Ok, you make a point when it comes to costs but the automatic fire is still an option that comes in handy when you're fighting aliens that like to show up in hordes, especially in the case for grunts and drones. And yes I'll admit, for us the br is better for killing off those 2 kinds of swarms because of headshot capabilities, but you have to consider that the marines aren't always as fast or accurate as a guy using a controller against aliens that sometimes tend to just sit in the open or slowly march towards you. When you're being over run by a bunch of aliens whose primary strength is shear numbers and you can't get a clear shot in a fast paced environment, sometimes you might want to fall back on the spray in pray tactic. That goes double for the flood, especially since accurate weapons like the sniper rifle has proven to be ineffective against them since they tank they damage or just get back up after being killed, so a close/mid range automatic gun that can tear the body apart becomes preferable real quick. I'd bring up the infection forms but at that point you're probably gonna want smg's, which is something chief didn't have access to that on the autumn.
Faster rate of fire, comes in handy when you're up close to the enemy but it still allows you to hold your own at mid range unlike the smg. Also, I don't know the production and distribution costs for unsc weapons but you might've answered your own question, they could be cheaper.With BOTH the weapons, it actually isn’t cheaper. If they just keep the more expensive one, they will actually pay less because of less spent ammo. Still, the battle rifle can do everything the assault rifle can, with maybe just being passed by close range spamming, and even then the assault rifle still loses time to time. The battle rifle can be good for close and medium range.
However, I guess it's a little odd the saw doesn't replace the assault rifles since they seem like heavy versions of them. They fulfil the same task but with the added ability to tear through light vehicles.
True, but an SMG, having a stock that is much too short to use, could be used as a sidearm where as the two weapons introduced in Halo 2 would be infinitely better than having one that doesn’t really combine the two very well. A BR/SMG combo would be good because the magnum would not have a real place when the BR is already in use. The SMG uses a lot of smaller ammo, which could properly be produced in thousands and still not cost very much. The small, weak ammo has the ability to destroy flood spores and kill enemies in close quarters, the powerful and expensive battle rifle ammo can destroy enemies at medium range.
EDIT: The designers of the battle rifle could add a fully automatic selector switch, much like a modern AR-15. Two settings. Burst, auto. (Plus safe, and even a semi if needed) Now, you have the best of both worlds, auto would shoot slower than the assault rifle, while still maintaining the damage and can kill enemies in numbers.