What is the absolute best Sniper Rifle in MW3? While full-auto weapons like Assault Rifles and SMGs have traditionally dominated the gun meta in Call Of Duty, there has always been room for the exceptional stopping power and one-shot potential of Sniper Rifles. Thanks to the Carry Forward scheme, all the old Sniper Rifles from MW2 have made their way to Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, alongside a selection of MW3-exclusive snipers to boot.
With such an array to choose from, it can be a bit tricky to figure out exactly which Sniper to choose. That's where we come in! Below we've ranked all nine (nine!) Snipers in the latest COD from worst to best, to once and for all answer the question of which is the best Sniper Rifle in Modern Warfare 3 right now.
What is the best Sniper Rifle in MW3?
From our testing, the best Sniper Rifle in Modern Warfare 3 is the FJX Imperium. As was the case in MW2, the FJX Imperium is an incredible blend of power, range, and speed in a single package. When kitted out for range it's a fantastic long-ranged sniper for Ground War and Warzone, while in core multiplayer it excels as a fast-moving quickscope rifle.
Here is our Modern Warfare 3 Sniper tier list:
- FJX Imperium
- XRK Stalker
- SP-X 80
- KV Inhibitor
- Carrack .300
- Victus XMR
- LA-B 330
Below, we break down each of the 10 Sniper Rifles available in Modern Warfare 3, and what makes them as good or as bad as they are.
10. LA-B 330
The fire rate of the LA-B 330 is only marginally worse than the Signal 50, and is much easier to use. It has a greater effective range, good stability, and better handling. Unfortunately, it's still among the weakest and least consistent of the Sniper Rifles on offer in MW3, beaten handily by the likes of the SP-X 80. So there's not too much point in using the LA-B 330 in the current meta.
9. Victus XMR
The weighty Victus XMR is, shot for shot, among the most damaging Snipers in the game. It takes a keen eye to notice any significant differences between the Victus, the KATT-AMR, and the slightly superior rival to both, the MCPR-300 - but the differences are there. The Victus has slightly better range than its cousins, but that doesn't come into play much in MW3's small maps, while the lower ADS speed and magazine capacity make this gun a harder sell. Nevertheless, this is still a beastly Sniper Rifle that can easily kill in a single shot.
The KATT-AMR is similar in nature to the Victus XMR. Both are exceptionally powerful, exceptionally bulky Sniper Rifles that can easily destroy an enemy. Both also have decent range, but not the best. And both leave a lot to be desired in the handling and mobility departments. But if you're looking for huge damage output and can tolerate major losses to movement, the KATT-AMR beats the Victus XMR ever so slightly in the mobility department.
7. Carrack .300
The Carrack .300 boasts the fastest fire rate of any Sniper Rifle in Modern Warfare 3, making it easy to follow up non-lethal shots with more lethal ones. In this respect, it's quite forgiving. And the lighter weight and greater range marks it as superior to the similarly fast-firing LA-B 330. Nonetheless, its ability to deliver reliable one-shot-kills in the chaotic, fast-paced environment of MW3 keeps it slightly behind the curve.
6. KV Inhibitor
MW3's version of the Dragunov, the KV Inhibitor is a semi-auto Sniper Rifle that packs a decent punch - just not quite as much as we'd like. You can still use the KV Inhibitor to one-shot enemies if you've a good eye, but the consistency with bodyshot kills over range is not quite enough to put it in the top tier of Sniper Rifles.
Still, it's a powerful and versatile weapon, and not too difficult to use. To learn how to kit it out properly, consult our guide on the best KV Inhibitor loadout in MW3.
The MCPR-300 is an exceptionally powerful bolt-action Sniper Rifle which matches the damage potential of the Victus, while also remaining slightly lighter, more forgiving, and easier to handle. It's still not easy to turn the MCPR into a quickscope loadout because it's not exactly lightweight. But it's a very solid choice of sniper for most players, with no glaring downsides.
To unlock the full potential of this bulky sniper, check out our guide on the best MCPR-300 loadout in Modern Warfare 3.
4. SP-X 80
The SP-X 80, by contrast, is a fantastic choice when it comes to quickscoping. Acting as a superior version of the LA-B 330, the SP-X 80 fires fast, handles well, and actually has pretty good consistency with one-shot-kills over a decent range. It's honestly a phenomenal gun, even with the increased health pools of Modern Warfare 3, and it's a testament to the power of the remaining rifles on this list that the SP-X comes fourth in our rankings.
3. XRK Stalker
The XRK Stalker was added to Modern Warfare 3 in the game's Season 1 update and quickly shot to the top of our list thanks to an impressive combination of damage, ADS speed, and recoil control. It's a stellar weapon for quickscoping, and our guide to the best XRK Stalker loadout goes a long way towards ramping up this gun's mobility, making it a true winner in the field.
As with any new gun taking off in popularity in MW3's ever-evolving meta, there's always a chance that the XRK Stalker may receive nerfs in the near future, which keeps it from taking the coveted top spots in our list. But if there's one Sniper Rifle you want to keep an eye on, it's this one.
The Longbow excels at pretty much everything. This Modern Warfare 3-exclusive Sniper Rifle features fantastic damage and range, making it very consistent at one-shot-kills. It can also be kitted out to be surprisingly mobile, with great ADS and Sprint-To-Fire speeds for its weapon class. Add to that a whopping 25 round magazine - not necessary, but certainly a welcome boon - and you've got a genuinely top-tier Sniper, beaten in our minds only by one gun.
For more, consult our MW3 best Longbow loadout guide!
1. FJX Imperium
The FJX Imperium is the best Sniper Rifle in Modern Warfare 3 right now. A revival of the fan-favourite Intervention from 2009's Modern Warfare 2, the FJX Imperium is a phenomenal quickscope weapon, with great handling and mobility stats, as well as enough damage potential to deliver some of the most consistent one-shot-kills in the game. There's really not much more that needs to be said: the FJX Imperium is just fantastic, and it almost makes the other Sniper Rifles feel a bit redundant at the moment.
Check out our guide to learn how to make the best FJX Imperium loadout in Modern Warfare 3!
That's it for our breakdown of the best Sniper Rifles in Modern Warfare 3. If you're in the mood for a different class of weapon, check out our similar guides on the best Assault Rifles, best SMGs, best LMGs, and best Shotguns in Modern Warfare 3. Or, for a wider overview of the current meta, consult our guides on the best guns in MW3 and the best MW3 loadouts.