Compared to its peers, the M1877 "Lightning" is a moderately powerful firearm, performing decently in multiple areas across the board. Aside from firepower, this includes rate-of-fire and accuracy, and it was a superior weapon to the Single Action Army which had a longer barrel. The M1877 was, however, produced in at least two different models which differed in the cartridge they operate. These were nicknamed the "Lightning" and "Thunderer" respectively with the offering less power and accuracy than the latter.
In 1868, the United Kingdom's economy faced an impending meltdown in the aftermath of the Assassin Jacob Frye's assassination of Templar banker Philip Twopenny. This owed to the fact that Twopenny was not only the Governor of the Bank of England, but counterfeiters had seized on the confusion to rob the bank of its currency printing plates. After Jacob's twin sister Evie Frye helped Sergeant Frederick Abberline of the Metropolitan Police Service resolve this crisis by secretly recovering the printing plates and returning them to the bank, she acquired an M1877 "Lightning".
Two decades later in 1888, the Inspector Frederick Abberline of the Metropolitan Police Service would use a "Lightning" during his operation against the serial killer Jack the Ripper. In November, he carried this very weapon when he arrived in Lambeth Asylum just after Evie had finally slain the rogue Assassin.
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- In Assassin's Creed: Syndicate, the M1877 "Lightning" is anachronistic because whereas the gun was first manufactured in 1877 as indicated by its model number, the game is set in 1868. Curiously enough, even though the Bergmann 1896, another handgun from the game, is renamed the Self-Loading Pistol Model 1868 in an attempt to rectify its anachronism, the same was not done for the M1877 "Lightning" and "Thunderer". Because the Jack the Ripper downloadable content is set in 1888, the "Lightning" is no longer anachronistic in that segment.