The Fallout series never fails to impress, with its expansive and darkly funny game worlds and inventive storytelling. While completing quests and charming NPCs can be fun, the series also offers satisfying combat, in no small part due to its large variety of available weapons, fit for any and all character builds.
For almost every type of weapon, there’s a unique variant, meaning that you can specialize in any weapon, from light machine guns to sledgehammers. It’s difficult to narrow down the game’s many excellent weapons, but some simply shine above the rest.
10 Shishkebab (Fallout 3)
Apart from the undeniable fact that a flaming sword is awesome, the Shishkebab is also one of the most versatile and effective melee weapons in the game. Rather than being found, the Shishkebab must be constructed using a motorcycle gas tank, handbrake, pilot light, and lawn mower blade. However, all these items are plentiful in Fallout 3’s overworld, and with the right amount of skill, crafting the Shishkebab should be easy.
Along with melee damage, the Shishkebab also deals flame damage, and can be boosted with the Pyromaniac perk. It doesn’t degrade as quickly as the game’s other melee weapons, and is lightweight enough for all builds to use.
9 That Gun (Fallout: New Vegas)
A reference to the popular .223 pistol in the first two Fallout games, That Gun is easy to obtain by breaking into the storage room of the Dino Bite gift shop, meaning it can be used early on. A high critical rate make it the most useful pistol in the game, and its design flair, including a special jingle when the gun is reloaded, make it one of the most unique weapons in the series.
It’s a speedy and relatively lightweight option to handle the game’s weaker enemies, and its ammo type is plentiful. That Gun is definitely one of the most useful weapons in Fallout: New Vegas.
8 Overseer’s Guardian (Fallout 4)
Another gun that can be acquired relatively early in the game, the Overseer’s Guardian is a unique rifle found in Vault 81 near Diamond City. It will cost you three Power Cores and 3000 caps, but it’s more than worth it. The main selling point of this gun is its excellent two-shot effect, which guarantees a second projectile with every shot for no extra ammunition cost.
Speaking of ammunition, the Overseer’s Guardian uses .45 rounds, one of the most common ammo types in the game. Want it quieter? Use a Suppressor. Want long range? Use any scope you want. The Overseer’s Guardian is an excellent choice for any character build, and one of the best rifles in the series.
7 Turbo Plasma Rifle (Fallout)
The best weapon in the original Fallout, the Turbo Plasma Rifle is far and away the strongest single-shot gun in the game. Using microfusion cells and costing a measly 4 Action Points, this rifle is extremely useful in taking down powerful enemies at any stage in the game.
While its range isn’t quite as large as some other weapons, it’s still nothing to turn your nose up at, and should get the job done in most situations. It’s also got a +5 on critical rolls, and is highly accurate among energy weapons.
6 Sprtel-Wood 9700 (Fallout: New Vegas)
A unique weapon included in the Gun Runners Arsenal expansion, the Sprtel-Wood 9700 gets a lot of points for how darn cool it is. Seriously, it shoots green, and the cool laser sound it makes is pitch perfect science fiction.
It’s also no slouch in the damage department, as well as having a high range and a considerable critical rate. The Sprtel-Wood 9700 is best used on powerful enemies such as Deathclaws and Yao Guais. Nab the Laser Commander perk for significantly increased damage.
5 Perfect Storm (Fallout 76)
The best weapon in the newest addition to the Fallout canon is a submachine gun that literally sets enemies on fire. Seriously. What could be cooler than that? It’s received as a reward for completing the Cold Case quest, and can be modified for increased range, bash damage, or critical hit rate.
While its damage doesn’t stack (meaning that it’s less useful at higher levels), the ability to find the weapon in the early game makes it crucial to your success as you’re just beginning your adventure through the wastelands of West Virginia.
4 Lincoln's Repeater (Fallout 3)
Rifles in general are some of the strongest weapons in Fallout 3, and Lincoln’s Repeater is the strongest of the bunch, much more powerful than the more commonly found alternatives. It’s extremely useful at long range, given its 0 spread and considerable accuracy, and has the highest ammunition capacity of any rifle in the game.
Since it uses the .44 Magnum round, which is fairly rare, it’s best used sparingly on more powerful enemies. It can be found in perfect condition at the Museum of American History, which is fitting given its historical value.
3 Bozar (Fallout 2)
This light machine gun can be found in the game’s Toxic Caves, and it’s worth seeking it out as it’s arguably the best weapon in the game. It’s categorized as a Big Gun, meaning that it’s best suited to a more powerful build, but its high accuracy and damage make it effective in all sorts of combat scenarios.
It can tear through almost every enemy in the game without breaking a sweat, and its ammo is relatively easy to find in the game world. Its cousin the Vindicator is technically more powerful, but it’s also less practical and more difficult to acquire. The Bozar is the people’s choice.
2 Big Boy (Fallout 4)
Another Big Gun, the Big Boy is a variation on the standard Fat Man, which fires incredibly powerful mini nukes. The catch is that the Big Boy fires not one but two nukes for the cost of one, making it the most powerful weapon in the game based on sheer damage output and one of the most powerful weapons in the whole series.
Given that there are only about 20 mini nukes to be found in the wasteland (and that the Big Boy will set you back about 10,000 caps in Diamond City), the Big Boy is far from the most practical weapon in the game, but with a high barter skill and relevant perks, this weapon can be a game breaker.
1 All-American (Fallout New Vegas)
A fan favourite and our personal choice for the best weapon Fallout has to offer, the All-American is a variant of New Vegas’ Marksman Carbine. In pretty much every way you can imagine, the All-American excels: it’s got a high rate of fire, high damage, accuracy with a long-range scope, and a low AP cost. It does require a 100 guns skill, meaning you won’t be able to use this weapon until late game, but if you’re willing to clear out the ghouls in Vault 34 you won’t be disappointed.
The Grunt perk available in the Honest Hearts DLC will give you 25% increased damage with Marksman carbines along with other weapons like service rifles and light machine guns, making the All-American even more overpowered. You owe it to yourself to get this gun.