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Icy's Guide to Weapons, Armor, and Assemblies

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In this guide, I'll be thoroughly covering all of the weapons, armor, boots, and assemblies in the game, as well as some various setups and combinations. The wiki and Github are both excellent resources for learning about the details of each equipment, but don't provide much guidance about how to actually use each weapon effectively, how to optimize your setup, and other important details.

First are all of the Mod Packs and some related miscellaneous tips as they are a large part of improving your equipment and developing your build:

-Technical Packs are first found on floor 5, Agility Packs and Bulk Packs on floor 6, and Power Packs on floor 7. All of the exotic Mod Packs first appear on floor 10.

-Assemblies requiring multiples of the same Mod Packs are probabilistically harder to make. For example, needing AA means the first two Mod Packs you find offer a 1 in 16 chance, while needing BT is a 1 in 8 chance. Each individual Mod Pack also has higher probability to partially provide you what you need. Furthermore, Mod Packs that come in pairs in The Chained Court, Phobos Lab, Military Base, Hell's Armory, Deimos Lab, and Halls of Carnage cannot match.

-The only traits that block Whizkid are Army of the Dead and Gunrunner.

-Technicians start with a Technical Pack unless you're playing a challenge that wipes out your inventory before filling it back up, such as with Angel of Overconfidence. Angel of Marksmanship randomly starts you with either an Agility Pack, Technical Pack, or Bulk Pack.

-Sniper Packs and Firestorm Packs are identical in appearance and can't be distinguished until you can see it with your character.

-All of the basic Mod Packs have the same probability of being generated, and all of the exotic Mod Packs have the same probability of being generated.

-When you clear Hell's Armory, one of the three rewards you receive is either an exotic Mod Pack, Schematics if you don't have every assembly, or Cybernetic Armor. The other two rewards are a random, non-matching pair of the basic Mod Packs. If you cleared Hell's Armory without taking damage, one of the other two rewards is instead a Nano Pack, or if the main reward already is a Nano Pack, the extra is an Onyx Pack.

-When you clear Deimos Lab, you receive one of an exotic Mod Pack or Schematics if you don't have every assembly, one of an exotic Mod Pack or Cybernetic Armor (the exotic Mod Packs can be matching), and the other two are a random, non-matching pair of the basic Mod Packs.

-Railgun and BFG 10K can be modded once or given a basic assembly, and Cybernetic Armor can be fully moddable, but only for Technicians.

-When Agility Packs are used on Shotguns, or Sniper Packs are used on Shotguns and non-ranged weapons, the game informs you that you feel silly.

-Assemblies completed before Whizkid 2 cannot later gain an additional Mod Pack after getting Whizkid 2. Cheap assemblies should be created as early as you need them, but hold off on making stronger ones if you plan on getting Whizkid 2 and have still have a long game ahead.

Basic Mod Packs

Technical Pack

Technical Packs either reduce the knockback of armor and boots by 25% additively, or reduce the attack time of any weapon by 15% multiplicatively (note that rounding and multiple speed source complicates the exact value). For the early game, Technical Mod Packs are generally best used to speed up your weapons or to be used to make a Tactical Shotgun. Grappling Boots has a few niche uses, but movement speed is usually better to have on boots. Many of the stronger assemblies use a Technical Pack, but they're fairly easy to find. Unless you really want knockback reduction, Technical Packs are generally a waste in armor and boots which can benefit more from Power Packs and Agility Packs.

Bulk Pack

Bulk Packs increases the ammo clip by 30% for weapons that have at least a clip of 3, or otherwise decreases reloading speed by 25% multiplicatively. For melee weapons, it increases the damage dice by 1. For armor and boots, current and maximum durabilities are both increased by 100, but movement speed is decreased by 10%. Bulk Packs are often the least useful Mod Pack since most weapons benefits from other Mod Packs, and the speed penalty for armor and boots is a significant disadvantage. Unless for an assembly, the only reason a Bulk Pack is useful for armor is to try to salvage one that is already heavily damaged. Having a much longer threshold before becoming damaged is nice though, as it still requires going down to 50% or lower before being considered damaged. For the early game, Bulk Packs are best used for Gatling Gun before switching to Plasma Rifles, and are decent for Shotguns since the reloading speed increase is greater than the firing speed increase from Technical Packs. Bulk Packs in bulk are useful later in the game for Nanomanufacture Ammo and Biggest Fucking Gun, but I wouldn't recommend holding onto them and taking up inventory space.

Agility Pack

Agility Packs increase weapon accuracy by 1, movement speed in armor by 15%, and movement speed in boots by 10%. If you don't plan on using Power Packs for armor, Agility Packs are great and give you a bit more extra speed compared to boots, but a pair of Agility Packs in Steel Boots creates Tactical Boots, which are very cheap and excellent early on. The accuracy boost to most weapons is generally too low to be worth using over Power Packs and Technical Packs, but can be okay for some rapid fire weapons where the extra accuracy makes a more significant difference across multiple shots, such as for a Minigun, or if you are using them as a secondary weapon and not putting points into Eagle Eye.

Power Pack

Power Packs increase the number of damage sides to melee weapons by 1, and for ranged weapons increases the number of damage sides or damage dice by 1 depending on which is already higher. If they are equal, it increases the damage sides by 1. For armor and boots, the protection value is increased by 2. Power Packs are definitely the most useful and versatile basic Mod Pack, whether for basic assemblies, non-assembly usage, or for adding the final mod of a finished assembly. Many of the cheap assemblies also use Power Packs including Chainsword, Piercing Blade, Elephant Gun, Nanofiber Armor, and High Power Weapon. Depending on your build, playstyle, and game mode, Power Packs generally don't always have a best first choice. Buffing Shotguns with them are helpful early on, or using Piercing Blade on the Chainsaw from The Chained Court to significantly improve damage. Power Packs may be a bit of a waste in Blue Armor, but are nice in Red Armor which should last you awhile and keep you protected. Power Packs shouldn't be used in boots except as a part of Cerberus Boots, but other uses generally have higher priority. Since Power Packs increase the higher of damage and side dice, they don't add too much extra power to rapid-fire weapons and those may benefit more from Technical Packs.

Exotic Mod Packs

Sniper Pack

Sniper Packs first removes the distance penalty to accuracy from a ranged weapon, then the 50% penalty to accuracy for attacking a non-visible enemy. A third Sniper Pack does nothing. Sniper Packs are kind of gimmicky and not super useful overall. For the first Sniper Pack, you can generally get enough accuracy from other sources to avoid the issue of the penalty since at higher levels of accuracy, the -2 penalty is less significant. You can likely get more damage out of a simple Power Pack or faster kills with a Technical Pack. If you find yourself firing from great distances, especially with rapid-fire weapons though, Sniper Packs can be useful. The second effect is also quite nice actually, but means you won't be able to create any assemblies. A few niche weapons like a Laser Rifle with SSPPP can help a lot with ammo efficiency, but those may also benefit more from Firestorm Packs. Overall, Sniper Packs can be nice if you have nothing better, but are definitely not the best.

Firestorm Pack

Firestorm Packs add 2 extra shots to rapid-fire weapons that already fire at least 3 shots, or otherwise increases the blast radius of explosive weapons by 2. Firestorm Packs work wonders when doubled or even tripled up together to make rapid-fire weapons shoot huge bursts or making explosive weapons make huge explosions. Both are very effective and depends on how you're playing, although keep in mind of your ammo if you're using them on rapid-fire weapons. If you have a long game ahead, you likely will get the most usage of using it in Demolition Ammo, especially on Nightmare for an excellent and cheap source of corpse destruction. It can be a bit dangerous because of destroying walls and harming yourself if you're not careful though. If you're very fortunate, Firestorm Packs are absolutely at their best as a part of Biggest Fucking Gun which is one of the best weapons in the game and can clear out huge portions of floors in a single shot.

Onyx Pack

Onyx Packs when used on armor and boots immediately sets durability to 100 and sets the item to be indestructible except for a few small exceptions such as nukes. Being able to make your armor and boots indestructible and permanent is very powerful and often the best way to finish an item. Some players may still prefer to finish an armor with a Power Pack if they believe they can keep it from being destroyed and benefit more from the protection increase, and most of the end-game boots are already indestructible and benefit more from Agility Pack. Otherwise Onyx should always be used. Among the assemblies, Tower Shield is decent if you don't have long-term usage for an Onyx Pack, as it offers a huge amount of protection. The only downsides are Tower Shield can only be repaired using a Megasphere and it has a huge movement speed reduction. Cybernano Armor is also excellent if you have no intentions of switching armors for the rest of the game. Lava Boots and Fire Shield are less recommended and more niche or outclassed.

Nano Pack

Nano Packs first check if the item applied to can already self-recharge. If so, the waiting delay to recharge is reduced by 5 actions. Otherwise, the amount that is recharged is increased by 1 for ranged weapons and 2 for armor and boots. If the item previously did not already self-recharge, the waiting delay is set to 5. Nano Packs are extremely powerful, providing you with functionally infinite durability or ammo, and are a part of many of the best assemblies. What to use a Nano Pack for depends mostly on what kind of build you're playing. Nano-Shrapnel assembly is essentially game-breakingly powerful when applied to a Super Shotgun, but also still very good for other Shotguns. Nanomanufacture Ammo is also excellent, partciularly in Laser Rifles and Plasma Rifles. All of the other assemblies are lesser or supplementary, but are still very good too. If you don't have a specific use for a Nano Pack, I would generally suggest using it for a Plasma Rifle as a backup source of ammo if you find yourself running out, and also because Plasma Rifles are cheap and effective for handling tough enemies such as Archviles. You may also prefer using it in a Rocket Launcher for Nightmare to always be able to destroy corpses without worry of maintaining a supplies of Rockets. Just about everything can benefit from a Nano Pack.

Basic Weapons


There aren't too many cases where you'll want to use your fists unless you're playing for a specific challenge. A few levels into Brute can add some good damage quickly, but it will always pale in comparison to even a Combat Knife. Unless you somehow completely run out of ammo and have no other melee weapons, you'll likely rarely ever use this.


Being the starting weapon, they're naturally pretty wimpy. Pistols are nice that they have a large accuracy bonus so that you can at least pretty consistently hit the targets. Aimed Shot increases accuracy even further, but is very slow, so I generally would only suggest using it to finish off enemies, or if you're firing from a long distance and desperately need as much accuracy as possible. Switch to at least a Shotgun as soon as you can. The only assembly that specifically requires a basic Pistol is Speedloader Pistol, but comparatively only offers half reloading speed and is a waste of Mod Packs. The better assemblies are better suited for a Combat Pistol or Blaster if possible. I wouldn't really recommend using any Mod Packs on a Pistol unless you're playing Angel of Marksmanship and don't intend to find a Combat Pistol for awhile. If so, I'd recommend using Power Packs, then Technical Packs.

