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The New Federal Assault System Mk.II (NFAS-II. Imperial designation Shotgun, 12ga, M101) is a military-grade automatic shotgun designed in the New Frenco Empire and widely utilized by both the Grand Imperial Military and the Austronesian Military. Originally conceived as a replacement for both the pre-war AA-12 and M77 shotguns in GIM service, the NFAS-II went through an unusually hectic development cycle wrought with last-minute cancellations and administrative incompetence. Regardless of these issues, the NFAS was finally put into service a decade and a half after it's original conception, and it is considered a successful weapon, not just in the Empire but abroad as well.

Taking many design cues from the NFAS-I (an envisioned pre-war replacement for the AA-12), the NFAS-II was conceptualized based on the experiences of the GIM in Austronesia and Africa, where it was found that troops were often forced into brutal CQC situations in spaces where support would not be possible, and the lack of adequate firepower on the fireteam or squad level was a serious hinderance in these all-too-common instances. New designs for rifles and automatic weapons were inspired by these studies, though at the time, GIM high command was uninterested in undergoing mass-replacement of it's small arms stockpiles while in the middle of a war. Instead, any potential solutions were to be supplemental, meaning it had to fit current logistical doctrine rather than change it.

The GIM requested SMGs/PDWs and shotguns that could perhaps fit this role, though only the order for shotguns really went anywhere. Among the most enthusiastic to win a contract was Remington-Ithaca, who carried a wide variety of pre-war shotgun designs that never went into serious testing or production. The Remington New Federal Assault System, of which only two examples were made, was taken out of the vault and heavily refined to fit GIM requirements. Among said requirements was that the weapon was to be "relatively compact", allowing it to be effectively wielded in cramped jungle or urban conditions and used by airborne forces and vehicle crewmen, as well as allowing it to be comfortably carried by a designated user alongside a rifle if necessary.

To make the weapon as light and compact as possible while still retaining a minimal recoil profile, the NFAS' blowback system was axed and replaced with the same gas system seen in the AA-12. To retain a degree of versatility, an advanced electronic primer system was implemented that would allow the NFAS to use a wide variety of shotshell, regardless of powder load (allowing it to use everything from standard buckshot to low-pressure "Dragon's Breath" rounds).

The end product developed, however, was flawed. The electronic system had a tendency to fry when dropped from only a few feet, and the rifle was quite unwieldy, among a myriad of other issues. The GIM was quick to label the NFAS-II a failure, however, the project did not end. After nearly ten years of independent developing (with only on-and-off support from the government), the final version of the NFAS was ready by 2107. Retaining all the original selling points of the original, the weapon was made more durable and even more light, thanks to nanoforging techniques. Despite the NFAS vastly improved performance (meeting or exceeding the original 2096 trials qualifications in every way), the government was hesitant to adopt it in any significant manner, only issuing it to testing units in very limited number. It wasn't until the 2109 Riots, where five NFAS testing models (transported from a nearby testing arsenal and loaded with soma canisters and beanbags) were given to local Civic Police out of desperation, that the government took the once-disgraced weapon seriously. Reports from the users during the incident were overwhelmingly positive, and the weapon proved a key factor in the Nancy Boulevard Standoff, where a force of only four police officers and two Cadet Guards beat back a mob of more than two hundred using only one NFAS and various thrown munitions.

The NFAS was given the M101 designation and issued throughout the GIM later that year. It has since become a standard infantry weapon throughout the Imperial uniformed services, and many are given to infantry companies to be doled out to squads and fireteams as the commander sees fit. To many troops, they've proved to be "lifesaving" in harsh CQC confrontations, and generally a useful tool all around - current GIM infantry drills often call for a FRAG-20 loaded M101 to lay suppressing fire on enemy positions alongside machine guns, and the utility of being able to instantly turn the weapon from a devastating automatic CQB weapon into a non-lethal munitions thrower makes it a very common tool in peacekeeping services such as IDISA and Civic Police.

Austronesian Procurement and Use

Following the normalization of relations between the Empire and the Austronesian Federation in the late 2110s and early 2120s, many of the Empire's major independent and semi-independent businesses expanded into Austronesia, seeking to take advantage of the island chain's developed, yet still rapidly growing economy. Remington-Ithaca was one such company and, like many Western defense firms, found lucrative business with the Federation government, who was seeking to rapidly modernize and expand the armed forces.

The Austronesian Land Service trialed the weapon alongside a couple of domestic designs and a submission from Japan, where it was eventually found to be the best of the lot after rigorous field testing. The Austronesians were partial to it for the same reasons as Imperial services, being that it struck an almost perfect balance between performance, reliability, and handling in it's relatively compact package. It's notable competence in the harsh jungle conditions also proved attractive to the potential customers, and one General in attendance reportedly deemed it "perhaps the greatest jungle-fighting tool we can put in our arsenal".

It was eventually put into service in the mid-2120s, with Austronesia first relying on imports, though eventually convinced the Imperial government to allow licensed production in their own domestic factories (a notable accomplishment, considering the Empire's notoriously tough international regulations on it's modern milspec weaponry). As per agreements with Remington-Ithaca and the Imperial state, Austronesian NFASes are only produced through state-owned enterprises. Most are manufactured at Pindad Small Arms, though quite a number are made alongside Austronesia's Nesher 45 (another license-built design) at State Arsenal 14.

Appearances

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