[Top 10] HALO 4’s Best Weapons

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A blue running away from a red's excellent taste in weapons. The red read this article, you know


Shoot your way to victory with the bullet cream of the gun crop

Halo’s gameplay has always been about the weapons. There is an ever-growing dearth of firearms to choose from, ranging from human ballistics to alien crystal guns to alien laser beams to other alien laser beams and much more. Within the Master Chief Collection, you can watch the armory grow and change across each entry, culminating in Halo 4 with the largest weapon library of the collection. There’s so much to choose from, so how will you know which weapon to use? By listening to me, a certified *Halo Gamer,* of course.

Halo 4’s new Promethean weapons carry over to Halo 5, but since 5 is not part of the MCC, I will refer to them as Halo 4 exclusive for the purposes of this list. Additionally, while this guide is for Halo 4, if a weapon that I mention  appears in the other games it is likely one of the best of those entries as well.

#10. Assault Rifle (Best for Multipurpose Shooting If you Can’t Aim)

Ah, the Assault Rifle, the faithful and iconic Halo weapon, found in every game except 2 because it lost its invitation in the mail that time. This gun varies in effectiveness across the franchise, but it is always a solid choice for shooting down enemies without needing to rely on headshots. In Halo 4 the Assault Rifle is particularly effective, with its time-to-kill buffed from its prior appearances. As long as you don’t get killed first, of course.

A common combo with this weapon is charging at the enemy while firing at them, like a dumb bull charging a matador, and then meleeing when you get close. The rifle should lower the shields enough to kill with the melee attack. Of course, this can just as easily get you killed, but there’s no gain without pain, as the sports folk  say. Or play strategically and try to ambush enemies, that works too if you’re boring and play smart.

What Makes the Assault Rifle Awesome:

  • Versatile and reliable
  • You don’t have to aim as precisely
  • Good combo potential

How to Use Assault Rifle: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BqejgYMd89I

Assault Rifle details: https://www.halopedia.org/MA5D_assault_rifle

#9. Needler (Best for Bursting Enemies into Pink Mist)

The Needler is a classic Halo weapon, having been a part of it since Combat Evolved. That said, its usefulness has fluctuated wildly across all the games. It was perhaps most powerful in Halo 2 when you could dual-wield them and blow people up almost immediately. This was absolutely ridiculous, so in later games you could only wield one at a time. In Combat Evolved and Reach it is at its weakest, but the one constant is that you can always make enemies explode if you shoot them enough and that is what truly matters.

In Halo 4, 343 Industries has buffed this weapon a decent amount. How it works is simple: shoot an enemy enough times and the pink needles you shoot into their bodies will explode, instantly killing them and damaging anyone else nearby. It is ineffective against vehicles, but there are plenty of other weapons on this list for that. It’s fun to use, it’s one of the most uniquely Halo weapons, and it is quite good in 4, so pick one up and start needling.

What makes the Needler Awesome:

  • Rapid fire
  • “Supercombine” explosions always satisfying
  • Projectiles hone in on targets when close enough
  • Projectiles ricochet off walls
  • Spiky and pink

How to Use Needler: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-SdRoTj5u-Y

Needler details: https://www.halopedia.org/Type-33_needler

#8. Spartan Laser (Best for Ruining Vehicles’ Fun)

Ever since the release of Halo 3, the Spartan Laser has scorched the battlefields, making its wielders squeal with glee and its victims swear and die (not necessarily in that order). The Spartan Laser, or “Splaser” as its friends call it, is a large shoulder-mounted laser gun. You point it at enemies, hold to charge a shot, and then fire a hitscan laser that obliterates most enemies in one shot (tanks take two). 

The biggest drawbacks are that it takes time to charge up a shot and that it cannot be recharged without picking up a new one, limiting its use somewhat. But its instantaneous high damage more than makes up for that, and it does do some splash damage if your targets are clustered together.

