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Red Dead Redemption 2: best weapons and where to find all Rare and Unique weapons

There are 59 weapons to be found and used in Red Dead Redemption 2 – some more easily unlocked than others.

They roughly fall into three categories – standard weapons you are given during the story or that can be bought from a Gunsmith in any major town. You can also find Rare versions of these standard weapons throughout the story campaign and world.

Unique weapons that can be found by following treasure hunts, killing gunslingers or completing other side missions.

And then there are a few extra weapons that can be unlocked by pre-ordering Red Dead Redemption 2, or by playing GTA Online.

Cleaning your weapons

All weapons can be deadly if you’re a good shot, using Dead-Eye correctly or just getting up close and personal. But if you don’t look after your weapons their performance will decrease significantly, even for Unique weapons. You need to keep a healthy stock of Gun Oil, which you can buy from a Gunsmith or find by looting dead enemies. Whenever you get a little downtime, be sure to clean your guns. And buy the Upgraded Holster from a Gunsmith as soon as you can it will slow down the degradation of all weapons by 20%.

Customizing your weapons

Head to the Gunsmith and select Customize from the menu. You can now swap out the Components; barrel, scope, iron sights, stock and wrap. With pretty much every weapon, adding a new scope, longer barrel, iron sights or stock will improve its range and handling. Whenever you get the chance you should mod these. The wrap will just change the look of the weapon and not any actual stats.

To carry more ammo, buy the Upgraded Bandolier and the Upgraded Gunbelt from the Gunsmith as soon as you’re able.

Best weapons in Red Dead Redemption 2

Best revolver
There are three revolvers to choose from. The $84 Schofield Revolver is the best, dealing decent damage and it has good accuracy and fire rate.

Alternatively, you can rob the Doctor’s shop in Valentine. You will need to peer through the back window first in order to gain the ability to rob the place. Once inside, force the doc to take you to the back room, kill everyone, and loot the box on the table. You can Customise it to improve it and you’ve got a good early game firearm. Get a second one as soon as you’re able to dual wield.

Best pistol
The Volcanic Pistol does the most damage and it’s the cheapest at $150. The Semi-Automatic is best for fire rate and reloading, and the Mauser holds a lot of bullets and spits them out quickly.

Best rifle
It’s a toss up between the Springfield Rifle and the Bold Action Rifle. But both are slow. The Bolt Action is a little more accurate and the Springfield does slightly more damage. Alternatively, the Lichefield Rifle is the best repeating rifle you can pick up for $145 if you’re using a rifle as a main weapon.

Best shotgun
The Repeating Shotgun does the most damage, but the sawn-off can be dual-wielded so get both.

Best Sniper
The Carcano Rifle is the best sniper rifle so go for that. It has great range, will bring down an elephant and is pin-point accurate. Only use it at range, though.

Best melee
The Tomahawk is a brutal weapon that can kill with one throw at close range, and should be used for silent attacks. Just remember to pick it up again.

All Unique and Rare weapons

Midnight’s Pistol
If you take on the Gunslinger side quests, you’ll hunt down an old shootist called Billy Midnight. Kill him and you can take his rare Mauser Pistol, complete with gold engravings. It has a great fire rate, reload and accuracy. Although damage is average, it’s a good early-game gun and fairly easy to earn.

Flaco’s Revolver
Another weapon you find by completing the Gunslinger side quests, this pistol isn’t amazing but it’s a nice replacement in the early game for your rusty old shootin’ iron. Kill Flaco Hernandez and it’s yours – he ain’t gonna need it anymore.

Granger’s Revolver
Another weapon picked up after killing the gunslinger Emmet Granger. It has a beautiful pearl handle but isn’t as good as Flaco’s Revolver.

Stone Hatchet
Here’s how to unlock the Stone Hatchet by completing challenges in GTA Online.

Double-Action Revolver
This is a special revolver you can earn by completing headshot challenges in GTA Online.

Rare Rolling Back Rifle
This is a great sniper rifle that you earn during the end of the Magicians for Sport story mission. One of the guys who have kidnapped your friend will be carrying it so make sure you search all the dead bodies.

Rare Shotgun
There’s a cave on the far west of the map, north west of Big Valley, or west of Hanging Dog Ranch. Inside you’ll find the mysterious hermit who wields this Rare Shotgun. It doesn’t seem to be any more powerful than the regular double-barreled shotgun, but it looks amazing.

Rare Double-Barrel Shotgun
You’ll have to kill a man for this one. Open up your map and set your waypoint below the letter “a” in Manito Glade. In this area you will find a settler’s home in the woods, and he’s packing the Rare Double-Barrel Shotgun. Kill him and it’s yours. Just be sure to loot him, otherwise, you won’t collect it later in the game. The weapon is rather decorative, has a two round capacity and can use a variety of shotgun ammo.

Ancient Tomahawk
In the north-east area of Calumet Ravine is the Ancient Tomahawk. It is embedded in the broken target sitting on the ground.

Hunter Hatchet
South of the “k” in Window Rock and north of the tracks in the Grizzlies, you will see a building. Go to the right of it, and embedded in a tree stump you will find the Hunter Hatchet. It features a long bearded ax which allows for greater control when planing or shaving wood.

Viking Hatchet
A melee and throwing weapon, the Viking Hatchet features really neat handle bound in leather with Noric patterns. The weapon can be found on a sacrificial altar in a set of ruins. Located in the Roanoke Valley of New Hanover, north of Annesburg, if you look at your map, you will see where two paths meet in the “c-shape” of the river. To the right of where the two paths meet, you will find the ruins in the forest. Also, if you walk into the ruins and turn left, you can acquire the matching Viking Helmet. It’s just for looks.

Whether you’re just getting started or are a few hours in, head over to our ultimate Red Dead Redemption 2 guide for all the tips, tricks and walkthroughs you’ll need.

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