The Rifle, Anti-Tank .55in Boys, commonly known as the Boys Anti-tank Rifle was a British bolt action anti-tank rifle in use during the World War II. There were three main versions of the Boys: an early model (Mark I) which had a circular muzzle brake and T-shaped monopod; a later model (Mk I*) that had a square muzzle brake and a V shaped bipod; and a third model made for airborne forces with a 30-inch (762 mm) barrel and no muzzle brake. There were also different cartridges, with a later version offering better penetration.
It was often nicknamed the "elephant gun" by its users due to its size and large bore. Although adequate against light tanks and tankettes in the early part of the war, the Boys was ineffective against heavier armor and was phased out in favor of the hollow charge-based PIAT mid-war.
— In-Game Description
The rifle functions as an anti-armor rifle, featuring a one round magazine and reload time of 3.8 seconds. The weapons provides moderate to significant damage to enemy vehicles. It can deal between 25 and 40 damage to tanks, 40 damage to planes, 30 damage to jeeps, and consistently 40 damage to infantry.
— In-game Description
The Boys AT Rifle is a weapon introduced in Battlefield V in the third Tides of War chapter Trial By Fire. The weapon is unlocked upon completion of Week 9 challenges, after which it became purchasable from The Company. The weapon was the first Anti-Materiel Rifle made available to the Recon class. It can also be found in Firestorm as a Legendary weapon, where it uses the Sniper ammunition type.
As an Anti-Materiel Rifle, the Boys is one of the only primary weapons capable of damaging vehicles including tanks, but is subject to the same limitations as Medium Machine Guns in that the sights cannot be used when not set up on the Bipod. The weapon is capable of destroying light vehicles and aircraft with three to five shots. Tanks are far more resilient - at close range against a perpendicular surface, shots are expected to deal between 5 and 15 points of damage depending on tank class, with any reduction in damage and increased potential for ricochets correlating to vehicle armor thickness, distance, and change of angle of the armor plate. However, the weapon has high potential for dealing systemic damage - aiming for treads, turret or engine can leave vehicles vulnerable to attack by other AT weapons.
The Boys AT Rifle is also effective against infantry, capable of killing in a single body shot up to 100m, and a single headshot at all ranges. Despite this the weapon has several drawbacks - in addition to its dependency on the bipod, the weapon has a low fire rate of 22 RPM. Cycling the bolt takes 2.7s, while changing magazines can take between 4 and 5 seconds. This low responsiveness in the weapons handling, in addition to mobility penalties, encourages the user to remain stationary and practice more precise aiming due to the lengthy time between follow-up shots. The weapon's categorically low velocity of 400 m/s also hampers accuracy against moving targets at far range, requiring a significant lead be applied when tracking, as well as substantial bullet drop.
Compared to the Panzerbüchse 39 released later in the game, it offers consistent magazine reloading, a higher rate of fire, and larger starting pool of ammo; but suffers lower overall damage and magazine size.
The potential danger of the Boys as an Anti-Materiel Rifle is reflected in its distinctive firing effects. When fired, the weapon produces a characteristic sound that is louder than most other gunshot sounds. On impact with terrain, the weapon's rounds also make a significant sound as well as a flurry of yellow sparks. These factors make it obvious to enemies they are being targeted, and can more easily give away the shooter's position compared to other weapons.
Specializations for the Boys AT Rifle are notable as they only provide marginal statistical bonuses due to their already low values. On the left side path following Slings and Swivels and Flashless Propellant, the Machined Bolt upgrades provides only a marginal boost to fire rate from 22 to 26 RPM. The final upgrade in the path is APCR Bullets, which increases damage to vehicles. On the right path, the starting upgrade of Recoil Buffer is effectively useless as recoil will have completely settled by the time the next round is chambered. It is followed by Variable Zeroing, Quick Reload and High Velocity Bullets, the latter working to boost velocity to a still low 460 m/s.
- On release, equipping the APCR Rounds specialization would cause the weapon to deal no damage to vehicles - a similar bug affected the ammotype specialization of the M28 con Tromboncino. This was fixed in the following patch.