Achtung! Cthulhu: The Secret War
A visual encyclopedia of weapons and other harmful gadgets wielded and encountered.
Enfield SMLE, Mk.III
The Short Magazine Lee-Enfield Mark III is the standard infantry weapon of the British military, including the Royal Marines, from 1907 onwards. A shortened and improved version of the magazine-fed bolt-action rifle designed by James Lee in 1888, it is produced by the Royal Small Arms Factory (RSAF) at Enfield, England. It can be fitted with the 0.5-kg Pattern 1907 Mk I bayonet with its 43-cm blade (Spear 20%, 1D8+1+db plus Impale).
The SMLE Mk III has swivels for a canvas rifle sling. Empty charger clips cost $0.25 each. Infantry troops wear a 10-pouch canvas belt holding 30 clips.
Webley, Mk.VI (Army)
Made by Webley and Scott of Birmingham, England, the Mark VI was adopted by the British Army in 1915 as its standard sidearm. It is a break-open double-action revolver chambered for the .455 Webley cartridge.
Military versions are fitted with a ring for a lanyard. The British Army issues the revolver in an open leather belt holster together with a leather belt pouch holding 12 spare cartridges. The Webley Mk VI can be used with the Prideaux speed loader, which allows loading six rounds in a single combat round. It costs $2.50 (without ammo) and weighs 0.25 kg filled. The device was nominally adopted by the British Army in 1918, but is not in common use.
Mills Bomb, No. 36 (Rifle Grenade variant)
The No.36M hand grenade is the most commonly issued British Commonwealth hand grenade. Invented in World War One as the “Mills Bomb”, this is a “defensive” grenade—the thrower must use it from cover as the blast radius is greater than the distance it can be thrown. The 36M can be converted into a rifle grenade and fired from a cup launcher-equipped Lee-Enfield rifle.
Auto-Ordnance Model 1921 Thompson
The Model 1921 is the brainchild of John Thompson, who saw the need for a portable automatic weapon or “trench broom” during the fierce fighting of the Great War. This first American submachine gun is marketed by the Auto-Ordnance Corporation of New York City.
The Tommy’s earliest foreign user is the Irish Republican Army (IRA), which buys some 650 through straw men. Although the US authorities confiscate 495 of these before they can be shipped across the Atlantic, dozens are used during the Irish struggle beginning in 1921—and some of the confiscated guns eventually turn up in Eire, as well! Some 14 guns are acquired in 1921 by Captain Hugh Pollard of British Intelligence for use in Ireland. Other foreign users include the police forces of Buenos Aires, Havana, Toronto, and Vancouver, as well as the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. The Shanghai Municipal Police adopts it in 1924, soon followed by the Garde Municipale of the French Concession in Shanghai. Small numbers are adopted by the militaries of Guatemala, Mexico, and Nicaragua. Europe largely shuns the weapon.
The Thompson is heavy; users with STR 35 or lower are at -10 percentiles to Submachine Gun skill.
“Special Ammunition” available from 1921 includes tracer bullets that add a nice incendiary effect. For use in riot situations, a birdshot cartridge is introduced in 1922. This essentially converts it into a full-automatic shotgun. However, damage is low, the cartridge being intended to discourage rioters rather than to kill them with its tiny 2.3-mm shot grains (No.7½ birdshot). The birdshot cartridge can only be used in a special 18-round box magazine.
Canvas belt pouches hold four box magazines. A canvas gun scabbard with shoulder sling, holding the gun with the stock detached as well as four box magazines, is also available.
Karabiner 98 kurz (Kar98k)
The Karabiner 98k, sometimes called the “Mauser” by the Allies, is the standard Wehrmacht rifle. A bolt-action design, the Kar. 98k is the latest iteration of the original Mauser bolt-action rifle, and over eleven million are made. The Kar. 98k has a five-round magazine loaded by stripper clip, and can use the Schiessbecher grenade launcher cap.
MP40 Sub-machine Gun
The Maschinenpistole 40, or MP40, is the standard Wehrmacht submachine gun introduced into service in 1938. It is a 32-round, open bolt, blowback automatic weapon. Constructed from pressed steel, it is cheaper to make than its predecessor, the MP38, and cures its accidental misfire problem if dropped. The MP40’s weakness is its magazine, which can cause misfeeds if damaged or dirty. The MP40 is issued to platoon and squad leaders, Fallschirmjäger, and tank crews. The British incorrectly call this weapon the “Schmeisser”.
DWM-Luger P.08 Parabellum
This famous single-action hammerless semiautomatic pistol was designed by Georg Luger and is made by Deutsche Waffen-und-Munitionsfabriken (DWM) of Berlin, Germany, from 1900 onwards. Named the Parabellum (“for war”) in Germany, it is better known as the Luger in the English-speaking world.
(In 1912, the German army added the Lange Pistole 08 or L.P.08, which has a long 20-cm barrel and is normally issued with a shoulder stock for use as a pistol-carbine. The L.P.08 is commonly known as the Artillerie model, as it was originally intended to arm artillery and machine gun crews. A 32-round drum magazine was added in 1917 for the L.P.08, to improve the weapon’s use in assaulting trenches.)
The Beretta M1934 is the standard sidearm of the Italian Army, and the M1935 is the standard sidearm of the Italian Navy and Air Force. The Beretta is a single-action blowback semi-automatic pistol, and is widely used by Italian and German forces, as well as being sold to the civilian market so it can be used by Italian partisans. As well as proving popular with Allied soldiers, the SOE issues captured examples to agents, together with suppressors.
The Flammenwerfer 35 is a one-man operated flamethrower capable of throwing an oil/petrol/tar mixture up to 27 yards (25m). The FmW35 is a Great War design, weighing nearly 80lbs (36kg) and carrying almost 2.5 gallons (12 litres) of fuel.
German flamethrowers are issued to engineers, but these are often detached to assault infantry units. The preferred targets of Flammenwerfer operators are both static and enclosed; these are approached under cover of smoke or covering fire, and the loopholes attacked directly.