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The Stun Baton, also known as the Stunstick, is an electrified baton used by Civil Protection to enforce the law on unruly Citizens, as well as restrain, harass or simply beat them. It is seen in the first and third chapters of Half-Life 2, Point Insertion and Route Kanal, and is a usable weapon in Half-Life 2: Deathmatch. An earlier form of the weapon also appears in Half-Life: Alyx, however only used during scripted sequences.
Stunsticks are similar in use and appearance to the batons used by real-world police officers, though considerably more brutal in application. The small electrical device contained within the tip is used to electrocute anyone hit with the baton. When activated, the tip emits an electrical blue glow. It will stun the target for a few seconds, causing pain and confusion. The baton is approximately 22 inches long and is manufactured from a gray metal.
Often, Stun Batons are used simply to beat Citizens who do not comply with Combine rules and regulations, or who simply disobey Civil Protection officers no matter how trivial the matter may be. For instance, in Point Insertion, Gordon Freeman receives a beating if he puts the >B can elsewhere than in the bin (e.g. throwing it at the CP or on the floor). They are also used in Civil Protection raids to subdue targeted Citizens or Rebels, as seen in Point Insertion as well.
In Half-Life: Alyx, set five years prior to the events of Half-Life 2, an earlier version of the Stun Baton is seen being used by Civil Protection and Combine Chargers. This iteration appears to resemble that of a more classic baton, simply a grip and long bar with some attachments. A red wire carries electrical current from the grip to the tip of the weapon, allowing its use as a stun weapon. It features brass knuckles on the grip, something that its later form lacks.
While Freeman cannot use the Stun Baton as a weapon, it can be picked up and used as a battery, recharging the HEV Suit's power by 7%. However, if the enemy is killed from far range, the Stun Baton will simply disappear once it is dropped.
In Half-life 2: Deathmatch, the Stun Baton is always given to players who spawn with Combine player models. It only has one level of damage and cannot have its stun mode toggled on or off. It is very similar in function to the crowbar, though it does significantly more damage (it will take 3 hits to kill a fully healed enemy) and has a slower attack rate. It is better suited against enemies whose health is already low.
Behind the scenes
The stunstick is still able to function as a player weapon in Half-Life 2. By tricking the game into thinking the stunstick's class definition is of some other equippable weapon the player does not have in their inventory, it's leftover code and viewmodel can be seen in action. It deals the exact same damage as the crowbar, but has a longer delay between swings. The only advantage it has over the crowbar is the lack of screen movement when hitting something, more likely attributed to unfinished coding.
The "pick up that can" Metrocop about to send a >B can on the ground.
Civil Protection officers running with Stun Batons in promotional artwork for Half-Life: Alyx.
CPs wield early batons as they wrangle Citizens into a Combine Prisoner Transport.
A child's drawing of a Civil Protection officer at the Zoo. Strangely, the officer is drawn holding the future Half-Life 2 variant of the Stun Baton which may be an oversight.
List of appearances
- Half-Life 2: Deathmatch (Non-canonical appearance)
- Source Particle Benchmark (Game files only) (Non-canonical appearance)