Combat in OutridersSource: Square Enix

The focus of any looter shooter, like the newly released Outriders, is to constantly be on the lookout for the next best gear to power your character up. Outriders does things a little differently than other entries loot 'em ups since there isn't a definitive "best" at every level for gear. However, there are still better options for different playstyles, ways to customize your equipment to suit your needs, and things to look out for (especially at later levels).

Here's everything you need to know about the best gear and armor in Outriders.

What is the best gear and armor in Outriders?

There's a ton of gear in Outriders. There are countless armor sets and weapons, and even weapon models can have numerous types and variants. Players will have to assess the majority of the gear on a per-case basis to find the best fit for their class or playstyle. Because mods and attributes can also be semi-random, this makes it even more vital that you consider the individual equipment instead of the type of gear it is.

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That being said, there are still a few things to keep in mind when choosing the best gear and armor in Outriders, and what you can expect from the top tier, or Legendary rarity, in Outriders.

Armor

Outriders ArmorSource: Square Enix

A full armor set consistes of a helmet, chest piece, trousers, gloves, and boots. Many armor sets include one of each of these pieces, but there's nothing wrong with mixing and matching. Sets usually have some kind of gentle focus, such as close-range combat or healing with skills damage, so be sure to keep a close eye on mods and attributes.

All armor of blue (Rare) rarity or higher should also include one or more mods that affect your class abilities. Bear in mind that you can also change one mod on armor, so if you find a higher-level armor with good attributes but a less-than-favorable mod, you can switch that out. We'll go into more detail on making your gear better later.

Once you start earning Epic rarity armor consistently, it's usually worth taking it over Rare armor for the extra mod slot, even if the Rare armor might have slightly higher armor stats. Weigh the pros and cons when it's time to replace your existing armor.

When it comes to Legendary armor, you'll have to pay extra attention to your specific playstyle. Legendary armor will come with one Tier III mod, making them incredibly powerful. However, if that Tier III mod doesn't fit your character or playstyle, it may be worth skipping until you find something else. You won't have to think too hard about Legendary armor until Outriders' endgame, however, where Legendary weapons seem to be far more common.

Weapons

OutridersSource: Square Enix

Weapons in Outriders afford you much more choice than armor does, since the differences between two different kinds of weapons can be more pronounced and aren't just limited to attributes and mods. Here's a breakdown of the different weapon categories and what might work best for you:

  • Assault rifles. These weapons are great at mid-range combat and are best suited for classes that can keep their distance or get in close, like the Devastator or Pyromancer. Assault rifles come in several varieties that primarily affect fire type (full auto, burst, or single) and are among the more common weapons you'll find.
  • Double guns. Double guns are a unique kind of firearm in Outriders that mixes the characteristics of assault weapons and SMGs. You can expect greater fire rate at the expense of slightly weaker damage and range. Double guns often also have more ammo to expel, making them great backup weapons for classes like Technomancer when things get up close and personal.
  • LMGs. LMGs, or light machine guns, are mid-range weapons that are slower and more unwieldy than assault weapons but counteract this with high damage and huge amounts of ammo. LMGs can be a perfect partner for Technomancers or Pyromancers that are comfortable dishing out damage from a decent distance away.
  • SMGs. SMGs, or sub-machine guns, are perfect when paired with close-range classes like Devastators or Tricksters. SMGs lose out over distances quickly, but their mobility and high fire rates let you move in close and demolish the opposition with ease. SMGs can also be found in tactical varieties, which switch to a burst fire more appropriate for slightly longer distances.
  • Rifles. Rifles are best suited for mid-to-long range combat, making them a good fit for Technomancers and Pyromancers. Rifles can deal a lot of damage in a short period but often don't carry a lot of ammo and rely on high levels of accuracy to be used effectively.
  • Sniper rifles. Sniper rifles are the ultimate long-range weapon, and are most effective in the hands of the Technomancer. Sniper rifles can either be bolt action or automatic, which is basically the difference between big damage / slow fire rate and low damage / high fire rate. For most players, bolt action sniper rifles will be a better choice.
  • Shotguns. Shotguns deliver that damage up close and peonal. This is a favorite for classes like the Trickster, which favors close-quarters combat and high mobility. Pump-action shotguns deal incredible amounts of damage, while auto shotguns dish out smaller amounts of damage at faster speeds. You can't go wrong with either, but the auto shotgun is more suited for groups and quick self-defense, while the pump can deal with opponents (especially bosses) faster.
  • Pistols. Finally, you have your sidearm. While you think you might not use your sidearm very often, it can be an invaluable tool in certain situations. You have dual-wielded pistols and revolves, but I'm going to recommend you stick with the full auto variant of the dual-wielded pistols. These pistols have extremely high fire rates and large clips, and their infinite ammo makes them awesome against monsters and low-level goons.

