Back in the 1990's this off shoot came about. It was basically a Mossberg reciever and selected components, but made (at that time) cheaply.
The originally started out with a single action bar that was thinner slightly than the single bar of the Mossberg. I actually witnessed a catastrophic bar failure at the range one year. The guy that was running the new Maverick through some paces was speed firing the arm. During one (and the last) drill for the day, he was speed shucking the gun and made a nice "V" bend in the action bar when it failed to fully unlock, rendering the gun useless. Needless to say, I was rather put off towards Mavericks till recently.
2 years ago I was shopping for a 12ga pump and came across a Maverick 88 8-shot. Upon close inspection, I noted that it was very simular to the discontinued Mossberg Police Special. Infact it was a carbon copy and had dual action bars and was reasonably priced around $350 at the local candystore, while all other names were around the $500 mark and up.
I just had to buy it and run it through some tests. I took it home and disassembled it, clean and lubed it with my favorite teflon based spray and reassembled it for the range. Since it was for personal protection, I chose 00 Buck as my heavy scatter shot, a mixture of Remington Foster, Brenneke, Fiochi slugs and #4 buckshot as my light load.
The shotty worked without a hitch with all loads and the point of impact was almost equal to the point of aim. All shotguns do not hit where the bead is, but the closer they are to the sight picture the better they are.
I decided on a little speed test of my own using the Remington Foster slugs. Since they come in 5 shot boxes, I limited my test to 5 rounds. I paced off 30 feet from the target, spun around and fired as fast as I could. The Maverick didn't complain one bit and did what it was supposed to do. I could cover all 5 shots with one hand and none were visable outside of my medium sized paw.
I had taken the gun to a NS forum shoot in Las Vegas last year. A members grandson from California shot clays with it. The boy was 15 y.o. and never fired any gun before in his life, but he busted every clay that he shot at with my Maverick and those birds were dust! The boy was all smiles and the guy throwing the clays was very impressed with his marksmanship.
So, if you are looking for a cheap and reliable shotgun, don't discount the Maverick 88. They are usually well priced and often over looked.