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Ranking The Most Powerful Weapons In Fortnite

One of the most entertaining parts of Fortnite: Battle Royale is the game that happens before the game. The one that starts as soon as you drop out of the sky from the Battle Bus. The one that plays out before you ever shoot a single bullet at an opposing team member.


It's the looting. The search for weapons to use against your enemies. And there are a whole lot of weapons inside Fortnite.

But not all of them are powerful.

Amongst all the weapons you'll come across during your time playing Fortnite, only a select few stand alone as the most deadly in the game. These are the tools that can potentially eliminate an opponent in a single shot. They're capable of bringing enemy forts to the ground. They're not always the most practical ones to carry, but they're guaranteed to wreak some havoc on the Battle Royale battlefield.

And we've sorted them all from least useful to most useful.

Here are Fortnite's most powerful weapons, ranked.

Guided Missile

Once upon a time, the Guided Missile inside Fortnite was a force to be reckoned with. You could find ammo all over the place. The missiles were speedy. And the damage you could do was game-breaking. Far too many battles were decided by a flurry of guided missiles flying back and forth, and it got so bad that — at one point — Epic removed the weapon from Battle Royale entirely.


Now it's back. And today's version is a mere shadow of what the Guided Missile used to be.

For starters, the missile has been slowed down significantly. It no longer zips across the battlefield, and you can no longer turn it on a dime. On top of that, it's less powerful. And good luck finding missiles to send off. Ammo is much harder to come by, which means that even if you happen to pick the weapon up, it's more likely to take up a crucial spot than to be of importance in your game.

Relative to other weapons, it can certainly pack a punch. But you can just as easily find something else that'll serve your destructive needs.

Rocket Launcher

And speaking of destruction, the Rocket Launcher is another weapon that once stood more powerful and proud. Like the Guided Missile, you had a pretty decent shot at finding some rockets in a gold chest or ammo cache. And the fast reload speed meant you could fire a few rockets off before your opponent even knew what hit them.


Sadly, though, Fortnite's Rocket Launcher got a ticket to nerf city.

After a patch, Rocket Launcher ammo inside Battle Royale suddenly became much more difficult to find. Epic also upped the reload speed for the weapon, ensuring that players would need more time to send a volley of rockets toward an enemy encampment. What's left is a weapon that is still a beast when the stars align and you're able to find both it and some rockets to fire. But you're probably better off using more common weapons than going on a wild goose chase.

Rockets are fun. But not if you get killed trying to find them.

Grenade launcher

In terms of pure damage, a good grenade launcher can do work. A direct hit from a high-tier launcher can kill an unshielded enemy, for instance. But you don't want to use one in open space — you'll likely get your face shot off there. Rather, there's a particular use case for grenade launchers. Areas where they truly shine.


They're fantastic at flushing out enemies who are hiding from you.

Whether it's an opponent holed up in a Port-a-Fort or someone hunkered down in a man-made structure, a grenade launcher is their worst enemy. You can fire the grenades into the top of a fortress and tag the people inside, or launch them into windows. And if you do it right, you'll either see enemies scurry out like mice, or you'll get that all-too-satisfying "knocked down" notice.

If the grenade launcher is so great, you might be wondering, why is it so low on the list? It's not the easiest weapon to find. And then there's the matter of tracking down grenades. Still, you'll probably have an easier time finding a grenade launcher than you would a rocket launcher or guided missile, which means you'll have a better chance at actually using it.


Heavy Sniper Rifle

Sniper rifles are the ultimate skill weapon inside Fortnite (and out), and for good reason. Bullets fired from a sniper rifle aren't hitscan — meaning they don't instantly hit the person or thing you fired at. There's travel time you have to take into consideration. And there's also bullet drop-off, so a bullet you fire will lose elevation the further it travels.


There's some mastery involved in becoming a good sniper. But if you can wield Fortnite's Heavy Sniper Rifle effectively, you'll be an absolute nightmare for your enemies.

The Heavy Sniper Rifle is one of the highest-damage weapons in the game. If you can manage to put a body shot on an opponent — and they're full health with a 50% shield — you're gonna knock them down. A major downside of the gun is that it reloads extremely slowly, but some have countered that by simply carrying two of them, shooting one before quickly switching to the other.

The Heavy Sniper is extremely overpowered. It's not the most common gun to come across. And it's hard to use unless you're very talented. But should you pop a chest and see one, it's definitely worth grabbing.


Bolt-Action Sniper Rifle

Based on the entry above, you're already well-educated on how much skill goes into using a Fortnite sniper rifle. And in this instance, the sniper being covered isn't quite as powerful as the Heavy Sniper. But it shows up a bit more on the map than its more deadly variant, and it adds some perks, to boot.


We're talking about the Bolt-Action Sniper Rifle.

