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In-depth Hardmode weapon tier list

qwerty3.14

Terrarian
Kaleidoscope REALLY needs to be ranked S or most likely S+. Availability is not taken into account, and as a weapon itself Kaleidoscope is one of the best weapons for piercing multiple enemies, and against single targets it easily pulls quad digit DPS with Dark Harvest and no minions. With Obsidian Armor, expect 2000+ DPS.
Obsidian armor will make the whip iteslf do more dps but I don't see that being worth the -3 minion slots and -27% minion damage from replacing spooky. Now yes it is very effective at cleaning up weak enemies but not to the extent of weapons like the razorblade typhoon or snowman cannon.

Then you combine it with a weapon like Stardust Cell Staff and you get a total of 5000+ if not 6000+ DPS, which is on par with Stardust Dragon/Firecracker/Dark Harvest (tested against Empress of Light).
Ok firstly I don't like using the dps meter, it tends to fluctuate a lot. Kill times are a much more accurate, multiple kill times with an average are even better.
Second bringing in star cells means we're at fragment weapons tier. How does this build compare to a ranged build using the phantasm with a 3 segment stardust dragon?
If its worse I don't see it being in S tier.
If its about the same it'd be S- since phantasm has more range it is much safer to use on moonlord specificly. Moonlord is a completely different beast from Empress of light.
If it can get a noteably better kill time on Empress then it'd probably be S tier.
 

Dragrath

Duke Fishron
Hmm Seems it got updated since the last time I visited Reading through this it is still quite sad how many of what used to be some of my favorite weapons are sitting in the garbage tiers. In particular Spears are so forgotten... (They could have at least had some use if all the hardmode ones were given wall hacking abilities and the Phase sabers have been unusably bad since 1.2. Yoyo Progression still seems to be a mess what with how easily the Amarok is obtained the Horseman's blade as far as I'm concerned lost its only viable pseudo niche back when 1.3 removed its ability to spawn its projectiles off of destructible enemy projectiles. And spears... well in hardmode literally all of them are unusable aside from the Mushroom Spear Chlorophyte Partisan and North Pole. I mean I knew that but it still infuriates me that it's still true so many years later... With how underpowered Melee is allowing the Spears/ \>\_\<

Alas as Terraria is at its final update any hope of optimally balancing the game will have to come from mods whenever they update and officially integrate that with the base game. Never messed with mods TBH but sounds like I will have to I still feel anything below B needs a buff seriously The under utilized alt attack could probably give some bad melee weapons some utility if they got an alt move that say involved a dash. Breaker Blade is probably unfixable though not unless a screen clearing OP alt ability or something similarly broken were added lol
 

Shyguymask

Terrarian
Obsidian armor will make the whip iteslf do more dps but I don't see that being worth the -3 minion slots and -27% minion damage from replacing spooky.
Spooky Armor only gets slightly higher DPS (if at all) with Firecracker from what I tested. Obsidian Armor makes up for the smaller minion boosts with the increased attack speed applying Firecracker's explosion more often.

Now yes it is very effective at cleaning up weak enemies but not to the extent of weapons like the razorblade typhoon or snowman cannon.
On its own not, but coupled with minions Kaleidoscope is a spammable giant hitbox that heavily damages & stunlock groups of enemies while applying debuffs (tag & ichor) that make them wet paper against Stardust Cell Staff. It's about as good as Razorblade at shredding crowds all things considered.


Ok firstly I don't like using the dps meter, it tends to fluctuate a lot. Kill times are a much more accurate, multiple kill times with an average are even better.
I do know that the kill time for Kaleidoscope + Stardust Cell staff is on the rank of Dragon + Firecracker and Phantasm + Ichor Arrows. In fact it felt like Cell/Spooky/Kalei was faster because Dragon tends to waste a bit of time derping around and not being on top of EoL dealing damage. And we both know how fast Dragon/Phantasm melts EoL.

I also assume your EoL kill time spreadsheet did not include Whip Stacking for Dragon + Firecracker. Taking that into account, on best hands the Dragon should be able to deal significantly more damage than Phantasm + 3-segments dragon, killing Expert EoL in under 20 seconds.

