VALORANT Weapon Tier List
Riot Games’ VALORANT has always been about two things, Agents and Shooting Agents. We’ve already done a VALORANT Agent tier list, so now we’re moving on to the thing that they shoot - weapons! VALORANT has a wide variety of weapons to take down opposing Agents. However, not all weapons are made equal. Keep reading our VALORANT weapon tier list to find out which is the best of the lot.
This tier is for the royalty of weapons. These are the best of the best weapons that you’d want any day of the week. They’re good in almost every situation you can find yourself in and are incredibly versatile. These will be your bread and butter weapons, and for good reason.
Arguably the best weapon in VALORANT, the Vandal is basically the go-to rifle for every player. With its classic one-headshot-to-kill gameplay, it's one of the most satisfying weapons to dink other players with. This gun is practically what Valorant is built upon, it’s what most players use and it’s what most players will save for.
The Phantom is like the Vandals little brother. It doesn’t pack quite as much of a punch as the Vandal does as its damage can fall off at longer ranges. This is why a lot of players prefer the Vandal, as there’ll be times when you’ll lose a gunfight purely just to the fact that one headshot at range with Phantom isn’t a one-shot. However, it’s got some nice benefits over the Vandal, that being a slightly tighter spray pattern, and the fact it has no tracers. This makes it perfect for controller players who like shooting through their smokes, as enemies won’t be able to see where the bullets are coming from.
The A Tier is for weapons that are good in most situations or are very good in certain situations. These weapons either excel at certain areas and are fantastic, but aren't necessarily good at other areas. Otherwise, they're just a slight bit worse than the Vandal/Phantom.
The Operator is VALORANT's premier sniper. Similar to the AWP, the Operator will one hit any agent it hits in the body and above. While this sounds fantastic in theory, the Operator has been nerfed so many times that its clunkiness only allows it to be used in specific situations. Alongside its hefty price tag, the Operator is a risky purchase for anyone and is often best used on agents with escapes like Chamber and Jett. It’s a fantastic weapon, but one that can only be used in certain circumstances and therefore is placed nicely in the A tier.
The Shorty is the weapon for cheese enjoyers. Like all shotguns, it's no aim no brain cheese around a corner or in a smoke. The difference between the Shorty and the other shotguns is their price and effectiveness. The shorty is ridiculously effective at close range, and can easily one-hit an agent to the body. Pair that with its cheap 150 credit price tag and you’ve got a helluva weapon. It’s particularly effective on save rounds, where if you get a kill with it you basically gain an insane amount of credits in value.
The Bulldog is a criminally underrated rifle. It’s not quite as strong as the Vandal, but it can fight at range and can duel Vandals/ Phantoms regardless. It’s strong on anti-eco rounds, as it's got a fantastic TTK against low/unarmoured targets. On top of that, it can be used to duel in the round afterwards if you win. That and it has a pretty nice fire sound effect going for it too.
The sheriff as a pistol is an absolute powerhouse provided you can land shots. At closer ranges, it’s one hit to the head for a kill meaning that good players can outduel a Vandal/Phantom and grab it. It’s also cost-efficient pricing at 800 credits for a relatively strong weapon. Its main downside is that its rate of fire for a pistol can be pretty slow and inaccurate, meaning players need to be measured when taking shots.
B Tier weapons are still pretty good. They're the middle of the pack in terms of viability and typically are pretty cheap econ weapons that can definitely turn the tide of things.
The Spectre is quite a decent weapon. It’s a good gun for eco rounds as its price is pretty low at 1600 credits. It’s generally the go-to weapon for players if they want to save enough for a rifle for the next round. The Spectre still has a pretty decent time to kill and also is silenced which makes getting those sneaky flank or cheese kills that much easier.
The Odin comes into this list by sheer firepower. It has a ridiculously high damage output which can easily mow down anyone it fires at. The only issue with it is that it’s an LMG, which makes it clunky to move around with. Alongside that, its high rate of fire makes its recoil pattern pretty rough, so most players tend to crouch and ADS with it to land shots. This makes them a sitting duck from other angles, and can easily lead to their death.
