Sniper Rifles fall into two families, differentiated by their bodies and magazines: sniper rifles proper, sometimes called manual-action, pump-action, or (inaccurately) bolt-action sniper rifles; and semi-automatic ("semi-auto") sniper rifles. Operationally, the two families strongly resemble one another. Manual-action sniper rifles have a higher critical hit damage bonus, whereas semi-auto sniper rifles have a higher rate of fire. Other than body and magazine, the two families share most parts, though certain accessories are specific to one or the other.

Different parts will influence different attributes of the weapon.

Body Stock Magazine Barrel Sight Accessory
Damage x x x x
Accuracy x x
Recoil x x x x
Rate of fire x x x
Reload speed x x x
Tech x x x x x x

Note: Sniper rifle parts also include a grip. However, the grip does not affect any of the weapon's attributes. Each grip design is specific to the weapon's manufacturer.

A sniper rifle's name derives from the body, stock, and magazine parts present on the weapon.

Parts

Body

The body of a sniper rifle is usually easy to identify, since the model name declares it straightforwardly.

Manual-action and semi-auto sniper rifles have different bodies. Any sniper rifle with body2 or body5 is a semi-auto, while all others are manual-action.

Sniper rifles

Part Model
name
Damage Rate of fire Recoil Tech Image Notes
body1 GGN -8% SniperBody1.png Baseline
body3 VRR -15% +30% -30% +3 SniperBody3.png Fast-firing but weak, with high tech
body4 DVL +20% -23% +50% +1 SniperBody4.png Slower-firing but more powerful

Semi-auto sniper rifles

Part Model
name
Damage Rate of fire Recoil Tech Image Notes
body2 LB +10% -17% +30% +1
SniperBody2.png
Slower-firing and unstable
body5 PPZ +20% +50% -20% +1
SniperBody5.png
Superior in every attribute

Stock

The stock is completely specified within the weapon's model number. For unique weapons without a model number, the stock is easily distinguishable in profile. Manual-action and semi-auto sniper rifles share the same set of stocks.

The stock affects both overall weapon stability (recoil reduction), accuracy and reload speed. In addition, some stocks offer a minor tech upgrade.

Unlike revolvers or combat rifles, there are no stockless sniper rifles. All sniper rifles will have a stock other than stock_none.

Note that the weapon's model number is a function of both its stock model number (listed here) as well as its magazine model number.

Part Model
number
Best
accuracy
Worst
accuracy
Accuracy
recovery
Recoil Reload
speed
Tech Image Notes
stock1 0 SniperStock1.png Baseline
stock2 20 -10% -10% +20% -40% +30%
SniperStock2.png
Better balance, but slower reload
stock3 30 -20% -20% +40% -30% +1
SniperStock3.png
Better balance without reload penalty. Slight tech upgrade
stock4 40 -30% -30% +60% -80% +20%
SniperStock4.png
Still better balance with a slight reload penalty
stock5 50 -40% -40% +80% -100%
SniperStock5.png
Best balance, no penalty to reload

Magazine

The magazine is specified within the weapon's model number. For unique weapons without a model number, they're mostly easily distinguished by the weapon's ammo capacity. Manual-action and semi-auto sniper rifles use completely different magazines. Any sniper rifle with mag2 or mag5 is a semi-auto, while all others are manual-action.

Primarily, the magazine specifies the number of rounds of ammunition carried by the sniper rifle; beyond that, it influences weapon damage and reload speed, and can affect rate of fire and the weapon's tech level as well.

Note that the weapon's model number is a function of both its magazine model number (listed here) as well as its stock model number.

Sniper rifles

All manual-action sniper rifles have an ammunition capacity of 3 or 6.

Part Model
number
Size Damage Rate
of fire
Reload
speed
Tech Notes
mag1 0 6-shot Baseline
mag3 9 3-shot +21% -15% +3 Tech and damage bonus, half capacity
mag4 5 6-shot +21% -40% A faster-firing, faster-reloading upgrade to mag1

Semi-auto sniper rifles

Semi-auto sniper rifles will have different ammunition capacity depending on the manufacturer, the material grade, and the magazine part. Dahl, Hyperion, and Torgue make rifles with a baseline capacity of 5, while S&S weapons start at 7.

