There are a few guns that will almost certainly make any decent Fallout New Vegas Best Weapons list. But even apart from these select few, the game features an absolute plethora of unique and creative weapons that can suit almost any style of play. From shotguns to assault rifles to grenade launchers, there’s something in New Vegas for everyone.
While you’re here, why not also check out our article on the 12 Best Weapons in Dying Light.
But with this article, we will attempt to list some of the absolute best weapons in the entire game. We would also like to mention that this list is based on our own personal preferences. You might not agree with every entry, and that’s okay. Different people play games in different ways, and not all of our choices will align.
Fallout New Vegas Best Weapons
There are dozens of different weapons in Fallout New Vegas, and they come in a variety of different shapes and calibers. A significant number of these weapons are already available in the base game, but a large amount of them are also exclusive to each of the six DLCs for the game. The Gun Runners’ Arsenal add-on in particular introduces a large number of new guns, ammo types and weapon mods to the experience. So if you can’t locate a weapon we mention in this list in your own game, you might not have the relevant DLC installed
A majority of these weapons are also unique variations of existing models that already exist within the game, but they function in ways that make them more powerful and valuable to the player. Talking about some of these may actually classify as minor spoilers, so we’ll try and mitigate them as much as possible. You might also not meet the requirements for some of these weapons, in which case our Fallout New Vegas Skill Book Locations guide can help you quickly level up the relevant skill.
Now finally, this is our Fallout New Vegas Best Weapons list.
This is actually one of the first unique weapons that you come across in the game, and it’s one that is useful for a long time afterwards. Comically named ‘That Gun,’ this 5.56mm pistol is among the best non-energy one handed guns when it comes to critical hit chance.
Compared to a regular 5.56mm pistol, this weapon’s damage, reload speed and item HP are also noticeably higher. Unlike the standard variation however, the unique ‘That Gun’ is not considered an improved holdout weapon. This means that it cannot be taken into areas where weapons are normally forbidden.
Location: That Gun can be found inside the Dino Bite gift shop in the town of Novac. It can either be purchased from the shopkeeper Cliff Briscoe, or stolen from the locked storage room next to him. To unlock the room, players can either pickpocket the key from Cliff or pick the Very Easy lock by themselves.
If you have the Gun Runners’ Arsenal DLC installed, the unique Paciencia rifle can also be acquired almost as soon as ‘That Gun.’ This is an extremely powerful hunting rifle that deals a base damage of 55, but then it also has the ‘Bonus Critical Damage’ effect. This lets it crit twice as frequently as normal weapons to deal a staggering 110 damage per shot.
With this weapon in your inventory, there are few combatants that should be able to stay standing after a well placed headshot. In fact, the Paciencia is one of my favorite weapons in the entire game, and I carried it with me for the entire duration of my most recent playthrough. Trust me, it’s useful in almost any situation.
Location: The Paciencia can also be found in the Dino Bite gift shop. Unlike That Gun however, it can only be purchased from Cliff Briscoe and not stolen. The weapon also has a massive price tag of 12000 caps, which most players should not be able to afford so early in the game.
Now this gun on our Fallout New Vegas Weapons list may not rank particularly high with a lot of players, but it’s one that I never play through the game without. The Big Boomer is an explosive sawed-off shotgun that eviscerates enemies at short range. It’s basically useless at mid or long range, but if you walk up close to someone and let it loose, few foes should be able to survive.
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Unlike regular Sawed-off shotguns, the Big Boomer has a much tighter spread, faster rate of fire and lower AP cost. It also deals an additional 20 points of damage. But unlike the standard version of this weapon, the Boomer is not considered a holdout weapon. So you cannot sneak it into restricted areas.
Location: If you keep going north from the town of Novac, eventually you should reach a location called Gibson Scrap Yard. An NPC named Old Lady Gibson resides here with her pet dogs. You can kill her to loot the gun from her body, or you can place a more powerful weapon into her inventory. NPCs automatically equip the strongest weapon in their arsenal, so this should allow the Big Boomer to be pickpocketed.
A Light Shining In Darkness
While the Honest Hearts DLC is far from the best New Vegas story expansion, it does feature one of my favorite NPCs in the form of Joshua Graham. This character also wields a unique .45 Auto pistol that goes by the name of ‘A Light Shining In Darkness.’ It is a powerhouse of a gun.
On top of being one of the best feeling guns in the game, it deals more damage than a standard .45 Auto pistol. Combine this with it’s greater critical hit chance and better rate of fire, and you have a weapon that can down enemies pretty quickly. It is also considered to be an improved holdout weapon, so players can take this into otherwise restricted areas with a Sneak skill of at least 50.
Location: To get this weapon, players first have to start the Honest Hearts expansion and head to Zion Canyon. Once here, they can either kill Joshua Graham to get the gun, or they can play though the entire storyline to get it at the end automatically.
