Welcome to our Valorant Gun Tier List (Last Updated Patch 5.03)
Looking for the best guns in Valorant? You’ve come to the right place.
In our Valorant weapon tier list, our experts (Immortal-Radiant) rank every gun based on their strength in the current ranked meta.
We’ll be updating this list every patch or so so be sure to check back!
To learn more about every gun, from their spray patterns to their stats, head to our dedicated Valorant Weapons page.
If you’re looking for the best agents in the current meta (including team comp recommendations by map) head to our Valorant Agent Tier List.
The Best Guns in Valorant
Patch 5.03 Valorant Weapon Tier List
|S-tier||Operator, Phantom, Vandal|
|A-tier||Classic, Judge, Marshall, Odin, Sheriff, Spectre|
|B-tier||Ares, Bulldog, Frenzy, Ghost, Guardian|
|C-tier||Bucky, Knife, Shorty, Stinger|
Our experts (ranked Immortal – Radiant) will be ranking weapons from S/A/B/C based on how strong they are in the ranked meta.
This list aims to apply to the general meta so it should be useful for more elos (perhaps not the very bottom of Iron where OPing probably isn’t recommended).
Overall, the criteria for S/A/B/C are as follows:
These are weapons that have an optimal cost/effectiveness ratio. They are typically the most commonly used guns for most maps on both offense/defense and the least situational weapons.
These are weapons that are very powerful but a little more situational than S-Tier. They usually have a slightly lower cost/effectiveness ratio and may not work too well on either offense or defense on certain maps.
These are weapons that can be strong in certain situations but also tend to have a disadvantage against their competitors in many situations. You usually only run them at very specific parts of the map and they can vary in performance based on attacking or defending.
These are weapons that are very situational and rarely worth picking up. They are they rarely offer an advantage over their competition.
Here are some insights for each gun from our experts with explanations for why they’re ranked where they are.
S-tier Weapons (Optimal)
Type: Sniper Rifle – Creds: ¤ 4700 – Magazine: 5 – Wall Penetration: High
- Priced at 4700 it is quite expensive but its price is justified. One shot to the body at any range will kill an enemy. This weapon is very strong at grabbing early picks in the round whilst holding the site as a defender.
- It is best suited on Jett (since she can instantaneously dash out regardless of whether she got the kill) and second-best on Reyna (can dismiss if she secured the kill).
- The Operator is meta on maps like Breeze, Icebox and Fracture which have very long lines of sight.
Type: Assault Rifle – Creds: ¤ 2,900 – Magazine: 30 / 90 – Wall Penetration: Medium
- This is the clear weapon of choice for players who appreciate a higher fire rate (11 rounds/sec, 660 RPM) and a slightly bigger magazine in comparison to the Vandal.
- It benefits from a silenced barrel and conceals the direction its bullets are coming from, making your shots harder to pinpoint for enemies.
- The Phantom’s first bullet accuracy is considerably better in comparison to Vandal.
- The fire rate and the first bullet accuracy mean it is very effective when jiggle peeking corners and bursting off 2-3 shots.
- Probably the best gun to go with if you are a newbie and are familiarising yourself with the fundamentals of a tactical shooter.
Type: Assault Rifle – Creds: ¤ 2,900 – Magazine: 25 / 75 – Wall Penetration: Medium
- Vandal has a slower fire rate (9.75 rounds/sec, 585 RPM) and a slightly smaller magazine in comparison to the Phantom.
- The main advantage of using the Vandal is its consistent damage output and one-shot kills when hitting the opponent’s head (at all ranges).
- The confidence that you gain from the one-shot headshot damage at any distance makes it a preferable choice for some players when holding longer ranges of sight.
- The Vandal is very effective when it is burst fired, (shoot 3-5 bullets then reset the recoil).
Type: Sidearm – Creds: ¤ Free – Magazine: 12 – Wall Penetration: Low
- The Classic is a solid choice for pistol rounds since you save 800 credits which you can invest into armour and or utility.
- Patch 3.09 nerfs mean that the jumping classic right clicks and Classic run-and-gun is going to be less deadly. Nevertheless, it is a free gun and will still be a desirable weapon to use for pistol rounds.
- Besides the mentioned value in pistol rounds, the Classic can also be a surprise factor in buy rounds by using the right-click burst mode that comes with it
- Considering the fact that this gun is completely free and is given to you by the game at the start of every round, it provides incredible value at 0 credits.
Type: Shotgun – Creds: ¤ 1,850 – Magazine: 7 – Wall Penetration: Medium
- The Judge is the most expensive shotgun but also most effective compared to the others.
