[Top 10] Warframe Best Bows That Are Excellent (Latest Patch: Angels of Zariman)

The Robin Hood of Warframes: Ivara
Strike Fast and True Tenno

High-tech, space-age warriors using bows and arrows might seem out of place in a practical sense; but it’s super cool so… checkmate?

Regular bows are cool enough, but Warframe steps it up with its diverse selection. Some bows shoot exploding arrows, there are crossbows that empty their entire clip with a click of a button, and there are even bows that fire arrows that create tentacles that pull enemies in before blowing up in a messy viral explosion. Yes, that last one is real.

If you’re having trouble picking one as your next weapon, here’s a list of the best ones out there for you to give a shot. Don’t forget to lead the shot too!

Here are the rules considered in the making of this list:

  • Weapons are considered a “bow” when you can equip any single bow mod like Arrow Mutation or Thunderbolt onto them. This includes crossbows so they are allowed in this list.
  • Exalted Weapons (weapons usable only through Warframe abilities) are not included in this list.

10. Nagantaka Prime

It'll only sting a lot

One of the latest weapons in the game, introduced in March 2022, the Nagantaka’s Prime version is already good enough to be on a top 10 list. This crossbow features better damage, critical chance, magazine, and alternate firing mode fire rate.

The Nagantaka Prime’s primary firing mode is a semi-automatic bolt for accurate shots.

When you face a tanky opponent and/or find yourself facing multiple enemies, you can use the alternate firing mode which immediately unloads your entire magazine. Turn whoever’s in your path into pincushions with this crossbow.

Also, lore-wise, the Nagantaka, and its prime variant is owned by the Warframe Garuda, and when used by Garuda or Garuda prime, it gains +1 meter of Punch Through, to pierce through your foes even better.

What Nagantaka Prime excels at:

  • Accuracy:

Other weapons in the game with alternate firing modes where they empty their clip in seconds can’t aim while doing so. The Nagantaka can, making even its alternate firing mode, have good accuracy.

  • Fire rate:

Bows in Warframe usually have a fire rate of 1 arrow per second. Since the Nagantaka Prime is a crossbow, it gets a higher fire rate than the regular bow (2.5 bolts per second). In fact, it has the highest fire rate of any weapon on this list!

That’s not even mentioning its alternate fire which has a fire rate of 5 bolts per second!

  • Status chance:

The Nagantaka prime has a status chance of 39%, allowing you to easily inject whatever nasty status effects you want on your enemies.

How to get Nagantaka Prime:

Like most Primed weapons, the Nagantaka Prime’s blueprints and parts are obtainable by cracking Void Relics or trading them with other players. A list of the Void Relics containing this weapon’s blueprints and parts can be found on the “Nagantaka Prime Details” link below.

Void Relic Guide

Nagantaka Prime Details

9. Cernos Prime

Pinning enemies to walls 3 arrows at a time

The Cernos family bows might be Warframe’s favorite variety of bows due to the sheer number of versions it has (spoiler alert: you’ll be seeing this bow’s cousins further down the list).

The Prime variant has a unique way of firing: it shoots 3 arrows at once. You can adjust their positioning to be arranged horizontally or vertically by pressing the alternate fire button. This makes the Cernos Prime really flexible for a lot of tricky situations.

This bow also has the effect of dealing a bonus (50%) damage on headshots. Add this to the already impressive base damage that all weapons deal on headshots, and you get an amazing head-hunting bow.

What Cernos Prime excels at:

  • Being a one-bow army:

Firing 3 arrows at once already makes the enemy feel like there’s more of you than there really are. Adding multishot mods increases this amount even further, allowing you to just rain down tons of arrows with just 1 bow.

  • Whizz! Headshot:

If you have a decent aim (which, well, you should if bows are your thing) and love to get headshots, this is the bow for you. The 50% damage bonus is just too good to pass up.

  • Versatility:

Fire horizontally if you wanna take out a bunch of enemies at once. If there is a single enemy that’s giving you trouble, try firing vertically so all your arrows hit him (and you can easily get headshots when firing this way too).