Combat Knife

Combat Knives are much better than your fists and offer a lot more damage. That said, they're still fairly weak compared to higher-end melee weapons, but can be good until getting a Chainsaw from The Chained Court. Chainsword is decent, but is quickly outclassed by a Chainsaw and is not recommended using your Mod Packs for it. However, a Combat Knife is preferred if you are intending to use a Malicious Blades build, or playing for a challenge that doesn't allow a Chainsaw. In that case, a Chainsword offers more damage than a Piercing Combat Knife, even against enemies with high armor values. Bringing a stack of Combat Knives can also be useful for throwing them. The range is fairly short and not impressively useful, but can still be a little helpful. In particular, if you're restricted to melee weapons, you can throw one to safely destroy barrels.


Shotgun is arguably the staple weapon of DoomRL, being reliable, ammo-efficient, providing some good power, and very easy to find. The two keys that make them great are they always hit, making accuracy completely negligible, and that they can hit multiple targets even if they're packed together. It's also helpful that running has no negative impact on using a Shotgun. The downsides are that the Shotgun loses power over distance, the need to reload after every shot is very slow, and armor points reduce damage more than any other damage type. Shotguns can also be difficult to control where enemies end up where they die, which is important on Nightmare. Still, the Shotgun is almost always your primary early-game weapon. Given that you'll likely find better weapons, especially the Combat Shotgun, I generally don't recommend using too many Mod Packs on a regular Shotgun. Extra Bulk or Technical Packs that would otherwise go to waste are good to burn for a Shotgun. Elephant Gun is powerful and good for controlling space with its knockback, despite being a bit slow, but you can likely find better usage of your Power Packs.

Double Shotgun

Compared to a regular Shotgun, the Double Shotgun does a ton more damage and offers a great source of knockback to help keep enemies away. However, the shotgun blast type is much worse since it has only about half the range and damage reduction is higher. It also will consume ammo much faster and is slower to reload. Double Shotguns are useful for single targets or when you quickly need to push away an enemy, but they can't be as loosely used as a regular Shotgun. Single Shot is usually worse than simply just firing a single shot with a regular Shotgun. Focused Double Shotgun isn't an amazing assembly, but it is somewhat cheap to make and helps improve the weapon by giving a little more power and a normal shotgun blast, although ultimately it's just a mini Super Shotgun. Overall, a Double Shotgun is a useful supplementary weapon, but its drawbacks means you should not primarily use it over other weapons.

Combat Shotgun

Compared to a regular Shotgun, Combat Shotgun is a little weaker and has less damage spread, but the damage reduction due to distance is a bit lower, and most importantly, the Combat Shotgun can hold 5 shells in its clip. Pumping adds an additional step and time requirement to reload, so plan your combat accordingly. A full reload uses a lot of time, so only do it while you're safe. Note that powerup durations are based on player actions, so if you have Invulnerability for example, it's much better to always full reload in one action instead of doing each reload individually in multiple actions. Combat Shotguns are definitely an upgrade to a regular Shotgun, and is an excellent early-to-mid game weapon. Tactical Shotgun is also one of the best basic assemblies and should often be your first choice for Mod Packs unless you have other important plans for your build. Tactical Shotgun is identical except for removing the pumping requirement, and I generally recommend finishing the assembly with Power Pack. I wouldn't recommend non-assembly Mod Packs for a Combat Shotgun.


Chaingun is a decent weapon for single target firing. Compared to the Shotgun, the Chaingun is faster at damage output since it doesn't need to reload after every shot, has less damage reduced due to distance and armor, and can keep enemies in place which can sometimes be desireable. The key to getting good damage out of the Chaingun is making sure your accuracy is high enough and most of the bullets are hitting. Despite that, Bulk Packs are generally better than Agility Packs for the Chaingun and you will have to rely on Eagle Eye. Gatling Gun is a good improvement and Bulk Packs aren't as useful anywhere else in the early game under most circumstances. Chain Fire is generally not very useful as it only works on enemies that are visible, takes 3 bursts to output more bullets, requires shooting in a circular direction as you turn to other enemies, and it resets when all visible enemies are clear. Overall, the Chaingun does tend to get replaced quickly by Plasma Rifles later on as they have more damage, a better damage type, and reload faster. The only positive with Chainguns is their ammo is much easier to find and store. For the early game, it's a good secondary weapon to go along with the Shotgun, but investing in Eagle Eye which doesn't help Shotguns further hurts the Chaingun.

Rocket Launcher

Rocket Launcher offers some strong damage and the large splash helps hit groups of enemies, but having only a clip of 1 and not being able to carry many rockets, it only works well as a supplementary weapon. That said, its main assistances are destroying corpses and destroying walls, which it is excellent at doing. Rocket Launchers tend to become more viable during Nightmare games where destroying corpses becomes much more important, but can also be helpful in other games with preventing Archviles from resurrecting enemies. Rocket Jump can be useful in a few cases such as getting across Limbo/The Mortuary, Mt Erebus/The Lava Pits, or to quickly separate yourself from dangerous enemies. The Tactical Rocket Launcher assembly isn't significantly different to be worth using Technical Packs unless you have excess of them, and is fairly comparable to Missile Launcher which you're able to always find in some bonus levels. The best basic Mod Packs for Rocket Launchers are usually Power Packs, but likely aren't worth using for it and are better elsewhere. Overall, Rocket Launcher is helpful in certain situations and can be worth carrying, but is a very poor primary weapon due to ammo issues and the explosion destroying items.

Plasma Rifle

Plasma Rifle is very powerful, fairly accurate, and has an excellent damage type. Being rapid-fire, it greatly benefits from having more accuracy bonuses such as Eagle Eye, and also improves a lot in power with Triggerhappy and Son of a Bitch. The main setback is that cells can be hard to obtain in large enough quantities as the Plasma Rifle burns through ammo very quickly. Generally, Plasma Rifle works well as a secondary weapon to Shotguns for single target enemies, such as a dangerous Archvile or bosses. Chain Fire is generally not useful as described under Chain Gun, and Overcharge is generally a waste unless you absolutely need to destroy an enemy immediately and can sacrifice your Plasma Rifle. One trick though is you could farm Plasma Rifle from a Former Commando on Nightmare or near an Archvile to provide you with plenty of them to Overcharge. Each of the basic Mod Packs are helpful, although I would recommend Technical Packs for the best general use. Of the available assemblies, both Assault Rifle and Hyperblaster add a lot of power due to increasing the number of dies for each shot, while also speeding up the firing or reloading time. A non-assembly Plasma Rifle such as 2 Power Packs and 3 Technical Packs is also a strong weapon. Nanomanufacture Ammo removes the need for ammo, turning the Plasma Rifle into a very viable primary weapon, although it requires a Nano Pack and you may be inclined to use a Laser Rifle for that instead which provides functionally perfect accuracy at the small cost of a bit of damage. If you have a lot of supplies, Firestorm Packs are the best to add on to any assembly and non-assembly, which increases the number of shots. Overall, the Plasma Rifle is an excellent weapon, but you need to go out of your way to ensure it has ammo. Use it sparingly for difficult scenarios as you often can't afford to spam it.

Exotic Weapons


The Chainsaw is much more powerful than your fists and Combat Knife, and is often critical to have for a melee character. The first time you pick it up, even if you drop it during a game of Angel of Berserk + Angel of Overconfidence, you become Berserk and automatically place it in your main weapon slot. Generally as with most melee characters, you'll want to camp near doorways and slowly lure enemies in as rushing to enemies will lead to you taking too many hits. A few levels in Brute are also critical as missing your attacks will effectively reduce your damage by a large amount. As for assemblies, Piercing Blade is excellent if you don't want to invest too much into Whizkid, which ignores all armor on enemies. Double Chainsaw is a large boost in power at the cost of some accuracy, while Ripper attacks twice as fast, but also at the cost of more accuracy. Because Ripper is only an additional Technical Pack compared to Double Chainsaw, I wouldn't recommend Double Chainsaw. Ripper is one of the best melee weapons, so long as you're able to improve your accuracy enough. Regardless of what kind of Chainsaw you use, Bulk Packs are generally the best Mod Pack to finish your weapon with as it adds on the most damage. Chainsaw is a great weapon, but if your build isn't specifically made to be a melee character, you might have to go out of your way to gain the necessary levels of Brute for it. You can still use it for bosses if you rely on a Berserk Pack or Invulnerability however.

BFG 9000

BFG 9000 does a large amount of damage to a large amount of enemies, making it great for clearing out groups in an instant. The obvious drawback is the amount of ammo it uses, meaning that you can't be constantly using it. Bring it with you and have it ready as a quick solution to difficult situations, and try to not destroy any useful items while firing. You can also keep it as a storage for cells, since it can hold more than a regular inventory slot can have, especially if you apply Bulk Packs to it. Overcharge offers you a powerful blast, but there likely aren't too many cases where it's worthwhile doing so and losing your weapon. The High Power Weapon and VBFG9000 assemblies don't add a whole lot of extra power to it, and I wouldn't recommend them. An extra 2 dice sides aren't a significant boost when BFG 9000 is already at 10d6 naturally, and instead I would suggest using a non-assembly with Power Packs and Bulk Packs. If you are fortunate enough to have Firestorm Packs however, Biggest Fucking Gun is a tremendously powerful weapon that improves the already large damage to ridiculous amounts, while also having a splash radius taking up a good portion of any floor. It's an incredibly expensive assembly though, but very worthwhile if you can get it. If you do make it, use a Nano Pack to complete it, which will provide you with 2 extremely destructive blasts, and the ability to infinitely recharge its ammo, making it one of the best weapons in the game. Even in its basic form, the BFG is a good supplementary weapon and you should always bring it with you.

Combat Pistol

Combat Pistol is a large upgrade to the regular Pistol, providing more damage, a larger clip, more accuracy, but a slower reload time. If you want to use pistols, this is one of the main staples to use. For assemblies, Energy Pistol is a bit gimmicky in that it's essentially a worse Plasma Rifle, but if you have plenty of supportive pistol traits, it can be stronger and far more ammo efficient. You lose out on being able to use bullets though, which are much easier to acquire and store. Storm Bolter Pistol will add a lot more damage, although its variance is quite high, making it a bit unreliable. Sharpshooter trait of course negates this issue. A non-assembly with 3 Power Packs and 2 Bulk Packs each is also strong if you prefer speed and higher average damage. The expensive option is 2 Nano Packs instead of Bulk Packs, giving you infinite ammo unless you're using Bullet Dance. Finally, Demolition Ammo is excellent in converting the damage type into the much better fire type while still being able to use bullets. It's strong and can destroy corpses, but you'll have to be more cautious with using it at close range. Overall compared to other weapons, Combat Pistol is still pretty wimpy, but with commitment to traits improving pistols as well as some of the best ammo efficiency of all weapons, it can be made to be viable.


