The Zimmerman Shotgun In Armored Core VI Is Really Good. Too Good.

It’s been a good while since Armored Core VI Fires Of Rubicon is out, enough to the point we’ve seen a meta developed. How many of you have used the Zimmerman shotgun, sound off. Good.

The Zimmerman has been popular enough to spawn its own memes, but also gone too popular to the point some fans outright despise it.

But what makes the Zimmerman so good? As developer FromSoftware continues to work on updates and balance changes, it’s important to document why on day-1, the Zimmerman is a powerful, versatile weapon that becomes outright cheating in Double Trigger (dual-wielding) form.

Full name SG-027 ZIMMERMAN, it’s a kinetic shotgun designed for longer-range engagements, compared to the Haldeman. But it’s not just the range that seperates the two. It’s how the shotgun pellets spread. The Zimms have a tighter spread, which means it’s so much easier to get all the shots to land, dealing not only good damage, but a significant amount of impact to make that stagger bar fill quick.

The downside of the Zimmerman is its fire rate. You have one shot per reload, and reloading takes a full 2 seconds. So it deals massive burst damage but the catch is that if you whiff the shot, you’re vulnerable. That’s why dual-wielding Zimmermans is nutty. You can double the burst damage and should set you up for a stagger if you have the right shoulder weapon to keep the pressure up.

As nutty as it may be, twin Zimmermans are so fun to use. There’s a specific rhythm you can time your two available shots to ensure you’re always building that stagger bar up. So rather than a flaw, the long reloads becomes a cool feature of whether you can time your attacks well enough to keep up the pressure. It’s not as brainless of a playstyle as one might think, you still have to time the shots right. When faced against super-fast bosses where beginner to mid-experienced players would hard-lock the targets, it’s a still a challenge to find the opportunity when the target reticule lines up perfectly, though it does indeed make such encounters easier compared to using other weapons.

The core gameplay of Armored Core VI does revolve around the stagger bar a lot, to the point that it seems unwise to not build an AC that cannot deal good stagger damage. Twin Zimms was how I defeated most of the bosses post-Sea Spider, as the weapon only unlocks after you complete Chapter 2.

And there’s another reason why most players may have gravitate towards the Zimms. The starter weapons you get by Chapter 2 were not that good. I struggle to find a good main weapons as I felt that all the rifles and machine guns were not really strong enough to face the onslaught of bosses in the early game. FromSoft thought so too now that those weapons were buffed in the recent 1.02 patch.

Once new weapons were unlocked at Chapter 3, I tried the Zimmerman for fun and to my surprise it was decent, since my time with the Haldeman was less so. So I equipped another Zimmerman and didn’t looked back.

The Zimms can take down MTs with one shot, the ammo reserve is plentiful that I don’t find myself running out during boss fights or long missions. And when you have the right build, it’s powerful enough that you can forgo melee attacks altogether. The melee kicks I get with my Spring Chicken legs is good enough. I paired the twin Zimms with twin BML-G2 P05MLT-10 missile launchers and has been effective at staggering bosses, including all the ones at the end of the game. And yes, I’ve seen all the endings armed with twin Zimms.

But is it too good? It is. The Zimmerman has been outshining most of the almost 40 arm units in AC VI so far. To the point that most folks just stick with the Zimms and never looked back. And that’s not what AC is about. I’ve since drop the twin shotguns for twin hand missile launchers. Apparently a full-on missiles build is pretty decent too.

For now, enjoy composing with one or two Zimmermans while it’s good. It’s a fun weapon, but in a game where half the fun is to make different builds and have them in some way or form viable, the days where this shotgun reigns supreme is numbered. Hopefully it’s due to more weapons being buffed up, and not the Zimms being nerfed to the ground. I still like to see a few steadfast believers sticking to their (shot)guns.

Armored Core VI Fires Of Rubicon is out now on PS4, PS5, PC (Steam), Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S. Check out our review here.

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