Apex Legends is a free-to-play battle royale game developed by Respawn Entertainment and published by Electronic Arts. It was released for Windows, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One on February 4, 2019, without any prior announcement or marketing. The game is in its fourth season.
In Apex Legends, up to 20 three-person squads or 2 person duos land on an island before searching for weapons and supplies to attempt to defeat all other players in combat. Each player must keep moving to avoid being caught outside the play area. The final team alive wins the round. The game is set in the same science fiction universe as Respawn Entertainment’s Titanfall and Titanfall 2.
Work on the game began sometime around late 2016 and early 2017, though the project remained a secret right up until its launch. The game’s release in 2019 came as a surprise, as until that point it had been assumed that Respawn Entertainment was working on a third instalment to the Titanfall franchise, the studio’s previous major title.
Apex Legends received positive reviews from critics, who praised its gameplay, progression system, and fusion of elements from various genres. Some considered it a worthy competitor to Fortnite Battle Royale, a similar game that had gained massive popularity in the previous year. Apex Legends surpassed over 25 million players by the end of its first week, and 50 million within its first month. According to EA, as of July 2019, the game had approximately 8 to 10 million players a week and by October 2019 it had approximately 70 million players world-wide.
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Apex Legends weapon tier list with stats
Apex Legends Weapons Stats
Apex Legends guns & weapons guide (Season 4)
Below we’ll walk you through every weapon currently in the game, with an up-to-date Apex Legends weapons tier list so you know exactly what the best guns in the current meta are. Further down we also answer some frequently asked questions about how gunplay works in Apex.
Apex Legends weapon tier list – best guns in Season 4
Below I’ve created a handy table of our rankings of every gun in Apex Legends within their weapon class for Season 4. I’ve tried to take into account the power levels of each weapon as well as their dependency upon attachments. If you like, think of it as a measure of which gun I’d pick up at the beginning of a match without any attachments, bearing in mind the possibility of augmenting it with attachments later on.
And before you all go hatin’, bear in mind that just because I’ve ranked a certain gun as the worst in its category, doesn’t mean it’s a bad gun. Good? Good. Now, let’s get stuck into how we came about these rankings, by taking an in-depth look at every weapon’s stats and behaviours in turn.
Assault Rifles – Apex Legends guns & stats
The R-301 Carbine is the best AR on offer and always has been, trading a bit of damage for a faster rate of fire and a much easier ride in general. Low recoil and a high bullet speed makes the Carbine excellent at most ranges (it can even be used to great effect at long range if you switch to single-shot mode) and with a good extended mag, barrel, and stock, it’s like there’s no recoil at all on this beautiful bastard of a gun. As with the Flatline, the Anvil Receiver Hop Up turns the single-shot on the R-301 into something very much worth using, making this fantastic gun stronger than ever.
The VK-47 Flatline’s consistently decent stats has always been marred somewhat by an unpleasantly high horizontal recoil, which has always prevented it from really taking the top spot from the ever-reliable Carbine. Thankfully Season 3 was very kind to the venerable old Flatline by giving it the new Anvil Receiver Hop Up, which allows you to switch at will between a decent, high-powered Assault Rifle and a magnificently punchy long-range single-shot Sniper Rifle. If it weren’t for the fact that the Carbine received the same Hop Up, it might even have been enough to rank the Flatline as the best overall Assault Rifle.
Wait, what? The Scout is an Assault Rifle now? One of the stranger changes made at the start of Season 4 – but then the Scout has always been a strange weapon, occupying the nebulous space between AR and Sniper Rifle. On its own it’s a reliable and versatile weapon, but lacks the damage of either of the above Assault Rifles with Anvil Receiver attachments. The saving grace of the Scout is the ability to attach a Double Tap Trigger, which allows you to fire twice with each pull of the trigger. That makes for a massive damage boost, and if you can hit your shots your enemy is going to be in a world of hurt.
The Hemlok Burst AR is – you guessed it – a burst weapon, firing 3 bullets in extremely quick succession, which means if you’re accurate with them you can deal over 100 damage in the space of about 0.2 seconds. Many players prefer to use the single-shot mode of the Hemlok and click rapidly, but either way this punchy rifle has the ability to rip apart your enemies with the its very high damage-per-shot, which equals the Havoc and exceeds that of most other automatic weapons in Apex Legends. The downside – and it’s a big one – is, quite simply, that it’s not automatic.
