Assault Rifle
Weapon Data
First Found on MedSci Deck (armory)
Hydroponics Deck
Requirements Strength: 2
Standard Weapons: 6
Researchable No
Maintenance 4
Modification 2 (1st) / 4 (2nd)
Repairing 4
Ammunition Standard Bullets
Anti-Personnel Bullets
Armor-Piercing Bullets
Magazine Size 36 / 72
Attack Types Single Shot
Damage 10
Summon Code assault rifle

When the rail launcher rounds were spent, when the auto-mines were bypassed, when the neuron acceleration field was neutralized, the men still had their M-22's and their gunpowder. And, by God, they used them to good effect.

The M-22 Assault Rifle is a weapon that appears in System Shock 2.
It is the most powerful Standard Weapon in the game.


Well-loved by grunts everywhere, the M-22 Assault Rifle is a good entry into the world of automatic rifles. Rapid-fire keeps vulnerable enemies down and the single shot mode is good for accuracy. Armour penetration and damage potential are both moderate.

When used for heavy automatic fire, the aim point tends to wander. The design by committee nature of the unit however has led to some questions being asked regarding its reliability.


The Assault Rifle requires Standard Weapons level 6 and Strength level 2 to use. No research is required.

Ammunition Types

Standard Bullets icon Standard Bullets - The most common type of bullets in the game which deals Standard (unmultiplied) damage.
Anti-Personnel Bullets icon Anti-Personnel Bullets - Deals additional damage to partly and fully Annelid opponents.
Armor-Piercing Bullets icon Armor-Piercing Bullets - Deals additional damage to partly and fully Mechanical opponents.

Damage Table

Annelid Half-Annelid Mech Half-Mech Final Boss
Standard x1 x1 x1 x1 x1
Armor-Piercing x0.5 x0.5 x4 x2 x1.25
Anti-Personnel x2 x4 x0.5 x1 x0.75

Firing Modes

  • NORM (Primary mode) - It fires a single shot when the trigger is pulled.
  • AUTO (Secondary mode) - It fires bullets continuously until the player stops pulling the trigger or the magazine runs out of ammunition.


  • Level 1 - Reduces reload time by ⅓ and increases damage to 110% of normal.
  • Level 2 - Increases clip size from 36 to 72 and increases damage to 125% of normal.


  • The first M-22 the player can typically find is located in Sector A of the Hydroponics Deck.
    The next one is found in Operations Deck's Armory.
  • Through sequence-breaking, the player can access the Armory on the MedSci Deck to receive an Assault Rifle early in the game, although it is not likely he would be able to wield it at that time.


  • When using the right type of ammunition, this weapon can pin any enemy down within 5 shots, including Rumblers.
  • Although not as deadly single shot-wise as the Grenade Launcher, the Assault Rifle uses the most common types of ammunition in the game, making it one of the most practical ranged weapons.
  • Since the Assault Rifle uses the same ammo as the Pistol and is a far better weapon, you might as well drop the Pistol once you are able to use it. 
  • It is the most durable Standard Weapon in the game.
  • AUTO mode of this weapon drains ammo at an incredibly rapid rate. You should use it preferably when surrounded by multiple opponents, a situation which rarely occurs in the game. It could be also used to defeat a particularly difficult opponent.


  • The Assault Rifle located in the armory on the MedSci Deck is unbreakable and has reduced kickback. It will still decay, but never jam regardless of its condition.[1]
    • Partially fixed as of version 2.46. The aforementioned Assault Rifle still has zero kickback in Normal setting and greatly reduced kickback in Auto, but will eventually jam if used when degraded enough.
      • This can be reverted by editing the appriopriate .mis.dml file (in this case, medsci2.mis.dml) located in the main System Shock 2 folder. Lines that are responsible for gun breakability are found after a relevant comment (look for word "break" to find it) and need to be either deleted/cut out or preceded by "// " without the quotes, making them only a comment instead of a working command.
      • Alternatively (preferably after getting this very weapon, since there's also an unbreakable EMP Rifle nearby) one can create a file named user.cfg in the main game folder containing only "gun_degrade_rate 0" (without the quotation marks) and re-run the game. The gun will now be unbreakable and also stay at its current condition (6 when found). Alas, all guns in the game will behave the same way. Use that with care.


  • Its name during the production phase was M19 Assault Rifle.

See Also



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