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The T-55 Directed Energy Rifle/Advanced, or Storm Rifle, is the evolution of the standard Plasma Rifle and served various infantry during the violent Sangheili civil conflicts that followed the Human-Covenant war. The weapon now includes a modular coil set, a high-mounted cooling shroud, and an extended barrel, all contributing to greater overall performance in the field than its predecessor.
As the name might suggest, the fully automatic weapon unleashes a "storm" of projectiles upon firing - rapid and deadly at close to medium range, but less accurate at longer ranges. However, it overheats within approximately 5 seconds of continual fire, though this is generally still plenty of time to deplete shields of and kill a number of hostiles. It seems the Sangheili have traded the slower, yet more accurate and longer range weapons of the past for more aggressive variants, influenced by the Jiralhanae "Jiralhanae force" tactics evident through such items as the Jiralhanae variant of the Type-25 Directed Energy Rifle. The weapon also appears to be similar to the Plasma Repeater, though it lacks the former's ability to quickly vent waste heat.
The Storm Rifle has a high rate of fire, giving it the ability to take out shields with ease. It has a fair amount of shots before it overheats, letting the user continuously damage the opponent. At short range, it is relatively easy to keep aim on the target.
The Storm Rifle is good against shields, but not quite as effective against armor. It will destroy shields but shortly after overheat, leaving the user vulnerable to a counterattack. At mid to long range, it is practically useless, meaning it is only a close range weapon.
Changes in the Halo 4 Weapon Tuning UpdateEdit
- Main article: Weapon Tuning Update
- Capable of killing in three fewer rounds.
- Auto-aim angle has been reduced.
- Projectile spread has been decreased.
Changes from Halo 4 to Halo 5: GuardiansEdit
- Overheats much faster.
- The revolving compartment below the receiver now spins as the rifle fires.
- Slightly different firing sound.
- Gains the ability to smart scope.
- Color of screen changed to blue.
- Screen projections changed to a more generic overheating gauge and battery meter.
- Screen no longer projects interesting glyphs when overheating.
- It was confirmed by 343 Industries that the Storm Rifle has replaced the Plasma Rifle in Halo 4, marking the first time that the Plasma Rifle has not been a usable weapon in a Halo game.
- At launch, the Storm Rifle was the only Loadout weapon without a weapon skin design, but one will be available for those who purchase a Sangheili Ranger from McFarlane Toys.
- It has a strong resemblance to the Type-51 Carbine, with a different stock and blue coloring.
- The Rifle has a heat display similar in location and appearance to the ammo counter on the MA5 family of firearms.
- One battery unit will disappear when two plasma bolts are fired, meaning a fully-charged Storm Rifle can fire 200 bolts.
- Despite being the successor to the Plasma Rifle, it is actually less effective (Shot-for-shot) at removing energy shielding and, while the Plasma Rifle can remove shielding in six plasma bolts, the Storm Rifle takes ten. However, this is compensated for by the Storm Rifle's higher rate of fire.
- In Halo 4 multiplayer, with the ammo specialization enabled, it is possible to spawn with a Storm Rifle that carries a 150% charge. This means that it is capable of firing 300 plasma bolts.
- The Storm Rifle is the Halo 4 Covenant equivalent to the UNSC MA5D Assault Rifle - an interesting coincidence, considering that the term 'Assault Rifle' is derived from the German word Sturmgewehr, which literally means 'Storm Rifle'.
- The Storm Rifle bears a considerable resemblance to the UNSC's MA5 series of Assault Rifles in both shape and function and bears more resemblance to the Human weapon than it's predecessor, the Plasma Rifle.
- Considering that the Covenant's technology is based on mimicking other technology (usually that of the Forerunners) rather than inventing new technology of their own, it is likely that the Covenant has seen the effectiveness of the Human weapons in action and has mimicked several of those design elements into their weaponry.