Horizon Zero Dawn is a game that pits players against impossible odds. One minute, you're fighting a horde of Scrappers, who are all shooting their lasers at you. The next, you'll be taking on a massive Thunderjaw while the Eclipse is desperately trying to end your life once and for all.
To tackle the great challenges presented in this game, it's important to have the best weapons at your disposal. Whether you're traversing the Sundom or headed through Banuk territory, it might be best to stock up on the 10 best weapons in the entire game. We're including the base game and the DLC expansion.
10 SHADOW HUNTER BOW
Aloy is great with a bow, but there are different types to purchase in Horizon Zero Dawn. An essential tool for any player should be the Shadow Hunter Bow. This very rare bow can be purchased for a reasonable price and parts from just about any Merchant.
The bow gives players standard arrows, Fire arrows, and Hardpoint arrows, the latter of which is excellent for ripping components off the toughest machines. It's a quick bow too, so it works well in mid-range and close combat. Combine that with the precision aiming maneuver, and the Shadow Hunter Bow becomes one of the best tools in the game.
9 SHADOW TRIPCASTER
The initial tripcaster Aloy receives is useful, but it has its limits. Only capable of laying down shock traps to trip up machines, that doesn't work on all of them. Many of the later machines are immune to shock, so it becomes effectively useless at some point. However, the Shadow Tripcaster maintains its usefulness by giving Aloy three different traps to throw down.
This means that it becomes useful in just about all situations. It provides an extra method for dispatching machines and humans as well as gives Aloy a bit more breathing room when tackling multiple opponents at once.
8 SHADOW SHARPSHOT BOW
Often times, Horizon Zero Dawn will pit Aloy against opponents who are far away. Standard bows aren't effective at that distance, so the solution is to purchase a sharpshot bow, particularly the Shadow Sharpshot Bow. This bow packs a punch as well as three different arrows to choose from.
The Precision Arrows deal a lot of damage and can take out enemy humans with a single headshot. Tearblast Arrows can rip annoying parts of machines, giving Aloy the edge against Thunderjaws and Ravagers. The only downside is that it takes a while to draw arrows on the bow, but it's more than a worthy tradeoff.
7 SHADOW RATTLER
The Shadow Rattler is one of the most unique weapons in Horizon Zero Dawn. Where most weapons are variations of primitive equipment, the Rattler is something that feels a bit more modern. It functions like a rifle, firing deadly bullets to get the job done. It's easily a weapon designed for tackling machines, as its different ammunition covers different weaknesses.
It deals a lot of damage, can penetrate armor quite well, and the status effects can make any fight a cinch when used properly. Many players can go through the entire game without ever using a rattler, so it's important to keep it in mind.
6 LODGE BLAST SLING
Slingshots seem like silly weapons when compared to using something like a bow. However, Horizon Zero Dawn ensures that using a slingshot has its own advantages, the greatest of which being its impressive blast damage. Slingshots can be used to attach bombs to machines, which deal massive damage and can cause them to stagger.
The best of the bunch is the Lodge Blast Sling, which offers three different bomb types and excellent stats. However, this sling can only be obtained if Aloy makes herself known by conquering all 15 of the Hunting Grounds in the game. It makes sense that it'd be so good in that case.
5 BANUK CHAMPION BOW
The Frozen Wilds was the DLC expansion to Horizon Zero Dawn, providing a new area for players to explore as well as Daemonic machines, which were stronger than the Corrupted machines from the base game. To compensate for this difficulty spike, the game introduces some new weapons that give players an advantage is this new location.
Among them is the Banuk Champion Bow. A variation of the popular War Bow from the base game, this bow packs a punch and isn't afraid to get down and dirty. With the right upgrades, this bow can instantly demolish some of the stronger machines, such as Rockbreakers.
4 BANUK POWERSHOT BOW
Banuk weapons are some of the best in the game, as they were released to account for the increased difficulty of The Frozen Wilds. Among those weapons is the Banuk Powershot Bow, which takes the best parts of the prior sharpshot bows and turns them into something extraordinary. Better at long range, this bow can deal amazing damage with just one hit.
Considering that The Frozen Wilds also offers a lot of powerful modifications, it's easy to turn this into the strongest weapon in the game. If you're going to take on the Fireclaws after the main quest, you're going to need something like this.
3 LODGE WAR BOW
The Lodge War Bow is all about gaining the upper hand against Machines. Each of its three arrow types sports a different element, which is used to stun or give players the right opening they need to secure a critical hit. The Lodge War Bow does all of these things on top of having some of the best stats for a War Bow.
The only way it can be obtained is by completing the 15 Hunting Lodges. Only then can it be purchased by trading in the blazing suns. While it might seem like a difficult task, there's no denying that the Lodge War Bow is worth the effort.
2 IMPROVED ICERAIL
Players who just have the base edition of Horizon Zero Dawn aren't going to know what the Improved Icerail is. It's a weapon that is only earned for those who played The Frozen Wilds DLC. After Aloy becomes chief of the Werak, it's one of the weapons rewarded to her.
The standard Icerail can then be upgraded by completing another side quest. Needless to say, the Improved Icerail is easily one of the best weapons in the game. Fully charged shots can dismantle machines quicker than most other weapons in its class. It became one of the most effective tools against stronger machines.
1 IMPROVED STORMSLINGER
The Stormslinger is a weapon only obtained in The Frozen Wilds. A shaman's weapon given to Aloy when she decides to escort Ourea to Thunder's Drum, the Stormslinger shoots out bolts of electricity that can quickly damage machines and apply shock damage to them as well.
Its standard form is strong and sturdy, but complete the side quest for Varga, and you get rewarded with the Improved Stormslinger. Not only does the weapon look much more menacing, but it's much more potent, able to down the health of machines in just a few shots. While it's more geared toward ranged combat, it's powerful enough that it doesn't make a serious difference.