Like most online shooters, GTA Online is unrecognizable from the game that released back in 2013. Updates that bring new weapons and explosives, along with balance patches have completely changed how players approach the game, and what was good a few years ago probably has a better alternative today.
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There is a wide variety of weapons to choose from and you can only carry a handful, so make sure you choose wisely. Different weapons are unlocked at different levels, so check out our guide on how to level up fast in GTA Online as well if you want to grab some fancy new guns. If you're looking to refine your loadout, or get off to a good start by chasing the best weapons right away, we've got you cover with these pointers.
Best loadout for intense player vs player gunfights
While there isn’t a single ‘best loadout’ that’s unanimously agreed upon by the majority of the community, there are a number of favorites that are good to aim for if you don’t know where to start. This loadout is best for taking on other players, but can be effective for missions as well:
- MKII Heavy Revolver (Hollow Point rounds)
- Combat MG MKII
- Special Carbine (Drum Magazine)
- Heavy Sniper MKII (Explosive Rounds)
- Pump Shotgun MKII (Explosive Rounds)
- Sticky Bomb
Be aware that this is a deadly setup, so be careful when approaching missions that don’t want you to hurt anyone.
Sticky and Sinister
There are a number of handheld, throwable explosives across Los Santos - some are great for bum rushing a building, while others are more effective during races. The Sticky Bomb is widely considered to be one of the top explosives, effective in gunfights and during missions, even if some look at it as overpowered. They are unlocked after achieving rank 19, and need to be detonated after throwing.
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The AP Pistol, unlocked at rank 33, is one of the most consistent weapons in the game. It’s powerful, accurate, and great for drive-bys. It does have alternatives, but most players end up sticking with it due to how effective it is - it can even take out a car in a handful of shots, something no pistol should be able to do. It’s been changed enough since release, but is still considered reliable.
Bread and Butter
The assault rifle is usually the most reliable and most used gun in online shooters. It’s versatile, powerful, and easy to handle. GTA Online has a number of sturdy guns that can get the job done but we recommend the Advanced Rifle, unlocked at rank 70, or the Special Carbine, unlocked at rank 1. The Advanced Rifle is less accurate but deadly at short to medium range, while the Special Carbine is better for headshots. You’ll be relying a lot on your assault rifle until you find the weapon that feels best to you, and that’s why the Special Carbine is so widely recommended.
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