Noble Legend
Now this is more of a canon question in which gameplay elements conflict with the actual canon of the universe, but it's occurred to me that the galilien nonlinear technology implemented in the spartan laser has proven itself far more effective in every manner than that of gauss technology, which, with the advent of the railgun, seems to be the direction in which the UNSC is moving. As a rudimentary example, consider the fact that the handheld Spartan Laser has a comparable charge time to that of the mounted Warthog gauss cannon, but only requires a single shot to destroy even a wraith, which the gauss cannon struggles to achieve in five, despite it's greater size.Are there any canon buffs that can explain why the UNSC hasn't attempted to mount large scale versions of such weapons on their spacecraft, or to compact it for use in small arms such as the assault rifle?Also, why did the forerunners never implement such technology when it's clearly superior to that of both plasma and hardlight? (Again, I'm aware that I'm making fairly broad assumptions based on gameplay elements)
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Quirel
Now this is more of a canon question in which gameplay elements conflict with the actual canon of the universe, but it's occurred to me that the galilien nonlinear technology implemented in the spartan laser has proven itself far more effective in every manner than that of gauss technology, which, with the advent of the railgun, seems to be the direction in which the UNSC is moving. As a rudimentary example, consider the fact that the handheld Spartan Laser has a comparable charge time to that of the mounted Warthog gauss cannon, but only requires a single shot to destroy even a wraith, which the gauss cannon struggles to achieve in five, despite it's greater size.Are there any canon buffs that can explain why the UNSC hasn't attempted to mount large scale versions of such weapons on their spacecraft, or to compact it for use in small arms such as the assault rifle?Also, why did the forerunners never implement such technology when it's clearly superior to that of both plasma and hardlight? (Again, I'm aware that I'm making fairly broad assumptions based on gameplay elements)

Until the Prometheans came along, I would have said that we've never seen anything like the Spartan Laser from the Forerunner because we've never seen their anti-armor weapons. Sentinels aren't front-line units, they're Roombas with weapons meant to kill unarmored biologicals and sterilize whatever remains.

Spartan Lasers are more powerful than the gauss cannons because the two are meant to do different jobs. A Carl Gustaf recoilless rifle is smaller than a 25mm Bushmaster autocannon and does considerably more damage to bunkers and armored vehicles, because one is a single-use anti-tank weapon, while the other is a machine gun meant to shred holes in cover and lightly armored vehicles through a sustained firefight. A laser weapon meant to do the same job as a gauss cannon might end up larger, heavier, and more expensive than its counterpart.

As for why lasers haven't seen widespread use on the UNSC side, how many shots does a Spartan Laser hold? Maybe you could keep firing if you hooked it up to an external power source, but that would assume that the unit is designed for sustained use. My guess is that the Spartan Laser is designed to be as cheap as possible. If the battery can only store five shots before it has to be returned to an armory to recharge, why make the unit last longer than that? I bet there's several internal components that have to be swapped out or refurbished with each charge, just to keep the price down.
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Mendicant Bias
Now this is more of a canon question in which gameplay elements conflict with the actual canon of the universe, but it's occurred to me that the galilien nonlinear technology implemented in the spartan laser has proven itself far more effective in every manner than that of gauss technology, which, with the advent of the railgun, seems to be the direction in which the UNSC is moving. As a rudimentary example, consider the fact that the handheld Spartan Laser has a comparable charge time to that of the mounted Warthog gauss cannon, but only requires a single shot to destroy even a wraith, which the gauss cannon struggles to achieve in five, despite it's greater size.Are there any canon buffs that can explain why the UNSC hasn't attempted to mount large scale versions of such weapons on their spacecraft, or to compact it for use in small arms such as the assault rifle?Also, why did the forerunners never implement such technology when it's clearly superior to that of both plasma and hardlight? (Again, I'm aware that I'm making fairly broad assumptions based on gameplay elements)


For whatever reason Bungie didn't want too futuristic of a military which is why they stuck with armaments hardly more advanced the what we have currently. As for 343I this is one of the major upgrades i would have liked to see post-war instead of magically pumping out upgraded ships months after the war ended.  There isn't any reason why the UNSC shouldn't have moved towards more Gauss/Rail standard weaponry after the Covenant war and especially after encountering Prometheans on Requiem.
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BaconShelf
Laser weapons aren't really worth changing to. A Spartan laser is powerful, yes, but it also only has five shots before it's done with. But it's also not much of an improvement over a rocket launcher, which has lock-on capabilities (and presumably compatibility with laser designation systems), compared to manually aiming the shot with a spartan laser. Not to mention the spartan laser's need to charge up for several seconds rather than fire on demand. Plus, steel and gunpowder are cheap and easy to manufacture, where energy weapon systems are unwieldly, expensive and generally not all that effective (or at least not so much more effective than a regular firearm that they're not worth the cost of upgrading). 
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Mendicant Bias
BaconShelf wrote:
Laser weapons aren't really worth changing to. A Spartan laser is powerful, yes, but it also only has five shots before it's done with. But it's also not much of an improvement over a rocket launcher, which has lock-on capabilities (and presumably compatibility with laser designation systems), compared to manually aiming the shot with a spartan laser. Not to mention the spartan laser's need to charge up for several seconds rather than fire on demand. Plus, steel and gunpowder are cheap and easy to manufacture, where energy weapon systems are unwieldly, expensive and generally not all that effective (or at least not so much more effective than a regular firearm that they're not worth the cost of upgrading). 


Don't we normally debate how things are cumbersome,inefficient at first then rapidly advance with development? Considering how the UNSC massive upgraded it's fleet capabilities after the war there shouldn't be any doubt on their ability to refine gauss,rail, and laser technologies. Look at our nuclear reactors of today compared with Mjolnir's mini reactor followed by a football sized HAVOK nuke.
Reverse engineering Sentinels beams,Focus cannons, and Focus rifles would give the UNSC means to improve their own laser technology.

I honestly haven't found a legitimate reason as to why the UNSC's weaponry hasn't been modernized post-war as their fleets were. Ballistics don't need to completely vanish however there needs to be a greater presence and implementation of those three types of weaponry.
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