What makes the Spartan Laser Awesome:

  • Big Handheld Laser Cannon
  • One shot, one kill (unless you miss)
  • Shreds enemies and vehicles
  • Hitscan
  • Funny nickname

How to Use Splaser: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IShkhXJNkCw

Splaser details: https://www.halopedia.org/M6_Spartan_Laser

#7. Incineration Cannon (Best for Big Explosions)

Our first weapon on this list unique to Halo 4, this Promethean variant on the human Rocket Launcher is the best explosive weapon in the game. Point and fire and watch things blow up. Or blow yourself up, that’s a pretty common goof.

It can annihilate both infantry and vehicles very quickly, out-matching the Spartan Laser in almost every category. It is easier to dodge since it is not hitscan, but given everything else I think it’s fair to place this weapon above the Splaser.

What Makes the Incineration Cannon Awesome:

  • Huge Blast Radius
  • One hit kill for everything
  • Shoots clusters of laser missiles instead of one measly rocket
  • If you blow yourself up with it, it’s funny

How to Use Incineration Cannon: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2aqoofbay78

Incineration Cannon Details: https://www.halopedia.org/Z-390_incineration_cannon

#6. SAW (Best for Mowing Down Mooks Like A 30s Gangster)

Another Halo 4 exclusive, this is basically a sci-fi Tommygun. It can do everything the Assault Rifle can do, but faster and better. The only drawback is that it is less common and thus harder to find more ammo. For optimal play, make sure you say “Gotcha, see?” into voice chat while imitating an old timey mobster. People love that.

    What Makes the SAW Awesome:

  • Pretty accurate and has good range for a rapid-fire weapon (still best at closer ranges)
  • Very high damage output
  • Looks cool, see?
  • High Ammo Capacity
  • Melee Combo from the Assault Rifle is still viable, but you probably won’t even need it

How to Use the SAW: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F3NojOtBpys

SAW Details: https://www.halopedia.org/M739_SAW

#5. Battle Rifle (Best for Multipurpose Shooting if you Can Aim)

The Battle Rifle is the on-and-off significant other of the Halo universe. It keeps showing up and leaving, and when it’s there you have a great time and when it’s not there you miss it, but then you get used to not having it until it shows up at your door in the pouring rain asking you to let it back into your life. And you want to, but you don’t want to get hurt again, but when you’re together things are so good and so you just can’t resist.

What was I going on about? Anyway, this gun is present in many of the Halo games, introduced in Halo 2, briefly away for ODST and Reach, and returning for Halo 4. In all its appearances, it is the best multi-purpose, multi-range weapon available. With three shots every time you pull the trigger, you can easily cut down any foes in your path… as long as you have the precision to make headshots.

In Halo 4, the Battle Rifle is hitscan, which means a well-placed shot is a guaranteed three bullet impact.This may be one of the less flashy guns to use, but it’s by far the most practical.

    What Makes the Battle Rifle Awesome:

  • Three-round firing makes for quick kills
  • Good scope for longer ranges
  • High accuracy
  • High versatility
  • It’s changed this time, it promised, it will never leave you again

How to Use the Battle Rifle: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zdS98tMq3fk

Battle Rifle Details: https://www.halopedia.org/BR85HB_battle_rifle

#4. Scattershot (Best for Disintegrating People at Close Range)

It was a tough call whether to put the traditional shotgun here or the Halo 4-exclusive Promethean equivalent, but the latter, known as the Scattershot, is just all-around better. Its shots ricochet, making it easier to kill multiple foes at once, and it also has a higher range. While its individual shots are technically less powerful, the difference is negligible when you run up to someone and blast them in the face.

With that said, you could easily swap out the Scattershot for the shotgun on this list and the reasons why it is there would mostly be the same. They are incredibly powerful and fun close-range weapons that can kill an enemy with just one shot, and you don’t need to be as precise as you do with other weapons. 

