by: Simon Hill
; edited by: Eric Stallsworth
; updated: 4/17/2012
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Bioshock 2 is an engaging FPS game with plenty of combat. In this Bioshock 2 Weapons Guide we run through the arsenal at your disposal.
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Bioshock 2 Weapons
There are plenty of weapons in Bioshock 2 and that’s just as well because you’ll need them if you expect to survive. The weapon list has changed slightly since the original game and each weapon in Bioshock 2 can be upgraded. The weapons also feature various ammunition types and they are suited to taking out different enemies. You can check out our Bioshock 2 review for more on the game.
In this guide we’ll give you a complete run down of the weaponry, the upgrades and the ammo. Each weapon has three upgrades which you can apply at Power to the People stations. The first two basic upgrades have to be applied before you can get the final special upgrade. The Hack Tool and Research Camera appear in your weapon slots but they aren’t really weapons and neither has any upgrades.
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The Drill is your basic melee weapon and you can punch with it or rev it up and bore into people. When you research the Brute Splicer you will develop the ability to charge with the Drill by revving it up and pressing the melee attack button.
The Drill runs on Drill Fuel which you’ll find dotted around throughout the environment and on corpses. Occasionally you’ll see a Fuel Station where you can get free fuel but for the most part you’ll need to buy it from vending machines.
The Drill does increased damage.
The Drill uses less fuel.
Spinning the Drill bounces shots and projectiles back at the attacker.
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Obviously designed as a repair tool for Rapture the Rivet Gun doubles up as a great ranged weapon. It is powerful, and with the upgrades and right ammunition it will serve you well.
Standard Rivets – These do reasonable damage.
Heavy Rivets – These really bring the pain.
Trap Rivets – They can be stuck to the floor or walls and will fire a rivet at anyone who walks past. They will also stick to people and detonate if fired at them directly. If you finish a fight and there are left over Trap Rivets stuck around you can collect them and use them again.
The Rivet Gun has an increased clip size (takes 18 rivets instead of 12).
The Rivet Gun does more damage.
Rivets sometimes set the target on fire.
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The Hack Tool is what you’ll use to Hack Security Cameras, Bots and Turrets from a distance and it has a very useful secondary function with the right ammo. It doesn’t have any upgrades.
Remote Hack Darts – fire at the machine you want to hack from a safe distance.
Automatic Hack Darts – no need to complete the hack just hit the machine with this and it’s your ally immediately.
Mini-Turrets – deploy mini-turrets which will fire at your enemies. Really handy for when your Little Sister is harvesting ADAM or a Big Sister attacks.
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This is a powerful machine gun which churns out rounds rapidly but suffers from pretty drastic recoil. With the right ammo this gun is invaluable.
.50 Caliber Rounds – Basic rounds do reasonable damage.
Anti-Personnel Rounds – These are great and will put down enemies fast.
Armor-Piercing Rounds – Save these for taking on Big Daddies.
The Gatling Gun does increased damage.
The Gatling Gun recoil is reduced (this is highly recommended).
Bullets can ricochet off hard surfaces and cause extra damage.
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The shotgun is a great close range weapon and perfect for blowing away multiple Splicers if you find yourself under attack. It also serves well against bigger enemies if you get up close and use the right ammo.
00 Buck – Basic shells do decent damage up close.
Solid Slug – These are high damage shells.
Phosphorous Buck – These really hurt and they ignite the target too which makes them ideal for big enemies.
The Shotgun does more damage.
The Shotgun has a bigger clip (takes 6 rounds instead of 2).
The Shotgun has a chance to electrocute targets with each shot.
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The Research Camera is much easier to use than in the original game and you can research each of your enemies for various bonuses. In order to use it you just select the camera and left click the mouse. This starts the filming and automatically switches you to your next weapon down. Try to kill them while the film is running to earn research bonuses. The Research Camera has no upgrades or ammo.
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The Spear Gun is slow but it is very powerful and very accurate which makes it a handy addition to your arsenal. You can zoom in to fire at a target and it will sometimes nail them to the scenery. Head shots are especially damaging but the Spear Gun does take an age to reload.
Spears – Basic spears are highly damaging and can be recovered after a fight and used again.
Rocket Spears – These do great damage and they explode and ignite victims.
Trap Spears – These can be fired directly at targets and they’ll do decent damage or you can embed them in walls so they electrocute anyone who runs into them sets them off.
The Spear Gun does more damage.
The Spear Gun features an improved zoom.
The reload rate of the Spear Gun is drastically reduced.
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The Launcher fires various types of explosive devices which makes it invaluable when you need to do some serious damage.
Frag Grenades – Standard grenades do a lot of damage in a small radius.
Proximity Mines – These do huge damage in a small radius and can be stuck to the scenery where they will be triggered by any enemy who wanders close enough.
Heat-Seeking RPGs – These home in on the nearest enemy and blow them sky high.
The Launcher can hold more ammunition.
You are immune to splash damage from your own explosives.
Explosions are multiplied with each boom creating smaller impact explosions.
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What to Use
That’s it for the single player game. Since ammunition is limited you’ll likely end up using all the weapons. It is a good idea to save the serious hardware and top ammo for tougher enemies. For advice on what to use to kill enemies check out our Bioshock 2 Enemies Guide. Generally speaking the Shotgun is best for close range, the Gatling Gun for mid range (but you have to get the recoil reduction upgrade) and the Spear Gun for long range.