A blaster pistol was a small, hand-held blaster.
Blaster pistols had respectable firepower in an easily carried design. Although a pistol would tend to have less firepower than its rifle or carbine cousins, they had enough power to kill a humanoid and punch through body armor, though they did not have the energy to pierce the hull of a starship. There were thousands of different designs from hundreds of manufacturers, such as the popular BlasTech DL-18 Blaster Pistol. Larger, more powerful varieties were known as heavy blaster pistols, while smaller precision pistols included sporting blasters and hold-out blasters. Ownership and use was regulated in many systems, generally in the form of restrictions and regulations. Coruscant was one such example, as was the mining world of Peragus II, where only lower strength mining lasers were allowed.
Pistols were common firearms of self-defense, used as sidearms or backup weapons. From police forces to traders, blaster pistols could be seen just about everywhere in the galaxy. Blaster pistols were used extensively by a variety of Clone troopers. as well as soldiers and officers of the Galactic Alliance Defense Force. The stormtroopers of the Galactic Empire used modified military versions, while the Rebel Alliance modified all of its blaster pistols to include a safety. A pistol may have been the one of the most common weapons, but was usually not the weapon of choice, mainly due to its short range and lack of power. However, some pistols, like the DC-17 hand blaster, had incredible amounts of power and firing speed for a sidearm. Normally, a soldier's favorite place for his pistol was in its holster. But in emergency situations, it could mean the difference between life, death, or worse.