Blaster is more or less like a regular Pistol, except it deal plasma damage and recharges after 2 non-actions. It's a nice weapon to have to provide you with a source of semi-infinite ammo, but it's a bit redundant given how efficient pistols already are with ammo. That said, a single Nano Pack will remove the recharge delay, allowing you to instead have infinite firing with it, and room for Power Packs for a powerful non-assembly. Demolition Ammo is nice if you want a way to always be able to destroy corpses. As a primary weapon, it does fill a viable niche of benefitting from pistol traits and allowing your inventory to be freed up of ammo for more useful items, although Blaster as such is definitely a bit gimmicky. I would suggest Combat Pistols instead, but Blaster can certainly still be used and even possibly preferred. For non-pistol builds, I'd only suggest using it as a backup if your ammo supplies run low, and if you don't have a better semi-infinite weapon like a Nuclear Plasma Rifle.

Assault Shotgun

Assault Shotgun is an excellent weapon and a definitive upgrade to other Shotguns. It's slightly weaker than the Tactical Shotgun assembly, but the Assault Shotgun itself can still have additional Mod Packs added, which should be 2-3 of Technical Packs and Power Packs each, unless you want to turn it into a Plasmatic Shrapnel. With a full clip, you can repeatedly knock back most enemies to keep them away as you chip away at their health. There's not much more to comment on as it's a very simple and useful weapon that can work with any build, at any point in the game, and at worst can always be a good secondary weapon.

Plasma Shotgun

Plasma Shotgun is a gimmicky weapon, but can be a good support in certain situations. It fires and acts like any other shotgun, but uses cells, which can make it ammo hungry. It effectively has a clip of 10, which is the largest of any shotgun, and its damage type is much better than shrapnel. The main contradiction with it however is because it destroys walls, it's harder to create and use good cover as you would normally want to with a shotgun. Use it for when you want to make holes in walls or if you need to quickly clear out a strong group of enemies, but don't try to use it as a primary weapon. Power Packs and Technical Packs are the best choice, or if you want to get expensive, you could use multiple Nano Packs and be able to almost endlessly use it for wiping out floors quickly.

Super Shotgun

Compared to the Double Shotgun, the Super Shotgun is better in every way with slightly higher power, faster reloading, and a much better shotgun blast. It burns through ammo fairly quickly, but is a great weapon at quickly knocking enemies away from you, or for taking on bosses. Most notably, the Super Shotgun is by far the best choice for the Nano-Shrapnel assembly as it fires 2 shells but doesn't have a bad shotgun blast. When made, you can endlessly click to fire a super powerful blast without any worry of reloading, ammo, or even destroying weapons. It is one of top weapons in all of the game. Without Nano-Shrapnel, the Super Shotgun is best used as a support weapon alongside another weapon.


The Minigun is essentially like firing two Chainguns at once and comes with a giant clip, but is a bit more inaccurate and slower. Miniguns can also function as storage for bullets in your inventory. Minigun is definitely much better than the Chaingun in most cases, but is still generally outclassed by Plasma Rifle because of the better damage type and stronger shots. You can still make use of the Minigun since bullets are easy to find, but be sure you have high enough accuracy so that most of the bullets are actually hitting. While many assemblies do improve the Minigun, you are generally better off making them in a Plasma Rifle instead and should just dump what you have to spare in the Minigun. Demolition Ammo however can provide you with a rapid-fire fire damage weapon, but likewise is probably not worth using a Firestorm Pack for. Bring the Minigun with you if you have spare inventory slots for bullets to provide you with some extra ammo, and gradually make sure you upgrade to a better weapon as you progress through the game.

Missile Launcher

Missile Launcher is a good upgrade to the Rocket Launcher in that it is faster, has more accuracy, and most notably comes with a clip. The only downsides are the blast radius is 1 unit smaller and you can't use Rocket Jump. Like the Rocket Launcher, ammo is an issue with trying to make it your main weapon, but it's a great support for displacing groups of enemies and destroying corpses. If you have some spare Power Packs and Technical Packs, they can bump up the power and speed a little, but generally don't waste them on it. Unless you want Rocket Jump, swap it for a Rocket Launcher and use it in the same manner.

Napalm Launcher

Napalm Launcher is a fairly gimmicky weapon, but can actually be great as a support weapon. With each blast creating a pool of lava, you can use it to cut off enemies or trap them in it for easy kills. The damage is also higher than a regular Rocket Launcher, although the blast radius is much smaller. If you think you'll want to use it in some situations, bring it along with you. You could also potentially use the Nanomanufacture Ammo assembly with it to give yourself infinite shots with it to create as much lava as you want, provided you have boots that give you immunity. You could use it as a primary weapon, but you'll need a secondary weapon for Lava Elementals and generally for enemies who can move across fluids. Finishing the assembly with a Firestorm Pack will give you much bigger explosions.

Laser Rifle

Laser Rifle fires one less shot than Plasma Rifles, but has significantly more accuracy and also reloads faster. With Laser Rifle, you're able to use it even without any levels in Eagle Eye, allowing you to always effectively use it and making it an excellent weapon for single targets. Both Assault Rifle and Burst Cannon assemblies work great with it offering different advantages, and Nanomanufacture Ammo turns Laser Rifle into one of the best weapons in the game with being able to consistently blast out huge bursts of shots without worries of missing or running out of ammo. Firestorm Packs are also great additions to add even more shots. Even if you don't have much inventory space for cells, there aren't too many cases where bringing a Laser Rifle with you would not be useful, so always grab it.

Nuclear Plasma Rifle

Nuclear Plasma Rifle is an excellent weapon, which is essentially the same as Plasma Rifle with a smaller clip, but the ability to self-recharge. With its semi-infinite ammo, it can always help you keep your inventory full. Nuclear Overcharge offers you a nuke if you really need it to help clear a floor or as a way to easily finish the game, but generally isn't worth the sacrifice. For assemblies, go with Burst Cannon if you have levels in Eagle Eye, or otherwise go with a non-assembly. Bulk Packs help with the small clip, and every other type of Mod Packs can be useful depending on what you need. A Nano Pack will remove the delay to recharge, which allows you to get ammo back faster, but is a fairly expensive commitment that might be better for other weapons, especially since you'll be bursting ammo more than you'll be recharging ammo.

Tristar Blaster

Tristar Blaster is a gimmicky weapon and usually not very good because of how much ammo it consumes for what is essentially a stronger Plasma Shotgun or a weird firing Plasma Rifle. The damage is pretty strong and having splash damage further enhances that, but it's very messy to use with it's awkward spread. It can also destroy items, but can also destroy corpses. You could use the Nanomanufacture Ammo assembly for it to solve the ammo issue, although a Nano Pack can be used for many other better weapons. Tristar Blaster can make for a decent support weapon in some situations, but I generally wouldn't suggest using it.

Combat Translocator

Essentially functioning like a Phase Device to be used on enemies, it's a very gimmicky weapon and you probably will find it more useful to just kill enemies instead of teleporting them around. The ammo cost is also fairly high and can't be spammed too much. Generally if there are large groups of enemies, teleporting just one away isn't very helpful, and single enemies can often just be avoided. If you think you can make use of it, you could bring it with you, but it likely will just take up inventory space.

Nuclear BFG9000

Nuclear BFG9000 compared to a regular BFG is a bit weaker, slower to fire, and can't be manually reloaded, but having a weapon with the power of a BFG that is self-recharging is very useful. Use it as a quick way to clear out a group of enemies and then keep it in your prepared slot to recharge. If you're fortunate enough to find Firestorm Packs, making Biggest Fucking Gun with it means you'll have an extremely destructive weapon that likewise doesn't have ammo issues. Firestorm Pack as a final Mod Pack will further increase its blast radius, but you may prefer going with a Nano Pack instead to self-recharge twice as many shots since the recharge delay is already instant. Another alternative is instead of making Biggest Fucking Gun is to use many Nano Packs so that the recharging is much faster and allows you to fire it more rapidly. Bulk Packs are also helpful for increasing the clip. The other Mod Packs don't really enhance the weapon as much. Regardless of how you mod it, Nuclear BFG is awesome at destroying enemies, corpses, and an entire floor if you need to use Nuclear Overcharge. It's one of the best weapons in the game.

Unique Weapons

Butcher's Cleaver

Butcher's Cleaver hits harder than the Chainsaw and also grants any character with Blademaster, including when it's being used in the prepared slot by a Technician with Malicious Blades. If you expect that you'll be attacking groups of enemies in close combat, Butcher's Cleaver is excellent, but otherwise will get a bit outclassed by other melee weapons that can get modded and become stronger. If you're using Malicious Blades, always keep it in your prepared slot and likely for the rest of the game, even with Dragonslayer. The more overpowered aspect of the weapon is you can find it at any point, even at the beginning of the first regular floor.

Subtle Knife

Subtle Knife is a decent melee weapon since its damage type is plasma, but otherwise it's fairly underwhelming and a simple Piercing Blade Combat Knife mostly outclasses it. Invoke is also terrible in that it does a decent bit of damage, but only to those you can see, only if you're not tired, and permanently lowers your maximum health by 2. Given how rare it is, you're pretty much guaranteed to have something better by the time you find it.


Mjollnir is a gimmicky weapon, but is unique in that it is a melee weapon that can be used at range. It also hits exactly where you click, even if there are other enemies in the way. With some levels in Brute and also while you're Berserk, you can get some good ranged damage with it, although simply using stronger melee weapons at close range is usually better. I would only suggest using it if there's a large clog of enemies and you desperately need to hit a specific one.


Dragonslayer can only be picked up while Berserk and with all 4 equipment slots empty. Once picked up, you have permanent Berserk (or more technically, 10 million turns of it), half knockback, and can never wield anything else. Appropriately though, Dragonslayer is one of the best weapons in the game and the ultimate melee weapon. Permanently being Berserk is what makes it one of the best as it means that all of your resistances are increased by 60%, you're faster at moving, and the already insanely high damage is doubled. Even boss enemies will be destroyed in just a couple hits. Being a melee weapon also means you can keep your inventory full of other useful items instead of various weapons and ammo. Whirlwind is a decent alternate attack for quickly attacking all sides around you, and being Berserk, you can't run anyway. Not much can stop you unless you're careless or reckless once the Dragonslayer is wielded.

Longinus Spear

Longinus Spear is one of the rewards from Unholy Cathedral and very likely will replace any melee weapon you have to that point. It is very powerful, deals plasma damage, and can fit fine with any build so long as you have enough accuracy to consistently hit enemies. Holy Fire is also very powerful, but you might not find yourself in too many situations where it would be better than just hitting enemies. It can help with corpse destruction, however.

Azrael's Scythe

Azrael's Scythe is even stronger than Longinus Spear, still maintains plasma damage, and has an excellent alternate attack with Whisper of Death. Under normal circumstances, Whisper of Death is likely not worth permanently lowering your maximum health, but it allows for easy clearing of bonus levels if you have enough Med Packs, as it simply does 20 plasma damage to everything in the level. Azrael's Scythe is only really outclassed by Dragonslayer for melee weapons, and like Longinus Spear, it can be used for any build so long as you have enough accuracy.

