Despite being a country where firearms are incredibly rare and licences to own them notoriously difficult to obtain, there nevertheless remain thousands of gun nuts in Japan. Thankfully, the majority of firearm fans here are content to spend hours poring over photos and technical diagrams of weapons, occasionally visiting shooting ranges or watching videos of pretty girls squeezing off a few rounds while dressed as French maids.

For those who prefer to have something to play with at home, there are airsoft guns from makers such as Tokyo Marui, which feature a shockingly high level of detail and come with all manner of bells and whistles in an attempt to recreate the experience of firing the real thing without the risk of death, serious injury or being arrested. But as aesthetically pleasing as these firing replicas are, one key element was always missing: sound.

Enter: Bakuon Gun-Sound replicas.

Literally meaning “exploding sound”, Tokyo Marui’s Bakuon Gun-Sound firing replicas were unveiled at last week’s Shizuoka Hobby Show where guns fans and toy lovers alike went–if you’ll excuse the pun–completely ballistic.

The ultra-realistic plastic models work with transceivers that pump realistic gunshot sounds into a set of connected headphones with each pull of the trigger, meaning that not only can young men set up firing ranges at home well out of harm’s way, but they can do it without their family telling them to keep the noise down.

The VSR-10 Pro Hunter G sniper rifle comes equipped with a “silencer”, and joins plastic replicas such as shotguns, pistols, submachine guns and even grenade launchers. Plug in a set of headphones, though, and this long-range rifle will produce any one of four realistic rifle sounds. At long last, we have the correct audio accompaniment to properly daydream about popping off zombie heads or being Jean Reno on the rooftop in the movie Leon.

The following video from Japanese gun enthusiasts Hyper Douraku shows the gun in detail as well as a few seconds of it in action.

Although it’s difficult to tell how good the quality of these sounds effects are since the user is wearing headphones, the camera’s microphone manages to pick up the sound of the blast from a couple of feet away, suggesting that it packs a mean punch. Besides, whether it’s 100 percent accurate or not, this gun certainly sounds much better than the pew-pew and da-da-da-da-da noises that my friends and I used to make while running around the playground with our jackets tied around our necks to look like capes.

Thanks to the Bakuon system, gun fans will no longer have to suffer that anticlimactic sting of shame as their tiny ball bearings ping out of their rifle barrels and across the room; with the device attached, every trigger-pull sends ear-splitting ripples of audio manliness through your headphones, assuring you that you just did something suitably epic.

Tokyo Marui took the opportunity to showcase some of its other, perhaps worryingly realistic, replicas at the show. Not all of them feature the additional sound capabilities of the VSR-10 sniper rifle, but we’re betting that it’s only a matter of time before we’re cackling like madmen in our back yards, firing our entire collection of plastic guns at home-made targets while wearing a set of oversized headphones.

As a Brit whose experience of guns amounts to little more than laser tag in the 1990s and playing Call of Duty online with my pals, I have to admit that I’m glad Japan is the relatively peaceful, gun-free a country that it is. Nevertheless, Tokyo Marui’s replicas look extremely cool, and had I been present at the show I’m pretty sure that it would have taken more than a few ball-bearings to the crotch to stop me buying a set for the office. Now if only they had rocket launchers… Pew-pew!

Source: Game Watch (Japanese) via 俺的ゲーム速報