Ranking The Best Shotguns In Fortnite History

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Ranking The Best Shotguns In Fortnite History

Find out what Fortnite: Battle Royale shotgun claimed the number one spot!

Shotguns in Fortnite: Battle Royale have been arguably the most useful close-range weapons in the game’s three-year history. From day one, players have had access to a multitude of shotguns to use at their disposal. Epic Games has managed to work even more than the traditional pump variation into the fold. Some have come and go, but every weapon has made some impact in Fortnite, no matter their lifespan. The question is, which ones are the best? We’ve decided to break down each shotgun and pick an ultimate winner of the bunch.

7 – Drum Shotgun

A Drum Shotgun from Fortnite on a blue background

Back in Chapter 1 – Season 9, Fortnite saw the arrival of another new shotgun variation. This time it was the Drum Shotgun, which came with a common, uncommon and rare variants. It seems like a distant memory at this point, considering the short lifespan of the Drum Shotgun. It’s best features were in its close-range damage output. The rare version granted 50 maximum damage with a 4.0 fire rate and 12 shots per magazine. An unfortunate drawback of the Drum Shotgun was its uselessness from a distance. It catered to players who enjoyed w-keying but lacked true versatility. After leaving Fortnite in Season X, not many clamored for the Drum Shotgun’s return.

6 – Charge Shotgun

A Charge Shotgun from Fortnite on a yellow background

The polarizing Charge Shotgun made its debut in Fortnite Chapter 2 – Season 3. In an unexpected move, Epic Games decided to swap out the beloved Pump Shotgun in favor of this successor. The Charge Shotgun possesses a similar appearance to the Pump, but it is all the worlds different. It forces players to initiate a charge sequence for optimal damage. Unfortunately, the charging aspect slows down combat and makes Fortnite feel clunky. One of the redeeming qualities of the Charge Shotgun is its damage output. The common version maxes out at an unfathomable 120 damage. Although the concept is unique, the Charge Shotgun falls short of expectations.

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5 – Double Barrel Shotgun

double barrel

Fortnite’s version of the Double Barrel Shotgun spent nearly two full seasons in the regular loot pool. From Season 5 to Season 7, players could get their hands on this scarily powerful weapon. The Double Barrel Shotgun has only ever sported a Legendary and Epic variant. With the Legendary version, this shotgun hit for 120 damage at maximum without a headshot multiplier. Power was its selling point, but it simply did not offer much else. It featured only two shots per clip, which meant accuracy was all the more important. The Double Barrel Shotgun has been out of the picture for quite some time, but it’s undoubtedly a fun gimmick item that should resurface.

4 – Heavy Shotgun

Fortnite Heavy Shotgun Changes

The Heavy Shotgun was another experimental weapon first introduced in Season 3. This weapon heavily resembles the traditional Pump Shotgun but is superior in two areas. The Heavy Shotgun fires much quicker and exceeds the sub-par range of the Pump Shotgun. From a damage standpoint, the Heavy Shotgun’s Epic version deals 74, whereas the Legendary version deals 77. With the headshot multiplier, the Heavy Shotgun packs a punch, but will not eliminate an opponent with full shield. The Heavy Shotgun has been collecting dust in the Vault since Season 7. Hopefully, it will return one day.

3 – Tactical Shotgun

One of Fortnite’s mainstays since the very beginning has been the Tactical Shotgun. It first appeared in Patch 1.6, offering a different approach to shotguns than the traditional pump variety. This weapon offered a more user-friendly alternative to the Pump Shotgun. It offers a common, uncommon, rare, epic and legendary variation with a multitude of damage ranges and a fast fire rate. In its current iteration, the common Tactical Shotgun deals 68 damage. The Legendary version hits for up to 83 damage.

However, its usefulness comes from its 1.5 fire rate, which is third behind only the Combat and the Drum Shotgun. The Tactical Shotgun, in general, requires less precision than most of the others on this list. It’s never entered the vault since first appearing in Battle Royale, and we don’t expect it to leave anytime soon. Players simply rely too heavily on its fire rate and forgiveness.

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2 – Pump Shotgun

Released at the launch of Fortnite: Battle Royale, the Pump Shotgun is a staple. It’s what you’d expect from a typical pump-action shotgun in any other first-person or third-person shooter. Unfortunately, the Pump has not received the same love from Epic Games as the Tactical Shotgun. Since its debut in the very first season of Fortnite: Battle Royale, the Pump Shotgun has gone to the vault twice. The first time took place in Chapter 1 – Season 9, where Epic removed the Pump Shotgun in favor of the newly introduced Combat Shotgun. It was removed again recently in Chapter 2 – Season 3 to make room for the Charge Shotgun. Nothing is more satisfying in Fortnite than hitting a 200-damage pump on an opponent. The Pump Shotgun will hopefully return in a future update.

1 – Combat Shotgun

The proverbial crown jewel of Fortnite’s arsenal of weapons begins and ends with the Combat Shotgun. Introduced first in Chapter 1 – Season 9, the Combat variation quickly became the go-to weapon for both casual and professional players. Its versatility was almost unmatchable, with a 1.85 fire rate and up to 80 damage without a headshot multiplier. Ten shots per magazine allowed plenty of room for error and did not punish inaccurate shots.

Perhaps the most insane aspect of the Combat Shotgun was its range. Before an adjustment, the Combat Shotgun could connect with shots up to 100 meters. Epic Games eventually nerfed the distance down to 60 meters. Still, it became the staple during the Fortnite World Cup era. The Combat Shotgun is unquestionably the strongest in the Battle Royale’s three-year history. It entered the dreaded vault in Season X and never saw the light of day again. Although it’s a polarizing weapon, there is no doubting its effectiveness. Maybe someday we will see it reappear in Fortnite: Battle Royale.

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Matt Pryor
Matt is a graduate of Southern New Hampshire University. He appreciates all esports titles but primarily focuses on Fortnite and Call of Duty. Matt continuously analyzes gameplay and plays the games himself to better understand in-game decisions by the best players in the world.