Grammaton Cleric Beretta

The power of Grammaton Cleric Beretta is that it is the only weapon that benefits from both traits that improve rapid-fire weapons and traits that improve pistols. Single-shot mode does not benefit from rapid-fire traits however. As a simple pistol, it has a huge clip and great accuracy, but is a fair bit weaker than Combat Pistols with Mod Packs and assemblies. As a rapid-fire weapon, semi-auto is like a slightly stronger Chaingun with a smaller clip, and full-auto is like a better Minigun, but the tiny clip is not enough to support full blasts. Grammaton Cleric Beretta only becomes better if you have levels in Son of a Gun, Triggerhappy, Dualgunner, and/or Sharpshooter. With Dualgunner, you'll also need to fire in a planned manner as you likely won't have both pistols firing in sync with each other due to clip sizes. Overall, Grammaton Cleric Beretta is decent, but you need to be specifically invested in a pistol build and then use it for rapid-fire to be able to outclass other weapons. Sharpshooter trait is one of the keys to making it great, but you still need to watch your ammo.

Anti-Freak Jackal

Anti-Freak Jackal is an alternative to using Demolition Ammo in a Combat Pistol, being cheaper to get if you happen to find it. A fully complete assembly will have a larger clip and slightly more power, but is very expensive, and you can still use Anti-Freak Jackal anyway if you use Dualgunner. As a standalone weapon, Anti-Freak Jackal is very ammo efficient like most pistols and is great for destroying corpses. It's definitely outclassed in power by Shotguns and Plasma Rifles, and doesn't make for an amazing primary weapon, but can certainly still be used for various situations. You'll need to be a bit cautious with using it so you don't blow yourself up, but otherwise can help preserve other ammo by using up bullets instead.


As a simple pistol, Trigun is fairly powerful, comes with very high accuracy, and has fast firing speed, making it pretty good for pistol builds. It can generally outclass most pistols, except for the absolute best, and because of its accuracy, can also fit in with most other builds as an efficient use for bullets to help save ammo. However, the primary draw with the weapon is its ability to nuke a level at any time, only at the cost of 5 maximum health, and requiring more than a maximum health of 10 to be used. With Invulnerability, you can quickly clear out entire portions of the game with little effort, so long as you can handle playing with permanently lower health. It's a fairly situational weapon and there may be times you have no need for it at all, but in other cases is extremely overpowered and can completely trivialize many of the game's challenges.

Frag Shotgun

Compared to the Assault Shotgun, the Frag Shotgun is a fair bit slower and functionally has a smaller clip, but the unique aspect is that it can use bullets for ammo. That being said, a full stack of bullets is good for 25 shots, while a full stack of shells is good for 50 shots, and likewise an ammo box is good for about 62 shots, while a shell box is good for 100 shots. Given that it also can't use Mod Packs, Frag Shotgun is simply outclassed and not really great. The only use for it is if you are very low on shells and don't have other weapons or ammo to use as a backup, but this situation should be uncommon enough where you rarely find use out of Frag Shotgun.


Jackhammer naturally does a very powerful shot, but also fires these shots in bursts of 3. You can actually increase this up to 5 with levels in Triggerhappy as well, giving you absurd damage in a single blast. That said, you likely will be dealing huge knockback and the latter hits won't do as much damage unless the enemy is backed against a wall. The ammo usage is also very high and will need to be reloaded frequently, which is very slow. Heavily modded shotguns of various kind will generally outclass Jackhammer, but it does still have use when you need an immediate burst against a strong enemy or group and don't have time to be firing individual shots. If your build and equipment is still a work in progress, hang onto the Jackhammer to get you out of a dangerous situation, but as you're better able to control the area and your cover, other shotguns tend to be more effective.

Mega Buster

Mega Buster is aruably the gimmickiest weapon in the game and while it can be a fun, interesting weapon, it's not very good. In its base bullet mode, it's very similar to a regular Chaingun except with less shots and more ammo consumed, although being a little bit stronger. Plasma mode is likewise similar to a Plasma Rifle, but also fires only half the shots, has a bit less accuracy, and is also a bit stronger. Acid and Fire modes are identical and are actually decently powerful with a very high minimum damage, dealing splash damage, and good for destroying corpses, although it is certainly still outclassed by better weapon. Of course, the main challenge with Mega Buster is that it is constantly switching modes depending on the enemies that you kill, and most of the time you'll have a better weapon you can just use instead. I don't recommend using it.

Acid Spitter

Acid Spitter is very gimmicky, but is actually useful in some cases. You're required to drain 10 tiles of acid before being able to fire it, and you only get one shot. However, Acid Spitter does very high damage in a large radius, and has enough accuracy to support any build. The explosion also creates new acid tiles that you can use the reabsorb and continue. It also provides 75% acid resistance when used as your main weapon slot. Overall, if you have acid immunity you can use this weapon to both clear and destroy pathways so you can funnel enemies how you want. It can also be used to destroy corpses and has a strong blast attack if you encounter strong enemies you can't manage. It's far too slow to be used as a primary weapon, but it can make for a great support weapon if you want to make use of it.

Revenant's Launcher

Revenant's Launcher is slightly stronger and has a slightly smaller blast radius compared to the Rocket Launcher, but explodes exactly where you choose to aim. It can be helpful for aiming at enemies behind groups of others, or to fire past any if you want to bring them forward or simply scatter them. As with other rocket launchers, its ammo consumption is very high and can't function as a primary weapon, especially since it can't use Mod Packs, but it's a good weapon to have if you want to blow up a very specific spot among a group of enemies. Be cautious with aiming as you can still damage yourself like other rocket launchers.


Railgun is a very strong weapon, pierces through enemies until hitting a wall, and will never have issues with missing given its giant accuracy boost. It costs quite a bit of ammo to use, but can still perform better than unfinished Plasma Rifles, and even top weapons if you take advantage of being able to clear out lines of enemies. If your character is a Technician, it can also be modded, either becoming a High Power Railgun, or taking a single Mod Pack. I would recommend a Nano Pack if you're really committed to the weapon so that ammo is not an issue, or otherwise using your choice of Technical Pack, Power Pack, or Bulk Pack depending on what you need. High Power Weapon assembly could be used, but a very slight increase in damage is likely not worth the much smaller clip, even if you're committing the Nano Pack after. Accuracy is no issue so Agility Packs and Sniper Packs are useless. Any build can take advantage of the Railgun and is a great use of cells if you haven't committed to a heavily modded Plasma Rifle. Try to use it against group of enemies to make the most of the weapon, but single targets are still good too.

Charch's Null Pointer

Charch's Null Pointer actually does 10 damage despite what the weapon itself says. With that and its ability to essentially freeze enemies by draining their energy, Charch's Null Pointer is excellent for single target enemies and bosses. The ammo consumption is very high, so you will likely only find yourself using it against strong enemies in bonus levels, Spider Mastermind, or JC, and despite its usage for them, you still might find it to mostly be a waste of inventory space. Generally speaking, it's better to simply kill enemies than to freeze them.


BFG 10K hits specifically the tile that you aim at, but the projectiles themselves take varying paths to reach that location and can very easily hit walls and harm you. The damage it deals is extremely powerful, is plasma type damage, and comes with a blast radius, but also costs a ton of ammo per shot. A Technician can solve the ammo issue using a Nano Pack, and even applying that after the High Power Weapon assembly, but the self-recharging will still be slow and allow for fairly infrequent shots. BFG 10K is good if you're in a wide open area and need to destroy a target at all costs, but is otherwise a messy, bad weapon. I would only recommend using it against JC.

Basic Armors

Green Armor

Green Armor is very basic and weak, but still usually better than nothing. You will generally find Blue Armor or better by the time you start collecting Mod Packs, so it's not really worth using any for Green Armor. Tactical Armor requires Green Armor, but the needed Agility Packs are better suited for Steel Boots, and armor is pretty critical with having protection and resistances to keep you alive. Unless you desperately want more movement speed at the beginning of the game, don't use any Mod Packs on Green Armor and just use it for the early game until you find something better. It can be useful for giftdropping later in the game in order to avoid giving enemies something more powerful when luring them.

Blue Armor

Blue Armor is a bit better than Green Armor, but will still get outclassed by Red Armor later, which isn't too difficult to find. If you happen to have large piles of Mod Packs, you could use some extra with a Blue Armor, but it's generally not worth making any assemblies in unless you desperately need fire or melee resistances through Fireproof Armor or Ballistic Armor respectively. Blue Armor with a Power Pack is better than most other armors for plasma damage though if you can't find anything better, and even completely unmodded is better than Red Armor.

Red Armor

Red Armor is not amazing, but given every other armor is much more uncommon to find, it's great for a cheap equipment. A non-assembly of Power Pack and then Agility Pack will greatly boost Red Armor's strength, but Fireproof Armor and Ballistic Armor can be useful if you want particular resistances. Nanofiber Armor isn't amazing, but is nice for a temporary indestructible armor if you expect to be getting repeatedly hit, such as for Vampyre builds. Red Armor is the best choice for Power Armor, but is likely not worth using a Nano Pack for. Tower Shield is excellent at reducing most attacks to 1-2 damage, but you'll need to rely on Megaspheres to keep it from breaking, and the huge loss in movement speed is often very detrimental, to the point where a non-assembly with Power Pack and Onyx Pack will likely serve you much better. Fire Shield is a bit less extreme, although more niche, and is also not amazing unless you're stair diving through hell. Overall, I generally would suggest going with a non-assembly of Power Pack, Onyx Pack, and Agility Pack for Red Armor until you can find some of the top armors to replace it with.

Exotic Armors

Bullet-Proof Vest

If you happen to find Bullet-Proof Vest very early in the game, reducing most bullet damage down to just 1 or 2 is very helpful, but it won't be useful for very long as only a few of the stronger enemies use bullet damage, not to mention you can't really handle any other type of damage. Use Bullet-Proof Vest as an armor better than Green Armor, but worse than Blue Armor.

Duelist Armor

While Duelist Armor only provides resistances against the damage types by most of the early game enemies, it also gives a large increase in movement speed and a modest 2 protection. Unless you really need better resistances against acid, plasma, and fire, Duelist Armor is excellent to use. For cheap assemblies, Fireproof Armor can be a nice trade-off as you progress later into the game, and Ballistic Armor is great if you're using a melee build, so long as you can avoid fire. If you have Whizkid 2 however, Cerberus Armor assembly turns Duelist Armor into one of the best armors as you'll have high resistances for every type at the cost of movement speed. The low protection won't reduce most weak hits to low damage though, but will reduce high damages much more effectively.

Ballistic Vest

Ballistic Vest is essentially the same as Duelist Armor, except worse in having 1 less protection, and no bonuses to movement speed or knockback. It can still be useful in all the same ways as Duelist Armor, just a bit less effective. However, for Cerberus Armor assembly, all the differences are nullified making it identically viable to use Ballistic Vest as a base for that assembly.

