In order to use the pistol effectively, you need to be familiar with a few of its basic traits. First, pistols never run out of ammunition. So if your clip runs low, do not hesitate to reload when the coast is clear. Second, most guns, even non-pistol ones, have a damage rating of 1. This means that the only real advantage some other weapons have is having longer ranges, faster firing rates and larger magazine clips. When targeting an enemy with really low health, a pistol is more than sufficient for the job and will save you precious ammunition for your other guns.
Another great thing about the pistol is that it is set to hotkey 1 -making one of the most accessible guns in the game. In a combat scenario, being able to pull out a fully loaded M9 when your enemy is still reloading their weapon could mean the difference between life and death. Also, pistols tend to have pretty good range, so if your target has managed to leap out of your effective damage area, simply switch over to the pistol to get that last needed shot.
Mausers are strategic guns for farming -if your enemies tend to grab shield powerups a lot, then your rocket launcher will not be able to take them out in one hit. The best thing to do is to nail them with the explosive weapon then whittle down their HP using the mauser -not only does this save you ammo, but it also earns you bonus points as well.''
Starters (a.k.a. pistols & co.) are the very first weapons you get in battle, with the exception of some campaign levels and weapon modes. Starters are generally designed to be balanced guns, high fire rate, but low damage, and medium Range. Starters are one of the most important guns in your arsenal as they can be used in just about any situation.