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A handgun is a firearm designed to be handheld, in either one or both hands and differentiates them from other classes of firearms. Handguns are typically categorized as Pistols, Revolvers, and Machine Pistols.
A revolver is a repeating handgun that has a revolving cylinder containing multiple chambers and at least one barrel for firing. It allows the user to fire multiple rounds without reloading. Each time the user cocks the hammer, the cylinder revolves to align the next chamber and round with the hammer and barrel, which gives this type of firearm its name.
Some other firearms may also utilize a revolving cylinder, such as some models of Shotguns.
A machine pistol is a handgun capable of fully automatic or burst fire and is chambered with pistol cartridges.
Machine pistols are sometimes classified as Submachine Guns because of their use of pistol cartridges and higher rate of fire yet they tend to be more compact and concealable and can be operated one-handed.
Generally, handguns have fast draw time and reload time. The draw time for handguns tends to be faster than the reload times of primary weapons.
In Battlefield 3, suppression does not affect aim with a handgun, but still results in diminished vision.
In BF3 multiplayer, revived players will automatically draw their handgun, and can reload it even if they have no reserve ammo. The reload quirk ends when the player "accepts" being revived by pressing Jump.
Players also draw their sidearm in BF3's Co-op mode if they are wounded and their teammate is still healthy.
In Battlefield 4, players can now use their handgun while swimming. Other water-borne abilities include knife attacks and counterattacks, swimming underwater, planting C4 and sprinting.