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10 Best Melee Weapons in Fallout 76, Ranked

In Fallout 76, players have access to a huge number of different weapons. Whether it’s long-range sniper rifles or powerful shotguns, there is no shortage of toys to cause some good old-fashioned mayhem with. One such weapon type is melee weapons. Melee weapons — not to be confused with unarmed weapons — are a type of hand-held weapon that allows you to bash and slice your enemies into fine pieces. Today, we’re listing the 10 best melee weapons in Fallout 76.

Let’s get started!

Melee Builds Overview

Fallout 76 Melee Builds Overview
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG

Before we get into the nitty-gritty of the best melee weapons in Fallout 76, we should first give a brief overview of how melee builds work and which perks you should get. Melee builds are very up-close-and-personal, requiring you to get very close to your target in order to deal damage. Their biggest drawback is that they prevent you from dealing damage from a distance. But melee builds do some of the highest damage in the game, so it makes up for it.

I highly recommend putting your SPECIAL attributes into Strength and Agility, as these are the best stats for melee users. Strength increases damage with melee weapons, and Agility increases action points (which affects how much you can swing before getting tired).

Some must-get perk cards for a melee weapon build include the following:

  • Gladiator: Increases damage with one-handed melee weapons.
  • Slugger: Increases damage with two-handed melee weapons.
  • Incisor: Some of your enemies’ armor is ignored when using melee weapons.
  • Martial Artist: All melee weapons weigh last and have a faster swing speed.
  • Ninja: When attacking an enemy with any melee weapon in stealth, you do more damage.

Of course, there are plenty of other great perk cards to pick up, but these are worth considering if you’re just starting out and don’t know where to begin.

10 Best Melee Weapons in Fallout 76, Ranked from Good to Best

Of course, good perk cards don’t mean much without good weapons. Speaking of which, let’s get right into our ranking!

10/10

Meteoritic Sword

First up, let’s take a look at the Meteoritic Sword. This is a one-handed melee weapon made from metal harvested from a meteor. It is a unique weapon and the only one of its kind, and it cannot be purchased. You can only get this weapon by completing the in-game event Breach and Clear. It’s also not a guaranteed item, so you may have to complete the event multiple times.

Most one-handed melee weapons feature a moderate swing speed, and this weapon is no different. It makes up for it with better damage, sitting at 36 per hit when it is at its max level of 50. The weapon’s DPS is a bit lower than some of the other weapons on this list, but it has some unique bonuses that allow it to compete with other melee weapons. For example, it has 50% more durability, significantly reduced weight, and does an additional +10% damage to all human enemies!

9/10

War Drum

Moving onto our next pick, let’s take a peek at the weapon War Drum. Visually, this is a really bizarre-looking weapon that resembles something from a Mad Max film. It appears to be a small metal barrel with spikes and metal cans attached all around it, and it’s either the ugliest or best-looking weapon, depending on your tastes. This weapon is pretty easy to get in early game. You can find one inside the Songs of Dane Compound, as well as at the raider base located at the Top of the World.

This weapon deals slightly less damage than Grognak’s Axe, another popular melee weapon. Its slow attack speed means that its overall DPS is just okay, but nothing fantastic. It weighs a total of 20 pounds, which is a little on the heavier side. One unique thing about this weapon is the fact that when you hit an enemy with it, you’ll hear a special and unique sound play. It definitely makes bonking enemies over the head a lot more fun!

8/10

Guitar Sword

Up next on our ranking of the best melee weapons in Fallout 76, we have the Guitar Sword! Much like the War Drum, this is a musical instrument turned into a brutal melee weapon. It features a guitar with metal blades attached to it. This weapon is one of the most unique melee weapons in Fallout 76, and I highly recommend getting it even if you aren’t doing a melee build and just like collecting things. It can be bought by a merchant in Pleasant Valley Station.

The highest rank of this weapon deals 50 damage per hit (excluding the increases in strength). Its swing speed is moderate, which is common for a one-handed weapon. The Guitar Sword is also very light, weighing only 3 pounds in total. This makes it a great weapon to carry with you as a side piece if you’re not doing a pure melee build. One thing I really love about this sword is that when you hit an enemy with it, it will make a unique sound!

7/10

Blade of Bastet

For our next pick, let’s take a look at the Blade of Bastet. This is a one-handed sword that was used by a pre-war superhero named Mistress of Mystery — now it belongs to anyone fortunate enough to find it in post-apocalyptic Appalachia. You can craft this weapon only in the Riverside Manor. Even though I wasn’t going for a melee build on my first playthrough, I found myself using this weapon fairly often. It was fun to use, and it has good stats. Speaking of which…

The weapon does a moderate amount of damage with each hit. It features a medium swing speed, meaning that you can hit enemies with it faster than some of the other melee weapons in the game. Its damage per second is good, and it makes for a good primary weapon for melee characters or a good secondary weapon for non-melee users. It’s also very lightweight, weighing only 3 pounds. This makes it one of the lightest melee weapons in the game.

