Player drawing back a bow and arrow, aiming over a wooden wall into the forest.
Image via Endnight Games

Sons of the Forest Best Weapons Tier List (1.0 Release)

Find or craft the best weapons in Sons of the Forest with the help of our tier list guide, including their exact locations.

Sons of the Forest players can craft a number of very useful weapons, but some of the best ranged and melee weapons can only be obtained at specific locations. My guide will provide you with a tier list of the best weapons in Sons of the Forest, including their exact locations and crafting recipes.

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Sons of the Forest: S-Tier Weapons

Crafted Bow

Bow crafted in inventory
Screenshot by GameSkinny

What makes the Crafted Bow so good is that you can build it almost immediately upon starting your game. This gives you a quick ranged option, and you can keep up your supply of arrows by crafting those as well. It doesn’t do the most damage, but various arrow types have been added since entering Early Access that give this weapon a nice damage boost.

Craft it using x1 Rope, x1 Duct Tape, and x2 Sticks. Then, you can use it for reliable damage and range against enemies. It’s a must-have for me each time I play Sons of the Forest. Even standard arrows are enough to keep cannibals at bay.

Compound Bow

Compound Bow leaning against a bathtub in Sons of the Forest
Image by GameSkinny

The compound bow is one of the three available bows in Sons of the Forest, and it’s by far the best ranged weapon in the game. It can shoot with a couple of types of arrows, including generic bow arrows and carbon fiber arrows that can be crafted at the 3D printer. Its power is enough to insta-kill almost any enemy with a single headshot.

I went back and forth between the shotgun and this bow. But in the end, the ammo supply for the Compound Bow is far better since you can just print more ammo. In a survival game, the availability of ammo carries a lot of weight. As a result, the Compound Bow beat the Shotgun here.

Compound Bow Location

Image via MapGenie.io/Marked by GameSkinny

The Compound Bow can be found in the southwestern part of the map inside the Maintenance Shaft B. Look for it next to a bathtub in the bedroom (x4439, y10446).

Katana

Katana on a stand on a cabinet before picking it up
Screenshot by GameSkinny

The Katana is the best melee weapon in Sons of the Forest. It’s extremely sharp and has very quick attack patterns that are perfect for quick close range kills. I prefer it even over guns because it does a lot of damage, and you don’t need to worry about running out of ammo or stopping to reload.

Katana Location

Katana marker circled
Image via MapGenie.io/Marked by GameSkinny

You can find the Katana inside the bunker on the eastern shore of the island. You need a VIP card to enter, and then go to Room 2 on the second floor (x10874, y908).

Sons of the Forest: A-Tier Weapons

Pistol

Orange raft in the ocean with a pistol
Screenshot by GameSkinny

There are multiple Pistols you can find in Sons of the Forest. And with how easy it is to find 9mm ammo, the Pistol is a great weapon choice, especially if you need range and don’t have the Shotgun yet. Also, you can give a Pistol to Virginia after befriending her, letting her help you fight enemies. The fire rate and number of bullets you can load at one time make for a decent balance with the damage done. I like that I don’t need to be as careful with the Pistol as I do with the Revolver, which only holds six bullets at a time.

Pistol Location

Pistol location circled on the map
Image via MapGenie.io/Marked by GameSkinny

The Pistol is on a raft in the ocean on the western side of the island. It’s actually marked as a point of interest on your in-game GPS, meaning you can follow the marker right to it. Just be careful because there are sharks in the water around the raft.

Crafted Spear

Pointing a spear at a waterfall
Screenshot by GameSkinny

The Spear may not be the most powerful melee weapon in Sons of the Forest, but it has decent range, and it can be thrown for an even longer reach. You also don’t need both hands to hold it, so you can use it with the flashlight, which is convenient when exploring caves. Crafting the Spear requires x2 Sticks, x1 Duct Tape, and x1 Utility Knife. Duct Tape is abundant in plastic containers, so make sure you open all of them as they often contain that and other useful items, like Meal Bars.

Since these items are easy to pick up early, the Crafted Spear is my favorite early-game weapon. You have enough power to defeat enemies, but also the range required to keep yourself safe before getting armor.

Machete

Using the machete
Screenshot by GameSkinny

The Machete is basically a large knife with some very fast attack patterns. Returning players from The Forest will be familiar with the Machete’s handling, as it was one of the most effective melee weapons back then. I like the Machete well enough, but if you want more power in exchange for slower attacks, then you want the Firefighter Axe instead.

Machete Location

Machete location circled on the map
Image via MapGenie.io/Marked b y GameSkinny

You can find machete near some red boats on the northern beach of the island (x7412, y3410).

Molotov

Molotov crafted in inventory
Screenshot by GameSkinny

Crafted with x1 Vodka Bottle and x1 Cloth, the Molotov deals splash damage and sets enemies on fire. Since you find these items at camps and in plastic containers, you can have a steady supply of Molotovs available.

Those are the best weapons in Sons of the Forest. For more tips and tricks articles, go to our Sons of the Forest guides page here.


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Serhii Patskan
Serhii is the Writer at GameSkinny. He's been writing for GameSkinny since 2015. Before that, he's been writing for various outlets and playing video games, which eventually turned into a passion. The video games that have contributed the most to his enthusiasm for writing about this industry are Magic: The Gathering, Dark Souls, and The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.
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Melissa Sarnowski
Melissa Sarnowski has been working as a gaming writer professionally for two years, having been at GameSkinny for over a year now as a horror beat writer. She has an English degree from University of Wisconsin - Madison. While she focuses on all things horror, she also enjoys cozy games, MMOs like FFXIV and WoW, and any and everything in between.