    What Makes the Scattershot Awesome:

  • Instantly delete foes up close, even if they’re shielded
  • Effective counter to the Energy Sword’s lunge attack (See #2)
  • Don’t need to be that precise
  • Ricochet shots
  • Better range than the human shotgun

How to Use the Scattershot: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tU1z3vhazx0

Scattershot Details: https://www.halopedia.org/Z-180_Scattershot

#3. Sniper Rifle (Best for Infuriating the Enemy from Afar)

The sniper rifle is a staple of any infuriating FPS foe and a decorated veteran of the Halo series. Stand up and salute, whippersnappers. The sniper is always a top tier weapon in Halo, and a precise wielder can easily top the leaderboard of any multiplayer match. A headshot is an instant kill, discounting certain powerful enemies in Campaign modes. Be aware that your shots leave trails, so enemies can easily find you if you stay in one place.

While some prefer the Covenant Beam Rifle in Halo 4, the Sniper Rifle carries more rounds and can replenish ammo if you find another one, while the Beam Rifle can never acquire more shots. The sniper is best at long range, though if you happen to be close, you can shoot your enemy’s body and quickly melee to dispatch them. Or do a quick-draw, close range headshot like the epic gamer you know you are.

What Makes the Sniper Rifle Awesome:

  • High damage; instant kill headshots, two-shots to kill otherwise
  • Decent rate of fire, if you need it
  • Still useful at close range
  • Highly accurate… as long as you are

How to Use Sniper Rifle: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h1RGI6uNVH0

Sniper Rifle Details: https://www.halopedia.org/SRS99-S5_AM_sniper_rifle

#2. Energy Sword (Best for Jedi-ing Around)

Whoever said “never bring a knife to a gunfight” was an idiot. Not only did they never even mention proper swords, they also failed to take into account that the sword might be made of concentrated plasma and zip you towards your enemy like a magnet. 

It is important to note that these are, for legal reasons, not lightsabers at all (to be fair, the visual design is completely different, which is more than can be said for most other laser sword derivatives).

This weapon gives you the ability to instantly lunge at a nearby enemy and cut them in half with one sword stroke, like mowing the lawn. Unfortunately, after Halo 2 the lunge was dialed down so you could not hilariously fling yourself across the map if you miss, but the Energy Sword has always been one of the best weapons in the series.

What Makes the Energy Sword Awesome:

  • Instant kill, regardless of shields
  • You can duel people who also have one
  • Lunge attack gets you to targets quickly; if you find a cluster, you can easily kill everyone at once
  • Makes you feel like a Jedi (but of course, for legal reasons it must be emphasized that you are not one)

How to Use the Energy Sword: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dBsPBDAhZ3o

Energy Sword Details: https://www.halopedia.org/Type-1_energy_sword

#1. Binary Rifle (Best for Sick No-Scope Disintegration Trick Shots)

I sang the Sniper Rifle’s praises just a couple entries ago, but the Halo 4-exclusive Binary Rifle is a step above. It is powerful enough to kill enemies in a single shot, and it doesn’t even have to be a headshot. It is also more capable against vehicles and features a more advanced scope, letting you kill at even longer ranges.

One feature of the Binary Rifle is that when you zoom in, a giant laser pointer shows where you are aiming. Some call this a drawback, as it exposes your position and can help other players avoid your shots. Those people are fools who ignore the value of psychological warfare. Warning your foes a second before they die means they die with fear, and so you always win.

What Makes the Binary Rifle Awesome:

  • Extremely long range
  • Extremely long barrel
  • Insane damage output, even against vehicles
  • One-shot kill means even at close range you can come out on top
  • Laser pointer induces Fear (and attracts cats)

How to Use the Binary Rifle: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bp0uhpqFfXM

Binary Rifle Details: https://www.halopedia.org/Z-750_binary_rifle

You might also be interested in:

https://www.gamersdecide.com/articles/best-halo-5-weapons

https://www.gamersdecide.com/articles/top-5-halo-4-best-armor-most-fashionable

https://www.gamersdecide.com/articles/halo-master-chief-collection-what-does-it-come



As a pretentious English major who plays video games, I have many *opinions* about the games I play. I must share these *opinions.* It's pathological. Help me. Read my *opinions.* Validate me. Please.
Gamer Since: 2000
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: Hollow Knight
Top 3 Favorite Games:Pillars of Eternity, Dishonored 2, Transistor


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