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Howa Type 20

From Internet Movie Firearms Database - Guns in Movies, TV and Video Games
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Howa Type 20 - 5.56x45mm NATO
Howa Type 20 with riflescope and grippod - 5.56x45mm NATO

The Howa Type 20 (Japanese: 20式小銃, ni-maru-shiki-shōjū) is a Japanese assault rifle designed and produced by Howa. It is intended to replace the Howa Type 89 as the standard-issue rifle of the Japan Self-Defense Forces.

In 2014, the Japanese Ministry of Defense began a competition to find a replacement for the Type 89 and tested a number of foreign designs, along with a domestic design by Howa. The Type 20 was designed in 2015 and designated as the HOWA 5.56. In 2018, the rifle selections were narrowed down to the Heckler & Koch HK416, FN SCAR-L, and HOWA 5.56. In 2019, the HOWA 5.56 was selected by the JSDF as their new rifle and designated the Type 20, with the first batch of rifles produced in the 2020 fiscal year.

The Type 20 represents a radical shift in design philosophy compared to Japan's previous domestic service rifles, the Type 64 and Type 89. The design has drawn comparisons to other modern assault rifles like the CZ 805 BREN, Bushmaster ACR, FN SCAR, Heckler & Koch HK433. Some speculate it borrows design elements from various foreign-made rifles used by Japanese Special Forces. It is short-stroke piston operated and stated to be much more durable than the Type 89. Water resistance was a key factor in JSDF testing, due to the possibility of amphibious warfare in the coming years.

The Type 20 also features both picatinny and M-LOK rail sections, the first Japanese assault rifle to have rails as factory standard. It is also compatible with the Beretta GLX-160.

Like Japan's previous service rifles, the Type 20 is highly unlikely to see use outside of Japan due to the nation's strict laws forbidding the export of military equipment.


(2020 - Present)

  • Type: Assault rifle
  • Caliber: 5.56x45mm NATO
  • Weight: 7.7 lbs (3.5 kg)
  • Length: 33.5 in (85 cm)
  • Barrel Length: 13 in (33 cm)
  • Capacity: STANAG Magazines
  • Fire Mode: Semi-Auto/Full-Auto

The Howa Type 20 and variants can be seen in the following films, television series, video games, and anime used by the following actors:

Video Games

Game Title Appears As Mods Notes Release Date
Phantom Forces Added in update 2015
Bayonetta 3 Unusable 2022

See Also

  • Howa - A list of all firearms manufactured by Howa.

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