“But it’s too big to be a [pistol],” Solo objected. “The size of it! It can’t be artificial — it can’t!”
“I have a very strange feeling about this,” was Luke’s comment.
At long last the task is finished. The Soul Edge is mine. A weapon of such awesome power that gravity itself appears affected when the mighty energies contained within this weapon are unleashed. From the skies comes the sound of Gabriel’s trumpet heralding the coming of Ragnarog and the end of all things; life’s bane. On seeing such power men of spirit bow their heads in prayer whilst those of lower strength squirm in terror aghast at the great beast that is amongst them. The beast known only as “What the fusk is that thing!?”
In other words: It’s a bit tasty like!
Those of you who remember my previous review of the power of the TM93r AEP will enjoy this, everyone else perhaps should start with that review found in the archives.
I have enjoyed the wonders of the 93R for a few months now.
It is a fine weapon with many advantages, like full auto and great accuracy. But it wasn’t enough. Originally, I saw its place in my arsenal as a left handed backup gun. A sort of Uzi for my slightly less accurate left hand to use in dual gunning whilst my right aimed the mighty Desert Eagle at my foes. My common tactic was to draw and fire on full auto as I moved cover and thus give myself supporting fire and reduce my reliance on my team-mates. After all, who hasn’t asked some newbs to cover you, only to find as you start to move that they cower and hide leaving you to take the hits? I knew I had. Then I saw this photo taken at a gun show in Hong Kong:
I suddenly knew that this gun had a greater destiny. I started out collecting the parts needed to complete the masterpiece and soon put together the following:
This is the basic TM93r. It comes with all you see here, which is a battery, the charger and a single 40 round mag.
In order to add anything further to the gun you need to buy the special rail accessory that replaces the front grip. This is an official mod and runs about £10 or less.
With that on you can now add a torch. The best one to add is the Pro-Light as this is part torch and part battery upgrade for the gun. As I said in the first review, you cannot reach the torch with your gun hand. If you want light you have to use your second hand and you can’t lock the torch on. On a more positive note, the torches battery increases the ROF by a fair margin. This is noticeable when firing BB’s, with and without, the torch on full auto but it is not as large an increase as the Glock gets.
Next you will be wanting to ditch that slide for something a little sexier. The basic slide just unclips and pushes forwards off the gun. TM has just released an upgraded slide that has a full top rail and a silencer adapter. This slide is still plastic with the rail part and the screw for the silencer being metal.
This baby is now looking meaner! The new slide has a larger depth than the basic one and adds a chunk to the look and feel without changing the weight much. Like all rails, it does come with drawbacks namely that the rail adds a rough set of edges that can catch when drawing or holstering the weapon until you adjust your holster.
Onwards! Now the rail is on, let’s get a scope to up the accuracy. I am a big fan of the Walther branded pistol scopes. This is mainly because they are fairly cheap, very reliable and come with a large shroud at the front, significantly reducing the possibility of getting a shot to the lens. The battery also lasts for ages. I personally like the crosshair version because with my eye up to the optic the cross is tiny, but with my arm fully extended the cross gets bigger thus enabling me to aim at both ranges. This is of course personal choice.
I added to this a nice scope mount that I had picked up in a trade. This was from a M4 AEG I had bought. I don’t know the manufacturer, but I suspect that it is the Guarder version, which is about £20. The bonus over the supplied scope rings is that the sight sits a little higher on the rail (good for those of use who wear full face masks) and can be very quickly detached and reached. With a little practice I can attach the scope in less than 5 seconds.
Next came the need for more ammo. The 100 round mag is now available everywhere (I got mine at Wolf).
Its length is a little prodigious, but the advantages are manifold. A hundred rounds are a lot of BB’s to be able to fire without reloading. However, forget about filling one without a BB loader! The shape of the mag is a little hard to like. It has a long metal stick extending from a bulbous base, which adds significant length to the guns already long grip. This is an issue you need to think of. It is not any hassle in the holster as I have yet to catch it on anything even in the confines of Electrowerkz. The issue is simply, where to attach it to your vest. Unless you have P90 mag pouches you will find this mag a pain in the ass to store. Personally, I simply use it as my first mag, dump the Mo-Fo in my bag and then swap to my smaller 40 round mags. If I was to buy another mag, I have no idea where I would store it.