Now, the Bolt-Action can't quite hit like the Heavy, but it can still make a long-range difference. One body shot from the Bolt-Action Sniper Rifle can down a full-health, unshielded opponent. And if you happen to miss — which isn't hard to do with a sniper rifle inside Fortnite – the Bolt-Action has a much faster reload time than the Heavy. Which means you can quietly curse to yourself, reload, aim down scope one more time, and try to take down that pesky enemy.

And, hey — remember the bullet drop! Aim high.

Semi-Auto Sniper Rifle

Is this list a little sniper-heavy? Perhaps. But there's good reason for that. They're high-risk, high-reward weapons. And the next one up is still fairly powerful, but is far more forgiving than the previous two.


It's the Semi-Auto Sniper Rifle, and if you can't hit the broad side of a barn but still want to snipe, it's going to be your new best friend.

The Semi-Auto, true to its name, lets you pop off several shots before requiring a reload. It also reloads more quickly than your other snipe rifle options. The major downside to choosing the Semi-Auto over, say, a Heavy or a Bolt-Action, comes with damage. You'll need at least two body shots to take down a full-health enemy, which means you're going to need those fast-firing bullets — or some serious headshot accuracy.

But you're far more likely to open a chest with a Semi-Auto Sniper compared to the others. So based on its commonality on the battlefield, and the damage it can do at long range, it's an extremely viable weapon to carry. If you see one, don't leave it behind.


Hunting Rifle

If you're trying to use any kind of Fortnite sniper rifle at close range — and your name is not Ninja — stop doing that. They're unwieldy at close distances, and unless you can down an opponent on your very first shot, you're likely headed toward deadsville. Instead, there's another kind of rifle that might be more up your alley. It actually packs more power than a Semi-Auto Sniper Rifle, and its low-zoom iron sights ensure you'll still keep your whole opponent on screen.


We're talking about the Hunting Rifle. And if you're a good shot, you'll do plenty of hunting with it.

The Hunting Rifle excels in mid-range engagements. If you're too far to use a pistol or machine gun, but you're too close to use a sniper rifle, the Hunting Rifle is a fantastic option. It has tons of upside in terms of damage, knocking enemies out in a few body shots or one extremely lethal headshot. The main issue you'll have is with reload speed. The Hunting Rifle can only fire a single bullet at a time, which means you'll either need to do major damage on your first shot or suffer through a lengthy reload.

Still, these rifles aren't all that tough to find. They're not the only guns you should carry, but they're worth a slot for those mid-range shootouts.


Hand Cannon

Fortnite's Hand Cannon really takes the "cannon" part to heart. It's a handgun that takes heavy ammo. It's loud. And one close-range headshot can floor an opponent, leaving them crawling for a revive while you hover over them, popping every single emote you have at your disposal.


It's an absolute monster. And you're bound to come across one while scavenging, which makes it a must-have in your arsenal.

There are several types of handguns inside Fortnite, but none come quite close to the power of the Hand Cannon. And perhaps the best part about using this particular gun is that, if you've played a first- or third-person shooter in the past, you probably won't have a hard time picking it up and using it.

But perhaps the best part about having a Hand Cannon holstered comes when you come face to face with a shotgunner. If you're good with the Hand Cannon, you can down a shotgun user before they're able to bunny hop your way. But you'll have to be skilled to do it.

Pump Shotgun

And if you can't aim a Hand Cannon? You're going to want a shotgun.

If there's anything remotely meta right now in Fortnite — at least in terms of close-range combat — it's the shotgun. And the Pump Shotgun is one that's not terribly difficult to find. You can bash your way into a home on the Battle Royale map and, odds are, you'll find a Pump Shotgun. You'll hear the glorious sound of a gold chest nearby, and on your way to it, find a Pump Shotgun on the ground.


The Pump Shotgun isn't fancy. But a slightly damaged enemy can be knocked down with one body shot from it. And if you're close enough to shoot a shotgun, hitting someone with one isn't the most difficult thing in the world. Which is why just about everyone and their mom — because, yes, everyone's mom seems to be playing Fortnite now — is running around with them.

Add to that the fact that the Pump Shotgun recently got a buff? You'd be silly not to keep one by your side.

Double-Barrel Shotgun

But the Pump Shotgun can't quite stand up to the shotgun that tops our list. And it'll become pretty clear why this other shotgun is head-and-shoulders better than the Pump, and why it's the one you'll want to have equipped in close-quarter battles.


The top-ranked power weapon in Fortnite is the Double-Barrel Shotgun. Because why have one shotgun shot when you can have two?

The quick shots from the Double-Barrel are great. But that feature is made even better by the fact that those shots are more powerful than shells from the Pump. One single body shot from the Double-Barrel Shotgun can knock down a full-health opponent. Which means that the second shot can rapidly take down the most protected enemies on the map. All you have to do is get within shotgun range and start firing.

Look, you're gonna see a lot of shotguns in Fortnite. And sometimes, your best option is to fight fire with fire. If you come across a Double-Barrel Shotgun while looting, grab that thing immediately and get ready to use it. You probably will.