The Marshall is one of my personal favourites. It’s a great feeling bolt action sniper that can one hit unarmoured targets in the body. That means it's a great weapon for anti-eco rounds as you don’t even need to land headshots to get meaningful picks. The Marshall is just an overall really great feeling weapon, that when you land shots on it just feels so fantastic. Unfortunately, it is outclassed by the Operator and therefore placed a bit lower.
The Guardian is a weapon that requires a lot to master. Being a DMR its single shot rate of fire means it can punish players if they whiff their first shots. But its high damage and penetration mean that a good player can track and one-hit a player to the head. It definitely feels more ideal to hold an angle with as you can microflick towards the agent’s head and get a one-tap. Otherwise pushing with the Guardian can require some very precise aiming to land the first shot, and in that time you can get headshot or sprayed by a Vandal.
The Ghost is right in the middle of the pack for weapons. It’s only really used on pistol rounds as the Shorty and Sheriff are better on save rounds. That being said, in Round 1 a Ghost can one tap an unarmoured agent which makes it particularly deadly on duelists. Being only 500 credits, it means Duelists can purchase other utility while also grabbing a weapon more powerful than the classic.
C Tier weapons aren't the greatest. Their usage is a bit more limited than the weapons in the higher tiers, and they do their jobs worse as well. These weapons just aren't very good at the current moment, and you're better off going for the higher-tier weapons instead.
The Stinger isn’t the ideal weapon for many situations. It’s got a ridiculously high fire rate and absurd recoil basically removing it from being viable in any long-range encounter. That being said, its high rate of fire and recoil means in close ranges it can absolutely demolish someone. You can practically run and gun at close ranges and there’s a good chance a couple of bullets will land on the other agent's head. Alongside its cheap price tag, the Stinger is good, situationally.
Frenzy is a weapon that can be used pretty well on maybe pistol round and that’s it. Due to it being able to fire full auto, it's great for fast pushes as you can simply outduel a lot of pistols provided you land shots. Apart from that, it has almost no use in any other rounds and is simply outshined by other secondaries.
The Classic is your stock standard weapon. It’s literally given to you for free and is a somewhat serviceable firearm. The best part about the classic is its right-click which fires out 3 bullets in a shotgun-like cone. This makes it particularly deadly in close ranges and is good for cheesing on save rounds. Originally the right click was much stronger and was pretty accurate while moving but has been nerfed since.
The Judge suffers a similar syndrome to all shotguns, it has a lack of range and is also RNG reliant. Alongside this, the Judge used to be absurdly overpowered and was basically cheesing every player in existence. So Riot took it upon themselves to nerf it to what it is today, and what it is today just isn’t that great. It’s expensive and doesn’t always guarantee a kill, it requires you to play in a very certain way. There are better guns to use with the creds you have.
D Tier is for the weapons you don't really want. They just aren't anywhere near as good as the other weapons on this tier list. They've just been nerfed too hard to be viable bar very specific situations.
The Bucky, like the Judge, suffers from the same syndrome. That being said, the Bucky is just bad. It’s just a straight-up bad weapon. It’s been nerfed so many times that it’s just no longer worth using. It’s got an incredibly low rate of fire, so if you don’t one-hit them on the first shot you’re likely dead after they have time to react. It’s just a weapon not worth using anymore, you’re far better off using the Sheriff or Marshall on save rounds.
The Ares is basically Odin’s intern. It’s Odin Junior. It’s cheaper and has fewer bullets, it’s basically just the Odin but a bit worse. The main issue with the Ares is it’s in a weird spot, as an LMG, it’s hard to push with as you need to crouch and ADS in order to be accurate. But it has a big windup for it to reach maximum RPM. This most likely means you’ll be outdueled by other weapons. Honestly, if you have 1600 credits, just buy the Spectre.
That's it for our VALORANT weapon tier list. For more VALORANT guides, be sure to keep reading GGRecon.