Ballistic Shield

Ballistic Shield is excellent at reducing all damage in the early game, but quickly loses usage as enemies start using acid, plasma, and fire damage. If you happen to find it and find yourself against enemies who use the corresponding damage types, it can be nice for a quick solution. It can also be helpful for cave levels with Pain Elementals and Demons, although its durability won't last too long if you get surrounded. It's a very situational and niche armor, but can be useful.

Energy-Shielded Vest

Energy-Shielded Vest provides large resistances to all of the common damage types seen later in the game, making it very versatile. Power Pack helps improve the low protection value, and an Onyx Pack will keep it from getting destroyed as you absorb heavy damage. Most assemblies are not very useful for Energy-Shielded Vest, and going with a non-assembly with the mentioned Mod Packs as well as Agility Pack will usually suit you best for it. If you don't have plans to swap out other armors, Cybernano Armor is a great assembly for it, providing you both the needed protection and infinite durability that Energy-Shielded Vest is otherwise missing, but because it is rather weak for strong melee attacks and swapping armors for particular situations is helpful, Cybernano Armor is a large commitment to go with. Shielded Armor, Plasma Shield, Inquistor Set, and Phaseshift Set are all very useful, so you likely don't want to get stuck with just one, as good as Cybernano Energy-Shielded Vest can be, and I recommend going with non-assembly.

Energy Shield

Energy Shield helps cover all of the damage types later in the game, but with 0 protection and being a bit too well-rounded, it won't often be your best choice of armor for most situations. It can be helpful for Nightmare Arachnotrons and Shamblers if you don't otherwise have a Plasma Shield, and it does offer high acid resistance not really found elsewhere, but most fights you'll encounter will be a mix of damage types and you'll need to be sure to avoid all melee damage. If you stumble upon it and it can cover some spots in your sets of equipment, Energy Shield can help, but it's certainly not an armor for main usage.

Plasma Shield

Plasma Shield is extremely specialized, but fortunately that specialization is helpful. If you enter a cave full of Arachnotrons, Cacodemons, or are fighting Shamblers, Plasma Shield is the best armor available at reducing all incoming damage, so long as you can keep your distance to avoid melee hits. For general use, Plasma Shield is not very useful. I'd recommend hanging onto it if your inventory isn't too tight and you otherwise don't have a way to handle plasma damage, but you might find yourself never using it. It's your call if you want to alleviate the potential risk of getting swarmed in a dangerous cave level or anticipate never seeing one.

Onyx Armor

Onyx Armor on its own is essentially a bulkier, worse Blue Armor, but infinite durability is helpful for Vampyre builds who are expecting to get hit a lot. Comparing it to other bases for Cerberus Armor, Onyx Armor already provides the infinite durability and you can instead use a Power Pack without worry of the armor ever breaking. This will lack the bullet, shrapnel, and melee resistances of other bases, but 2 protection will greatly improve your ability to reduce fire, plasma, and acid damage. Other than this niche, Onyx Armor is not very good and is best used as a backup armor if everything else you have is destroyed. If so, you may want to use a Power Pack on it.

Medical Armor

Medical Armor functions more like a common armor or a weaker version of Duelist Armor and Ballistic Vest, but comes with the gimmick of self-healing you if your health is low. Because Onyx Packs simply hide durability and avoid it getting reduced under normal circumstances, Medical Armor is the only one where a Nano Pack is actually better. That said, you likely won't repeatedly find yourself running around on the verge of dying, and the self-healing is somewhat slow and only goes up to a certain amount, making Medical Armor mostly just a worse version of many normal armors. However, the one beneficial niche is that it's one of the few ways to heal on Angel of Masochism, but otherwise is not great.

Gothic Armor

While Gothic Armor provides tremendous protection to the weaker damage types and has plenty of durability to sustain hits, the massive decrease in movement speed won't allow you to effectively move around much without enemies being able to quickly jump around. If you plan on staying in place, the large protection can be helpful. One other niche is that if you have Invulnerability, which lasts based on player actions, each movement can lead to a lot more enemy in-fighting than normal because of the time each movement takes. Gothic Armor can also be used as an equivalent base for Cerberus Armor compared to Duelist Armor and Ballistic Vest, although it will still work as a part of the Gothic Set, which can provide additional protection if you're fine with staying in place. You could also finish the Cerberus Armor with a Power Pack instead of an Onyx Pack since the much higher durability is easier to keep from getting destroyed. It can also be used for giftdropping if you want to really slow down some tough enemies that can wear it such as a Cyberdemon, and then run away. Overall, Gothic Armor is decent so long as you aren't going anywhere.

Phaseshift Armor

Phaseshift Armor is decent for handling the weaker damage types, but more notably is its huge boost to movement speed. If you're going for movement speed, you likely are also inclined to go with Phaseshift Boots, which as a set also makes you immune to acid and lava fluids. Phaseshift Armor is excellent if you intend to stair dive through levels as fast as possible, but you'll need to be cautious about actually taking hits. Using it for regular combat can still be helpful as you can adjust your positioning around enemies very freely since you can move much faster than they can. Most of the assemblies aren't great for Phaseshift Armor and going with the non-assembly using Power Pack, Agility Pack, and Onyx Pack is usually the best for it. If you're really committed to Phaseshift Armor, you could use the Cybernano Armor assembly along with a Power Pack to maintain the huge movement speed and also giving you 8 protection, but you won't be able to switch to anything if you need defense instead of speed. Overall, Phaseshift Armor is one of the better armors in the game.

Unique Armors


Necroarmor is kind of gimmicky and drains out your health in order to repair itself. While it has high protection and also decent movement speed, the decreased damage is nullified by adding on the damage lost through durability. If you need a quick armor to sustain strong attacks, it can be a bit helpful, but I generally recommend not using this armor.

Medical Power Armor

Like Medical Armor, Medical Power Armor heals you if you're close to death, but only up to a fairly low point and at the cost of durability. It's rather gimmicky and not particularly helpful. unless you're playing Angel of Masochism. Otherwise, it's pretty much a worse Red Armor that can't be modded, and I don't really recommend using it much since you'll likely have something better.

Lava Armor

Lava Armor offers great protection against fire and plasma damage, and its 4 to protection is also good for most general hits. You'll need boots that have immunity to lava to really make use of Lava Armor, and Inquisitor Set and top assemblies tends to obsolete Lava Armor, but if you don't have any of those, Lava Armor is very good for the late game enemies.

Shielded Armor

Shielded Armor is extremely protective against the early game damage types, but doesn't offer much for fire, plasma, and acid. However, Unholy Cathedral and the potential threat of Nightmare Demon caves gives Shielded Armor a useful niche and can reduce any melee hit in the game to 1. Make use of Shielded Armor if you're expecting melee damage, but otherwise leave it in your inventory and generally avoid using it.

Malek's Armor

Malek's Armor as a single piece offers huge movement speed, good resistances, and good protection, making it a great armor. However, its true power is unlocked as a set which gives you complete immunity to fire damage, one of the most common types in the late game. All of Revenants, Mancubi, Archviles, Cyberdemons, and Lava Elementals won't be able to hurt you at all outside of melee damage, and with the movement speed, you can also run past most everything else. Do note though that if Malek's Armor becomes damaged, you do lose immunity to fire, so you still need to be a bit cautious of damage and let it self-repair. Inquisitor Set is not the absolute best for every situation, but is excellent at worst for everything. You might occasionally swap it out for Phaseshift Set, or for resistances of other damage types, but otherwise it's one of the best armors in the game.

Cybernetic Armor

Cybernetic Armor offer a huge boost to protection and high resistances for the weaker damage types, but you can't ever switch it out and the armor does not self-repair. It's very good, but because it's outclassed by other armors and can be dangerous to be stuck with while damaged, you probably shouldn't use it. If your character is a Technician, Cybernetic Armor is fully moddable, and both Nanofiber Skin Armor and Cybernano Armor can be great assemblies for it. Nanofiber Skin Armor provides extra resistances for everything, self-repair, and you can use a Power Pack to reach 9 protection, while Cybernano Armor along with a Power Pack can bring protection up all the way to 13. Even with all that though, the late game enemies will still be dealing more damage that the lack of resistances can't cover, so I still wouldn't really recommend using Cybernetic Armor.

Berserker Armor

To equip Berserker Armor, you must be wielding Dragonslayer and have at least half your maximum health, but you can always pick it up off the ground. Enemies cannot equip it. Berserker Armor is required to find the Apostle, but for anything else, it is a horrible armor to use. The protection it offers can get quite high as you take damage, keeping you from dying, and the resistances are pretty good, but the movement speed is extremely slow and Nightmare Demons will infinitely spawn while you wear it. One niche for Berserker Armor is if a level is cleared out, there are some damaging fluids around, and you can hide yourself somewhere, you can let the infinitely spawning Nightmare Demons provide you with ridiculous amounts of kills, which is helpful for challenges that require a non-100% amount, or if you want to get general kills for the ranks. Otherwise though, never use Berserker Armor.

Angelic Armor

Angelic Armor offers very large protection and good resistances, which increases further if you have Longinus Spear or Azrael's Scythe. Even as a single piece, Angelic Armor is a very good armor and can likely outclass what you have unless you need high resistances for plasma and fire. It's generally good to use, although you'll only get it very late into a game and it's possible you may have something better if your build is nearly complete.

Basic Boots

Steel Boots

Steel Boots aren't very helpful for much, but they're still better than bare feet. Tactical Boots assembly requires Steel Boots, and make great use of early Agility Packs to provide you with speed, so you may actually prefer Steel Boots over the other two basic kinds. They also work just as well as any other base for Cerberus Boots.

Protective Boots

Protective Boots offer some protection to acid and a bit to lava, but are very outclassed by Platsteel Boots and not really recommended to spend Mod Packs on. If you don't want to use Tactical Boots but find yourself needing to go through some damaging fluids, Protective Boots can still be helpful, but they are very quickly replaced by something better.

Plasteel Boots

Plasteel Boots aren't amazing, but are very cheap to find and good for some simple assemblies. Grappling Boots assembly is mostly helpful if you're a melee character and charging through shotgun blasts and explosions, but otherwise you should go with Fireproof Boots to help more with lava. Cerberus Boots of course provides you with immunity to lava as well as acid, so you should just save for that assembly unless your build isn't going to be using Whizkid.

Exotic Boots

Acid-Proof Boots

Acid-Proof Boots are very simple in that they give you immunity to acid and nothing really else. One niche for them however is you're able to make the basic assembly of Lava Boots to give yourself immunity to both fluids without the need for Whizkid, but the downside is it requires an Onyx Pack and Acid-Proof Boots might be hard to find. You likely won't care too much for these, but you can make use of them if you happen to find them before making the top boots. Fireproof Boots is nice as a cheap assembly if you don't have Whizkid or an Onyx Pack.