With the removal of the Turbocharger for Season 4, the Havoc is without a doubt the most finnicky and least useful Assault Rifle in the game. Now, there’s no getting around the crippling wind-up time between pressing the trigger and the gun actually firing. When it finally gets firing it’s pretty powerful, as you can see from the stats above. But it’s a really tough gun to master, and there’s plenty of better options in my book. Or you can attach a Selectfire Receiver and use it as a tenth rate Charge Rifle with its charge-up beam shot, but honestly you’re better off picking up a good strong automatic weapon and then finding a proper sniper for long-range encounters.
SMGs – Apex Legends guns & stats
This punchy burst SMG is… alright… until you manage to get your hands on an accompanying Selectfire Receiver Hop-Up attachment, after which it becomes one of Apex Legends’ most powerful weapons. Without this, it packs a punch with every 5-shot burst especially if you aim for the head/neck area, but you race through your ammo all the faster for it, and the overall reliability of the gun falls short compared to an R-99. But with the Selectfire, and a good Extended Mag, it’s probably favourite weapon to take into the final circles. And with Season 4, the Prowler deals more damage than ever before.
Many players prefer the R-99 to the Prowler, and I completely understand where they’re coming from. It’s a fantastic weapon. Hard to control, but with such blisteringly high fire rate that you can end most fights before they even begin. Unfortunately its high recoil and limited magazine size heightens its difficulty curve and inhibits its versatility, and a slight damage nerf in the Season 4 patch notes means I’d still pick a Prowler over an R-99. But needless to say, both SMGs are tremendously powerful close-range weapons.
The Alternator has had higher ups and lower downs than most weapons in the Apex arsenal. It started off unable to hold a candle to either of its sibling SMGs, and then for a brief time became the best weapon in the game with the introduction of the utterly OP Disruptor Rounds. But they’re long gone, and the Alternator is back to being a substandard submachine gun that you’re unlikely to want to take very far beyond the early game.
LMGs – Apex Legends guns & stats
The Devotion’s stupendous fire rate and DPS has always made it one of the strongest guns in Apex Legends – and with Season 4 Respawn have acknowledged this by promoting the Devotion to a crate-only weapon. With the removal of the Turbocharger from the game, the Devotion has been altered so that by default it behaves as it used to do with a Turbocharger. Its big drawbacks are still a strong recoil and a wind-up time before the Devotion’s fire rate reaches its maximum. But if you’re lucky enough to find one and skilled enough to land your shots, there’s not much that can match this shredder of an LMG.
The L-Star was released with Season 2: Battle Charge, and it’s a hell of a gun. A fast rate of fire and very high damage-per-shot puts its DPS nearly on par with a Devotion, but without the annoying warm-up period before firing. It’s also got a higher mag size and larger bullets, allowing you to hit your target slightly more easily with this powerhouse LMG. The downside to the L-Star is the inclusion of an overheating mechanic which locks you out of firing if you shoot too often in a short space of time. Feather the trigger to fire bursts of 8 or so at a time, and you’ll be able to melt players without having to worry about your gun suddenly failing on you. Season 4 has seen fit to nerf the L-Star (as well as moving it out of the crate, effectively swapping places with the Devotion) with reduced damage and rate of fire, lessening the gun’s bite somewhat. But it’s still an LMG worth fearing in the hands of the enemy.
The Spitfire, despite ranking lowest (by a tiny margin, I might add) in our tier list of LMGs, is a hell of a weapon. High base damage and the potential to have the largest magazine of any gun in Apex makes it a real force to be reckoned with. It bucks like a mule when you’re firing, so you should prioritize getting a good Barrel Stabilizer attachment as quickly as possible.
Snipers (Sniper Rifles) – Apex Legends guns & stats
The Charge Rifle was introduced with Season 3 and the arrival of the new map – and it’s sickeningly strong. A world-drop energy-using sniper rifle with a hitscan beam shot that deals 3 damage every tick (to a maximum of 45 total damage) over half a second before dealing 45 additional damage with its final burst of power. It’s hilariously efficient, dealing (potentially) over 100 damage per shot of Energy ammo. It’s quick, easy to use, terrifying to come up against. And honestly, I’m quite surprised Season 4 hasn’t seen a nerf to this overpowered beam-sniper.
