Giving them an optional pistol (heck, 50p is 50p), imho, is necessary. While caving heads in with lascannons is fun, i would rather have it as an option, not as the only way to deal damage as anti-armor dude when no vehicles are around. Sidearms will give vulnerable support characters a fighting chance (lets be honest, nobody likes to be dependent on people you dont know, aka playing with pubs, and HWS are rarely defended by their team, unless its a guild). It wont change the power balance between classes that much (JPA will still melt you), at the same time it will give us another option to protect ourself (atm its simply legging it).
BTW in terms of animations, to avoid the "dissapearing gun the size of a man" on weapon switch, you can make a character to hold the main weapon with left hand, and shoot with his right. That will look badass.
PS. While heavy dakka/melta guys wont care that much about this, others, with more specialized weapons, do need some love (kannon, lascannon users) for i feel like a helpless cripple when i play as one.
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