Apex Legends

Best guns in Apex Legends Season 3: Ultimate weapon tier list

by Calum Patterson

Share


When Season 3 launched in Apex Legends on October 1, the new update brought with it some major weapon and attachment changes, and it has shaken up the gun balance considerably. Here's our ultimate weapon tier list, so you know what to pick up and what to throw away when roaming World's Edge.

The most notable change is the addition of a brand new weapon, the Charge Rifle, although perhaps what will concern players most is the buffs and nerfs to their favorite loadouts.

On top of balancing tweaks, some weapons have added entire attachments removed or added, completely changing up their potential even further.

If you're just getting back into Apex for Season 3, or are just generally wondering how things have shaped up after the big patch, this weapons tier list will give you a good indication of what guns are the top picks, and what you should leave in the loot bin.

Some of these weapons do change dramatically when paired with a certain attachment, so we've tried to weight that into our rankings, but generally, the weapons are judged upon their performance when stock. 


Kraber .50-cal

In the sniper category, the Kraber is king. Unfortunately, it is still only available in care packages, but if you're lucky enough to come across it, you or one of your teammates would be silly not to pick it up. With the potential to kill in a single shot to the head, this bolt-action sniper does ridiculous damage at pretty much any range, and even if you miss the head, you'll soften up opponents nicely to allow a teammate to finish them off with ease.


Mastiff

Again, another care package-only weapon here, but as long as you're confident that you can hit your shots up close, the Mastiff is a must-pick if you're lucky enough to stumble upon it. A well-placed shot while up close and personal could put your opponent down in one. However, be aware that ammo is limited, so pick your shots carefully to be most effective.

Assault Rifle: R-301 Carbine

The R-301 Carbine is arguably the most consistent weapon and the definition of an all-rounder. Great at range, effective up close, and incredibly easy to use. Whether you're an Apex Legends noob or veteran player, the R-301 is always going to be must-have in your loadout. Even with no attachments, the R-301 won't let you down.

It also has a new hop-up attachment for Season 3 – Anvil Rounds – which makes its single-fire mode actually useful by giving it extra damage in this fire mode.

SMG: R-99

Like the R-301, the R-99 isn't anything flashy, but it's easy to use and incredibly consistent. Admittedly, it benefits massively from an extended mag, but it's high rate of fire gives it the potential to tear through an opponent's entire shield in a flash, and you'll always feel like you have a chance with the trusty R-99 in your back pocket.


Sniper: Longbow DMR

The Longbow only narrowly misses out on the S-Tier, as the Kraber is undoubtedly superior, but for a sniper you'll find more regularly, the Longbow is the pick of the bunch. Even without a scope, the iron sights provide a clear view, and with 50 damage a shot, it will put down an unshielded enemy in two.

It did receive a slight fire rate nerf (from 1.6  > 1.3) in the Season 3 patch, but you should picking your shots with this weapon anyway, so it doesn't do enough to knock it off the top of the non-care package snipers.

Shotgun: Peacekeeper

The Peacekeeper is a fan-favorite shotgun for good reason, as it packs a mean punch, especially when combined with a Precision Choke hop-up. Even when bare, the Peacekeeper can be deadly, but when kitted out with attachments, it can be a life-saver when in tight circles in the late game.

Assault Rifle: Hemlok

The Hemlok has often been underappreciated, but players seem to now be realizing just how versatile it is. Like the R-301, it's single-fire mode is also very useful.

Even up close, switching to burst mode and hip firing into an opponent will deal some serious damage, so if you're not a big fan of the Hemlok right now, we recommend giving it a shot.

Energy Rifle: Havoc

The first energy weapon on our list, and the honor has to go to the Havoc. This was the first post-launch weapon added to Apex, way back in Season 1, but it's remained a powerful and accurate AR throughout various updates. Without a Turbocharger hop-up, the spin up on the Havoc can be frustrating, but once you get used to it it's still deadly, and with the Turbocharger, the Havoc will tear through opponents. Bonus points for its generous magazine size, and with extended energy mags added during Season 2, things keep getting better for the Havoc.

The select-fire hop-up is best avoided though.

Pistol: Wingman

The Wingman has suffered countless nerfs since launch, with the most significant reducing its base revolver to only four bullets, with an extended heavy mag severely needed to keep the Wingman viable in the late game. But, the sheer power of this handgun means it's still in the upper tiers of weapons, even with all its nerfs. The Skullpiercer hop-up has now been removed, but the base headshot damage has been given a buff to counter this.

If you can practice with the Wingman and hit your shots, it can be truly a top tier weapon – but if you miss, you will find yourself in trouble.

SMG: Prowler PDW

The Prowler is another weapon that benefits massively from a hop-up, the select-fire in this case, but even without it, it's comfortably the second-best SMG. The Alternator briefly usurped it in Season 2 (more on that later), but for now, it's damage output, fast rate of fire, controllable recoil and it's ability at range make it arguably the most versatile SMG. With an extended mag and a select-fire, and a digital threat sight as an added bonus, it's a brilliant late-game weapon.

LMG: M600 Spitfire

Like the Prowler, the Spitfire is an incredibly versatile weapon, with its biggest benefit the huge magazine it can hold, especially when equipped with an extended mag. The fire rate is a little on the slow side, but on the other hand this helps with keeping it controllable. Some might argue that the Spitfire is a bit of 'nooby' weapon, but that doesn't discount it from being a very versatile and powerful LMG.


