Hello. I have bit of a problem with plausibility in my story. I'm not going to share too many details, but the background of the story is very far futuristic where man is spread across many worlds in a very industrial setting. They battle aliens and each other. In some cases the warfare on planets will be very similar to WW1, it will be messy gray and horrible. Technology will not give the comforts one might expect in such a far futuristic setting. Man will actually be have to do their own battles with their own bodies. They use rifles firing metal projectiles. And all sorts of nasty technological weapons as well as technological countermeasures. And now I wish to add melee into this mess. I have always loved the sword, I feel it's much more personal than the rifle and I believe it will add to the story. I have a few explenations that might satisfy readers, such as in order to actually gain ground one would be have to do an aggressive and quick advance and as such melee would be a useful option? A basic infantry unit would therefore be have to carry a sort of shield, a rifle, random gear, other necessities, armor and a sword. This is a lot to carry around in a warzone when the unit can be off-base for several weeks. An advance would look something like this: The unit takes out its shield and places the rifle on a specific holding spot on the shield and advances while firing the weapon. As the unit gets close to the enemy, it switches to the sword and runs up to the enemy with the shield always raised. Melee combat including several thousands of units ensue. As you can understand this is unrealistic and pretty insane for use as a standard tactic. Key Issues: 1. Once melee actually ensues the risk of getting shot from sides, not protected by the shield, is extremely high in large combat situations. Probably high enough to render standard use of such a tactic completely useless. (But this also depends a lot on the situation...) 2. Who the heck would be insane enough to follow such an order? Especially if the military uses mainly conscripts. Here some form of motivation is required. 3. Legs and heads would come off like spring blossom on a stormy day. Notes: Energy shields will be pretty rare and can be quickly broken using certain common weapons, hence not a good option. Anything relying on electricity/energy in general will be adviced against. Mechanical options are the key here. There are plenty of infantry. And they are cheaper than your standard battle tank. What are your thoughts and opinions on this?