Gothic Boots

While Gothic Boots don't provide you with resistances, the high protection will cover most of the damage anyway. That said, the poor movement speed and better methods to provide with fluid protection leads to Gothic Boots not being really useful. Gothic Set is also not great, so you probably don't need these boots for that either.

Phaseshift Boots

Phaseshift Boots offer a huge boost to speed and as a part of the Phaseshift Set, give complete immunity to both acid and lava. The main reason they're not instantly the best boots is because armors other than Phaseshift Armor can be better in many situations. Phaseshift Boots are worth holding onto as you switch equipment sets as needed. Since you'll already have immunities, the best assembly for Phaseshift Boots is Antigrav Boots followed by an Agility Pack to give you speeds high enough that you can run through huge portions of levels before enemies have a chance to move at all. They are excellent for stair diving through levels.

Unique Boots


Compared to Cerberus Boots with an Agility Pack, Enviroboots are slightly slower, but do offer better knockback protection, so are generally a bit outclassed. However, if you happen to find it before Cerberus Boots or an Onyx Pack for Lava Boots, and don't want to put levels into Whizkid, Enviroboots are a great way to give yourself immunity to acid and lava. They are a bit slow though, so you may want a secondary set of boots for more general use that can help you move faster such as Tactical Boots.

Nyarlaptotep's Boots

As a single piece, Nyarlaptotep's Boots are pretty good, especially for the large movement speed increase, but of course are used moreso for the immunity to fire provided with the complete Inquisitor Set. They're one of the best boots because of the set bonus, but can still be used just on their own if you aren't running across large amounts of damaging fluids. Keep in mind that compared to other boots, while you do gain immunity to fire and lava with the set, they don't give immunity to acid and you'll still need to be a bit cautious about it.

Basic Assemblies


For the Combat Knife, Chainsword is the best assembly, doing more damage on average than Piercing Blade even if the enemy has high armor. A pair of them is great for a Malicious Blades build unless you find Butcher's Cleaver and Dragonslayer. Finish the assembly with a Power Pack instead of a Bulk Pack to give you higher damage. If you plan on using other melee weapons however, Chainsword is much weaker than the Chainsaw and its assemblies.

Piercing Blade

Piercing Blade greatly improves the damage of melee weapons in ignoring all armor of enemies and any melee resistance they may have. For games where you aren't intending to fully commit to melee or aren't going to use Whizkid, Piercing Blade should always be used for Chainsaw. For longer games, Double Chainsaw and Ripper tend to be much stronger.

Speedloader Pistol

All that Speedloader Pistol offers is half the speed in reloading, which shouldn't frequently be a danger, and pistols usually won't last long in effectiveness. I don't recommend using this assembly, and saving your Mod Packs for something much better.

Elephant Gun

Elephant Gun gives a lot more damage at the cost of much slower reloading speed compared to the Shotgun. With this extra power gives more knockback, which can help push back enemies more and still keeps your ammo being more efficient. Power Packs are a bit costly to use since they're useful for many other equipment, and shotguns that come with clips tend to outclass Elephant Gun, but it's a decent assembly overall.

Gatling Gun

The Gatling Gun is an improvement to Chaingun, but still gets outclassed by the Plasma Rifle. Despite that though, Bulk Packs are not as useful for other equipment early on, and using them up with a Chaingun keeps them from going to waste. Use Gatling Gun to make use of the commonly found bullets, and phase it out for better weapons as you get further into the game.

Micro Launcher

Micro Launcher is actually weaker than the Rocket Launcher, at the trade-off for accuracy and speed. It's the best weapon for Rocket Jump, but it's not significantly better than a regular Rocket Launcher for it, and it's already a niche use. I wouldn't really recommend using this assembly.

Tactical Armor

While Tactical Armor is quite good, especially as one of the best ways to get movement speed early in the game, Agility Packs can equivalently be improving your speed with Tactical Boots, and armors are your source for reducing damage. Green Armor is also only good for the early game and is the only base for this assembly. Unfortunately, this assembly doesn't fit in well with most games unless you want to be moving as fast as possible for stair diving in the early game.

Tactical Boots

Tactical Boots are an excellent assembly and usually the best place to start using Agility Packs. For the early game, you can likely avoid most damaging fluids, so movement speed is the main attribute to focus on. Don't worry about not being to add a Mod Pack until Whizkid 2 because when you have that, you should instead focus on Cerberus Boots, so just make Tactical Boots as soon as you can.

Nanofiber Armor

Nanofiber Armor doesn't provide much protection or resistance, but is nice as a cheap source of an indestructible armor. It can be helpful to have as a backup armor, but chances are if you're taking tons of damage and having all your other armors getting destroyed, you should be improving your gameplay instead. Nanofiber Armor is good as an early armor for Vampyre builds which do tend to take lots of hits though, and the best bases are generally Red Armor, Duelist Armor, and Gothic Armor.

High Power Weapon

High Power Weapon can provide a fair bit of extra damage to many weapons, at the cost of greatly reducing clip size. It's a bit generic and almost every weapon that can use it can benefit more from a different assembly or even non-assemblies, but High Power Weapon can be decent if you're having trouble finding the corresponding Mod Packs you need. Use it for pistols if you're making a pistol build, or a Plasma Rifle if you can't find better Mod Packs to put into it, but otherwise try to use a better assembly.

Power Armor

Power Armor offers a nice boost to resistances, but it may be hard to justify using a Nano Pack for it. Red Armor is definitely the best base for it, but it's still pretty underwhelming given the cost. If you find yourself in a very specific situation where you have both, no Whizkid, and really need extra fire and melee resistance, it could be a decent assembly, but otherwise don't use it.

Tactical Shotgun

Tactical Shotgun is excellent and one of the best early game weapons. It's generally viable for a long time as well until you find an Assault Shotgun or better. With a shotgun that has a clip and without needing to spend extra time with pumping like the Combat Shotgun, you can very effectively keep enemies away from you, and also quickly kill anything pinned against a wall. You'll need to be slightly cautious as you reload since it's still a bit slow, but this weapon otherwise doesn't really have any weaknesses.

Tower Shield

Tower Shield offers huge protection, but has awful movement speed and not much else going for it. A non-assembly of Red Armor with both Power Pack and Onyx Pack gives you half the protection, but is indestructible, doesn't have a horrible movement speed, has fire resistance, isn't unrepairable, and can still be further modded. Tower Shield can be useful if you don't have Whizkid and stumble upon an Onyx Pack you otherwise don't have much use for, but in most other cases, Tower Shield is not worth using.

Fireproof Armor

Fireproof armor is a simple and cheap assembly to swap some melee resistance for some fire resistance. It can be a great addition to any armor if you don't have any better uses or other useful Mod Packs. It can be helpful later into the game where fire damage is more common and you can still maintain your distance to not get melee attacked. One niche with it is after adding an Onyx Pack to it or using an Onyx Armor base, you can use it for a melee build and giftdropping to make enemies much easier to kill with melee attacks. Overall, it's a decent assembly for a quick boost to armors.

Fireproof Boots

Fireproob Boots are a cheap boost to protecting you from lava fluid, but most of the time, it can be avoided pretty easily and you'll get more use out of Tactical Boots, or otherwise boots that are fully immune instead. They can be helpful if you plan on running across Limbo, Mt Erebus, or The Lava Pits, although it's not exactly the most viable way to get through those bonus levels. I would recommend sticking to Tactical Boots if you can't get something better, but they can possibly stay in your inventory as a swap if you're really concerned about lava.

Ballistic Armor

Ballistic Armor sets you with no resistance to acid or plasma, and even takes away fire resistance, but it does provide a large boost to bullet, shrapnel, and melee. If you are looking to boost your resistance to those, particularly melee damage, Ballistic Armor can be a decent assembly. The best base among common armors is Red Armor, but all of the various exotic armors that come with 50% melee resistance are ideal. Generally though, you can probably make more use of other assemblies and non-assemblies.

Plasmatic Shrapnel

Plasmatic Shrapnel is a bit gimmicky in simply converting shrapnel damage into plasma damage, but it is a much better damage type and can destroy corpses. The main drawback though is it can also destroy walls, making it harder to use cover effectively. If you can work around that though, the power is a huge improvement to any shotgun and can be a good use of a Sniper Pack if you have nothing else to use it for. It is also much better for ammo compared to a Plasma Shotgun that you might find since Plasmatic Shrapnel still uses shells instead of cells. Apply the Mod Packs to the best shotgun available in the order of how you would normally prefer shotguns. I would recommend Assault Shotgun if available and then apply a Power Pack to finish it, however, you might find a non-assembly better for it.

Grappling Boots

Grappling Boots adds a huge amount of knockback protection and not much else, and there aren't too many situations where you'll specifically want a large amount of it at the expense of other useful properties. If you're using a melee character and running through shotgun blasts and explosions, or stair diving and around a group of enemies, it can be helpful, but otherwise it's not worth making. If you do use it, go with Plasteel Boots.

Lava Boots

Lava Boots offers immunity to lava, but are fairly expensive with requiring an Onyx Pack. It's much cheaper to use Cerberus Boots assembly instead, which also offers acid immunity. The one niche with Lava Boots though is with Acid-Proof Boots, you can get immunity to both without the need for Whizkid, although Enviroboots could also do the same. I don't really recommend using Lava Boots unless you desperately need the immunity and have an Onyx Pack that doesn't have another use.

Advanced Assemblies

Double Chainsaw

While Double Chainsaw is a decent assembly, an extra Technical Pack instead makes Ripper which is significantly better. Ripper has less accuracy and requires another level of Whizkid, but neither of those should be an issue if you're using a melee build and already have one level in Whizkid. Because of that, I don't recommend Double Chainsaw.

Tactical Rocket Launcher

Tactical Rocket Launcher is essentially a worse Missile Launcher, but it does allow you to still use Rocket Jump repeatedly. When combined with Phaseshift Set, you can effectively blast yourself quickly through entire floors, so long as your health can hold up, or otherwise use Inquisitor Set which doesn't increase the distance due to knockback but does give immunity. More realistically though, it's not an efficient way to travel and costs a lot of ammo, and this weapon is otherwise outclassed by other rocket launchers. I would only recommend using it if you're having difficulty finding a Missile Launcher to destroy corpses and have spare Mod Packs to use up.

Storm Bolter Pistol

Storm Bolter Pistol gives very high damage, but also high variance per shot. It's also faster at shooting than normal and gives a much bigger clip size, although you'll need some more accuracy. Compared to other pistol assemblies, it's the best without applying any odd or gimmicky properties, and is generally the recommended assembly for Combat Pistols. Non-assembly Combat Pistols, such as 3 Power Packs and 2 Bulk Packs can outclass it though on a per bullet basis. Energy Pistol is better if you want to use pistols but don't mind using cells, and Demolition Ammo is better if you need fire damage and also have a Firestorm Pack.

