Warzone and Modern Warfare's best sidearms.
Our ranking of the best pistols in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and Warzone.
Your secondary weapon slot often comes in clutch in a huge number of sitiuations. Running out of ammo and needing to switch, getting a bit of close-quarters damage, or even using as a primary weapon if you’re feeling tough.
We’ve ranked the pistols from best to worst, and even put in a bit of info on the best attachments to use with them.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and Warzone – Best Pistols
Here’s our favourite pistols, as well as some tidbits on why we like them.
Top Tier Pistols
The Renetti has been hit with a nerf at the back end of Season 3. Regardless, we’ve still got it at the top of our list here – its damage has been reduced but it’s no longer able to act as a substitute for a primary weapon at close range. It’s still useful once you unlock the Mk3 Burst Mod barrel attachment at level 46, which gives the gun a 3-round burst fire. Once you have this coupled with the Akimbo perk and Lightweight Trigger it deals pretty solid damage close up in Warzone, breaking armour pretty quickly (albeit not as fast as SMGs). Keep hold of it whilst defending buildings and charging at foes. It also means you can swap out Overkill in favour of Ghost in your Warzone Loadouts if you’re feeling confident, giving you the edge over UAV users.
It’s not half bad for Multiplayer modes too – without the burst attachment it still deals more damage than the other light pistols. Of course, burst is ideal, but you can use it as a strong sidearm in a pinch too.
High Tier Pistols
.50 GS (Desert Eagle)
The .50 GS is a pretty stable and powerful heavy pistol. It’s pretty slow to handle for a pistol, but deals pretty solid damage across the board. It holds its power when hitting limbs pretty well, and one or two well-placed shots should take your opponent down in standard Multiplayer.
In Warzone, you’ll need to be a bit more patient. We’d usually recommend going for a lightweight pistol in this game mode, but if you are able to mix in headshots, you can kill an enemy in as little as three shots at close ranges. The Desert Eagle works decently as a secondary option, but isn’t worth dropping Overkill for in Warzone.
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Mid Tier Pistols
The X16 is a solid lightweight pistol with decent accuracy and a 3 shot kill to the upper torso. This weapon has the exact same damage profile as the 1911 and M19, but we prefer it thanks to its combination of super-fast mobility stats and respectable range. You’ve got a solid magazine capacity for a secondary weapon, but it’s much harder to get away with using the X16 solo.
In Warzone, it’s better than something like the M19, but you can usually run around and pick up an MP7 or any other submachine gun to use as a secondary. Again, pistols aren’t generally designed to be used solo, but the X16 is great to pull out when you’ve emptied a magazine and need an extra shot into your enemy.
The 1911 deals the same amount of damage as the X16, and it’s really down to personal preference. We’re more partial to the X16 thanks to the low fire rate of the 1911, as well as the smaller magazine capacity, but you’ll be able to hold your damage at longer ranges. Again though, both in Multiplayer and Warzone, you’ll want to be only using the 1911 in specific circumstances rather than going solo with it.
Low Tier Pistols
The .357 is a pain to use thanks to its hammer delay and slow bullet travel time. There’s an important caveat to this though – if you unlock the Snakeshot ammunition attachment and Akimbo, this becomes one of the best secondary weapons in both Multiplayer and Warzone, even after the recent nerfs.
Without Snakeshot though, this weapon really struggles to hold its own, making unlocking Snakeshot extremely frustrating. A recent buff eliminated the trigger delay when you’re using the Match Grade or Lightweight trigger, but it’s often pointless to use this weapon ahead of the .50 GS, since they largely fill the same role.
The M19 isn’t too different from the X16 and 1911, but we’ve found it the least enjoyable to use. That’s saying something when you’re trying to play using only pistols. Its fire rate is decent, and we like the 17 bullet magazines by default, but you’re never going to get a time-to-kill rivalling primaries. Keep an eye on bullet travel time too – you’ll want to use attachments like the XRK L Super barrel to increase your bullet velocity if you are going to use this gun.
It at least has some use for spamming chokepoints with Akimbo, but this is a very niche usage and you’re usually much better off with another sidearm.