Artillery firepower still reigned supreme over the battlefields of World War 1 despite the arrival of the aircraft and the "tank" as viable weapons of war. There was considerable pressure put on war time industries to continually output all manner of guns in various useful calibers to coincide with available ammunition types of each army. The Imperial German Army fielded several field gun types during the conflict and one such device became the 7.7cm Feldkanone 96 ("77mm Field Cannon Model of 1896"). as its designation would suggest, the type was first adopted in 1896 and saw use throughout World War 1 into the Armistice of November 1918. A modernized form then appeared in 1904 (7.7cm FK 96 n.A.) and an all-new improved gun replaced the line in 1916 (7.7cm FK 16).
Field guns provided war planners with a long range reach in which apply direct or indirect fire against concentrations of enemy troops or fortifications. As such, they could fire a variety of projectiles ranging from high-explosive to shrapnel. By the time of World War 1, such artillery pieces were breech-loading implements (as opposed to muzzle-loading) with integrated recoil mechanisms which allowed the gun unit to stay in place after firing (the recoil force being absorbed through various means). In this way, the weapon could consistently be training in on the target area without realignment.