How to Get the Best Weapons in GTA Online

How to Get the Best Weapons in GTA Online

We take you through the best weapons of each type.

GTA Online features dozens of weapons to choose from, adding more all the time. With this in mind, it can be difficult to know which to pick when you're out heisting - but we're here to help you find out the best weapons in GTA Online, and how you can get them.

What are the Best Weapons in GTA Online?

Let's be clear first that the best weapon won't always be the best weapon, if you see what we're saying. Aside from Rockstar adding new guns all the time, different weapons have different strengths and sometimes you'll need to vary what you've got equipped to deal with different threats. However, we've listed all the best weapons of their types for general play, the guns you'll want equipped normally as you explore the world and encounter threats.

Where to Get the Best Weapons

All the weapons below and pretty much any others you need are available to buy at any Ammu-Nation store in the open world, though they may require you to be of a certain rank before you can buy them, meaning you'll have to complete heists and missions to raise your standing.

You'll always want a range of guns to pick from, but some work better as your go-to default. | Joel Franey/USGamer, Rockstar North, Rockstar Games

Best Handgun: AP Pistol

Requirements: Rank 33, $5,000

If you're going for a sidearm, we'd choose this trusty weapon over any other. It's accurate, powerful, has a fast rate of fire and a large clip to minimize the need to reload. Let's be honest, the key value of a handgun is how well it works in drive-by shootings - and there's no equal to this deadly little pistol.

The AP Pistol outmatches all other pistols - and probably most SMGs to boot. | Joel Franey/USGamer, Rockstar North, Rockstar Games

Best Melee Weapon: Stone Hatchet

Requirements: See here for details

We did a full guide on how to get the Stone Hatchet already, but it's hard to say that there's a better melee weapon than one that can grant temporary damage invulnerability on the user, allowing them to cut through gunmen without going down. If you have to get into a brawl, this is what you'll want.

Best SMG: Assault SMG

Requirements: Sign-Up for Rockstar Social Club, $12,550

We'll be honest, this one's kind of on here for completionist's sake. There's no reason to use a kind of gun that exists in a nebulous space between pistol and rifle, without the ease of the former or the firepower of the latter. Still, if you find yourself low on ammo or you just want to make a name for yourself as the OG with the SMG, the Assault Submachine Gun is the best of the bunch, coming with a suppressor and more damage than its counterparts. It also doesn't lose damage with distance, meaning that there's genuine potential to be had in spraying at distant targets.

If you're committed to being an SMG user, the Assault SMG is the one to pick. | Joel Franey/USGamer, Rockstar North, Rockstar Games

Best Assault Rifle: Advanced Rifle

Requirements: Rank 70, $14,250

It was a very close call between this and the Special Carbine, but the only real place the Advanced Rifle fell short was range - and a simple scope changed all that. More powerful than any other assault rifle and with a very rapid fire rate, this is perhaps the default weapon to grab for whenever things get dangerous.

Best Shotgun: Assault Shotgun

Requirements: Rank 37, $10,000

Look, sometimes a guy gets in your face and you just want to spread him like peanut butter over the nearest wall. That's when you get the Assault Shotgun, a full-auto weapon that can kill nearly any enemy on the first shot, and follows it up with seven other shots, just to make sure.

The Assault Shotgun is so ridiculously violent we're surprised it's not in a Doom game. | Joel Franey/USGamer, Rockstar North, Rockstar Games

Best Sniper Rifle: Heavy Sniper

Requirements: Rank 90, $38,150

"One-shot, one-kill" is the mantra of snipers the world over, and the Heavy Sniper is here to enforce that mantra. Able to kill almost any player with a single bullet, the Heavy Sniper can even be used as an anti-vehicle weapon, bringing down helicopters and blowing up cars. It has downsides - there's no available silencer, for instance - but it does huge damage and even fires more quickly than the standard sniper rifle.

Best Heavy Weapon/Launcher: Homing Rocket

Requirements: Rank 1, $75,000

What else could it be? When you're being swarmed by police choppers or tormented by some high-level player in fighter jet, the Homing Rocket launcher is how you retaliate with efficiency. You don't need to waste time aiming or judging trajectories, just point it in the general direction of the enemy, wait for the target to lock on, and let the missile do the rest.

Best Thrown Weapon/Explosive: Sticky Bomb

Requirements: Rank 19, $600 (each)

High explosive power, stick to targets, and can be detonated at the thrower's request. Sure, they make noise and flash slightly, potentially giving them away, but all this does is risk losing an advantage that the other explosives don't even have to begin with.

A handful of sticky C4 is the easiest way to bring down... well, anything. | Joel Franey/USGamer, Rockstar North, Rockstar Games

Now that you've got the best weapons ready, you'll want the fastest vehicles, our full list of which you can find here. Alternatively, go here for our comprehensive guide on being a CEO with your own Organization in GTA Online. Or if you want to find our full GTA 5 cheats page for the singleplayer, you can go right here for all that and more.

Joel Franey

Guides Writer

Joel loves books, games, comics and drinks that make a person feel like they just got kicked in the head by a mule. He has a Masters in writing from Sussex, which he somehow got by writing about Superman. He is absolutely NOT three children in a long coat, so please stop asking.

In other news

Control: Ultimate Edition Confirms PS5 and Xbox Series S/X Dates and Ray Tracing Toggle

If you were hoping for the highest of high-end performance… dream on, Faden.

The SNES Can Do Ray Tracing Thanks to a Homebrew “SuperRT” Chip

Ben Carter's chip design makes real-time lighting and reflections possible on a 30-year-old console.

Xbox Is Hosting a Space Jam Game Jam Design Contest

We got a real (game) jam goin' now.

You may also like

Cyberpunk 2077 Review: Death by a Thousand Cyber-Cuts

Even if you get beyond the bugs, it's just not worth it.

Stardew Valley Just Got Beaches, Fish Tanks, Swimming Ducks, and a Whole Lot More

Nearly five years on, Eric "ConcernedApe" Barone just pushed what he says is Stardew's "biggest update yet."

Alien: Isolation Is Free on Epic and Just As Good as It Was in 2014

Get the motion tracker and don't go in the vents.