How to get Cernos Prime:

Like most Primed weapons, the Cernos Prime’s blueprints and parts are obtainable by cracking Void Relics or trading them with other players. A list of the Void Relics containing this weapon’s blueprints and parts can be found on the “Cernos Prime Details” link below.

Void Relic Guide

Cernos Prime Details

8. Lenz

Make use of this Corpus tool to get rid of some Corpus tools

The Corpus have always had that futuristic look for their weapons and equipment compared to the Grineer’s scrappy but functional or the Orokin’s elegant designs. Even “old-fashioned” weapons like the bow get the high-tech treatment, and it shows.

The Lenz’s arrows inflict an area of effect (AOE) cold damage before exploding and dealing blast damage.

You may be concerned about the Lenz’s tiny ammo pool of 6, but don’t worry. True to the futuristic feel, this weapon has an innate ammo mutation effect, meaning that it converts any unused ammo into usable ammo for itself.

What Lenz excels at:

  • Packing a punch:

The Lenz is the bow with the second-highest base damage, making this bow a powerhouse in its category. It deals 50 impact damage for a charged shot, 10 cold damage for the first burst (it also applies a guaranteed cold status effect), and a whopping 660 blast damage for the explosion.

  • Critical chance:

Along with the Dread, this bow has the highest critical chance (not counting Nataruk’s perfect shot) among bows (50%). Take advantage of this and use mods to increase it even further.

  • Crowd control:

Because this weapon deals 2 forms of AOE in succession, it’s amazing at dealing with large numbers of enemies. Try positioning yourself in choke points to maximize efficiency.

How to get Lenz:

You can research and obtain the Lenz Blueprint in the Energy Lab of your clan dojo.

Here’s a quick guide on building a Dojo

Lenz Details

7. Paris Prime

You've come a long way from using the Mk-1 Paris

Ah yes, a classic! (mwah) For those of you who chose the Mk-1 Paris as their first primary weapon in the opening section of the game (like me), this weapon must bring back good memories. The Paris Prime has been in the game from the very start and it’s only fitting that it’s good enough to take this spot on the list.

This more traditional bow than the ones you’ve seen on this list so far, it’s a simple aim and fire bow. Sometimes, more is less. 

Compared to the other Paris variants, the Paris Prime may have a slower reload speed, but its increased damage, critical chance, and status chance more than make up for this.

What Paris Prime excels at:

  • Tanking:

Yes, you read that right. The Bhsaj-Bal is a mod exclusive to the Paris Prime that restores 300 of your health for every 3 status effects. It also boosts the weapon’s status chance by 90% to make that healing effect easier to use.

  • Dealing crits:

The Paris Prime has the second-highest critical chance (45%) among bows.

  • Securing amazing riven mods:

This weapon falls in the highest disposition category for riven mods. This means that riven mods for this weapon will have amazing stats that can boost this weapon and push it past its limits.

How to get Paris Prime:

Like most Primed weapons, the Paris Prime’s blueprints and parts are obtainable by cracking Void Relics or trading them with other players. A list of the Void Relics containing this weapon’s blueprints and parts can be found on the “Paris Prime Details” link below.

Void Relic Guide

Paris Prime Details

6. Dread

The Stalker assassin's calling card

One of the Stalker’s personal weapons of choice (all named after fun and cheerful stuff like Hate, War, and Despair), as the name states, make your enemies lose all hope whenever you pull on this weapon’s string.

The Dread uses bladed arrows that can slice through enemy flesh and armor like a thousand-degree knife on a soft drink bottle… I guess.

What Dread excels at:

  • Dealing critical damage:

The Dread is tied with the Lenz, in having the highest critical chance (not counting Nataruk’s perfect shot) among bows. (50%), no wonder the Stalker could kill you in seconds in the early stages of the game.

  • Rapid-fire:

With a reload time of 0.7s, the Dread is great at quickly picking off targets, whether from a good vantage point or on the move.