This is the first non-unique weapon on our Fallout New Vegas Best Weapons list, and it’s an absolute beauty. This gun is a rare variant of the Hunting revolver, minus the scope, but it deals more damage than the standard variation.
At 62 base damage per shot without any perks and a x1.5 critical chance, there are few enemies that can stand up to the force of a single headshot. And if that alone doesn’t work, I can assure you that unloading the full 5-bullet chamber definitely will. There isn’t much else to say about this gun except that it deals massive damage and that it looks absolutely beautiful.
Location: A Ranger Sequoia can be pickpocketed from Chief Hanlon in Camp Golf, or looted from his dead body. If that isn’t an option for players, you can always find them on NCR Veteran Rangers after you hit level 16.
Among the numerous new additions to Fallout New Vegas with the Gun Runners’ Arsenal, we have the extremely powerful Medicine Stick. Don’t let the name fool you, this is a unique variant of the Brush Gun that is able to deal a whopping 78 damage per shot. And this is without any perks that increase damage for rifles.
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As with most mid-range rifles, the rate of fire on the Medicine Stick is not great. But with the high accuracy and damage alone, players can pick off enemies from a distance before they ever reach them. The weapon also features a unique stock with a Native American aesthetic that makes it look really cool.
Location: The Medicine Stick can only be purchased from the Vendortron robot running the Gun Runners kiosk outside of Freeside. The cost of the weapon is an enormous 20000 caps.
Now this is another weapon that might not make a lot of other New Vegas Best Weapons lists, but I would like to argue in favor of it. The AER14 Prototype is a unique energy weapon that deals significantly more damage per shot than a regular Laser Rifle, but it does so at a cost. Each use of this weapon costs two Microfusion Cells, as opposed to the regular of one for the standard rifles.
But in my opinion, the increased damage is more than worth it since the Microfusion Cells ammunition can be found littered absolutely everywhere. Plus, the weapon has a design that tells a story of it’s own, and the unique green laser also makes it stand out from other weapons of the same type.
Location: To get the AER14 Prototype, you have to head to the abandoned Vault 22. Once here, go to the fifth floor and enter the locked door leading to the stairway to the right of the elevator. Once inside, walk down the stairs and you should find the gun lying on the ground next to a skeleton.
If you ever feel the urge to simply mow down enemies with a quick burst of bullets, then the Survivalist’s Rifle is meant for you. This is without a doubt one of the best weapons in the entire game, and it can make short work of anyone.
Compared to the standard Service Rifle base damage of 18, the Survivalist’s Rifle doles out a monumental 48 points of damage per shot. It also has a much tighter spread, and a higher rate of fire than the standard variant. And all of this is without any perks that alter the damage weapons deal. So when I said that this gun mows down foes, I was not exaggerating even a bit.
Location: The Survivalist’s Rifle can be found in Zion Canyon, which you visit as part of the Honest Hearts add-on. To get it, travel to The Red Gate and locate the arching stone pathway. Now climb up onto the structure from the west side, and you should find it in a container called ‘The Survivalist’s Duffle Bag’ next to a skeleton.
I was never going to write a Fallout New Vegas Weapons list without the addition of the Anti-Materiel Rifle. This powerhouse of a weapon is a welcome addition to any arsenal, and it’s absolutely essential for anyone who is considering playing as a sniper.
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This gun is not something you pull out for every encounter, mostly because the .50 MG ammunition it uses is extremely rare to come by. Also, it can turn most enemies into meat chunks with a single shot, so it’s usually preferred that you reserve it for special occasions. But with a base damage of 110, and the extremely long range, this is a weapon you use to take off heads from half a mile away.
Location: There are two different variations of the Anti-Materiel Rifle. The regular one is the version that is present in the game by default and cannot be modded, while the Gun Runners’ Arsenal variant does accept modifications. You can find the regular rifle on multiple NPCs like the NCR Veteran Rangers, while the GRA one can only be bought from the Vendortron robot running the Gun Runners kiosk.
Gauss Rifles in Fallout New Vegas are these incredibly powerful energy weapons that are capable of dealing 120 damage per shot. But the cost of inflicting this damage is pretty high, as each shot from these guns consumes five Microfusion Cells. The YCS/186 is a unique variation of this weapon that uses up 4 Microfusion Cells and deals 140 damage instead.
So from the start, it’s much more economic than a regular Gauss Rifle. It’s also more accurate than a standard rifle, and it has more durability. The YCS/186’s only noticeable drawback is that it weighs an extra pound compared to a standard Gauss Rifle, but most players can afford to ignore this minor grievance anyway.
Location: The YCS/186 can be found at an enemy camp to the east of Brooks Tumbleweed Ranch. An enemy here is carrying the weapon, and will attack the player on sight. He also has some great armor on, so you can loot both of these things from his corpse together.
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