The Beretta 92 is a series of semi-automatic pistols designed and manufactured by Beretta of Italy. The model 92 was designed in 1972 and production of many variants in different calibers continues today. The United States Armed Forces replaced the Model 1911A1 .45 ACP pistol in 1985 with the military spec Beretta 92F, the M9, and the M9 itself was replaced by modified Sig Sauer P320 variants known as the M17 and M18 (the full-size variant and the smaller variant respectively).
When the U.S. military was directed to conform to NATO caliber requirements, a joint service pistol program was held to replace the M1911A1. The Beretta 92F won over the SIG Sauer P226 on grounds of price, despite the fact that the test model failed the trials at Aberdeen Proving Ground, and was adopted as the M9 Pistol. The M9's early service record was met with numerous problems, infamous among them the instance of the slide cracking and launching into the wielder's face due to extremely poor metallurgy.
However, it was realized that some of the pistol's flaws stemmed not from a particularly fragile design, but cheap, lowest bidder magazines, over powered ammunition and a manufacturing error on Beretta's part, and a majority of functional errors have been worked out. M9s are still notorious for wearing out rapidly. The main controversy over the M9 today is the stopping power its caliber offers compared to the M1911A1, though the same can be said about any other 9mm weapon. It has also proven to be very temperamental in hostile environments, with troops deployed to Iraq suffering frequent malfunctions with their M9s despite regular cleaning. Interestingly enough, several Special Forces units adopted variants of the 1911 and SIG Sauer P226 over the Beretta design, notably the Marine MEU (SOC) units and Navy SEALs, respectively.
The military M9 and the civilan 92FS were largely similar aside from slide and frame markings and, in some cases, the sights (the 92FS having 3-dot type sights,and the M9 having a more vertical 2-dot type), but, in 2000, the 92FS was altered from the M9 in several respects: the 92FS (as well as 96 and 98 pistols) were all given heavier frames, making them stronger, and the backstrap of the grip was made more ergonomic for small hands. The M9, remaining a contractually built pistol, has undergone no such redesign, and is thus distinguishable from the current make of the civilian 92FS.
Use by Solid Snake and Raiden
The Beretta 92F was the standard sidearm of special operations group FOXHOUND. It served as Solid Snake's weapon of choice during Operations Intrude N313 and F014, procured on-site in Outer Heaven and Zanzibar Land, respectively.
In 2007, Snake, now a member of Philanthropy, used a modified M9 on board the tanker USS Discovery. This version of the pistol had been modified to fire anesthetic rounds instead of actual bullets, making it a non-lethal alternative weapon ideal for the NGO's sneaking missions (where casualties were not an option). The M9 had an attached sound suppressor, as well as a visible laser sight and tritium-illuminated 3-dot iron sights, making it ideal for both keeping a low profile and making precision shots, even in low-light environments. In addition, its anesthetic rounds were also powerful enough to it to affect the target upon contact within seconds, and can last for hours, although the exact time in tens of seconds it needs to take effect will vary depending on the body part it makes contact with, and could even knock out an elephant should the tranquilizers make contact with it. A downside to this, however, was that it required manual chambering every time a tranquilizer round was fired, as the slide locks after each shot.
Following the incident, fans of Philanthropy and Solid Snake began to create models similar to the modified M9 used in the ill-fated mission (according to Iroquois Pliskin). One such model found its way onto the Big Shell offshore decontamination facility, where it was used by Raiden during his infiltration in 2009. Upon procuring the non-ID-tagged weapon, Raiden believed the possibility of terrorists having brought it aboard was suspect, since it had apparently been in storage prior to their armed takeover of the facility.
Use by other U.S. armed forces personnel
A regular-issue Beretta 92 was utilized by a Marine during the Tanker Incident, in an attempt to stop the theft of Metal Gear RAY. However, this proved ineffective against RAY's armor, and he was shoved aside by a fellow Marine to commence a grenade launcher assault.
Use by other military personnel
Behind the scenes
The Beretta 92F first appears as the Handgun in the original Metal Gear and its sequel Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake, referred to as the "Baretta M92F" in the English instruction manuals of the former. It is the first weapon available to player in both games, each located within a cargo truck. In Metal Gear 2, it can be seen in the story intro, alongside a magazine of 9mm bullets.
The Beretta 92F also appears in Snake's Revenge, the sequel to the non-canon NES version of Metal Gear, as identified in the instruction manual and advertisements. During Operation 747, Lt. Solid Snake starts the mission with one equipped.
|Weapon Window description for Handgun
|Pistol. Push the [Weapon Button] to shoot one round at a time. Can be fitted with a suppressor.
|Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake
|A semi-automatic pistol used as the standard firearm in the U.S. military. Can be fitted with a suppressor. Can also be reloaded.
In Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty, a standard Beretta M9 is seen used by U.S. Marines firing at the Metal Gear RAY prototype commandeered by Revolver Ocelot. In Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes, several guards (more specifically, the riot shield soldiers) are shown using the standard version of the Beretta 92F.
The equippable M9 presented in Metal Gear Solid 2 and The Twin Snakes is based on a real weapon: a special ops modified M9 designed to function in the same role as a Mk22 "Hush Puppy". The first modification was to the barrel: notches were ground into the sides so as to allow the application of specially designed (and, reputedly, highly effective) snap-on sound suppressor. This suppressor overshadowed the sights of the M9 and so crude iron sights were affixed onto the suppressor itself.
The second modification was done to the frame of the pistol by means of an added mechanism resulting in a change to the function of the weapon that allowed the slide to remain forward after each shot: instead of the pistol self-loading a fresh cartridge after every shot, the user would have to manually work the slide and chamber a new round themselves. This feature increased the silence of the weapon by disallowing the normal and noisy functions of the standard M9, but could be disengaged as well, allowing the weapon to resume a normal semiautomatic role. All modifications were done by Knight's Armament Company (the same company that produces the sound suppressor for the Mk.23 SOCOM). However, the modification greatly decreased the service life of the frame, reducing it to about 100 shots. This was due to the increased stresses the frame had to absorb due to the slide-lock feature.
The downside of the modification as present in-game is a severe firing delay; the modified M9 is not a combat pistol, but a weapon better suited for concealed users operating outside of heated combat.
|Weapon description for M9
|Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty
|Tranquilizer with suppressor. Press [Weapon Button] to aim, and release to fire. Equipped with laser pointer.
|Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes
|Metal Gear Solid Mobile
|Tranquilizer with suppressor. Equipped with laser pointer. Press the Action key to fire.
Known real-world users of this modified M9 include AFSOC (U.S. Air Force Special Operations Command).
An article about the weapon can be found here, along with a different, updated version of the suppressor system manufactured commercially by a different company (Feb. 2000).
The novelization of Metal Gear Solid 2 by Raymond Benson depicts Raiden as having the M9 upon his entry into the Big Shell (this applies to the Very Easy difficulty in-game where the M9 is available from the first area). In addition, he carried a lethal M9, but he kept tranquilizer darts in his backpack if needed.
Colored image from an advert for the NES version of Metal Gear.
- Metal Gear
- Snake's Revenge (non-canon)
- Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake
- Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes
- Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty
- Metal Gear Solid Mobile (non-canon)
|This page uses content from Wikipedia. The original article was at Beretta 92. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with the Metal Gear Wiki, the text of Wikipedia is available under the GNU Free Documentation License.
- ^ Implied by Snake finding them in truckbeds during his missions there.
- ^ http://web.archive.org/web/20100215140231/http://www.advanced-armament.com/pdf/articles/gweap0200.pdf