Part Model
number
Size Rate
of fire
Reload
speed
Notes
mag2 0 Baseline
mag5 7 +2 +21% -50% Premium

Barrel

While sniper rifle barrels do not affect the weapon's model number, they are easy to distinguish visually from their overall length and the profile of the flash suppressor or shroud at the end of the barrel. Manual-action and semi-auto sniper rifles share the same set of barrels.

Barrels strongly affect the sniper rifle's damage and accuracy, and can influence recoil reduction and weapon tech level as well.

Part Damage Acc.
spread
Best
acc.
Worst
acc.
Recoil Tech Image Notes
barrel1 -4%
SniperBarrel1.png
Baseline; weakest. The barrel of the Penetrator resembles this barrel, but offers greatly improved attributes
barrel2 +15% +28% -20% +20% +20% +1
SniperBarrel2.png
More powerful, but inaccurate. The barrel of the Surkov is visually identical with this barrel, but offers improved attributes
barrel3 +10% -50% -30% -30%
SniperBarrel3.png
A straightforward upgrade to barrel1. The unique barrel of Nailer is visually identical with this barrel
barrel4 +30% -30% -10% -40% +35% +2
SniperBarrel4.png
Highest damage and tech barrel. The barrel of the Skullmasher is visually identical with this barrel, but offers greatly improved attributes
barrel5 +15% -130% -40% -150% -50%
SniperBarrel5.png
Highest accuracy barrel

Grip

As with all weapons in Borderlands, the grip does not affect any of the sniper rifle's attributes. Each grip design is specific to the weapon's manufacturer, therefore each sniper rifle of the same manufacturer will have the same grip.

Part Atlas Dahl Hyperion Jakobs Maliwan S&S Munitions Torgue Vladof
grip1 ASR SR
grip2 ASR ASR
grip3 SR
grip4 SR
grip5 SR ASR

ASR = Semi-auto sniper rifle; SR = Sniper rifle

Sight

Sniper rifle sights are easily distinguished by the zoom statistic published on the weapon's gun card. They have little further effect on the weapon's attributes. Certain sniping styles may nevertheless favor certain sights, for improved peripheral-field visibility or magnification at range. Manual-action and semi-auto sniper rifles share the same set of sights.

Other than a couple of unique weapons (Rider and Whitting's Elephant Gun), all sniper rifles have a scope, i.e., a sight part other than sight_none.

The weapon's published zoom statistic may include a bonus for the manufacturer and material grade when it is Jakobs material 2 ("ZZ"), or the presence of the Hawkeye title on the weapon. The following table summarizes zooms for weapons with no other such modifiers present.

Part Zoom Tech Notes
sight1 1.0x Low-power baseline scope
sight2 1.5x Low-power scope with peripheral visibility
sight3 1.8x +1 Medium-power electronic scope, slight tech boost
sight4 2.4x Higher-power scope
sight5 2.7x Highest-power scope. Visually identical to the legendary Cyclops sight
sight_none none No sights on weapon other than whatever the top of the barrel provides

Accessory

Unlike other parts, the accessory part does not have a consistent effect on a weapon's attributes: some accessories boost tech, some alter recoil, some speed reload time. Some accessories grant a special property to the weapon, Elemental Damage, beyond mere attribute modification; furthermore, many accessories make their weapon eligible for a special name prefix describing the weapon's altered behavior, such as "Sober."

Most accessories are easy to differentiate visually. They always appear under the barrel, immediately in front of the foremost weapon grip.

Part Image
acc1_rolling
acc1_Brisk
SniperAcc1.png
acc2_explosive
acc2_incendiary
SniperAcc2.png
acc3_corrosive
acc3_shock
SniperAcc3.png
acc4_Heavy
acc4_deep
SniperAcc4.png
acc5_Long
acc5_sober
SniperAcc5.png

An accessory may or may not be present on any given sniper rifle, and no more than a single accessory may be present, which is why the game will never spawn, for example, a legendary Rolling Volcano.

While the elemental accessories are common to both families of sniper rifles, the rest are specific to one or the other.

Elemental accessories

There are four different elemental accessories, acc3_corrosive, acc3_shock, acc2_explosive, and acc2_incendiary, corresponding to the four different varieties of Elemental Damage. Each glow in the color corresponding to their element, making them easily identifiable. Elemental accessories grant shots fired from the sniper rifle elemental properties, imposing a -40% damage penalty in exchange, and grant an increase to the weapon's overall tech level.