  • Ripping and tearing:

This weapon’s bladed arrows deal primarily slash damage, it also has a good status chance (20%), allowing you to frequently inflict bleeding status chance on enemies and bypass their armor.

How to get Dread:

Dread blueprints have a 37.94% chance to drop from defeating the Stalker (either normal or Shadow Stalker).

Here’s a guide on farming for the Stalker’s drops

Dread Details

5. Mutalist Cernos

Facemasks won't save them from this

This is an infested variation of the Cernos bow. If you can get around the infestation plaguing its exterior (I’ve seen players that really dislike the infested motifs in weapons and other items), the Mutalist Cernos is a really good bow that handles big crowds well.

Upon impact, this bow’s arrows release toxic clouds that damage enemies foolish enough to pass through them. These toxic spores remain there for 10 seconds. If you can make enough of these spores, the entire area will be inhospitable to your enemies.

Be warned though, despite being labeled as “silent” the spore clouds alert enemies, making this bow tricky to use in stealth missions.

What Mutalist Cernos excels at:

  • Dealing with Nullifiers:

If you hit a nullifier bubble, the arrow will still generate a spore cloud on the surface of the bubble, dealing damage to it until it pops. Those enemies are extremely annoying so having this bow to lessen their threat level is a good idea.

  • Creating zones that deal constant damage:

The spore clouds are really useful in keeping large crowds under control. You can use them to keep some distance between you and them or to distract them while you do something else like hacking panels.

  • Being the best status chance dealer:

Of all bows, the Mutalist Cernos is undisputed in having the highest status chance of 49%. Add multiple status elements on this weapon, sit back and watch as enemies catch your status effects inside your spore clouds.

How to get Mutalist Cernos:

You can simply buy the Mutalist Cernos’ blueprint from the in-game market. You can access the market from the console across the console where you access your quests.

Mutalist Cernos Details

4. Daikyu

A sniper rifle disguised as medieval weapon

A little fun fact: this weapon’s name is Japanese for “big bow”, “long bow” or possibly “big nine”... it’s probably not the latter one though. Sadly.

This is another bow that doesn’t do anything crazy like fire soda cans or take your dog on a walk. It does, however, have a feature wherein it can only fire charged shots. Making this weapon useful for single, high-priority targets.

What Daikyu excels at:

  • Striking hard:

Not counting bows that deal AOE, this bow has the highest base damage among bows. Just make sure to aim well and this bow will do the rest.

  • Striking fast:

Clocking at 140m/s the Daikyu’s arrows have the highest projectile speed among bows. Not only that, this makes arrows fly so fast, that their projectile speed is actually the second fastest among all primary weapons (aside from those that are hit-scan). 

Firing arrows that travel faster than gun bullets really make you feel like a super-powered, robot ninja, which you are, kinda.

  • Causing status effects:

The Daikyu has the second-highest status chance among bows (46%).

How to get Daikyu:

You can research and obtain the Daikyu Blueprint in the Tenno Lab of your clan dojo.

Here’s a quick guide on building a Dojo

Daikyu Details

3. Nataruk

The enemy of my enemy' bow is my friend

Getting the Stalker’s bow is not enough for a true bow enjoyer. Take it a step further and grab Hunhow’s (the Stalker’s master) bow too! The Nararuk is a weapon gifted to you in an uneasy, temporary alliance. Hunhow didn’t ask for it back though. Must not be a bow enjoyer.

I struggled on whether the Nataruk or the Daikyu should get the title of “Best Single Target Bow” but I think the Nataruk should take it.

The Nataruk has infinite ammo, ties with the Lenz and Dread with having the highest critical chance (when charged), as well as having the highest reload speed among bows.

But the main feature that makes this weapon so great is the “perfect shot” ability. When you release your arrow just before you fully charge it, the shot will have an increased critical chance and critical multiplier, providing insane damage outputs.

What Nataruk excels at:

  • One hitting:

The perfect shot ability makes this weapon incredibly effective in taking down high-priority targets quickly.

  • Piercing through bodies:

Both the charged and perfect shots have innate infinite punch through on bodies, allowing you to damage multiple enemies in a line even if the frontmost enemy somehow survives.