Assault Rifle: VK-47 Flatline

Just missing out on the A-Tier, the Flatline is just not quite up to par with its fellow Heavy ammo Assault Rifle, the Hemlok. It does do slightly more damage, but it's higher fire rate and slow-moving rounds mean it can feel incredibly inconsistent. Sometimes, it feels as though the Flatline kills quickly, but the next gunfight it might feel sluggish and weak. Still, it's a viable weapon at all stages of a match and is helped greatly by some added attachments. Another downside though, is that it doesn't hold a barrel stabilizer, whereas the Hemlok does.

Sniper: G7 Scout

The G7 Scout is one of the most underrated weapons in all of Apex Legends, but it does have some drawbacks which still leave it behind the Longbow. Without a scope, it can be useful up close, but realistically you're almost always going to get outgunned by a fully automatic weapon. With a scope and some range between you and your target, the Scout's ability to spam shots can prove useful, and its new double-tap hop-up is a great addition, although not enough to push it into the A-Tier, especially since you're not guaranteed to find the hop-up.

Pistol: RE-45

The RE45 is another slightly underrated weapon, although admittedly you'll always want to swap it out for an R-99 or R-301 when you get the chance. However, for an early game weapon, the RE45 could just save your life. It's fairly easy to control with moderate recoil, and add a couple of attachments to it and you have a perfectly viable mid-game weapon too. It has to go in the B-Tier though, as it's essentially just an attachment holder until you find an R-99.

LMG: Devotion

This may be a slightly controversial pick, as some players will swear by the Devotion, but realistically, without a Turbocharger hop-up, there is no argument to be made that this weapon is better than the Spitfire.

Sure, if you find a Turbocharger, and an extended energy mag, you have an absolute beast of an LMG, but without these attachments, you'll often feel at a big disadvantage in gunfights. Not to mention, the Devotion has some extremely punishing recoil, which is only partly solved by a stock and barrel stabilizer, so again, without these attachments, the energy LMG has to languish in the B-Tier.

Sniper Rifle: Charge Rifle

The Charge Rifle is the brand new weapon added at the start of Season 3. Initial impressions for many players was that it was incredibly strong, able to tear through opponents with a well-placed shot. It also has a slight advantage over the L-Star because it's not purely available in care packages.

Update: The Charge Rifle has now been subjected to TWO nerfs since it was first added. It now only has four shots in its magazine (12 rounds), and cannot be improved with an extended mag anymore. It's also had its fire rate and damage fall off nerfed significantly. All of this means it has to stay in our B Tier of weapons for now.

EMG: L-Star

The L-Star is a powerful weapon, dealing 21 damage points per shot to the body and 42 to the head. But, because it uses its own unique ammo type, and you don't get much with it, means that it's really not an ideal pick up. It's also not very easy to control, meaning you might end up wasting a lot of that ammo until you get used to the recoil. It's still a fun gun to try out, if you haven't before, but we would recommend holding on to it for the entire match.

Shotgun: EVA-8

The EVA-8 shotgun is not a bad weapon by any stretch of the imagination, and with a Shotgun Bolt it can be even better. However, it simply isn't as good as the Peacekeeper, and there's really no reason you would opt to keep the EVA-8 over it.

For the early game, the EVA-8 can be useful, but you'll be better served by an SMG for up-close battles, as without attachments, this full-auto shotgun can feel frustratingly weak.


SMG: Alternator

The Alternator got a major buff in Season 2 when the Disruptor Rounds were added, as it would tear through opponents' shield instantly, but with this hop-up now removed, this slow-firing SMG has to move back down to the third-best in its class. Although it has higher damage per shot than the R-99, it's slow fire rate and tiny mag (only 16 shots), make it less useful overall in the close-quarter scenarios. Positives for the Alternator is its very controllable recoil and high damage, but we'd recommend the R-99 is always a better choice.

Sniper Rifle: Triple Take

The Triple-Take is an odd weapon, without really any comparison, even among the other sniper rifles. Bizarrely, the Triple-Take might actually excel in close range, when used like a shotgun, especially if you find one in the early game.

Late game though, you'll want to swap this out for the Longbow, or an alternative energy weapon like the Havoc. With a precision choke though, the Triple-Take can be powerful, so if you can combine it with one of these, then you might just want to hold on to it.

Pistol: P2020

No surprises here – the P2020 is fairly weak pistol, which can be difficult, or even completely ineffective, to use at any sort of range, and should really only be a last resort in the early game.

There is of course, one exception to this rule – and that's when you find a Hammerpoint Rounds hop-up. If you do find one, you might want to consider holding on to the P2020 for longer, as it will deal considerably more damage to unshielded enemies.


Shotgun: Mozambique

And, of course, rounding out our list is everyone's favorite 'meme' weapon, the lowly Mozambique. When players asked Respawn to buff this shotgun-pistol, the developers explained that they were deliberately leaving it as fairly underpowered, to ensure that there was an obvious disparity between certain weapons.

If you are going to use the Mozambique, likely by necessity rather than choice, make sure to get up close, aim for the head, and make sure you ADS rather than hipfire.

The Hammerpoint rounds can also be used on the Mozambique, but even with this hop-up, we still can't recommend holding on to it for long.


Remember, this tier list is subjective, and subject to change, depending on future updates with weapon buffs and nerfs. We can expect more changes over the course of Season 3, and we'll update this post as necessary.