Assault Rifle

Assault Rifle offers more accuracy, faster reloading, and a lot more damage to any rapid-fire weapon, but only shoots half the shots for the same amount of ammo. Despite that, it's still overall a good upgrade to many rapid-fire weapons, especially if you have no other need for Agility Packs. That said, Burst Cannon generally adds more damage and comes with a bigger clip size at the expense of other properties. Assault Rifle can be good if you don't have levels in Eagle Eye and want to use a Plasma Rifle, but otherwise other assemblies and even non-assemblies will fair you better. Use it if you have piles of Agility Packs and nothing else.

Energy Pistol

Energy Pistol makes your pistol deal plasma damage instead, but also requiring cells which can be harder to obtain large amounts of. It can be viewed as a more efficient use of each cell compared to a Plasma Rifle, or be a strong pistol if you need to take out a tough enemy, but the primary advantage of pistols is their ammo and Energy Pistol distorts a lot of that. Energy Pistol can work as a support weapon for both types of cases, but doesn't quite fit well as a primary weapon in either case. Use it if you think you'll need it, but for pistol builds, you might be more inclined to save Combat Pistols for Storm Bolter Pistol and non-assemblies instead.

Burst Cannon

Burst Cannon makes rapid-fire weapons blast out extra shots and with some extra power, while also providing a larger clip. The downsides are it has less accuracy and is slower to reload. A Nuclear Plasma Rifle can help work around both of those negatives, and both Laser Rifle and Minigun can get a good upgrade out of Burst Cannon. It's a pretty good assembly overall, but you may want a secondary weapon with good ammo efficiency as a way to finish off enemies so that you don't waste a ton of ammo to a nearly dead enemy. Chaingun is not really worth using up the Mod Packs for Burst Cannon, and a Plasma Rifle benefits more with a Hyperblaster assembly.


At the cost of a ton of extra ammo per shot, the damage is only increased a fair amount and the blast radius is a little bigger. Even if you don't expect to find the Firestorm Packs needed for Biggest Fucking Gun, a BFG and likely benefit more out of a non-assembly than VBFG9000. I don't really recommend ever using this assembly as it's very underwhelming to use and burns through ammo.

Environmental Boots

Given that Cerberus Boots only take a little more Mod Packs and gives full immunity instead of just an increase to resistances, Environmental Boots are not really good. There aren't too many situations where it's an optimal choice ever.


Fireshield is very specialized and costs an Onyx Pack, but does give the most fire resistance possible outside the immunity given from the Inquisitor Set. It can be helpful for Limbo and The Mortuary, or if you enter a Lava Elemental cave, but it's otherwise not great and fairly expensive. Only use it if you desperately need fire resistance and don't have the Inquisitor Set.

Nanofiber Skin Armor

Nanofiber Skin Armor is a pretty good armor, but being unable to be unequipped means you'll eventually find better armors that outclass it and not be able to switch. It can be nice if you're near the end of a game and have no use for a Nano Pack, but I otherwise wouldn't recommend using it too often. If so, it's versatile enough that any base can be useful depending on what you need.

Antigrav Boots

Antigrav Boots adds a huge amount of movement speed instead of any help towards resistances. Naturally, it's best used for Phaseshift Boots since the Phaseshift Set will give you immunity to fluids anyway, but you could potentially use Antigrav Boots with other bases if you just need the speed. For stair diving, it's the best boots assembly and only competes with Inquisitor Set.


Nano-Shrapnel is one of the best assemblies of all, giving your shotgun infinite ammo, no need to worry about reloading, and ignores the armor of enemies which gives you a large power boost too. Since it keeps the shotgun blast type of the base, Super Shotgun is by a huge gap the best choice and will make everything in the game extremely easy. If you are in need of making the assembly and don't have one, a regular Shotgun is the next best choice because of its higher damage and better shotgun blast type. Double Shotgun has a lot more power, but because of the wide shotgun blast type, it has very poor depth and isn't quite as effective, although it does at least offer great knockback. Generally speaking though, I would suggest trying your hardest to hold off making it in anything until you find a Super Shotgun.


Hyperblaster is an excellent upgrade to the Plasma Rifle by improving firing speed, accuracy, and is far more efficient with ammo. Despite being weaker as a blast, each individual shot is much stronger and you fire at twice the speed anyway, which nullifies the difference and is in fact much better. Finishing the assembly with any Mod Pack can work as well, depending on what you need most. It's not too expensive of an assembly and makes for a great weapon that you can use all throughout the game, even for builds that aren't focused around rapid-fire.

Focused Double Shotgun

Focused Double Shotgun adds a bit of damage to the Double Shotgun, but more importantly greatly improves the shotgun blast type. It's a decent weapon overall and can make for an alternative to a regular shotgun, but other shotguns with several Mod Packs will end up being much stronger. If you're planning on needing a weapon to push back nearby enemies, a regular Double Shotgun is probably fine enough and you don't exactly need this assembly.

Master Assemblies

Nanomanufacture Ammo

Nanomanufacture Ammo is one of the best assemblies in the game and is key to some of the best weapons in the game. When used in a rapid-fire weapon, you can endlessly blast away enemies without any worry of ammo or ever needing to reload, which can make for some extremely fast and powerful guns. Laser Rifle is generally the best base because of its huge accuracy at the cost of a little bit of damage compared to Plasma Rifle, but any other rapid-fire weapon can work too. You can also use it in a Napalm Launcher as a way to have infinite blasts of lava to completely destroy each level. If you have Berserker trait and Inquisitor Set, it can also be used as a way to give yourself as much Berserk power as you want by repeatedly blowing yourself up. It can also be used for more gimmicky weapons such as Tristar Blaster or Blaster. There are lots of options and most of them will result in a top weapon. If you're fortunate, I would recommend completing most of the assemblies with a Firestorm Pack to add on even more shots and explosiveness.

Demolition Ammo

Demolition Ammo provides a weapon with fire damage, which is excellent for destroying corpses and often better than bullet damage in most cases. The natural damage is also increased to be stronger. You'll need to be a bit cautious with using it so you don't blow yourself up or useful items, or also destroy walls in unfavorable ways, but at worst, it's an excellent support weapon to have. Use it in either a Minigun or Combat Pistol, depending on what type of weapon you need. As a support weapon, I would recommend any pistol for better ammo efficiency.

Cybernano Armor

Cybernano Armor make anything indestructible and also adds an extra 4 protection, but you're forced to use it for the rest of the game. While it is very strong, it's generally better to be able to switch to different armors for different situations and no singular base armor is good enough to cover you for everything. Energy-Shielded Vest with Cybernano Armor and finished with a Power Pack will give 7 protection and half damage to fire, plasma, and acid, but a Nightmare Demon cave for example would still be pretty dangerous. For Technicians, Cybernetic Armor with Cybernano Armor yields the highest protection in the game, but the lack of resistances doesn't help reduce fire, plasma, and acid damage as much as other armors. Given that it also costs both a Nano Pack and an Onyx Pack, it's really not worth using much of the time. If you're fully committed to stair diving, Phaseshift Armor can make for a decent base as it still retains its speed and the boost to protection helps make running by enemies a fair bit safer, especially once finished with a Power Pack and yielding 8 protection.

Biggest Fucking Gun

Biggest Fucking Gun is the most destructive weapon in the game, giving the strongest attacks in the game and covering a huge portion of each level. Not many enemies can survive a blast, and you'll be able to clear out most of everything very quickly. You'll still need a secondary weapon for finishing off what's left and you likely won't be finding too many items that survive the blasts, so you may want to hold off excessively using it until your build is complete or close to it. Biggest Fucking Gun is highly viable in three different ways. With a regular BFG, you'll have enough ammo in the clip to fire twice and be half way to a third shot. Because of the ammo consumption, a Nano Pack is pretty much mandatory. For a Nuclear BFG however, you can simply let it recharge back to 100 and fire again, but you'll have to be sure you can handle anything while it does so. A Firestorm Pack will increase the radius blast some more, or you can use a Nano Pack to make the self-recharging twice as fast to only 50 player actions. All variants are excellent, although I would argue a regular BFG with Nano Pack is the best of the three, and is also the strongest of the three since Nuclear BFGs have lower natural damage. Unlike most weapons, it's also optimal to collect as many of these as you can so you can keep firing while others recharge.


Ripper is one of the best melee weapons in the game simply because it attacks twice as fast as any other. You'll need high enough accuracy to undo the penalty, so it's not a practical weapon for just any build. Longinus Spear, Azrael's Scythe, and Dragonslayer all definitely outclass Ripper, but if you can't find any of those, Ripper is your best choice. Butcher's Cleaver can be an alternative due to having Blademaster, but Ripper is much better for getting the first kills and single enemies, which is a much more optimal way of playing melee builds anyway. The fast attacks will also significantly help with killing weak enemies that die in one hit.

Cerberus Boots

Cerberus Boots are very cheap given that they have both acid and lava immunity. Any boot base will be identical once completed, and it should be finished with an Agility Pack. You may not want to invest in Cerberus Boots if you find Enviroboots, but Cerberus Boots do have 5% faster movement speed once finished. Lava Boots in Acid-Proof Boots are completely identical if you happen to use those instead. Much more commonly though, you'll probably be making Cerberus Boots and have full access to any level, greatly improving how you position yourself and move around each level. They are an excellent assembly.

Cerberus Armor

Cerberus Armor is mostly the same for any base, so you should use it in Duelist Armor, Ballistic Vest, or Gothic Armor to add on all of the other damage type resistances. Once made, you'll have excellent resistances for anything. It's generally recommended to finish the assembly with an Onyx Pack to avoid it being damaged, but a Power Pack can work well if you're careful to avoid it getting destroyed. If you prefer a Power Pack, ideally assemble it in Gothic Armor for the extra durability. Onyx Armor can also work if you want both 2 protection and indestructibility, trading off the other resistances. It's an excellent assembly and doesn't require any of the exotic Mod Packs. The main drawback though is it's quite slow.

Equipment Builds

Early Game Basics - Shotgun/Combat Shotgun, Chaingun, Blue Armor, Steel Boots/Tactical Boots

There's nothing too special about this setup, but includes all of the good, common items as you start the game. With movement speed, some basic protection, and a pair of different weapons for different situations, you'll be able to get through the early levels without too much difficulty if you're playing well.

Middle Game Standards - Tactical Shotgun/Assault Shotgun (P/T), Gatling Gun, Rocket Launcher, Plasma Rifle (T), Chainsaw, Red Armor (P), Tactical Boots

With a little bit of everything, there won't be too many enemy combinations that will cause problems. Red Armor with a Power Pack gives 6 protection and should easily keep you from harm if you play well. Having a shotgun with a clip is often your strongest available primary weapon, although if you're more focused on rapid-fire, you might find yourself with much more bullets and more investment in Chainguns and Plasma Rifles. A Rocket Launcher is usually good to have for support against any Archviles, making holes in walls, and especially so on Nightmare with destroying the corpses of respawning enemies.

