Over the years, first-person shooters have been responsible for some of the most important franchises ever. So we’ve sifted through and picked out the top 10 best FPS weapons ever and ranked them.
It doesn’t matter how good an FPS’s story or characters are, if the player isn’t given punchy guns that make the gameplay feel meaningful then it breaks a lot of the immersion.
One of the reasons that the aforementioned franchises have done so well down the years and are so revered is because of the weapons they give you to use. We’ve taken it upon ourselves to see what they have to offer and select the top 10 best FPS weapons ever, ranking them in the process.
Best FPS weapons ever – Honorable Mentions
Before we get stuck into the heart of our main list, we’re first going to give a solid shoutout to three weapons that didn’t quite cut the mustard.
Battlefield – XM8
Anyone who played Battlefield: Bad Company will have probably clocked up many hours with the XM8 Assault Rifle. This strong and accurate rifle was the king of a well-balanced meta and definitely deserves a mention.
Fallout – Fat Man
Fallout is technically not really an FPS game with the emphasis being on its open-world, RPG elements. However, Fallout 3 switched the series to a first-person perspective and let players unleash the Fat Man – a literal launcher of mini-nuclear bombs.
Call of Duty – Akimbo Model 1887
If it wasn’t for the patch that broke them in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, their presence on the main list was all-but-guaranteed. However, once Infinity Ward realized the disgusting power of these dual shotguns, they nerfed their power and range into oblivion.
Ranking the 10 best FPS weapons ever
With the honorable mentions out of the way, we’ll now jump straight into the main course, our FPS ranking list.
Here is a complete ranking with an analysis of the 10 top weapons that have ever come from FPS games.
10. Half-Life – Gravity Gun
Valve’s Half-Life 2 reinvented FPS games with its long, fully-fledged campaign that featured a fascinating manipulation of physics into its gameplay.
One fine example of this was the Gravity Gun, an ammoless force of nature that could pick up pretty much any item, within reason, and hurl it at an enemy with unbelievable force. Found an idle sawblade? Congratulations, thanks to the Gravity Gun it will slice through absolutely anything now and insta-kill.
9. DOOM – Super Shotgun
id Software’s DOOM is arguably the franchise that got the FPS genre ball rolling thanks to its graphic imagery, which was uncommon at the time of its release, and violent gameplay.
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It had tons of destructive weapons to eradicate demons, with one of its standouts being the Super Shotgun – introduced in DOOM II. Compared to the regular Shotgun, the “Super Shotty” is a double-barreled bonafide bad guy buster thanks to its ability to pelt two loaded shells at attacking foes with great regularity.
8. Serious Sam – Cannon
If ever a game epitomized chaos, it’s the Serious Sam games. The titles have a penchant for overloading the screen with hundreds of enemies all trying to take down the titular character.
Players get a ton of typical weapons you’d find in an FPS game, but the coolest has to be the Cannon. Quite literally a cannon that could possibly have been ripped off of the side of a pirate ship. It can one-hit most enemies, bring down some of the biggest enemies in only two shots, and help to make light work of bosses.
7. Counter-Strike – AWP
The fact that many servers banned, and still ban, the use of the AWP should really underline just how ridiculously overpowered the AWP Sniper Rifle is in the Counter-Strike games.
It’s understandable that if you hit an opponent in the head with a beast like this then you should be rewarded with the kill, but the AWP went beyond this. In the classic CS: Source days, a hit anywhere on your opponent’s body would pretty much assure you of the kill. Some may consider this excessive, but it certainly made the weapon stand out.
6. Call of Duty – Ray Gun
The Ray Gun has become a staple of CoD games thanks to the introduction of Zombies in Call of Duty: World At War in 2008.
Until the regular addition of unique Wonder Weapons over the years, the goal was always to try and get your hands on the Ray Gun, Pack-A-Punch it, and pretty much go for a nap whilst you hold the fire button as the gun munches its way through feisty groups of the undead. But even in 2021 and Cold War, players still hold out hope of securing a Ray Gun for their loadout.
5. Halo – Energy Sword
Halo montages fall into one of several categories, and the Energy Sword can comfortably be filed in this section.
An awesome-looking, glowing sword that would one-hit anyone that got within touching distance of you. If you jumped into a lobby where a player on the enemy team knew how to masterfully carve you up with one of these then it was already over. It’s the only non-gun on our list, but in terms of FPS weapons, it’s easily one of the most famous, and deadly.
4. Call of Duty – ACR
Even though Call of Duty 4 established the basis for future Call of Duty online games, and most FPS multiplayer games in general, it’s Modern Warfare 2 where things really took off.
If you were lucky enough to be playing Modern Warfare 2 at the original time of its release, then you no doubt you used the ACR. It became the go-to gun for pretty much everyone because it was laser-accurate, had unbelievable power and range, and even sounded and felt great to use. What more could you want from an FPS weapon?
3. Goldeneye – Golden Gun
If one of your friends obtained the Golden Gun, then it was time to scarper and play as tactically as possible to bring them down and have them drop the gun – it was that good.
Taking its place amongst other one-hit weapons, the Golden Gun is what you wanted to get in the legendary N64’s Goldeneye multiplayer. There was a momentary feeling of anxiety amongst players when someone picked up the weapon as it would change the dynamic of the whole match.
2. Halo – Battle Rifle
Remember when we were talking about Halo montages earlier? Well here is another big one, Halo marksmen running around the various maps and effortlessly drilling holes through countless players with the iconic Battle Rifle.
It may not possess some of the more deadly qualities that other guns have, but the Battle Rifle is about as distinctive as they come and is the signature weapon of Master Chief. With the Xbox 360 multiplayer boom coming in the mid-2000’s, Halo was a big part of that, and as such, the Battle Rifle became synonymous with first-person shooters.
1. DOOM – BFG
The Big F*cking Gun. The name itself is worthy of the number one spot alone, but when you actually systematically break down the obscene capabilities of the BFG, then it becomes a no-brainer.
The BFG isn’t actually that big, but it’s big in name due to its killing ability. See, one press of the gun’s trigger, and it emits a giant ball of explosive plasma that essentially acts as a nuke and wipes out every enemy around you. Its introduction in the DOOM 2016 reboot is indicative of this as your first use with the gun easily decimates a room full of 50+ Imps in one go. It’s spectacular to watch the BFG in action.
For these reasons, we say that the BFG from DOOM is the best FPS weapon in video game history.
There you have it, our top list of the best-ever FPS weapons in history ranked from worst to best, with a few honorable mentions thrown in for good measure.
Image Credit: EA, DICE, Bethesda, Infinity Ward, Valve, Croteam, Treyarch, Bungie, 343 Industries, Rare
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