In Project Zomboid, weapons are your lifeline against the horde of undead that roam the world. Surviving without weapons is impossible.
Fortunately, the game provides endless choices. But are the best weapons in Project Zomboid, you may ask?
Recommended Read: What Are the Best Traits in Project Zomboid?
In Project Zomboid, there are both melee weapons and ranged weapons.
The best melee weapons in Project Zomboid are Katana, Machete, Crowbar, Spear, Hunting Knife, and Fire Axe.
The best ranged weapons in Project Zomboid are the JS-2000 Shotgun and M9 Pistol.
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What Are the Best Weapons in Project Zomboid
When it comes to surviving the zombie apocalypse, one of the most important aspects is having the right weapons.
Weapons in Project Zomboid refer to any objects or tools that can be used to defend oneself against zombies or other threats in the game.
There are two primary types of weapons in Project Zomboid: Melee weapons and ranged weapons.
Melee weapons are categorized as one-handed and two-handed weapons. They have the advantages of dealing great damage, being less noisy, not requiring ammo, requiring less skill to use effectively, not needing to reload, and having high durability. However, they have a shorter range.
Ranged weapons include firearms and throwables. They deal serious damage, are noisier, require limited ammo, have a slow reload speed, and have varying accuracy. They also have a longer range but require higher aiming and reloading skills to use effectively. Using the throwables might harm you as well.
You can carry up to 5 weapons if you wear a belt. To equip a weapon, right-click on it and select “Equip Primary”, “Equip Secondary”, or “Equip Both Hands”. It’s advisable to combine both melee and ranged weapons.
Remember that the term “Best Weapons” are influenced by various factors, including your preferences, style, and previous experience. Therefore, your list might be different from ours.
Now, let us show you our picks for the best melee and ranged weapons in Project Zomboid!
Best Melee Weapons
Getting up close and personal with the zombies is not for the faint of heart, but with the right melee weapon in hand, you can make quick work of even the toughest zombie.
Here are some of the best melee weapons to use in Project Zomboid:
Katana is considered the best weapon ever in Project Zomboid!
Katana can deal 8 damage to the undead with every swing, making it the highest-damaged melee weapon in the game.
This two-handed long blade also has a 30% critical hit chance, a 6x critical damage multiplier, and average durability.
However, due to its rarity and inability to be repaired, the Katana is quite occasional and inappropriate for the long term. If you, fortunately, get the Katana, save it for bloody combat.
The easiest way to get Katana is to find them sticking out of zombies when driving around in a car. Besides, searching in residential houses for a Katana is possible if you are lucky enough.
Machete is only one-handed, whereas Katana requires both hands, so it’s better for keeping items in the other hand or when you want to carry a second bag in your hand.
In general, Machete is quick, easy to use, light, and even at low skills or strength, it chops the zombies down fast.
The Machete has a damage of 3. It’s also good for chopping trees with 10 damage per swing. The Machete is more practical than the Katana, thanks to its high durability. Plus, you can repair the Machete with Duct Tape.
Although the Machete is considered relatively rare in-game, it’s more common than the Katana.
You can find the Machete in The 3 Hardware Stores around the map, The Military Surplus Store, Survivor Shelters, and Random Zeds.
Crowbar is the most used long blunt weapon in Project Zomboid.
With its 1.15 maximum damage, the Crowbar is unremarkable when it comes to discussing damage. However, its incredible durability of 1015 makes it the top of your wishlist. The Crowbar is the most durable melee weapon in the game, especially when you level up your Maintenance skill.
Its advantages also include a significant long reach and 20% critical hit rate, making it a great choice for killing zombies quickly and efficiently.
Not to mention its excellent functions that you can take advantage of, including the ability to pick up flooring, windows and break into barricaded buildings.
Thanks to its generous distribution, you can easily get the Crowbar in your early game. However, you can’t repair it, just like the katana. So we suggest searching every single crate or tool shelf in warehouses and gathering as many Crowbars in your inventory as possible.
Spear is an excellent weapon that can be a game-changer in any survival situation.
The Crafted Spear has 1.5 maximum damage and a 30% critical hit chance. It also offers a long reach, making it an ideal weapon to fight from a safe distance against the undead.
The Spear charge is a special and unique ability of the Spear that allows you to kill a single zombie effectively. It’s also used to catch fish if you’re on your foraging task.
