The Gauss Gun (real name: Project 62 or Item 62) is a weapon created by researchers and weapon smiths within the Zone, and plays an important part in S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call of Pripyat. Unlike traditional firearms, the Gauss Gun does not launch projectiles using combustion, but rather uses a series of electromagnets powered by fragments of the Flash artifact to fire special, highly-conductive slugs at high speeds, capable of ignoring most armors, even the armor of the Exoskeleton. Apart from a custom design it uses traditional parts from firearms such as a folding skeletal stock and uses a modified SUSAT scope as a sight mount, the scope has been modified for increased magnification of sight.
The Gauss Gun is the epitome of sniping weapons, and excels in that role. With pinpoint accuracy, zero recoil, and no muzzle-flash, the Gauss is perfect for sniping from any distance. However, the extreme damage of the shot is off-set by an extremely low rate of fire - it can only fire once every two seconds, and reloading adds another four seconds to the delay, the longest of any sniper rifle.
In Shadow of Chernobyl, NPCs using the Gauss Gun are not too extreme - the Gauss deals enough to likely induce critical bleeding, but the medkit can heal faster, and so long as the player's suit has a higher than 50% bulletproof statistic, only a headshot will result in guaranteed death for the player. By the time the player reaches Pripyat, where they first encounter the Gauss Gun, they will likely have a suit with 60-80%, reducing the damage to around 60, as opposed to an astronomical 200. However, the Gauss Gun does noticeable damage to armor and suits cannot be repaired unless you have at least four Pellicle, Battery, or Spring artifacts.
In Call of Pripyat, the Gauss Gun is only wielded once by an NPC, to devastating effect. Only one suit - the Exoskeleton - can surpass 50% bulletproof, the Gauss is an instant kill to the player, no matter what armor or healing artifacts may be in effect. This makes the Gauss sniper an unparalleled threat, one that must be taken down immediately in order to survive.
Shadow of Chernobyl
The Gauss Gun is in its prime in the original game, used regularily by Monolith snipers late in the game. Despite its common use in Pripyat and Chernobyl, it's very difficult for the player to get his own Gauss Gun in perfect condition, but even in a half-broken state it's capable of dealing enough damage to kill even a Pseudogiant.( On easy difficulty )
In S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky, the precursor to the Gauss Gun was being used by Scar, protagonist, to incapacitate Strelok's psy-protection. That weapon is named EM1 Rifle. "EM" stands for "Electromagnetic".
Call of Pripyat
In Call of Pripyat, only one copy of the Gauss Gun is found, used by the first Monolith Preacher who is encountered in Pripyat. Suspected of being the reason some of the helicopters have failed en route to the Chernobyl NPP, a main quest leads to you discovering the creation of the Gauss Gun. Depending on how you complete the quest, you can keep the Gauss Gun - though the ammunition is by far the most expensive, at 2000 rubles per battery (though the number of charges inside depends on your quest).
The rifle was created by one of the research groups operating under "Project #62", which sought to turn artifacts into ammunition for various weapons. Some Stalkers, namely Cardan took part in the creation of the rifle, and you can even find a larger, artillery-scale Gauss Cannon, though you unfortunately cannot fire it. Further investigating the project affects the game's ending, as depending on the information you recover, the Gauss either remains a rare, legendary weapon, or it can be explored yet again becoming a Military weapon (either succeeding and giving the Military incredible power, or failing due to cost).
If you keep the Gauss Gun on you when you evacuate the Zone in the game's conclusion, it is revealed through the ending slides that the Military begin to reproduce the Gauss Gun; however, the rifle will not be mass produced because of the extreme costs to build and maintain one.
- This weapon is very similar in appearance to the M72 Gauss Rifle from the game Fallout 2. It uses 2mm ammunition just like in Shadow of Chernobyl and has only minor cosmetic differences (such as wood furniture instead of polymer or plastic) and both weapons are extremely powerful and accurate. Of course since Fallout 2 was released in the 90's it would be safe to assume the weapons in S.T.A.L.K.E.R. are a homage to the Fallout series and not visa versa.
- For some reason, any trader is willing to buy this gun (and ammo) in all three S.T.A.L.K.E.R. games; though they offer a very small sum for the power and accuracy it offers.
- In real life, the official name of the Gauss Gun is called a Coilgun. The name "Gauss" is derived in reference to Carl Friedrich Gauss, who formulated mathematical descriptions of the magnetic effect used by magnetic accelerators. Today the alias "Gauss Rifle" has become widely popular in both real life and in fiction.
- The ammunition battery on the weapon's mesh reads 2.54mm, the XML string for the inventory reads 2mm, and the mesh for the battery itself reads 9mm.