Late Game Standards - Tactical Shotgun/Assault Shotgun (P/T), Hyperblaster/High Power Plasma Rifle, Piercing Blade Chainsaw, Rocket Launcher/Missile Launcher, Red Armor (P)/Fireproof Red Armor, Tactical Boots/Fireproof Platsteel Boots

Depending on your build and what you happen to find, you should at least have some of these items in your inventory. A shotgun works great as a primary weapon, but if you have plenty of cells, a modded Plasma Rifle can work well. As long as you have the accuracy to support melee attacks, Piercing Blade Chainsaw is also a good weapon for enemies that get too close. Fireproof Armor and Fireproof Boots are also very helpful as the later levels tend to have lots of lava and fire damaging enemies. Your equipment will generally be missing a few of these and likely having some better items too, but you should at least have many of them in order to consistently survive and get through the game.

Early Game Nightmare with Juggler - Many Shotguns, Chaingun, Blue Armor, Steel Boots/Tactical Boots

For Nightmare difficulty, it's often helpful to carry several Shotguns and use mouse wheel with Juggler to cycle through them instead of needing to reload after each shot. You can think of it as having an Assault Shotgun immediately with a clip as big as the number of Shotguns you carry. If you're needing to dispose of corpses, it helps to use Shotguns to knock enemies into fluids, or a Chaingun to kill enemies in doorways. Use each weapon appropriately depending on the positioning of the enemies. This setup is generally the best way to begin the otherwise very challenging early game for Nightmare difficulty.

Middle Game Angel of 100/Archangel of 666 - Tactical Shotgun (P)/Assault Shotgun (Ps/Ts), Gatling Gun, Hyperblaster, Tactical Rocket Launcher/Missile Launcher, Red Armor (PAT)/Cerberus Armor in one of various bases, Cerberus Boots (A)

If you're going to be playing out a long game of Angel of 100 or Archangel of 666, you'll need to be sure you're investing into your equipment before the amount of dangerous enemies starts to get out of hand. Whizkid should generally be obtained early as it's key to unlocking all of the best weapons, unless you're very fortunate to find several of the unique items that outclass them. Cerberus Boots should be one of the first investments so that you can move around freely as you'll be encountering a lot of dangerous fluids. While they're slower, having advantageous movement relative to most enemies is a huge factor in safely killing them. A buffed up Red Armor is good and easy to find, but ideally you'll find an exotic armor that comes with resistances to bullet, shrapnel, and melee as a base for Cerberus Armor. Once you start finding the exotic Mod Packs, you can work towards getting the top equipment.

Middle Game Melee Builds - Piercing Blade Chainsaw/Chainsword (x2), Shotgun/Combat Shotgun/Assault Shotgun, Nanofiber Red Armor, Green Armor for giftdropping, Tactical Boots

Unless you're going for a pure melee build, various shotguns are helpful for groups of enemies out of range as shotguns work well without any investment in traits. Nanofiber Red Armor isn't amazing, but if you're going to be taking lots of damage, having an indestrucible armor is very helpful to have. Former Sergeants can often be an issue because of their knockback, so if you're not fighting back with your own shotguns, having a Green Armor to help lure them can be very handy. Most melee characters aren't great until they get their master trait, so you likely won't use that many melee attacks unless you can safely hide behind a corner and slowly lure everything in. If you're use Malicious Blades with a Technician, a pair of Chainswords is your best equipment setup assuming you don't find any of the unique blades.

End Game Shotgun Build (no stair diving) - Nano-Shrapnel Super Shotgun, Malek's Armor/Shielded Armor/Plasma Shield/Cerberus Armor in one of various bases/Cybernano Energy-Shielded Vest (P), Nyarlaptotep's Boots/Cerberus Boots (A)

With Nano-Shrapnel Super Shotgun, you can make quick work of any enemy and happily blast away as much as you need. Cybernano Armor in Energy-Shielded Vest is the best well-rounded armor for general situations, but it a bit outdone by each of the other armors for specific situations. The choice is yours which to use. Boots are generally Nyarlaptotep's Boots even as a single piece, but Cerberus Boots are used for when you need to travel across fluids. You may also want some support weapons for corpse disposal such as Nanomanufacture Ammo in any rocket launcher or Demolition Ammo in a pistol.

End Game Melee Build (no stair diving/no Apostle) - Dragonslayer, Cybernano Energy-Shielded Vest (P), Cerberus Boots (A)

Once you wield Dragonslayer and become Berserk, you'll receive 60% to all resistances. Combined with Cybernano Energy-Shielded Vest (P), you'll have a total of 95% resistance to all of fire, plasma, and acid, as well as 7 protection, reducing just about every single hit you ever take to 1 damage. You'll still need to occasionally heal and you'll get banged up a bit, but you'll be pretty immortal. If you really don't like the restriction of Cybernano Armor, you can still use Inquisitor Set, Phaseshift Set, Cerberus Armor, Shielded Armor, and Plasma Shield all as needed, but you'll also use up a lot more of your inventory space. Both styles are viable in different ways. If you're wanting to kill the Apostle and needing Berserker Armor, Cybernano Armor can't be used.

End Game Malicious Blades Build (no stair diving/no Apostle) - Dragonslayer/Butcher's Cleaver, Cybernano Energy-Shielded Vest (A), Cerberus Boots (A)

Malicious Blades blocks Berserker trait, but Dragonslayer nullifies that. When combined with Butcher's Cleaver, you'll have enormous amounts of melee damage, Blademaster trait so you can immediately attack other enemies in range, and 95% resistance in all of bullet, shrapnel, fire, and melee damage. With just needing 35% resistance in acid and plasma to be fully maxed out, Cybernano Energy-Shielded Vest will cover them, as well as provide 5 protection. With this, it's better to finish the assembly with an Agility Pack instead. Completing this build is difficult to achieve, but you'll be dealing a maximum of 222 melee damage extremely fast and nothing in the game can hit you for more than 1 damage except for rapid-fire attacks.

End Game Pistol Build (no stair diving) - Combat Pistol (PPPNN) (Sharpshooter/Masterless)/Nanomanufacture Combat Pistol (P) (Bullet Dance)/Grammaton Cleric Beretta/Demolition Combat Pistol (F), Malek's Armor/Shielded Armor/Plasma Shield/Cerberus Armor in one of various bases, Nyarlaptotep's Boots/Cerberus Boots (A)

Depending on what pistol build you're using, different weapons tend to be the optimal choice. A non-assembly Combat Pistol gives the best damage output per shot under general circumstances, but Nanomanufacture Combat Pistol significantly better supports Bullet Dance with their bursts. Grammaton Cleric Beretta is extremely powerful for quick use, but does have some ammo issues and knocking back enemies in the middle of bursts can lead to many of the shots missing. It's ideally used for immediate kills on tough enemies. Demolition Combat Pistol is mostly used for corpse disposal, large groups, or destroying walls, but gets outclassed in damage. If you want a powerful Combat Pistol but can't expect to find the Nano Packs, especially if you're using Dualgunner, replacing them with Bulk Packs is still effective, only that you'll have to carry ammo and use the somewhat slow reloading. For more in-depth information, see here.

End Game Rapid-Fire Build (no stair diving) - Nanomanufacture Laser Rifle (F)/Nanomanufacture Plasma Rifle (F), Malek's Armor/Shielded Armor/Plasma Shield/Cerberus Armor in one of various bases, Nyarlaptotep's Boots/Cerberus Boots (A)

Nanomanufacture Ammo in either a Laser Rifle for accuracy or Plasma Rifle for a bit extra power will give you infinite bursts of extremely powerful plasma shots. When improved further with Son of a Bitch and Triggerhappy, just about everything in the game will get instantly melted by the huge series of bursts you unleash with each attack.

End Game Ammochain Build (no stair diving) - Laser Rifle (FFFPP)/Minigun (FFFAA), Malek's Armor/Shielded Armor/Plasma Shield/Cerberus Armor in one of various bases, Nyarlaptotep's Boots/Cerberus Boots (A)

While you will still need some ammo unlike the infinite ammo guns, you can instead make non-assemblies that burst out huge amounts of shot at the cost of 1 ammo each, yielding much higher damage. Laser Rifle is ideal since it has high accuracy and Ammochain blocks Eagle Eye, but a Minigun with some Agility Packs is helpful too and provides an extra ammo type you can use.

End Game BFG Build (no stair diving) - Multiple Biggest Fucking Gun (N)/Nuclear Biggest Fucking Gun (N), Malek's Armor/Shielded Armor/Plasma Shield/Cerberus Armor in one of various bases, Nyarlaptotep's Boots/Cerberus Boots (A)

While BFGs don't have any specific traits for them, the investment is very expensive and committing to them may lead you to preferring a masterless, unfocused kind of build until you get them. Scavenger is generally the best form to getting them, but can be done with any kind if you're lucky enough. While one is generally enough, it has to self-recharge after use, so there's never harm in having multiples if you can find them. If you do acquire all of them, you can functionally nuke every floor that doesn't have indestructible walls. Finish each BFG with a Nano Pack and save the Firestorm Packs for more BFGs.

Dragonslayer Stair Diving Build - Dragonslayer, Cybernano Phaseshift Armor (P)/Phaseshift Armor (PAO), Antigrav Phaseshift Boots (A)

With permanent Berserk boosting your speed, a strong weapon to easily kill anything in the way, and the fastest armors available, you can simply run to the exit without much stopping you. Cybernano Armor in Phaseshift Armor will provide you with 4 extra protection compared to the non-assembly, but you'll be slightly slower and be unable to switch your armor. You could just use Phaseshift Armor (PAO) and then also switch off to Inquisitor Set, Plasma Shield, and all the other common end game armors if needed, but you won't be able to stair dive quite as quickly with those on. With Berserk and 8 protection through your armor, you might not find the need to switch armors anyway. Stair diving is entirely possible with Phaseshift Set and any of the other suggested builds, but this setup is by far the best for it.

End Game Army of the Dead Build (no stair diving) - Assault Shotgun (P)/Elephant Gun/Jackhammer/Frag Shotgon, Malek's Armor/Shielded Armor/Plasma Shield, Nyarlaptotep's Boots/Acid-Proof Lava Boots/Enviroboots

Army of the Dead provides the player with all shrapnel damage being converted to piercing, which in isolation is a very good ability, but given that the best shotgun already does that with Nano-Shrapnel, it somewhat defeats the purpose. Moreso however, Army of the Dead blocks Whizkid, limiting gear significantly. Most of the same end game gear is available like other builds, but you'll be fully dependent on finding uniques and have a much weaker middle game. That aside, being able to use Jackhammer and Frag Shotgun with piercing is unique and delivers some extreme power. It would be helpful to have both since it allows two different ammo types and both burn through ammo very quickly. Elephant Gun and Assault Shotgun are the best choices if you don't find the uniques.


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