Also worth noting is that you cannot use any of the other AEP 100 round mags; IE the Glock one, as they wont fit. On top of this, you need to be careful when loading this mag as it will overload and the first few BB’s will trickle out when shot. I am not sure why this happens and I tend to just give the gun a quick burst before starting the game.
Finally came the bling. A silencer adds very little to an already very quiet gun, in fact…
…I bought it for one reason, it looks mean! Very cool. The front of the slide simply screws off revealing a thread which fits this silencer on. Note that other silencers don’t fit. I tried a TM SOCOM silencer first and that wouldn’t screw in.
The range of this gun is amazing. It is like some force is keeping the BB’s up in the air and straight and on target. This magical force is the hop up. TM has mastered the hop on this pistol to an amazing degree. Shot after shot sails out across the battle zone all flat and drifting inexorably into the opponents. This gun can snipe in CQB.
Finally, the package is assembled, watch in wonder!
Click these images for Windows-Wallpaper-size high res detail:
Here is the gun firing at Electrowerkz. This video demonstrates the power of the light as well as the rate of fire of the pistol:
CLICK FOR MOVIE ONE
This one is Trip shooting 1/3rd of the mag off full auto:
CLICK FOR MOVIE TWO
So, it looks the mustard but how does it do in battle? Basically, it kicks fucking ass to kingdom come!
I have two stories to tell you. I am not the world’s greatest airsofter, but I do play a lot of CQB and do a lot of pistoling. I have tried, tested and rejected many many combinations of firearms and tactics. I test things under the pressure of the Dark Angels and the Electrowerkz environment. Basically, if it works I like it. I won’t just use something just because it looks cool, it must be a players gun. It must perform. This gun performs. These two stories highlight the advantage this gun provides, and are not just bigging up my playing styles.
What counts is not necessarily the size of the dog in the fight – it’s the size of the fight in the dog. Dwight D. Eisenhower
The first story comes from an attack to Electrowerkz’s top floor. The enemy were slightly newb and hadn’t paid attention to the mission brief, in which Andy (Janno) had told everyone that the game was free roaming. This means that you need to defend all angles and not just one end of a floor. The opponents had taken the top floor and were holding off our troops at one end. I snuck down and across then up behind them. This put me in a position to flank them from the rear. I crept out of the DJ booth and on the floor. The enemy were laid out in front of me hiding behind the barrels. Now, we have all been here and what normally happens is you get off a few rounds into the nearest enemy then the rest hear your pistol/AEG and turn around and retaliate. Not with this gun. I simply used the gun in rifle mode:
This is when you consider the gun to be a very small rifle. You place your eye right up to the scope using both hands to hold it steady. You then tuck in both you arms to reduce your profile. Because the gun has no kick, you can place your shots on your target with ease. This mode gives the opponent very little to shoot at as you are making the smallest target possible. This maximises the advantages of any cover you may be behind.
Using this mode I was able to place three shots on every man. Two in the body, one in the head. Three of them walked without realising I was even there. The floor was ours and I walked down to my team-mates at the other end of the floor. Unfortunately, the enemy immediately regenerated and attacked. My team were quickly all hit. I retreated and hid in the tight corridor behind the doors to the top floor. My heart was leaping. I had put myself in a very small position and if this screwed up then I was likely to get laced. However, the AEP was ready for them. Tucked into the small space the AEP is still useable. If I had used my AEG in this play the opposition would have definitely seen it poking out from the doors edge and I would have got badly mauled with BBs. The AEP, although long for a pistol, enabled me to keep a bead on the narrow corridor the entire time without giving me away. Sure enough they fell for it and 6 opposition players walked right by me towards the corner and started talking about how they were going to take the stairs. I clicked the AEP onto full auto and used close quarters mode:
In this mode you are up close and dirty. You need to put a lot of fire down onto the opposition in a small time and in a confined space. You are perhaps fighting for a corner, against an unknown number of opposition. Or perhaps you are rushing a choke point and need the round in the air to win out. With a hundred rounds you have a large advantage against normal pistols. Because you can point at anything you can see you can aim much easier than with an AEG.
I opened fire on the newbs and sprayed them all at head height, making sure I got them all and holding the trigger down. I then bolted past them and down to the second floor. The AEP had struck again. Like a garden hose, it flung BB’s all over them.
