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BioShock: Best Weapon Upgrades

TheGamer logo TheGamer 6/7/2022 Gabrielle Castania
© Provided by TheGamer

Perhaps not as iconic as the Circus of Values in BioShock (“Come back when ya get some money, buddy!"), the still-critical Power to the People machines are scattered throughout Rapture. And you’re in for a tough time fighting through the city if you don’t stop to upgrade your weapons.

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Jack's Plasmids are the big focal point in the game, but you'd struggle to get through this 2007 classic on those powers alone. Some problems in this game are best handled with an actual weapon, and by the end, when the enemies are tough and you're low on EVE, you'll be glad you made these upgrades. So if you're looking give Jack some additional firepower, would you kindly check out these weapon upgrades?

Pistol: 300% Magazine Size Increase

You’d be hard-pressed to find a BioShock fan who calls the Pistol their favorite weapon of the series, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a good fallback.

By default, your first weapon of the game only holds six rounds of ammo, but that’s not ideal, with a whole city of splicers to endure. Plus, once you work through the game and locate better ammo like the Armor-Piercing and Antipersonnel rounds, you’ll want a little more space before long at all.

Once you grab this upgrade, you’ll be able to use 24 bullets before stopping to reload.

Shotgun: 25% Damage Increase

As soon as you grab the Shotgun from the Dental Services section of the Medical Pavilion, no splicers in close range stand a chance. But if you want more bang for your buck, be sure to snag the upgrade that increases your damage output.

Of course, this upgrade is most effective up-close, just like the Shotgun itself, but the weapon is also a decent choice for shooting at multiple mid-range targets as well.

The buck sprays a bit, dampening its effectiveness, so recoup that loss with this upgrade early-game and save some hassle in close quarters later on.

Machine Gun: 25% Damage Increase

Whether you’re more of a distanced fighter, maybe aren’t the best at shooting games, or just really like a good burst-fire, BioShock’s Machine Gun is a great tool to have.

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You get some good range out of this weapon, and it’s excellent for clearing a room if you’re in a pinch. With Antipersonnel and Armor-Piercing rounds available, you can do some serious damage in conjunction with this upgrade.

With a quick workaround that involves quickly tapping the trigger instead of holding it, the recoil reduction upgrade isn’t completely necessary. Still, if you want a little more out of your Machine Gun, you’re better off with the 25% Damage Increase.

Crossbow: Bolt Breakage Decrease

Because the Crossbow wasn’t already cool enough, being arguably the strongest weapon, you’ve also got an upgrade that makes a good amount of your ammo reusable.

Tragically, the bolts you use in this weapon are a little difficult to find, especially since you get it so late in the game and have less time to stock up. If fewer of your shots break on impact, you don’t have to search nearly as hard for ammo.

Both Steel-Tip Bolts and Incendiary Bolts are recoverable sometimes after a player fires them, and this upgrade makes it that much more likely that your ammo stays intact upon impact with your target.

Shotgun: Fire Rate Increase

Although it unfortunately doesn’t lessen how long the shotgun takes to reload, this upgrade means that you can make each time you’ve got to stop count that much more.

Additionally, as you fight your way through the underwater metropolis, you’ll come across things like Electric Buck and Exploding Buck. The electric ones are great for security devices, while the exploding ones can easily dispatch a Big Daddy. And if you’re able to fire those rounds even more often, that’s less time for your enemies to be a problem.

Besides, if you’ve already paired this with the damage increase upgrade, then you’ve made Jack into a pretty huge threat.

Chemical Thrower: Ammo Consumption Rate Decrease

Everyone loves Plasmids — what isn’t fun about shooting the elements from your fingertips? Later in the game, though, when your EVE is running low, the Chemical Thrower is there for you in a pinch.

Already helpful enough by default by sparing our EVE a little, this upgrade for the Chemical Thrower is a game-changer. The weapon is powerful but flies through the compound you load it with, until you snag this upgrade.

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The weapon will be your best friend on higher difficulty settings, and it can also be a huge help in taking down a Big Daddy. Make your blasts count even more with this upgrade.

Crossbow: 25% Damage Increase

Though it's already massively impactful even without any upgrades, why wouldn’t you want a chance to make your Crossbow do even more damage than before?

A headshot from the Crossbow will kill any splicer instantly, no matter how tough they are, regardless of which difficulty you’re playing on. Careful aim with this weapon can immediately do away with some of the danger that lurks around every corner.

But whether you’re not great at aiming and want each shot that lands to mean more, or just looking for a way to enhance the damage from your Incendiary Bolts or Trap Bolts, this is the best upgrade you could grab for this weapon.

Chemical Thrower: Range Increase

Keeping your distance is usually a pretty good idea in this game. And if you’d like to pad that distance even more, be sure to snag this upgrade for the Chemical Launcher.

Effective against enemies – from individuals to groups, from regular splicers to Big Daddies, and everything in between – you can’t go wrong adding a bit more of a buffer space.

Hitting them with Napalm to set them ablaze, Liquid Nitrogen to freeze, or Electric Gel to stun is never a bad choice, but doing it from further away is even better.

Grenade Launcher: Immunity To Splash Damage

The Grenade Launcher is a really versatile weapon on its own, but it’s also got the biggest blast range of all the weapons in BioShock, making it almost too easy to get yourself caught in your own friendly fire.

But with this upgrade, worry not. Your Frag Grenades are standard explosions, Proximity Mines can be left behind and detonated as an enemy approaches, and Heat-Seeking RPGs home in on an enemy to promise results.

These blasts do the damage you want them to, but are critically dangerous to Jack if he’s anywhere near them – grenades don’t discriminate who they impact in an explosion. But with this upgrade for the Grenade Launcher, you can stand amid all the chaos like it’s just another day in Rapture.

NEXT: BioShock: All Weapons, Ranked

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