I'd need to do dedicated and full on DPS tests with timers and all, but assuming I'm correct... Kaleidoscope's total DPS combined with Stardust Cell Staff is higher than Phantasm, and Kaleidoscope itself is significantly better at dealing with pillar enemies. Aiming at Moon Lord's weakpoints with Phantasm is also pretty difficult since the eyes and core and relatively small targets.
 

qwerty3.14

Terrarian
Spooky Armor only gets slightly higher DPS (if at all) with Firecracker from what I tested. Obsidian Armor makes up for the smaller minion boosts with the increased attack speed applying Firecracker's explosion more often.
I thought we were specificlly talking about kaleidiscope. Kaleidiscope's tag does not scale with minion attack boosts.

On its own not, but coupled with minions Kaleidoscope is a spammable giant hitbox that heavily damages & stunlock groups of enemies while applying debuffs (tag & ichor) that make them wet paper against Stardust Cell Staff. It's about as good as Razorblade at shredding crowds all things considered.
Working off memory here, but I'm pretty sure I've had a lot less trouble with lunar pillars when using the snowman cannon and razorblade than I did when I tried obsdian armor + kaleidiscope.

I also assume your EoL kill time spreadsheet did not include Whip Stacking for Dragon + Firecracker. Taking that into account, on est hands the Dragon should be able to deal significantly more damage than Phantasm + 3-segments dragon, killing Expert EoL in under 20 seconds.
I did not use whip stacking, however I was also using raven minions in the phantasm test.

Aiming at Moon Lord's weakpoints with Phantasm is also pretty difficult since the eyes and core and relatively small targets.
Not from my experience. Moonlord seems to fly at a constant speed and I'm able to reliable hit him with phantasm while his weak point is at the edge of my screen, staying far away from all his bs. Heck it might even be more consistent than the terraprismas, I've noticed that I would sometimes be far enough away to where the terraprismas wouldn't attack but I could still see and hit moonlord with the phantasm.
 

Shyguymask

Terrarian
I thought we were specificlly talking about kaleidiscope. Kaleidiscope's tag does not scale with minion attack boosts.
You could use Kaleidoscope with Dragon for a safer but still highly damaging alternative.

Heck it might even be more consistent than the terraprismas, I've noticed that I would sometimes be far enough away to where the terraprismas wouldn't attack but I could still see and hit moonlord with the phantasm.
I play on Ultrawide and Terraprisma attacks anything that shows up on my screen. When you're fighting Moon Lord you're constantly flying up and falling down, and with how relatively small ML's weak points are, he's difficult to target consistently with Phantasm compared to most other bosses.
 

Dreadnautilus5000

Brain of Cthulhu
You could use Kaleidoscope with Dragon for a safer but still highly damaging alternative.
This has nothing to do with whether Obsidian armour or Spooky armour is better with Kaleidoscope. You were talking about how Obsidian reduces the DPS difference between it and Spooky with whip speed boosts when using Firecracker. This debate has nothing to do with Firecracker, as Firecracker and Kaleidoscope have zero synergy.
I play on Ultrawide and Terraprisma attacks anything that shows up on my screen. When you're fighting Moon Lord you're constantly flying up and falling down, and with how relatively small ML's weak points are, he's difficult to target consistently with Phantasm compared to most other bosses.
His hitboxes may be small, but it's pretty easy to locate where they are. And if you know where they are, then you can hit them pretty easily thanks to to how fast Phantasm's arrows move. Not to mention if you do land a shot the resulting homing arrows will immediately let you know what direction the target is in.
 

Shyguymask

Terrarian
You were talking about how Obsidian reduces the DPS difference between it and Spooky with whip speed boosts when using Firecracker.
I don't remember specifying that anywhere, I was talking about how Spooky Armor doesn't really deal a lot higher (if at all) damage than Obsidian Armor in practice since qwerty brought those up.
 

Coleyohley

Terrarian
I play on Ultrawide and Terraprisma attacks anything that shows up on my screen. When you're fighting Moon Lord you're constantly flying up and falling down, and with how relatively small ML's weak points are, he's difficult to target consistently with Phantasm compared to most other bosses.
It should be noted that Terraria locks your maximum viewing area. Unless you unlock it manually by editing your files, there IS a maximum viewing distance.
 

qwerty3.14

Terrarian
I quickly summoned moonlord to test terraprisma range. It seems to have more to do with moonlord's eyes closing. When his eyes close the minions return behind me.
 

