A man with a backpack holds a Railgun out towards a mountain in Helldivers 2.
Screenshot by Dot Esports

Helldivers 2 players are convinced the Railgun was secretly nerfed this week

The Titans wish to rule once more.

As Helldivers across the globe stared at the black screens and server caps all weekend, a player found a different reason to be frustrated—the nerf bat. Killing enemies in Helldivers 2 has always been rough, but it seems Arrowhead Game Studios wants Railguns to be worse at it.

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“Railgun no longer seems to be 2-shotting Bile Titans as of yesterday,” Steam user Remalgigoran said. “I went from wrecking these things all week to them requiring 7-10 hits overnight.” This post came alongside a general patch addressing game optimization, matchmaking issues, and adjusting the balance for higher-difficulty missions. During testing, we found this is likely true—the Railgun has had its wings clipped through a bug fix or a straight nerf.

Giant alien bug in Helldivers 2 opening
Those legs don’t lie. And that bug don’t die. Screenshot by Dot Esports

Hundreds of replies came in from players, many thankful for the Railgun’s nerfing. As the original poster admitted, the support weapon was the “end-all-be-all answer to everything” in Helldivers 2. Killing gigantic armored monsters was difficult with any other weapon in the game, so many divers brought only Railguns as their support weapon.

There’s a minor issue, however—we kind of needed the busted version of the gun. Sure, it was weird that the Railgun was so effective at taking out everything while other support weapons were left in the dust. But that was because no other support weapon could safely kill without utilizing teamwork or terrible reload times. When you’re facing two to four Bile Titans on each spawn wave, you need a quick and effective answer for them—one that doesn’t require two people standing completely still while being swarmed by Bile Spewers.

Many players said this was a buff to Stratagems. Specific options, like Orbital Railcannon and the Eagle 500kg Bomb, are designed to kill Bile Titans quickly and easily. But these go on a fairly long cooldown after use. And, once they’ve done their job, you’re probably still facing down one to three Titans. You need Anti-Tank weapons once your Stratagem pool depletes, and the Railgun was the one that did the job the best.

This sets a worrying trend for Helldivers 2. If Arrowhead is willing to stealth-nerf a strategy almost necessary to deal with bugs on endgame difficulties, what else is it willing to hide? It even upped the difficulty of these missions during this same patch, making it more likely that Helldivers would need the strength of the unstable weapon. Surviving on Helldiver difficulty in the game was already a chore—now, it’s an army of bullet sponges and hundreds of trash bugs per wave without a clear and safe answer to any of it.

We’re hopeful this is just a one-time thing, and Arrowhead will be clear about the directions of its buffs, nerfs, and bug fixes in the future. If it wants us to use teamwork weapons, then a clear and concise list of changes will be much more effective than turning our Railguns into a wet noodle during a server-oriented maintenance patch.


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Author
Jason Toro-McCue
Contributing writer and member of the RPG beat. Professional writer of five years for sites and apps, including Nerds + Scoundrels and BigBrain. D&D and TTRPG fanatic, perpetual Fighter main in every game he plays.