Page 81 of Savage Worlds Deluxe Explorer's Edition says:

Double Taps & Three Round Bursts A character with a semi-automatic weapon (such as a Colt .45, an M1 Carbine, or even an M16 [my emphasis]) can fire two shots in one action by "double-tapping". [description of double tap rule follows]

Many modern automatic weapons, such as the M16A2, have a selector switch that allows the user to go from single shot, to burst fire, to fully-automatic as a free action. Burst fire, or a Three Round burst, gives the user [description of 3RB bonuses follows].

Pages 54 and 55 describe the various notes that can be attached to weapon stat-lines. They list:

3RB: The weapon has a three-round burst selector (see page 81).

Auto: This full-auto weapon may fire in automatic (single shot) mode.

Double Tap: The weapon can rapidly fire two rounds. [rules follow, identical to the rule presented on page 81]

Semi-Auto: The weapon fires on semi-auto and can take advantage of the double-tap rules (page 81).

In the gear listings on page 61 and 62, the Colt .45 and M1 Carbine have the "Semi-Auto" note. But the M-16 has the "Auto" and "3RB" notes. It is not listed as having "Semi-Auto". There is no distinction in the gear listing between an older M16 and the M16A2.

None of the weapons in the gear list are actually tagged with a "Double Tap" note; I assume this is an editing glitch, since that rule has been rolled up into the "Semi-Auto" note.

Question 1: Should the listing of the M16 in the rule on page 84 be interpreted as implying that any "Auto" weapon also counts as "Semi-Auto", and can make use of Double-Tap? (e.g. Tommy guns, MP40s, AK-47s, etc)

Question 2: Can only weapons which are explicitly noted with "3RB" make use of the Three Round Burst rule? Can users of other automatic weapons (without a 3RB selector position) make use of the Three Round Burst rule via fire discipline?


1 Answer 1


The choice of 'auto' here causes people a lot of confusion with this, and makes things seem far more complicated than they actually are.

  • Fully automatic weapons - any weapon with RoF 2 or greater is fully automatic. Without any other designators it can only fire in this mode, and incurs the recoil penalty.

  • The auto designator - this is used to show that a fully automatic weapon can also fire single shots and double tap

  • The semi-auto designator - this is used to show that a weapon with a RoF of 1 can double tap

  • The 3RB designator - this is used to show that a weapon can fire 3 round bursts

So, in your example the M-16 has a RoF of 3, so can fire full auto of up to 3 'shots'. It's auto designator also means it can fire single shots and double tap. The 3RB designation means it can also fire 3 round bursts.

See this post for clarification on this on the official forums.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Does Clint's post count as an official ruling that (fully-)automatic weapons can Double Tap? I can see no support for this claim in the rules-as-written. \$\endgroup\$ Apr 29, 2016 at 9:46
  • \$\begingroup\$ No, and I can't see where my answer says that? To double tap with a fully automatic weapon, i.e. one that has RoF2+, it needs to have the auto designation as well \$\endgroup\$
    – Wibbs
    Apr 29, 2016 at 10:01
  • \$\begingroup\$ The thing that's confusing me is that the Double Tap rule says semi automatics can Double Tap, and the Automatic Fire rules say that a weapon with the Auto tag can fire single shots. I can't see anything in the rules which says that Auto weapons can Double Tap but it seems to be a "commonly accepted truth", including in your answer. It seems reasonable, but I'd like to see a proof-from-RAW or official clarification, if one exists. \$\endgroup\$ Apr 29, 2016 at 10:08
  • \$\begingroup\$ Is my edit clearer? The rate of fire indicates a weapon is fully automatic. The auto designator shows that a fully automatic weapon can also fire single shots and double tap. This is also made clear in the last line of Clint's answer where he states 'The weapon would specifically need Auto to Double Tap and 3RB to use that ability (see the M-16 for an example of such a weapon)' \$\endgroup\$
    – Wibbs
    Apr 29, 2016 at 10:09
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Yep I am. Clint is the official brand manager for Savage Worlds, and that forum I link to contains official rules clarifications and corrections. As far as Savage Worlds goes, that forum counts as RAW \$\endgroup\$
    – Wibbs
    Apr 29, 2016 at 10:17

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