- The main selling feature for the weapon is its full-automatic firing mode which makes it extremely effective against close ranges, even against opponents who have purchased rifles like the Phantom.
- When holding close quarter areas like Garage on Haven or Hookah on Bind the Judge is a very strong weapon of choice.
- It is a weapon of choice for some Raze players who combine her double satchel mobility with the Judge to initiate aggressive plays on enemy territory.
Type: Sniper Rifle – Creds: ¤ 950 – Magazine: 5 – Wall Penetration: Medium
- The Marshall serves as the cheaper counterpart to the Operator, justifying the lower price by weakening a lot of the features that make the Operator so strong.
- For example, body hits with the Marshall are only able to kill people without armor
- It is a meta weapon of choice on Breeze for eco rounds.
- The Marshall has many perks, fast movement speed and scoping animations, and great almost perfect no-scope accuracy (compared to the Operator).
- The Marshall is an easy to control weapon and has a relatively fast fire rate making it a viable option for eco rounds when holding long ranges of sight.
- The scope distance is just right for contesting early round picks like Ascent B Link versus A Short.
Type: Heavy – Creds: ¤ 3,200 – Magazine: 100 – Wall Penetration: High
- A well-played Odin is a force to be reckoned with – close chokepoints or common areas that are wallbang-able aren’t so secure anymore with the threat of an Odin around.
- The large-scale magazine of the Odin make multi-kills possible that wouldn’t be otherwise and reloads become nearly redundant.
- Additionally, Odin players are still something opponents get easily distracted or confused by, and therefore, they might not be able to instantly counter your plays.
Type: Sidearm – Creds: ¤ 800 – Magazine: 6 – Wall Penetration: High
- The Sheriff is the pistol that deals by far the most damage of all sidearms
- In contrast to its silenced counterpart, the Ghost, the Sheriff is more commonly used on half-buy rounds or as a sidearm to the Operator instead of pistol rounds.
- In 90% of times the Sheriff will one-shot opponents when hitting the head, but watch out:
- From 30m distance and further, this weapon will only bring your opponent down to 5 hp.
- Its bullet penetration allows for you to secure wallbang kills that you most likely wouldn’t be able to with other pistols.
- At long ranges, the Marshall is the better weapon of choice since it is one shot to the head, unlike the 145 damage the Sheriff deals. The Marshall also only costs 150 more.
- The Sheriff is not a great pick for pistol rounds since it means you won’t be able to purchase any utility. Knowing this, it is mostly used by Jett players on pistol rounds since they can survive the round mostly unaffected without their Updraft and Cloudburst.
- This weapon is most effective at medium range, at point blank range and at very long ranges it is sub-optimal.
Type: SMG – Creds: ¤ 1,600 – Magazine: 30 – Wall Penetration: Medium
- Spectre is still a relatively viable option on half-buy rounds however the Ares is too strong to pass up on.
- It has made the Spectre somewhat redundant or at least a less preferred option.
- The only case I can make for the Spectre over the Ares in patch 4.0 is for any players who want to still try an overly aggressive run and gun playstyle on attack, I.e. Neon players.
- It’s still the best out of the SMG class for different reasons:
- In comparison to the Stinger, the cheaper SMG alternative, the Spectre is substantially more accurate, kicks considerably less, and has a higher magazine capacity.
- This weapon finds its use in many economically challenging situations as a budget alternative to the traditional assault rifles.
B-tier Weapons (Good)
Type: Heavy – Creds: ¤ 1,550 – Magazine: 50 – Wall Penetration: High
- Overall, the Ares has very similar functionality to the Odin, with its decreased price point being its main distinction and point of attraction. The Ares is almost half the price of an Odin and with such similar power it is arguably better to stick with the Ares this patch and save your credits.
- The lower price is justified by the 50 bullets less in a magazine and the lower firing rate.
- It’s quite effective at distance due to its low damage falloff and minimal recoil when scoped in.
- If you plan on sitting back and anchoring the site, the Ares is a very strong half-buy option.
- Note: It is easier to sit back and scope in with the Ares rather than try and be mobile or be aggressive with it.
Type: Assault Rifle – Creds: ¤ 2050 – Magazine: 24 – Wall Penetration: Medium
- Compared to the other two assault rifle in Valorant (Phantom & Vandal), the Bulldog has some noticeable disadvantages: slower fire rate (9.15 rounds/sec), smaller magazine, and lower damage output
- If you don’t manage to headshot your opponent you will almost always find yourself falling victim to any opponent that has a Vandal or Phantom due to their superior fire rate and damage output.
- However, it can have its niche uses since it can be a more powerful alternative to SMGs in half-buys or anti-eco rounds.
