"You won't last long here, not without help, not without guns... a hell of a lot of guns."
Helena Pierce, Borderlands debut trailer

According to Gearbox, there are over 17 million 750 thousand different variations of weapons, as of release. The game uses a procedural process to generate its various guns in certain classes, such as handguns, shotguns, assault rifles, sniper rifles, and more, but with many variations of firing speed, reload speed, damage type and more.

Thankfully, there is an easy way to determine the basics of a weapon without having to pick it up and open an inventory screen. When you approach a weapon on the ground, a small holographic window appears above it that displays information such as weapon type (shotgun, assault rifle, sniper rifle, etc.), damage type (static, incendiary, caustic, etc.), monetary value, as well as the weapon's rarity using a color coding system.

If a human enemy is carrying a special weapon that they drop upon their death, they will wield it against the player. Otherwise they use a default weapon for their enemy type.

The different types of weapons are:

Flavor Text

Found in the stats boxes of guns are sometimes cryptic or humorous messages. These lines usually indicate a certain effect on the gun. The text itself often gives a hint of what that special ability does, and is also often a reference to a video game, movie, or any number of things. A list of all known Special Weapon Effects is available on that page.



Gun colors in descending rarity

Borderlands uses a classification system for gear that follows the standard color-coding system for RPGs. A common (white) gun would be average, an uncommon (green) would be slightly above average, a rare (blue) would be a premium gun, an epic (purple) would be a very strong gun, and legendary (orange) guns are the best of the best.There 3 type of orange,Light Orange, Orange and Dark Orange. Dark Orange being the rarest. The rarity of each gun is indicated by color as stated on the page of each gun. (See Category:Weapons)

White < Green < Blue < Purple < Light Orange < Orange < Dark Orange

The rarity of a gun influences how good it will be, but you will find that some guns are exceptions to the color code. For example, you might find a rare (blue)gun that has drastically less damage than a common gun that has the rocket ammo effect.

Note: There is also some debate as to whether or not "Pearlescent" is an actual rarity. These are white weapons that sit above orange weapons in the rarity order (see image right). Many believe that these weapons are actually just glitched Oranges. Currently this is neither confirmed or denied by Gearbox. You can follow an ongoing discussion regarding this here:

Elemental Effects

The elemental effects include fire, electrical, explosive, and corrosive.  The damage of the elemental effect is a multiplier indicated by the elemental plaque and a "xN" in the weapon description, where N is a number from 1 to 4. The chance an elemental affect will occur depends on the difference between the level of the player and the level of the enemy. Occasionally a weapon description will include text reading "high elemental effect chance" or "very high elemental effect chance", which implies that the gun has a greater than normal chance of causing its elemental effect. Elemental attacks are added to the base damage of the weapon used and can have secondary benefits.

Each element has a specific benefit to use against differing enemies:

  • Fire has a benefit against fleshy enemies and causes the enemy to burn for a length of time.
  • Shock has a benefit against shields. It depletes them more readily but is less effective against flesh and armor than a normal weapon of the same type.
  • Explosive weapons have a chance for the round to explode in enemies, dealing much more damage and leading to an incredibly messy death on a critical hit.
  • Corrosive has a benefit against armored enemies, slowly draining health and making them weaker to other attacks as the ongoing damage progresses.

Each element also has its own specific death animation, most of which leave no trace of the target behind:

  • Fire slowly incinerates the enemy. A fair bit of screaming is involved.
  • Shock makes lighting arc up and down their body, eventually leading to the skin on their face melting,skull falling apart, then head exploding.
  • Explosive leaves you with a loud bang and giblets. Fun against low level enemies.
  • Corrosive is similar to fire, only it's acid doing the job.

Manufacturer Grade

In the land of Borderlands there are multiple manufacturers that make the guns that you shoot enemies with.  Each company will usually have particular attributes associated with it. Probably the easiest way to learn these different attributes is to listen to Marcus when you use a vending machine, as he will comment on the manufacturers and their attributes.  appearance note: the appearances listed here are accurate with most of the guns made by the manufacturers, but there will always be exceptions.

List of manufacturers:

  • Atlas - All around good accuracy, fire rate, power, and low recoil for the level of the weapon. Rare at lower levels. Appearance: white.
  • Dahl - These weapons will most likely have less recoil than most guns, and decent power. Appearance:generally green and compact weapons. Marcus: "Dahl guns absorb lots of recoil, allowing you to stay accurate throughout the fight!
  • Eridians - Alien weaponry, generally high damage, unlimited ammunition.  Appearance: almost organic looking
  • Hyperion - These weapons often feature long range scopes and always boast high accuracy. Appearance: red. Marcus: "What good is a gun that doesnt shoot where you point? Get a gun that's as accurate as you are!"
  • Jakobs - These weapons will typically have high damage, even without additional effects.  Appearance: orange, brownish. Marcus: "If it took more than one shot, you weren't using a Jakobs"
  • Maliwan - Weapons made by this corporation will always do elemental damage. Appearance: blue, usually high tech looking, with tubes of the element on the gun.
  • S&S Munitions - This company makes guns with extended magazines and often tech/elemental powers. appearance: yellow colored, similar in appearance to Vladof.
  • Tediore - This company makes guns that are lightweight and will reload faster. Expect to see a lot of these early on.  appearance: grey, rough looking.
  • Torgue - Torgue guns are excellent all-rounders, and are generally good quality weapons.  Appearance: modern looking weapons that are generally grey
  • Vladof - Fires quicker than most other average guns, and often have extended magazines.  Appearance: red or orange colored, doesn't have many additions to the gun Marcus: "Vladof: you don't need to be a better shot, you just need to fire more bullets!"
  • Gearbox - Certain easter egg weapons in the game have the manufacturer name Gearbox. An example is shown here.

See Manufacturers for more info

Guaranteed Weapons

These weapons and modifications have a 100% chance to drop off a specific enemy or be contained in a specific location.

See Guaranteed Drops

Weaponry List

Please see the Weapons category page to see all weapons added to the wiki thus far.

  • Note that due to the sheer amount of guns (Around 11.5 million) it is EXTREMELY unlikely that this Wiki will ever contain pages on every single firearm in the game. At this moment (October 31, 2009) 126 weapons have been recorded onto this wiki, which is equal to approximately .001095652% of all of them. Indeed, it's probable that there may even be weapons that nobody in the entire world will ever find.

Weaponry Names

Following the game's random weapon generation AI, a system formulates each weapon's model number and name according to its type, manufacturer and capabilities.

Please see  Weapon Title, Weapon Prefix and Manufacturer Suffixes for more information.

Weapon Components

Weapon Components


This illustration of a combat rifle identifies the different components that go into assembling a single weapon. Each manufacturer has a number of proprietary options for its components (Excluding "Shoulder" and "Trigger").

  • Stock: Higher quality stocks provide more stability and accuracy. Smaller stocks and stockless weapons achieve faster reloads and equip speed.
  • Body: Affects the weapon's firing rate and damage rating.
  • Barrel: The type of Barrel used affects the weapon damage ratings and accuracy.
  • Magazine: Better magazines yield increases in magazine size, reload speed, and equip speed.
  • Scope: A scoped weapon offers various degrees of zoom, dependent on the quality of the scope.
  • Materials: Higher quality materials yield different looks and stronger manufacturer bonuses.
  • Accessory: Provide a range of benefits from Elemental Effects (acid, fire, electrical) to damage and stability bonuses, and much, much more.
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