The ranger class in Terraria has two different types of weapons to choose from. You will mostly find yourself using bows or guns if you decide to play a ranged-based playstyle. Guns have the advantage of using bullets which have a higher velocity than bows and arrows. The downside to using guns is the fact that you cannot craft bullets. You will have to fund your gun-slinging through the arms dealer or finding bullets throughout your world. There are 36 different types of guns and this list will narrow down the best guns you can find throughout different stages of the game.
The coin gun is interesting as it does not utilize regular bullets. It uses coins and the higher grade of coin you use will increase its damage. Despite its expensive use, it boasts one of the highest damage outputs in Terraria. Using platinum coins is not a cost effective option, but the damage from platinum coins rivals even the sniper rifle which has the highest base damage in the game. Not to mention it shoots 5x faster than the sniper rifle making the coin gun one of the highest damage output capable weapons in the game.
While it is not practical to use platinum coins to fund the coin gun, its actual practical use with silver coins makes it a good single target DPS option. The potential damage is more of a novelty, but if you have a lot of funds, the coin gun can make quick work of any enemy in the game. The coin gun is an extremely rare drop from the Pirate Invasion event. Any pirate enemy you kill, excluding the parrot, has a small chance to drop the coin gun. The Flying Dutchman offers the highest chance at 0.25%, the pirate captain can drop it at a 0.05% rate, and all the other pirates have a measly 0.0125% chance to drop the coin gun.
For the most reliable DPS in the game, the Space Dolphin Machine Gun is the end-game gun for the ranger class. It has a 66% chance to not consume ammo and its fire rate is unmatched by any other gun. Its base damage is absurdly high given its fire rate, and coupled with some of the best bullets, you will be hard pressed to find anything that can dish out more damage. This gun is an indirect upgrade to the megashark as it is a similar type of weapon, but the S.D.M.G is not craftable.
To obtain this weapon you will need to defeat the Moon Lord. It has a 11.11% chance to be dropped by the Moon Lord once you defeat him. Using this gun with chlorophyte bullets makes it a gun that cannot miss. The ranger is the class that boasts the highest DPS capabilities in the game, and the S.D.M.G is a large part of why this is the case.
Another hardmode weapon to obtain as the ranger class is the flamethrower/elf melter. These guns utilize gel which is a welcome and cost effective change as most people will have more gel than they know what to do with. This gun will consume two gel per shot and will spew flames out to handle large groups of enemies with ease. The elf melter is just the flamethrower, but with higher stats and can be obtained later in hardmode. This weapon is why I play the ranger class and you would be missing out on a lot of fun by skipping this one.
The flamethrower can be crafted at a mythril/orichalcum anvil with illegal gun parts, 20 iron bars, and 20 souls of fright, meaning you have to defeat Skeletron Prime to be able to craft this recipe. The elf melter can be obtained by going through the Frost Moon event. Summon the Frost Moon by combining 5 ectoplasm, 5 souls of fright, and 20 silk to make a naughty present. Use this item during nighttime to start the event. Progressing through waves will eventually summon Santa-NK 1, a mini-boss that has a small chance to drop the elf melter. It is recommended to tackle this event after Plantera, but you can start it as early as defeating Skeletron Prime.
For fights during pre-hardmode it is hard to get better than the minishark. While it is far from the best weapon in the game, it is hard not to find yourself gravitating towards this one early in your playthrough. The minishark has low base damage, high rate of fire, and a 33% chance to not consume ammo. While its base damage is nothing too impressive, it offers high DPS for single target purposes. If you couple meteorite shots with the minishark, you can easily find your way into hardmode as it is reliable enough to carry you through the entirety of pre-hardmode gameplay.
The minishark is simply bought from the Arms Dealer for 35 gold. A relatively expensive purchase when you first begin, but it is a reliable weapon that can be upgraded to help you handle most of what hardmode throws at you.
A personal favorite pick of mine, the star cannon boasts the highest DPS a ranger can hope to achieve pre-hardmode. This gun utilizes fallen stars as its ammo, so it may be difficult to have a large stock of ammunition, but the stars can pierce any amount of enemies until it hits a solid block. This gun makes quick work of any enemy you find in pre-hardmode and remains a good option entering into hardmode. The biggest drawback of this weapon is how difficult it can be to maintain your ammo stocks. If you can manage to farm a lot of fallen stars, keeping a star cannon handy can save you in a sticky situation. The star cannon can even be upgraded with 12 hallowed bars, at a mythril/orichalcum anvil, keeping its usefulness long into hardmode.
To make a star cannon you will need to obtain a minishark from the Arms Dealer for 35 gold, and combine it with 20 meteorite bars, and 5 fallen stars at an iron/lead anvil. To get enough fallen stars to keep this gun shooting, build a bridge across the sky made from wooden platforms. If you remember to run across the bridge at night every now and again you should have no problem maintaining a decent stock of fallen stars.
Q. What are the best bullets in Terraria?
The bullets with the highest base damage are the luminite bullets. You can craft 333 of them from one luminite bar. They can pierce through any number of enemies, but a strong favorite bullet of mine is the chlorophyte bullets. These bullets will home in on any enemy you shoot at and can help you maintain a high DPS without focusing too much on aiming. If you have yet to reach hardmode, consider meteorite shots as these bullets can pierce and bounce off of terrain to hit enemies again.
Q. What are the best accessories for the ranger class in Terraria?
The ranger wants DPS accessories or movement accessories. Which ones you pick do not matter as much, but ensure you have a damage or critical strike boosting prefix on your accessories. This will do wonders in keeping your damage sky high and given that many guns and bows have a high fire rate, it is hard for any other class to meet the same damage numbers. Consider the ranger emblem for a DPS boost, the shield of cthulhu/master ninja gear to quickly reposition, cloud in a bottle/bundle of balloons to dodge enemy attacks, and others you feel comfortable using.
Q. How do you make enough money for the coin gun in Terraria?
There are many ways to exploit the game to give yourself infinite coins, use third party software to hack in more coins, or simply farm them from the game yourself. If you are looking to do things completely legit, consider wiring a statue to a bird or crab engine and use a lucky coin with a slime staff to gather up large amounts of money. If you are playing on journey difficulty you can use the in-game research feature to duplicate 1 silver coin into as many platinum coins as you want. Otherwise, stick to silver/gold coins to keep a reliable weapon in your inventory or farm bosses to gather high value items to eventually sell.