It’s really easy to obtain a Spear on your own. Simply sharpen a tree branch or a plank using a Knife or a Machete.
The best part of the Spear is the ability to combine it with other melee weapons and the Duct Tape to upgrade it, thus creating more powerful Spear variants. There are 14 Spear variants, along with the wooden one. The more choices they offer, the more possible weapons you’ll get.
Although you have already increased your carpentry and maintenance skills, you may be concerned about its low durability. However, crafting the Spear is so simple that crafting a new one is straightforward instead of repairing the broken one.
5. Hunting Knife
Short-blade weapons are heavily underestimated—especially the Hunting Knife, which has a huge potential you don’t know about.
Speaking of damage and hit, the Hunting Knife’s stats are quite impressive, although it’s categorized as shot-blade. The weapons can deal 1.2 maximum damage, 3x critical damage multiplier, and 50% critical hit chance. Remember that the instant kill chance only happens when fighting single zombies.
The Hunting Knife is light, has a low stamina cost, high attack speed, and average durability. It’s also useful to craft other weapons and tools.
Duct tape, glue, or adhesive tape can be used to repair the Hunting Knife. However, Hunting Knife is extremely commonly stuck into zombies, so never worry about running out of it.
6. Fire Axe
If you want a weapon that can kill two birds with one stone, both cut trees and effectively slay zombies, then the Fire Axe is the top weapon.
If the Wood Axe is an excellent tool for cutting trees but is slow, and the Hand Axe is fast but lacks great damage, then the Fire Axe is a weapon with both advantages of the other two.
Speaking of the pros, the Fire Axe can hit multiple zombies with each swing with a maximum damage of 2. In addition, 20% critical chance and 5x critical damage multiplier are considerable when it comes to coping with the undead.
The Fire Axe is also good at chopping trees or breaking windows thanks to its 35 damage for each one.
On the contrary, the long recovery time for each swing might be a big deal when a bunch of zombies surround you. Besides, the Fire Axe is quite rare in the game, so check this post for its distribution.
Best Ranged Weapons
In Project Zomboid, ranged weapons include throwables and firearms.
Guns can be incredibly effective if you have sufficient ammunition. They’re powerful and effective in keeping you safe against hordes. However, to use them practically and reload them equally well, you should have a skill level of at least 4 or higher. Additionally, it’s essential to use them intelligently and with caution.
Also, you can’t run a gun all the time. Eventually, you’ll be out of ammo. So, keep your melee as your main focus, and guns are optional.
Throwables, on the other hand, are a great alternative for players who prefer a more versatile and flexible approach to combat, allowing for strategic and efficient takedowns of zombies.
However, not so many players prefer throwables due to their difficulty crafting recipes, and they can even harm you in some circumstances.
1. JS-2000 Shotgun
The shotguns offer the greatest damage of all ranged weapons in Project Zomboid, and so does the JS-2000.
JS-2000 Shotgun is good for leveling aiming skill and hoard clearing. Its critical chance and accuracy depend on your aiming skill. It deals 2.2 maximum damage and can hit multiple zombies at once if it gets close enough. With enough ammo (10 boxes or more), you can kill up to 800 zombies in a single day.
In general, a Shotgun is an ideal weapon except for its noise. It can attract more zombies, which may put you in danger.
So if you are scared of zombies and still want to use shotguns, you can use cars. Press “V” while you’re in the car, open the window, and aim at zombies, but beware because when you reload and aim, you can’t control your car.
The JS-2000 Shotgun uses shotgun ammo. Both of them can be found in houses, gun stores, police stations, or vehicles.
2. M9 Pistol
Maximum damage is not a particular advantage of the M9 Pistol, with only 1 compared to others. However, if you increase your Aiming skill to level 5, you can use this handgun effectively and accurately.
All handguns are quick to reload, and so is the M9. The .9mm ammo is popular in various places, for instance, gun stores, houses, and medical centers. Just pick it up and shoot as you like.
Using the M9 Pistol during your combat is less noisy, making it good for dealing with a localized group of zombies without drawing too many of them. In addition, you can upgrade it with some attachments, although the upgrade is practically unnecessary.
All guns can be repaired using the same type of gun. But, in fact, would you rather repair your M9 when you pick up another M9 inside cabinets, storage crates, wardrobes, and dressers?
Simply get rid of the broken one and use the new one!
Those are the best weapons in Project Zomboid.
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