  • Rapid-fire:

Having the highest reload speed makes this weapon useful in taking down many weaker enemies quickly too. If you notice the Nataruk’s quick shots taking down enemies in a single shot, it’s better to go with that.

  • Criticals:

With the perfect shot, the Nataruk surpasses even the Dread and the Lenz in critical chance with a jaw-dropping 60% critical chance.

How to get Nataruk:

You get a Nataruk after completing “The New War” quest. You can buy additional copies, should you want to, from Cephalon Simaris for 100,000 standing.

Here’s a walkthrough of The New War quest, it contains huge spoilers though, so beware if you want to experience it yourself:

Nataruk Details

2. Proboscis Cernos

Innocent thoughts only! Those tentacles simply murder and maim, nothing nsfw

This is the big daddy of the Cernos family, it’s a supposed direct upgrade to the Mutalist Cernos as it requires one to be crafted. Aside from them both being infested bows though, they’re very different weapons.

The Proboscis (prow-baa-suhs) Cernos’ arrows unleash tendrils that latch onto enemies upon impact, then pull them into the impact location before exploding and dealing viral damage. It sounds crazy and over-the-top and that’s because it is, and I love it.

What Proboscis Cernos excels at:

  • Being viral:

The Proboscis Cernos comes with innate viral damage on its appendages and the ensuing explosion. This bow also has an impressive status chance, making sure that everyone gets their fair share of the viral status effect.

The viral status effect acts as a damage multiplier for any damage the affected enemy takes. It increases damage by 100% for the first proc for 6 seconds, any further procs will add 25%, capping out at 325%.

  • Crowd control:

Sucking in all surrounding enemies makes handling messy and chaotic crowds much easier.

  • Setting enemies up for further damage:

Since the appendages gather enemies together in one spot, you can use other weapons or Warframe abilities to follow up on this and deal even more damage to any survivors.

How to get Proboscis Cernos:

You can simply buy the Proboscis Cernos’ blueprint from the in-game market. You can access the market from the console across the console where you access your quests.

Proboscis Cernos Prime Details

1. Kuva Bramma

The power of the sun in the palm of your robot hands, sound familiar?

Here she is ladies and gents, one of the main reasons the current “boom and zoom” meta even exists. This weapon is not only the greatest bow, it is one of the greatest weapons currently in the game period. In the 2021 review released by Digital Extremes themselves, the Kuva Bramma is the 3rd most used primary weapon in the game.

This bow acts more like a rocket launcher than a bow. A rocket launcher whose payload splits into smaller loads upon impact or upon mid-air detonation (by clicking the alternate fire). That’s right, this thing is essentially a stick, a string, and a nuke.

Also, being a Kuva Weapon, the Kuva Bramma’s max rank increases every time you apply a forma, capping at rank 40. It will also have bonus damage, the type of damage would depend on the Warframe used to spawn your Kuva Lich.

This weapon is so strong that players are constantly calling for it to be nerfed. Whether you’re a fan of this bow or not, there is no denying its power and effectiveness.

What Kuva Bramma excels at:

  • Nuking everything in sight:

The nonstop explosions, combined with its high critical chance (35%), critical multiplier (2.1x), and status chance (21%), make the Kuva Bramma just an all-around damage-dealing monster. I’d tell you to watch your enemies melt before you, but all the smoke and explosions make it hard to see.

How to get Kuva Bramma:

You can get this bow by vanquishing a Kuva Lich that was generated with one. Liches spawn with a random Kuva weapon though so it may take a while to get one to spawn with a Kuva Kohm.

Kuva Lich Guide

Kuva Bramma Details

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In brightest day, in mindblockiest night, no game shall escape my sight. Let those who worship mediocrity's might, beware my pen game, Adrian's light. Basically I like games, I write.
Gamer Since: 2004
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: Warframe, Yu-Gi-Oh! Master Duel, Skyrim, Hollow Knight
Top 3 Favorite Games:Undertale, Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood, Fallout 3: Broken Steel

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