6/10

Grognak’s Axe

Grognak's Axe Fallout 76
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

Next up, we have the iconic Axe of Grognak the Barbarian. It is a two-handed weapon that resembles a medieval axe from your favorite 1980s sword and sorcery film. The melee weapon can be obtained through crafting if you have the plans for it. It can also be dropped by special Holiday Scorched during Fallout 76’s Christmas event. And you always have the chance of getting one whenever you defeat a legendary enemy.

This weapon does pretty high damage with each and every hit. It is kept in place, however, from its slow attack speed. Because of this, its overall DPS is reduced. It is best used for tanky characters that prefer to do their melee attacks out in the open, rather than in stealth. But this weapon can still be used to trigger sneak attacks, if you would prefer that. The weapon only has 10 weight, which is pretty good for a melee weapon.

5/10

Sheepsquatch Club

Moving onto our next pick, we have an especially unique one-handed melee weapon called the Sheepsquatch Club! This interesting post-war creation is made with the skull of the legendary Sheepsquatch, a cryptid you can fight in Fallout 76. There is only one way that you can obtain this weapon in-game, and it is by crafting it using plans unlocked by completing the Free Range event. Do note that there is a chance you’ll unlock the plans after completing the event — it’s not guaranteed.

This is a really fun weapon to mess around with. Not only does it look cool, but it has great stats that make it really worthwhile. It features a moderate attack speed, as well as good damage per hit. Most one-handed melee weapons feature lower damage, but this one is actually pretty strong. This unique quirk about the weapon makes it one of the best one-handed melee weapons in Fallout 76.

4/10

Shishkebab

Shishkebab
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

For our next pick, let’s take a gander at the Shishkebab! This was one of my absolute favorite weapons in Fallout 3, and it’s still one of my favorites all these years later. This is a custom-made sword that was originally built from a katana. The weapon can be acquired from several different locations all throughout the map. One such location is the Berkeley Springs Station. You can also craft it if you have the plans (which you can purchase from the wandering mutant Grahm).

The base damage for this weapon is actually pretty low, especially considering that it has a medium swing speed. However, it makes up for it with the fire damage that it does. Fire damage is really useful for dealing damage to enemies over time. This weapon has a pretty good DPS that makes burning through enemies in Fallout 76 a breeze.

3/10

Super Sledge

Fallout 76 Super Sledge
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

And onto our next pick, we have the Super Sledge. This is a heavily modified sledgehammer with rockets strapped to it that allow it to hit much harder than a regular sledgehammer. You can find one being sold by one of the Sunny merchants in Foundation. It is also a weapon that is commonly found being held by super mutants. If you want to get this weapon, head to a location that’s crawling with super mutants, like West Tek Research Center. As an added bonus, this is a great way to level up fast!

This weapon has great damage per hit, making it one of the hardest-hitting weapons in the game. As you would expect, its swing speed is pretty low. But that is okay, as it’s still a really solid weapon that is good for any tanky melee build. It is also capable of hitting enemies from farther distances away, which gives it more damage than most melee weapons. It weighs a total of 20 pounds, putting it up there with some of the heavier melee weapons in Fallout 76.

2/10

Chainsaw

For the next spot on this list, let’s take a look at the chainsaw. This is a standard pre-war chainsaw used by lumberjacks and masked murderers alike. It is a fitting weapon for the Appalachian mountains and makes a great addition to anyone’s melee build. The weapon is found in several places throughout the wastes, such as the Mountainside Bed & Breakfast, The Foundry, and many more locations.

What makes this weapon so great is the fact that it will continuously do damage to enemies as you hold down the trigger! This is different from normal melee weapons which will do one hit of damage per swing. As you can imagine, the attack speed of this thing is incredibly fast. And its damage — and therefore DPS — is pretty good as well. All these things, as well as the fact that it is a common weapon to find throughout Appalachia, make it one of the best melee weapons in the game.

Pair this weapon with the vampire legendary effect, and you’ll be regaining health faster than enemies can take it away from you.

1/10

Auto Axe

Taking first place on ranking of the best melee weapons in Fallout 76, we have the Auto Axe! The Auto Axe is an iconic Fallout weapon that was first introduced to the series back during The Pitt DLC for Fallout 3. It is an axe used for cutting metal that doubles as a deadly melee weapon. You can acquire the plan to craft this weapon by purchasing it from the vendor Giuseppe Della Ripa for 1,000 stamps. The only way that you can earn stamps is by completing expeditions into the Pitt.

The DPS on this thing is really good, and it’s one of the better end-game weapons in Fallout 76. Its attack speed is super fast, and each hit has a low amount of damage but stacks with the attack speed to give you a really great DPS. It is a two-handed weapon and weighs exactly 12 pounds, which isn’t super light, but not really heavy for a melee weapon either. Ignoring stats for a second, I just wanted to say that this is one of the most satisfying weapons to use in the game, in my opinion.

Another great thing about this weapon is that there are a bunch of cool mods for it to give it unique abilities. For example, you can make it do burning, electric, or poison damage to enemies over time. It can also be overcharged instead with a turbo mod to up its attack speed (at the cost of damage per hit). Regardless of what mods you get, you should definitely get the vampire legendary effect for this weapon. It will allow you to regain health each time you hit an enemy with it.

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Happy gaming!

 

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