The Machine Gun is the standard squad firearm in the 2002 video game The Thing. The weapon is incorrectly referred to as Machine Gun in-game and in the manual, when it is actually a submachine gun. A machine gun is an automatic weapon designed to sustain continuous fire and fire great amounts of rifle-caliber ammunition, while a submachine gun is a magazine-fed, automatic carbine designed to fire pistol cartridges.
This is a rapid-fire weapon used for CQB (Close Quarters Battle) that can make light work of smaller enemies and slow the advances of larger enemies. The Machine Gun has medium accuracy when used in motion, and will produce a small trust and courage boost when given to a squad member. Blake can carry no more than 9 magazines with a capacity of 50 rounds each, which is surprising considering the Machine Gun has a very short magazine visually, perhaps a 15 or 20-round one.
The Machine Gun's visual design is ambiguous, but it seems to be based on he Heckler & Koch MP5SD1 with its stock removed, a 15-round magazine and without an integrated suppressor.
- On most NPCs you come across. You and your Beta Team teammates start the game with this weapon.
- U.S. Outpost 31 - At the start of the level, right behind you.
- Norwegian Outpost: North - On a corpse outside the main building, down a hill towards the barricaded door.
- Norwegian Medical Center - On a table in the middle of the central room of the building. Also, In the ammo room on a cabinet.
- Strata Medical Laboratory - Found in the armory.
- Strata Furnace - On the elevator where you start the level. Also, on the floor at the end of the series of hallways to your right when you start the level.
- Transit Hangar - At the end of the hall filled with ammo.
- Weapons Security #1 - In another Guard Room you encounter after the one with a save terminal.
- Weapons Security #2: - After you exit the Weapons Laboratory and the facility is set on fire. On the floor on the top of the ramps.
- The weapon was originally an actual MP5 in the beta version, before being modified extensively, probably to avoid licensing issues. The beta MP5 closely resembles an MP5-N, with a compact folding stock and a 30-round magazine capacity (in the manual it appears its magazine holds up to 20 rounds). The beta MP5 can still be seen in-game on ammo boxes, in the game's trailer, in the soldier class icon in the squad menu, in the game's manual and in the cover artwork. The final design of the weapon in-game resembles an MP5SD1, with its stock removed, with a very short and noticeable 15-round magazine and without the built-in suppressor.