- Unlike other rifles, the Bulldogs firing mode switches to a three-round burst when using the AD.
- Riot knew that the Bulldog was quite underutilized in both pro play and ranked. Knowing this, they reduced the price to 2050. Since doing so, I would argue that this hasn’t improved the situation for the Bulldog.
Type: Sidearm – Creds: ¤ 450 – Magazine: 13 – Wall Penetration: Low
- Since the Frenzy movement speed accuracy was nerfed, it has lost much of its potency and viability on eco and pistol rounds.
- It is a low-cost pistol and does relatively high damage, typically requiring 7-8 shots to the body and 3 to the head to kill.
- However, the spread of this fully-automatic gun is hard to control and its magazine size is considerably small.
- There simply are better options in pistol rounds as well as buy rounds (like the Ghost or the Sheriff).
Type: Sidearm – Creds: ¤ 500 – Magazine: 15 – Wall Penetration: Medium
- The Ghost might be the best all-round pistol choice for the starter rounds.
- This semi-automatic pistol has the potential to kill opponents without armor in only one shot to the head and is, therefore, a cheap alternative for many Rifles and SMGs in certain situations
- Like the Phantom, the Ghost has a silencer which helps to increase overall accuracy and also reduces noise while firing, making it an effective stealth weapon
Type: DMR – Creds: ¤ 2,250 – Magazine: 12 – Wall Penetration: High
- The Guardian is the only semi-automatic rifle in the game so far and is capable of one-tapping just like the Vandal, with the highest damage per bullet among the rifles.
- However, when put in relation to weapons at a similar cost, the Guardian really doesn’t find a place for its own in the current meta.
- This is quite a viable pick if your economy isn’t great and you can’t afford a Vandal or Phantom. Especially if you are feeling sharp with your aim and plan on contesting longer ranges of sight.
- Additionally, handling this special gun is a task not everyone can instantly master in the heat of the game – its shooting rhythm and limited magazine size is often the reason why players trade the Guardian for a Vandal or Phantom as soon as they get the chance to.
- One thing to keep in mind is that the Guardian does have High wall penetration but it’s a bit too niche to make it that big of an advantage.
C-tier Weapons (Situational)
Type: Shotgun – Creds: ¤ 850 – Magazine: 5 – Wall Penetration: Low
- The Bucky is the cheapest primary weapon in the game at 900 credits, making it useful for half-buy rounds.
- The right-click used to be deadly at short-medium ranges but after some nerfs in ACT 2 the Bucky has lost its worth in the game altogether. The right-click is now almost completely useless and some players have found some viability in its left click at very close ranges.
- Unfortunately at the price of 850 you are just better off right-clicking a Classic which will have very similar damage output and save you 850 credits.
- If all guns in your arsenal fail you and you find yourself left with nothing else than your knife, you might as well use it
- But considering how poorly implemented the current version of the knife in Valorant is, this should be your absolute last resort when playing to win.
- There is finally a viable way to use your knife in VALORANT.
Behold: It is an effective way of clearing out enemies holding their own Astra wall.
Type: Sidearm – Creds: ¤ 150 – Magazine: 2 – Wall Penetration: Low
- The Shorty is the cheapest purchasable gun in the game and is balanced relatively well for its credit value in game.
- Due to its low price point, it can be a game-changer in economical rounds.
- Its range is terrible and is only viable at point-blank range, it doesn’t have the same effectiveness that the Bucky or Judge have at ranges beyond point-blank.
- With just two shells in a magazine, multi-kills are basically impossible with this weapon.
Type: SMG – Creds: ¤ 950 – Magazine: 20 – Wall Penetration: Low
- The Stinger’s unique characteristic is its extremely high fire rate but in all other respects, the Stinger is a cheaper but also distinctly worse version of the Spectre.
- This is due to its smaller magazine, low wall penetration, and lower damage output.
- Furthermore, this gun has an absurdly high spread and doesn’t work well at distances over 20m due to the low accuracy leading from it.
- Overall, the Stinger should be used like a shotgun with two advantages. First being able to slightly adjust your aim onto your opponent after shooting the first bullets, and second, being mobile whilst spraying an opponent point-blank you might be able to dodge their bullets.
- The alternate fire when scoped in has become somewhat viable at medium ranges (check the clip below) but this weapon is simply outclassed by most others when it comes to choosing something for an eco round.
- Check out the right-click accuracy here.
Thanks for reading! Let us know what you think of our rankings in the comment below. To learn more about every gun, head to our dedicated Valorant Weapons page. For the best agents, head to our Valorant Agent Tier List.