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When combating the undead, a number of shotgun variables must be considered. First is the constriction, or choke at the end of the shotgun barrel. This choking determines whether the pattern or spread of the shot is wide or tight. Another consideration is the gauge, or width of the barrel, with smaller gauge shotguns packing more punch than larger gauges. The action, or method for loading and disposing of cartridges, is another important variable to consider. In addition, shotguns can fire a variety of shot sizes, from birdshot to slugs.
Vampires: Even unloaded, the shotgun is a superb weapon against vampires. As I've said before, vampires are pragmatic hunters, and the sight of someone brandishing a shotgun is very likely to make them pull back.
In the unlikely event that a lone vampire or pack attacks, a 16 or 20-gauge pump-action shotgun with moderate choke is ideal. Aim for the head, but make sure you hit something.
Zombies: Shotguns are somewhat less effective against zombies because of the zombie's primitive mental capacity and enormous pain tolerance. As with any zombie weapon, you should use the shotgun only to buy enough time for escape.
Be sure to aim for the head and use the 12-gauge pump-action for more power. A tighter choke will improve your ability to score headshots from further away. Against both vampires and zombies, you're better off with more powder and more shot, so stick with Maximum or Magnum loads.
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