When it comes to what weapons work best for you, it all comes down to personal preference. That being said, it's worth keeping in mind that each weapon category serves a different need, and weapons can even have variants inside of those categories that dramatically change them.

For example, the sharpshooter variant of assault rifles acts more like a weaker but faster rifle and sacrifices a lot of speed, making it not as good of a choice for fast-paced combat. With pump-action shotguns, standard variants deal greater damage and hold more ammo than breach variants but fire slower and have less spread. Experiment with different weapons and bear in mind what specialty your class has when choosing your weapon.

We've broken down every class in Outriders and their skills and abilities, so you can do your research before making a choice. We also have advice on grinding to earn more gear in Outriders, and a wide selection of beginner tips and tricks to master Outriders. All of this information can help you better learn which weapons work for you.

Legendary

Legendary gun in OutridersSource: Windows Central

Of course, the best gear in Outriders is of the Legendary rarity. This gear, which comes in all the varieties mentioned above, possesses powerful Tier III mods that offer unique abilities and skills you can't find anywhere else. This makes Legendary gear extremely effective when in the right hands, but also more specific to certain use cases. Unlike regular weapons and armor, which can be tweaked and modded to fit pretty much any use case, Legendary gear is comparatively set in stone.

We have a running list of all the Legendary weapons we've found in Outriders, so you can get an idea of what's out there. If you want our suggestions on the gear you should be looking for though, we also have a list of the best Legendary weapons in Outriders.

How can I make my gear better in Outriders?

Outriders DevestatorSource: Square Enix

One thing that sets Outriders apart from other similar games is how most gear can be customized. If your brand-new assault rifle isn't the right variant or has one mod you can't make much use of, you can spend resources to change it. You can even level up gear you want to keep using at higher difficulties and upgrade attributes to make your weapons even more effective.

To learn all the tricks for improving your gear in Outriders, be sure to refer to our ultimate guide to crafting in Outriders. For the quick rundown, there are many ways you can improve your gear in Outriders, including:

  • Changing mods. You can swap out one mod for any other mod that you've unlocked on any gear of Rare rarity or higher. Bear in mind that if a gear has two mod slots, you can only change one and not both. You can unlock new mods by disassembling unused or unwanted gear.
  • Changing variants. Many weapons have multiple variants that change the way they're used. On any rarity weapons except Legendary, you can change the variant in exchange for resources. I used this constantly as I discovered which weapon variants I preferred. This is only for weapons.
  • Raising attributes. Many weapons have two or three semi-random attributes that are usually stat bonuses. You can spend resources to raise these attributes and make your weapon even more effective.
  • Leveling up. The strength of your gear raises quickly through levels, so once-powerful gear can be quickly left behind. You can raise the level of gear, but you'll spend a lot of resources to do this. This is usually only worth it for extremely powerful gear, like Legendary gear.
  • Improving rarity. The rarity value of your gear can be upgraded to Epic. The value of this comes with more powerful mods and attributes, and you even get to choose from a small selection of possible mods when you upgrade.

Mastering the crafting system in Outriders is essential to getting the most out of your gear, especially the ability to swap mods and change variants. With this extensive system, even basic gear can become dangerous to your opponents, and Legendary gear can become completely unstoppable.

Outriders is one of the best Xbox Game Pass games and includes hours of fun for anybody who enjoys searching for that next powerful piece of loot.

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Outriders

Follow the signal

Become an Outrider and follow a mysterious signal across the alien planet of Enoch, full of hellish threats waiting around every corner. Outriders features drop-in, drop-out co-op for up to three players so you can have a couple of friends at your side.

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