The Pulse Laser. Standard class Lasers operate by firing a continuous beam of focused coherent light at a target, damaging the target through extreme heat buildup, and are used much like a scalpel. The drawback to this is dispersing particles from the target will be kicked up in the path of the beam therefore weakening it. Pulse technology “pulses” the beam in short micro-burst while computer targeting keeps the aim true. The rapid fire pulses allow debris to disperse between cycling.
In Classic Battletech game play, the ‘pulsing’ of the laser allows a pilot to quickly adjust their aim, working in much the same way as a tracer, therefore reducing the ‘to-hit’ modifier on their dice role by 2 (a significant reduction modifier, allowing targets at long range(+4 modifier) to be engaged as though they were only medium range(+2 modifier) for the weapon) all for the cost of a reduction in overall weapon range. Inner Sphere pulse lasers cause slightly more damage than their standard IS equivalents, at the expense of weight and range (being twice as heavy as a standard IS laser of the same class). Clan pulse lasers have no damage increase and are heavier than their Clan standard laser equivalents, but boast extended range over the IS pulse lasers (as all Clan laser weapons do).
In its appearance in the Mechwarrior 3 game series on computer, the Pulse Laser was a laser weapon that could fire a beam for a prolonged period of time. However, the longer it was fired the longer it took to cool down, and shorter firing meant shorter cool down. Longer burst would cause more damage than a short burst if keep on target but by rapidly tapping the fire button you could quickly build up damage via the weapons minimum damage value with nearly no cool down time (or heat buildup) between shots. Later games changed the animation graphic of the Pulse Laser to reflect the micro-burst idea of the design, giving it a rather ‘laser-machine-gun’ look.