Another trend has been to simply fadeout the ammo counter when the weapon hasn't been fired recently (Far Cry 2 comes to mind). While this is great for most shooters, it lacks the right level of realism and suspense we are going for.
The method I like the most is having the player actually "check their ammo" (see Example 2 "Condemned: Criminal Origins"). While this worked exceptionally well for this horror-themed single-player game, nobody has ever tried it in a multi-player game.
For The Rising, we've attached this feature to the reload key and have it function like this: by simply holding down the reload key for a moment, the player will actually inspect the clip/chamber to see how many rounds are still remaining. If you watch closely, you will notice the remaining amount of ammo only shows during the "Ammo Check" animation.
(Animations By: Sick420
Model By: Aggressive Napkin
Hand Texture by: Millenia
Hand Model by: M4tlock))
This also plays a vital role in ammo conservation in our MOD because once a reload is complete, all rounds remaining in a clip are discarded. We feel this is a great feature that allows us to add an appropriate con to ranged weapons and allows us to keep them realistically powerful. Not only that, but it gives the MOD that extra bit of suspense and realism during encounters with the Necrotrophs that we are going for. We think that when the Resistance clash against the Necrotrophs, it should feel like they are fighting for their lives -- not target practice.
Also, people keep asking me what kind of shotgun we are using. The shotgun featured in The Rising is a custom Mossberg 590 w/ Bayonet and Sling.