The Longbow is a big-boy Scout. A slower rate of fire but significantly higher damage allows you to demolish targets from a very safe distance as long as you’re accurate enough. There’s really not much more to say about this punchy rifle other than that it’s just as viable in Season 4 as it was in Season 3. This thing hurts.
The newest weapon to be added to the Apex weapons arsenal (Respawn really like their snipers, don’t they?), the Sentinel is a bolt-action weapon that deals the highest damage with a single projectile of any weapon except the almighty Kraber. That’s the good news. And it is good, because if you manage to hit, your enemies are going to feel it even more than a Longbow shot. The bad news is its slow rate of fire (welcome to the world of bolt-actions), and – more importantly – the Sentinel’s unique ability to consume a Shield Battery to enter a temporary charged state where you deal bonus damage to shields… it’s just not worth it. The Sentinel already deals enough damage, that’s not the problem. The problem is its fire rate. And I’d rather use a Shield Battery on myself, thanks very much.
One of three crate-only weapons in Apex Legends, the Kraber takes no attachments, and sports its own unique ammo – meaning you only get 8 shots, full stop. But it’s a phenomenally powerful bolt-action sniper with the ability to deal over 100 damage with a legshot, and 200 with a headshot. In essence, it’s a big-boy Sentinel. Unfortunately, its rarity and crippling fire rate brings down its overall power, and I would almost always keep my existing sniper rifle rather than switch over to a Kraber.
Again, don’t let the tier list fool you – I really like the Triple Take. Unique and versatile, it can be used to great effect at close range as a makeshift shotgun, and it’s a fantastic mid-range choice if you slap a 3x scope on it. Its three-shot spread makes longer-range shots more difficult – until you get a Precision Choke Hop-Up attachment for it, after which you can charge each shot up to reduce the spread dramatically. It’s still not ideal, because it slows down the rate of fire (even though the Choke tightening speed was increased with Season 2), and a Precision Choke should always go to a Peacekeeper first before a Triple Take. It’s just the unfortunate way of things that a gun can be as good as a Triple Take, and still be outshined by every other weapon in its category.
Shotguns – Apex Legends guns & stats
The final crate-only weapon in Apex Legends, the Mastiff comes with its own unique shotgun shells, meaning you will only ever get 20 shots with this colossal weapon. But it’s by far the most powerful of all the shotguns at close-range, dealing a whopping 36 damage with each of the eight bullets it fires with every pull of the trigger. That makes for a potential 288 damage in a single burst.
The Peacekeeper has always been the best world-drop shotgun in Apex. Fantastic damage in a large spread pattern, a Hop Up which dramatically increases its effective range, amazingly ammo-efficient… Even with its history of gradual nerfs, this is probably still the most powerful and reliable Shotgun you can get your hands on outside of crate drops.
Probably the most forgiving shotgun in Apex Legends, a startlingly fast rate of fire is what sets the EVA-8 Auto apart from the rest. Its damage per shot can’t compete with that of the Peacekeeper, but the EVA’s flexibility allows you to get in more shots than your opponent, often winning you the fight. And if you’re fortunate enough to equip it with a Double Tap Trigger, the EVA-8 can absolutely shred opponents. In certain circumstances, it might even outperform a Peacekeeper.
A similar story to the Alternator here – the lowly old Mozambique has had some serious ups and downs over the past year. Starting off as the clear-cut worst weapon in Apex, its viability was finally increased into positive figures with the introduction of the Hammerpoint Rounds Hop Up, which gives the shotgun-pistol significant bonus damage against unarmoured enemies. But still, if you think a Mozambique is ever going to be as strong as the other three in this category, you’re a very special kind of crazy.
Pistols – Apex Legends guns & stats
The Wingman used to be the clear-cut most powerful weapon in Apex Legends, alongside the Peacekeeper. Now both have been nerfed enough to bring them more or less back in line with the rest of the arsenal – but the Wingman still packs a hell of a punch. This formidable Hand Cannon deals sniper rifle damage with each shot; its only real drawback (and it’s a big one, by necessity) is its very limited magazine size, making an Extended Mag absolutely essential for Wingman users.
The RE-45 can be thought of as a mini R-99. Very fast-firing, but low damage-per-shot and a very low mag size for an automatic weapon. As with the Alternator, it enjoyed its Season in the sun thanks to the enormously powerful Disruptor Rounds Hop Up, but now that Hop Up is no longer present, and the RE-45 has been relegated back down to the lower rungs of the Apex weapons tier list.