Call of Duty: Modern Warfare sniper rifles tier list

From semi-automatic to bolt action.

Image via Activition

Sniper rifles are some of the most dangerous weapons in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare for players who are willing to master them. This tier list will provide some insight into which rifle is worth spending your time and effort into learning.

Becoming proficient with a sniper generally requires more time investment than any other class of gun. Their damage stats may soar above other weapons but these rifles have much lower fire rates, extremely high recoil, and worse handling than almost every other gun in the game. Snipers also require very specific attachments to utilize most effectively. But once you’ve become adept at the art of sniping, you’ll be cleaning up the battlefield one headshot at a time.

There are only three snipers rifles in the game, making it the smallest weapon class along with marksman rifles. Each gun has its own particular strengths and weaknesses but some shine brighter than others.

Here is our tier list for the best sniper rifles in CoD: MW.

3) Dragunov

The Dragunov is the first sniper rifle players can get their hands on and it is the only semi-automatic in its class. The weapon’s semi-automatic design brings both benefits and detriments. The rifle has the highest rate of fire in its class, making it a solid choice for mid-range gun skirmishes. But it also deals less damage.

If you’re going to use this rifle we suggest slapping a 510mm compact barrel and VLK 3.0x optic on it to capitalize on its mid-range aggressive combat style.

2) HDR

The HDR is the king of long-range sniper gun play. This devastating bolt action rifle can take out opponents in a single shot, but its heavy damage comes at a price. This weapon has a horrendous rate of fire that your opponents can take advantage of. Enemies can easily duck under cover and fire back if you fail to hit your target. The HDR also handles poorly making it a weak choice for anything other than long-distance sniping.

This rifle can prove to be a real threat if used appropriately. We suggest equipping yourself with a 26.0 bull barrel, bipod, and a variable zoom scope. Then go find a safe lookout and start picking your opponents off one by one. Just don’t miss.

1) AX-50

The AX-50 is the last sniper that players can get their hands on and it is also the strongest. This .50 caliber bolt action rifle has surprisingly decent handling, making it a more mobile choice over the HDR and dishing out more damage than Dragunov. This weapon is solid at long-range but it is also the go-to choice for quickscoping. 

There are a few drawbacks however. The AX-50’s fire rate is still abysmal compared to the semi-automatic Dragunov. It also requires practice and plenty of attachments to use most effectively, but players who can master this rifle will instantly drop opponents at any range.

The AX-50 functions best with attachments that lower recoil and and decrease aim time. We recommend applying a muzzle brake, stippled grip tape, and the 17.0 factory barrel. These will provide you with the best chance to quickscope your enemies and make you a force to be reckoned on the battlefield.