|Weapon Type||Primary Weapon|
|Weapon Class||Assault Rifle|
|Rank Prerequisites||Rank 123|
|Damage||35 -> 25|
|Range||90 max -> 150 min|
|Magazine Size||30, 31|
|Rate of Fire||1225 RPM|
The M231 FPW (Firing Port Weapon) was designed for the M2 Bradley infantry fighting vehicle. The Rock Island Arsenal worked with the World War 2-era M3 submachine gun, another FPW based on the HK33, and an adapted AR-15/M16-pattern weapon before deciding that the last weapon had promising qualities and was given the designation XM231.
Colt was given the contract for the weapon and continued working on the design, and the weapon was finalized in 1979 and adopted as the M231.
The original Rock Island Arsenal XM231 fired from an open bolt, giving the weapon an incredible rate of fire, at 1050 RPM (Rounds Per Minute). After Colt received the design, a special buffer and spring assembly limited the rate of fire to 200 RPM, thereby eliminating the risk that users would expend their ammunition before their weapon was brought to target.
At some point during development, the weapon's fire rate was reintroduced at the 1100-1200 RPM range.
Officially, the M231 is not to be detached from its parent vehicle unless in an emergency, and the operator's manual warns of precautions that would have to be taken when using the weapon outside the vehicle. In-game, this rule is clearly violated.
The M231 is a powerful, high recoil assault rifle that was originally added in the Phantom Forces beta. The M231 is very powerful, deadly at close range, and requires some serious compensation without any attachments. The high Rate of Fire (RoF) is helped with the M231 having 150 rounds in reserve. With this in mind, if the recoil can be controlled, it can become a very efficient weapon that is virtually impossible to beat in a close range scenario, with the second fastest Time-To-Kill (TTK) in the whole game.
The M231 is capable of killing an enemy at full health in 3 shots anywhere on the body up until 100 studs. Beyond this range, the M231 will kill in 4 shots to the body, however it will always kill a full health enemy with 3 headshots, ignoring the use of a suppressor.
The M231 can be construed as the bigger and faster-firing older brother of the Colt SMG 635. Users of the Colt SMG may find the M231 very familiar, with both severely increased recoil and a more powerful round. This results in more effectiveness at close range than the Colt SMG 635 at the cost of ranged capability and ammunition consumption. Possessing the same ammunition as most Assault Rifles, the 5.56x45mm round, gives the M231 much more viability, as this balances out it's high ammunition consumption rate by allowing for more frequent resupplies.
Usage & Tactics
Attachments can aid in giving the user better control over the recoil of the M231. Unfortunately, decrease in vertical recoil is negligible regardless of attachments. Lasers can be very valuable attachments, as they are an excellent substitute for optics and a solution for the M231's lack of iron sights by hip firing instead of ADS. Generally, optics are not recommended because the M231's vertical recoil composes more of a diagonal climb than a straight upward climb, which obstructs the reticles of said optics. Smaller optics, such as the Coyote, provide better visibility even if the optic is nigh unusable. Despite the sight rail being almost unusable, it is possible to use the laser as an improvised sight as the laser still accurately tracks the weapon's fire.
Suppressors can help a bit in reducing recoil, but they do not provide nearly as much controllability as other muzzle devices. However, the ability to stay off the radar will help significantly against experienced enemies that use the radar. The penalty to muzzle velocity caused by suppressors is unnoticeable in close range, where the M231 excels at. Players who use the standard suppressor will lose their 3SK, but will always be able to 4SK at any range. Usage of any other suppressor hurts the M231's ability to deal damage at range with suppressing tap-fire sprays, meaning that kills at even hundreds of studs suddenly degrades to a 5SK - a hefty price to pay for staying off the radar while bringing incredible close quarters DPS.
The M231's minimum damage, at 25, is very attractive for players who like to use assault rifles as DMRs. Many players have experimented with success the possibility to lower recoil with Canted Iron Sights. However, the intense recoil and incredible trigger control needed to fire off only a single round means that utilities such as the Ballistic Tracker becomes utterly pointless and even detrimental. Using the M231 as a DMR is incredibly difficult, as without precision trigger control, attempting to fire a single bullet results in 2-3 rounds being fired. The incredible model and visual recoil kick of the weapon makes it difficult to keep tracking a target, and oftentimes will give them enough time to bolt for cover without a kill being confirmed. As such, the M231 is not recommended for DMR purposes, and the player's secondary should cover long distance duty.
The M231 is a weapon oriented in Close Quarters Combat (CQC). With the damage of an Assault Rifle and the RoF of a PDW, it can be quite powerful once the user has mastered the recoil. Its fast reload can be handy, especially when the magazine is expended due to its fast RoF. Provided with good recoil control and the right attachments, the M231 can be a powerful weapon.
Pros & Cons
- Very quick TTK.
- Very small damage drop-off.
- Good hip firing stability.
- Fast reload similar to the other AR-15 platform guns in-game, which can allow a user to quickly get back into fights.
- Has more reserve ammunition than most assault rifles at 150 rounds instead of the usual 120.
- Good damage.
- Compatible ammunition.
- Very high RoF.
- Extremely high vertical recoil, cannot be mitigated effectively with attachments.
- Vertical recoil can obstruct reticles including the VCOG 6x Scope.
- No Ironsights.
- High ammunition consumption rate.
- Below average muzzle velocity for an Assault Rifle, at 2,200 studs per second instead of the usual 2,500 studs per second.
- Restricted to full automatic.
- Second hardest gun to unlock, after the Hecate II.
- Very bright muzzle flash.
- The "Troll gun" is a nickname brought by the Stylis Studios developers who designed it to be extremely useless and uncontrollable to experienced and inexperienced players alike. Despite this, some players have been able to use the M231 effectively, despite the implied definition of a "Troll Gun."
- This weapon is currently the fifth fastest firing weapon in the game, the first being the ZIP 22. However, it's the second-fastest firing automatic in-game, only beaten by the TEC-9.
- Before the July 2017 update, the M231 used to have a semi-automatic fire mode. Combined with the VCOG 6x Scope scope, the M231 became a very effective DMR. This fire mode has since been removed.
- This was also due to the M231 not having a semi-automatic fire mode in real life.
- It is the only AR-15 platform weapon in-game not to have a rear or front iron sight and the second weapon in the game to not have any sights at all (first being the Obrez).
- The M231 is currently the only weapon in the game that is usable that is meant to specifically be mounted in a vehicle, designed to be fired from the inside of the M2 Bradley.
- Before the July 2017 update, the M231, when equipped with a VCOG 6x Scope and a Canted Iron/Delta Sight, it had virtually no recoil. This bug has since been patched.
- The rank to unlock the gun is coincidentally the exact same numbers in the gun's name.
- The M231 used to be the very last gun to be unlocked in-game. That title currently belongs to the Hecate II at Rank 150.
- Before the 5/19/18 update, the m231 was effective with the VCOG 6x Scope, while tap firing it, thus making it somewhat a faster m16a4 when tapped right. the update made the VCOG 6x Scope on the sight bounce upward every time the trigger is pulled, thus making the m231 inaccurate again