The accessories of the legendary Volcano, Cobra, and Orion each resemble an ordinary elemental accessory. However, Volcano only appears on manual-action sniper rifles, while Orion and Cobra only appear on semi-auto sniper rifles.

The Explosive accessory behaves unlike the other elemental accessories, as it always generates an explosive elemental event, even when the weapon does not proc per se.

A sniper rifle with an elemental accessory is eligible for various elemental prefixes, depending on the weapon's element and net tech level.

Sniper rifles

Rolling accessory

The Rolling accessory acc1_rolling grants a manual-action sniper rifle a 100% bonus to reload speed. This bonus more than compensates for a slow stock such as stock2 or stock4, and is cumulative with the speed bonus intrinsic to the legendary Surkov.

A weapon with the Rolling accessory is eligible for the Rolling prefix.

Heavy accessory

The Heavy accessory acc4_Heavy grants a manual-action sniper rifle an 18% damage bonus and a slight (+1) increase in tech level, exacting an 18% recoil penalty in turn.

A weapon with the Heavy accessory is eligible for the Heavy prefix.

Long accessory

The Long accessory acc5_Long grants a manual-action sniper rifle a 25% diminution (i.e. bonus) to spread (accuracy), along with an increase (+2) in tech level.

A weapon with the Long accessory is eligible for the Long prefix.

Semi-auto sniper rifles

Brisk accessory

The Brisk accessory acc1_Brisk grants a semi-auto sniper rifle a 50% increase in its rate of fire, along with a 50% bonus to reload speed. The reload speed bonus is sufficient to compensate completely for the penalty imposed by stock2, though not stock4.

A weapon with the Brisk accessory is eligible for the Brisk prefix, though PPZ-bodied weapons will usually instead receive Liquid.

Deep accessory

The Deep accessory acc4_deep grants a semi-auto sniper rifle a 30% damage bonus. Unlike its manual-action counterpart, it neither grants a tech increase nor imposes a recoil penalty.

A weapon with the Deep accessory is eligible for the Deep prefix.

Sober accessory

The Sober accessory acc5_sober grants a semi-auto sniper rifle a 30% diminution (i.e. bonus) to spread (accuracy), along with a 40% bonus to minimum and maximum accuracy and a 50% boost to accuracy regeneration. Like its manual-action counterpart, it also grants a +2 increase in tech level.

A weapon with the Sober accessory is eligible for the Sober prefix.

No accessory

The part acc_none serves as a placeholder for a weapon with conventional behavior, nothing more. A sniper rifle with this non-part will have no accessory visible beneath the barrel.

Naming

Other than unique drops, a sniper rifle name consists of the name of its body, a model number comprising stock and magazine, a possible manufacturer-specific material code, a prefix derived from its attributes or accessory, and a title.

Two families of sniper rifles use different bodies and magazines, and so are easily distinguishable by name.

Body name

The first element of the sniper rifle name is a simple function of its body part. To recap:

Name Body denoted
GGN body1
LB body2
VRR body3
DVL body4
PPZ body5

Model number

The model number consists of the sum of the number codes for the weapon's stock and magazine. Weapons with both stock3 or higher and mag3 or higher have this model number further multiplied by 10, denoting their premium quality.

mag1 mag2 mag3 mag4 mag5
stock1 none none 9 5 7
stock2 20 20 29 25 27
stock3 30 30 390 350 370
stock4 40 40 490 450 470
stock5 50 50 590 550 570

The two mag1 and mag2 share the same code, 0. They are nevertheless easily distinguished from one another by the body name, which will indicate whether the weapon is a manual-action sniper rifle (and thus mag1) or a semi-auto sniper rifle (mag2).

The magazine of the legendary Invader has its own number code, 77. Invaders will have a model number of 77, 97, 1070, 1170, or 1270, depending on the stock of the weapon.

Material code

Material codes are common to all weapons. See Material Grade for more info.

Prefix

The prefix is determined either by the weapon's overall attributes, its accessory, or possibly its material grade. Attribute prefixes may further bias the weapon's attributes.

Title

The title is determined either from the weapon's overall attributes, its accessory, or a legendary part. If the weapon does not qualify for any of these, its title defaults to "Sniper."

Other resources

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.