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Choosing between the Assault Rifle and Heavy Assault Rifle in Fortnite

(Image Credit: Epic Games)
(Image Credit: Epic Games)
Izaak
ANALYST
Modified 04 Dec 2020, 02:39 IST
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The new season of Fortnite now features two strong mid-range weapons to choose from, the Assault Rifle and the Heavy Assault Rifle.

As the similar name suggests, both of these guns fill the niche in Fortnite of being a strong and versatile mid range weapon that can be used comfortably at either close or far ranges when needed. The Assault Rifle has been in Fortnite since the beginning, while the Heavy Assault Rifle gets vaulted and unvaulted periodically.

Assault Rifles in Fortnite

It’s rare for assault rifles to not be part of a full loadout in any season of Fortnite. Much like how shotguns are seen as an integral part of the game, assault rifles offer too much versatility to be ignored, pairing a good range and high damage output in a way that is hard to compete with.

Even when other weapons are strong, their inability to be usable in almost any situation often causes them to lose out to assault rifles when time comes to pick which weapons to hold on to and which to let go of.

Comparing stats, AR vs. HAR

This chart shows how many shots it takes to eliminate players at various health levels.
This chart shows how many shots it takes to eliminate players at various health levels.

The AR in Fortnite ranges from common to legendary and deals anywhere from 30 to 36 damage per hit with a 1.5x headshot multiplier and a fire rate of 5.5 shots per second.

By comparison, the HAR ranges from common to mythic and deals anywhere from 33 to 44 damage per hit with a 1.5x headshot multiplier and a fire rate of 4.25 shots per second.

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When looking at the breakpoints for the Assault Rifle and Heavy Assault Rifle, it becomes apparent that the Heavy Assault Rifle will generally play better than the Assault Rifle. In general, the Heavy Assault Rifle will require one fewer shot to hit than the Assault Rifle.

In fact, the only time the Heavy Assault Rifle isn’t better is when compared at the common rarity, where the damage difference isn’t enough to matter and at that point, fire rate will be more useful.

The only Heavy Assault Rifle to require four shots to eliminate a player at 100 health is the common one, whereas the only Assault Rifles to require fewer than four are the Epic and Legendary ones.

With a 200 health opponent, the difference increases, with Heavy Assault Rifles generally requiring six shots with the highest rarity ones only needing five. Comparatively, only the highest two rarity Assault Rifles eliminate a 200 health opponent in six shots.

Lastly, all Heavy Assault Rifles except the common one eliminate 100 health players in two headshots and 200 health players in four, while only the highest two rarity Assault Rifles can achieve those numbers.

The Heavy Assault Rifle is almost always the better choice in Fortnite

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While there is usually some amount of nuance when it comes to making a choice between two comparable weapons, there doesn’t seem to be a lot in this season of Fortnite. Because assault rifles are meant to be used at a medium range, it’s usually more important to have each shot be more impactful.

By the numbers, an epic or legendary Assault Rifle is only slightly better than an uncommon or rare Heavy Assault Rifle, while the Legendary and Mythic Heavy Assault Rifles are the only ones which can deal over 200 damage in just five body shots.

And if the wielder is especially skillful, then Heavy Assault Rifles reach their headshot breakpoint sooner, with all Heavy Assault Rifles after common eliminating in the same number of headshots.

While there will always be edge cases, the Heavy Assault Rifle will almost always be the better weapon for the average Fortnite player.

Published 04 Dec 2020, 02:39 IST
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