AngryNimbus

Terrarian
I quickly summoned moonlord to test terraprisma range. It seems to have more to do with moonlord's eyes closing. When his eyes close the minions return behind me.
Desert tiger also has (seemingly) significantly more range versus ML core and head eye, I can fly off quite far away and do damage
Works well when you need to recover or use it with Phantasm + Chlorophyte arrow (shoot down at ~45° angle) or vortex beater
 

qwerty3.14

Terrarian
Desert tiger also has (seemingly) significantly more range versus ML core and head eye, I can fly off quite far away and do damage
Works well when you need to recover or use it with Phantasm + Chlorophyte arrow (shoot down at ~45° angle) or vortex beater
I'd think that the tiger would fall off every time the eye closes.
 

AngryNimbus

Terrarian
I'd think that the tiger would fall off every time the eye closes.
It bounces to another eyes, but not from hand to hand. Only from head eye to one hand and vice versa (can be resummoned though, and stick to the nearest part bypassing these rules)

The reason I mentioned it is because it is actually the 3rd/4th strongest minion in that fight. Terraprisma= Stardust Dragon > Stardust Cell = Tiger
Cells can dish out more damage, but try to stack Kaleidoscope + Dark Harvest in Master/Expert vs ML core wearing summoner armor, and you'll understand why it is a bad idea
As a secondary minion (3 minion slots with a different class build) it is the 4th.
Surprisingly, the Xeno is 5th (I expected it to be better)
Cells are superior due to unique feature of hitting extra shots while using something different – but still fall behind dragon for quite a bit
 
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Shyguymask

Terrarian
It should be noted that Terraria locks your maximum viewing area. Unless you unlock it manually by editing your files, there IS a maximum viewing distance.
I know that, I actually have my game edited to unlock the restriction and see more on my screen than the game would allow me to.

but try to stack Kaleidoscope + Dark Harvest in Master/Expert vs ML core wearing summoner armor, and you'll understand why it is a bad idea
It's not at all as hard as you're making it out to be. Especially if you're using Hallowed Armor, which goes well with Cells.
 

qwerty3.14

Terrarian
Alright some random comments. Mostly small nitpicks that don't effect tier rankings.

On the venom arrow overview you mention it's "usually the best ammo to use against the final boss", however ichor is actually better. Ichor has the same velocity boost venom does and although venom has higher base damage only 30% of that higher base damage gets transferred to the 'ghost arrows' whereas all the armor reduction from ichor gets used by the ghost arrows. Phantasm's windup time discourages using a sidearm to inflict ichor.

Spirit Flame should be Availibility #, it requires a rare drop from an UD enemy, and 2 forbidden fragments which is dependent on getting a sandstorm.

Crystal Serpent, Toxicarp, and Bladetounge should have availability ###, they really aren't that hard to get. Just box yourself in and keep fishing. Yeah there's some rng to it but putting on the same level as stuff like the ice sickle and sanguine staff doesn't make sense to me.

I'd argue that Phasesabers and the Cutlass are actually worse than the ore swords. Why you may ask? use turn. With the ore swords you can walk backwards while keeping the sword facing the enemies you retreat from. While the cutlass forces you to change the direction you're attacking.

Onyx blaster does not have an anti synergy with exploding bullets...
gyazo.com



Venom arrows should be mentioned in the pulse bow entry, damage is all the pulse bow cares about and these are quite a bit stronger than endless quiver.

Golem weapons should have availibilty ####, when you go through to temple you can easily get about 8 power cells, and you'll likely get a pax so you can easily clear out the temple and farm for more. Way more reliable than trying to farm plantera for a specific drop. I could honestly see plnatera weapons dropping to ## as well since she's the most annoying boss to resummon in the game.

Stake launcher should have dps #####. An archery potion removes the gap between stake launcher and jack o launcher.

Vortex beater and phantasm aren't effected by speed modifiers so godly and demonic should be listed alongside unreal for best modifier.
 

AngryNimbus

Terrarian
You can dodge them.
No, absolutely not. Moon Lord has a lot of cheap, random (on practice, I know that they aren't). Assuming using whips and their range, ML destroys even set bonuses with 3 charges (Beetle shell, Solar). In bossfight of this type, the Hallowed armor is not a great choice. Only with the blade staff, but at this point there are 2 reasos for using it: you test it deliberately or have forgotten to collect stardust fragments.