(I should point out that this was “old skool” night and there was no bang rule or minimum safe distance.)
Two sets of newbs owned, and the 93R was still hungry.
Two weeks before I had taken the 93R to the Amherst Tunnels in Chatham. I had never played here before and the dark angels were looking forwards to playing against the locals. Here the AEP was my main weapon for the night and I was able to use it all night in Rifle Mode as a small arms short sniper rifle, placing single shots on the body parts of the opposition that I wanted. Because of the small profile I was able to, more often than not, win any one on one duel, whilst at the same time I could hold back a full on rush by switching to full auto mode and lacing an entire area. It was here and in the final game that the last mode of this gun came into play. The game was a quick turnaround battle where the object was to hold onto the marshal for 10 minutes whilst under fire. To win you would have to push the enemy back and be able to hold their counter assault. Fast play, regen’ quickly and a defiance to pain were all vital. Lucky for me that the Dark Angels excel at this style of play. We were all shouting encouragement to each other when regenerating and pushing as hard as we could. The opposition had enough time for one final assault and we were all pumped up when Andy called the play with:
“Has anyone seen Tears of the Sun?” (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0314353/)
This is the call for a full weapon assault as seen in the last moments of that great film. Time for Fire Support Mode.
FIRE SUPPORT MODE.
There are times when one gun is not enough. You need to put the serious smack down on the opponents and simply push them back by the volume of fire you and your team are laying down. This is obviously an Army tactic and the AEP is you friend here.
A true friend knows your weaknesses but shows you your strengths; feels your fears but fortifies your faith; sees your anxieties but frees your spirit; recognizes your disabilities but emphasizes your possibilities. William Arthur Ward
I swapped my LR into single hand mode and drew the 93R. I then switched it onto full auto and we were on. 5 DA’s shooting full auto is a lot of BB’s and the AEP enabled me to pick two targets at once and do my part to drive them back. The opposition were totally owned.
(I would add that at this event the opposition were very good, containing some Electrowerkz old timers such as Marcus as well as some top woodland players).
As you can see from these examples, the AEP is well placed to be used in a number of different scenarios where its abilities are powerful force multipliers that enable you to come out on top in many situations. You can use it as a rifle, a pistol, a sub machinegun. It can shoot long range on full auto as well as short range on single shot. So, does it have any problems?
- Holstering. There is almost no holster capable of smoothly packing in such a beast of a gun. With the scope taken off, you can fit it in the Guarder Tornado, but it isn’t very smooth to put back (drawing is fine). With the scope on then the professional real steel holsters from Magnum Industries (home of the Desert Eagle) are your only bet. These allow scopes to stay on, but I haven’t tried them yet. I use the Guarder and am happy with that.
- Size. This gun is large. Much larger then the DE and even a little larger than the new TM MP7 sub machine gun! This is a gun to scare the shit out of your opponents with.
- The 100 mags are a nightmare to store. You will have to come up with something clever to enable them to be stored safely.
- Price. Whilst not stupid money, this is a project gun and therefore a little on the expensive side. Since my wife may read this I am not tell how much I spent, but rest assured darling, it was mostly trades… honest!
Here is the gun next to the MP7:
All in all the pluses vastly outweigh the negatives with this gun and I hope that I have shown that this is a gun well worth investing in. A true players gun, reliable, high ROF, good power, long range and pimped to the max!
I bought the accessories from Wolf Armouries, Airsoft Armouries and Airsoftsupplier.co.uk (these guys were very helpful in getting the rarer components and should be your first stop for official AEP stuff).
Q. Why not just get a MP7?
Sure, the MP7 is nice. I have used one and I can say it has much to be recommended, however it doesn’t have the ROF of this solution as well as many of the accessories (such as the large battery). Add to this that they are totally the flavour of the month. I was at Electro’ on Tuesday and I counted 6. This gun is far more unique. Personally, I will be getting an MP7 when the first round of upgrades appears.
Q. So where now?
Now, internal upgrades are starting to appear in Japan and Hong Kong. I will be upgrading all the internals in this gun as and when it is possible and reporting on the improvements in future blog entries. I will also getting a stock to assist the Rifle Mode and will post when and where I find one.
Get yours today!
Information such as crono and other features are to be found in my original review: Here
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