Black Ops 3 Pistols: Full Guide to Sidearms in BO3

Pistols have nearly always been an underused weapon type in Call of Duty games. Perhaps their biggest role was seen in Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 and CoD: Ghosts where high-powered sidearms such as the Tac-45 and the .44 Magnum got quite a bit of player love. These weapons are lightweight, deal varying amounts of damage, and can be great to swap to when you’re low on ammo.

In Black Ops 3 players will have the ability to equip a few different handguns. These pistols feature different firing modes, varying damage outputs, and more. Each one allows for slightly different gameplay. These guns will likely be used as finishing weapons after a sniper hit-marker most.

Black Ops 3 Pistols

Black Ops 3 Pistols

Below is a list of the confirmed handguns that will appear in the game:

  • L-CAR 9
  • MR6
  • RK5

NOTE: This list may not be comprehensive. BO3 is still in a beta stage at the time of this writing. Additional sidearms may be added before the final release.

NOTE #2: The links in the list above will take you to pages dedicated to the specific weapon. This pages provide you with more info including weapon stats, tips for using pistols, reviews for each gun, and more.

Player Opinions

Despite the fact that pistols are supposed to be low-damage weapons, a lot of players that have had access to the beta are actually saying that they are, yet again, quite overpowered. The video below, which is in all Spanish unfortunately, shows exactly how powerful the handguns are in Black Ops 3. Check it out.


Pistol Tips

Pistols are typically nowhere near as strong as other weapon types such as shotguns, assault rifles, sniper rifles, and submachine guns. Nevertheless, they pose an imminent threat in the hands of a skilled player. Most handguns require decent accuracy to use effectively as they are low-damage and don’t have large magazines.

Sidearms like the L-CAR 9 are a bit different, though. This pistol is fully automatic which gives the player a bit more leeway in regards to spraying. Hip-fire is usually only effective at very close range, though, making this gun obsolete at mid to long range.

Last Resort

In most cases, you won’t want to whip out a pistol until you absolutely have to. They don’t have a lot of impact per bullet and they can be easily outgunned by players using primary weapons.

If you run out of ammo in your primary weapon and don’t have time to engage a reload, a pistol is the fastest gun you can swap to. If you’ve got an enemy down to minimal health and just need to pop him one more time, unsheathe the handgun and end his misery.

Other than those scenarios, though, pistols are ultimate ineffective, especially if you don’t have great aim.

Recommended Perks

Should you decide to create a class in Black Ops 3 solely for pistols, which we highly advise against, there are a few perks that may assist you in racking up kills with them.

Afterburner is a decent choice considering you need to get rather close to your enemies. Having a faster cooldown on your boost abilities will help you get around the map a bit quicker. The new movement abilities actually help make these smaller weapons more powerful.

Scavenger is always a good selection. Handguns tend to have low amounts of ammo so being able to pick up extra rounds off fallen foes is always pretty handy.

Fast Hands is perfect for a pistol if you’re using it in conjunction with a primary weapon. This perk allows you to swap to your secondary faster than normal. Plus, it gives you the ability to aim down your sights out of a full sprint a bit quicker, too.


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