As for me, I can dodge Empress and Duke, but spammy ML attacks leave me no choices besides long ranged fight (ranged/ mage, tank melee + Daybreak). Hallowed armor works well in this case, bun not with pure summoner and falls greatly behind shroomite/ spectre/ beetle in some characteristics. Agains ML specifically, summon is the worst class by far.

Possible loadouts tried:

1) Shroomite + Vortex Beater = safety, dps
2) Beetle defensive + Daybreak = relative safety, dps (or terra blade + Dark Harvest vs hands)
3) Spectre/ Dark Artist + Razorblade Typhoon or Nebula blaze (bat scepter in Classic/ Expert modes) = safety, dps
*not the Nightglow though, it is less suitable for retreating
4) beetle offensive/shinobi + Daybreak = no safety, but distance and dps
5) Spooky (maybe with shinobi helmet) + dragon and kaleidoscope = insane dps, no safety, no defense, no ability to make yor runaway
6) Hallowed + Blade staff + Kaleidoscope + Dark Harvest + Durendal etc. — Medium DPS, useless holy dodge (remember, please, about extremely short distance to the core), almost no def.
7) Hallowed + Dragon + Kaleidoscope = best for summoner, but the third worst overall. Falls behind #4 and #6. High dps, still no safety and distance.

Terraprisma has less range, Tiger without whips has low dps, Xeno has low performance against core, Cells are better used by summoning 3 of them + ranged& Vortex beater.
 
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qwerty3.14

Terrarian
2) Beetle defensive + Daybreak = relative safety, dps (or terra blade + Dark Harvest vs hands)
What if you use phantasm here instead? I doubt beetle shell's pathetic melee bonuses will close the gap between daybreak and phantasm.

Also just wondering what other gear you're using? I usually use soaring insignia + betsy wings to get around, a celestial shell, then any spare accessories boost damage.
 

AngryNimbus

Terrarian
What if you use phantasm here instead? I doubt beetle shell's pathetic melee bonuses will close the gap between daybreak and phantasm.

Also just wondering what other gear you're using? I usually use soaring insignia + betsy wings to get around, a celestial shell, then any spare accessories boost damage.
Unfortunately, Phantasm depends greatly from ranged damage bonuses (phantom arrows do about 5-10 damage in all-Warding) and since beetle does not increase ranged bonused either, the result is even slightly worse (ichor arrow).
1.46 and 1.54 for Daybreak and Phantasm.
Daybreak is less dependant from low melee bonuses – due to fixed damage.

I use fishron wings and long asphalt runway. (celestial shell, frozen shield, ninja gear, worm scarf – all classes.)

Melee – destroyer emblem, fire gauntlet, mech glove
Ranged – recon scope, destroyer emblem, ranger emblem
Magic – destroyer emblem, mana cloak, celeatial emblem
Summon — Necromantic scroll, Papyrus scarab, (Fire Gauntlet for whips/ Vampire Knives wnen not fighting ML or Pygmy necklace for Minions).
 

qwerty3.14

Terrarian
1.46 and 1.54 for Daybreak and Phantasm.
what do these numbers mean?

I use fishron wings and long asphalt runway. (celestial shell, frozen shield, ninja gear, worm scarf – all classes.)
I prefer betsy hover + insignia. The hover speed is enough to stay away from all the slow bs attacks, like the spheres, eyes, and phase 2 mini deathrays. The hovering has near instantaneous accleration which makes dashes and kb immunity redundent, insignia gives a boost to vertical flight speed which is good for dodging the deathray, and I find the asphalt runway to be a kind of awkward in phase 2 since while running on it moonlord's core sits below the runway.

Melee – destroyer emblem, fire gauntlet, mech glove
I'd use warrior or avenger emblem over the mech glove, melee speed doesn't increase daybreak's damage.
Ranged – recon scope, destroyer emblem, ranger emblem
Why are you using ranger emblem instead of sniper scope?
Magic – destroyer emblem, mana cloak, celeatial emblem
I can understand why you would wnat a mana flower type accesory for nebula blaze, but Razorblade typhoon is so mana efficenet you're better off with an avenger emblem here.

Edit: 1 more question, are you using warding on all your builds? Warding makes some sense on the beetle build but when your defense is already low you're better off sacrificing a dps accesory to throw on a BoC then use menacing modifers.
 
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