I have typically used projectile weapons in combat, namely because I can't seem to find many advantages with the current combat system to using non-projectile weapons...except:
1) it's sometimes altogether more fun
2) there are advantages to getting injured and then gain XP by healing myself/my party.
Anyway, wondering of other advantages to going non-projectile...?
Yeah, we might be talking even closer than point blank, depending on what the system allows. Like, if someone runs up real close and attacks you with a sword, it's hard to imagine you defending yourself successfully with a shotgun. You might get a shot in while he's running up, but once melee has started you'd be at a severe disadvantage.
In melee range, the guy with a sword will usually beat the guy with a blaster, droid or not. But at the same time, you don't need a lot of range to make a gun viable.
Parry the oncoming blade sideways with a bracer to deflect the blade, and put your gun up to his belly. And shoot.
Dodge an overhead blow, roll to the side and bring the gun up to shoot him in the side from a metre or two away.
So on. It's much harder than making use of one at long range, but still perfectly viable, especially if the user happens to be skilled in hand-to-hand combat - and has practiced moving in such a way with a gun in hand. Depending on your discipline, hands might only be a small part of hand-to-hand, ironically enough.
At the same time, it -is- a game, as has been hammered into me again and again in various ways by various people. And games require good balancing.
...also, have fun swinging a sword after you just took a shotgun at point-blank. I don't care how tough they think they are, but that guy's not getting back up to fight anytime soon. If ever.
The concept is somewhat tested in various Law Enforcement training - There is a range within which it takes longer to draw your weapon and aim and fire than it does for a melee attacker to close and deliver a probably lethal blow. The distance obviously varies with the weapons, but that's the rationale as I understand it of a minimum range for certain weapons.
Assuming the situation is always: "I have my weapon drawn and aimed", yeah that distance is pretty much negligible. It's equally possible, since our combat system is not so sophisticated to take into account true Distances, readiness, etc., that every round an opponent is closer to you than the minimum gun range, you're too busy trying to fend off their attacks to take a full separate action to aim and fire - even into a belly or whatever you people think is so easy with a swordsman attacking you when you have a mid to long-range rifle. Albeit that suggests some kind of minimal "melee" action is necessary for any given Rifle, we can assume that minimal action is negligible in the grim dark realities of Star Wars.
Keep in mind, whatever links to realism or arguments along those bases, the combat system is entirely a simulation of combat. Hell, HP makes no actual damn sense. RPG systems and games just use it as an abstract measurement of one's ability to survive in combat long enough to get a lucky kill/disabling shot in because we have to be able to differentiate characters beyond simple skill choices. Obviously a single lightsabre hit or blaster bolt OUGHT to kill you, but they don't. Some people blame Armour, but I prefer to just look at the system as a whole to simulate the chaos of combat. IE: higher HP of people can be viewed as just having a higher level of skill at reading their opponent which gives bonuses to a) avoiding damage; and/or b) forcing the attacker to parry or dodge or avoid instead of aiming/stabbing/whatevs. A Battle on the whole ends up being decided by whoever gets sufficient number and magnitude of advantages to reduce HP to zero (IE: whoever manages to defeat the defenses and avoid the offenses of their opponent).
And PS: The Shotty is min range 0, so why are you all arguing about Shotties being gimped in Melee range?
My five credits is that I'd be more afraid to fight against a smaller weapon with high rate of fire in close combat than against a shotgun. Yes, if you land a hit with your first shot from your shotgun in a melee, the fight would be pretty much over in most cases, but if you miss with that, you'll have less chance to shoot again with it than with an SMG or it's blaster equivalent.
That's full reactionary time Dex, from relaxed stance to applying lethal force with a previously holstered weapon. Good real life room-to-room CQC is always carried out with a shotgun lead (SMG/pistol if hostages are involved) for a very good reason. A prepared gun is more effective than a knife to within a few feet.
"Civilized men sleep soundly because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf..."