Rocket launchers, what are they good for?

I’m currently on my 1st play through with my VH at level 45 and I’ve used a rocket launcher about 5 or 6 times. I tried 2 or 3 out in anger a long time ago but I’ve not come across a scenario where I would say I really needed one. All the other weapon types I use quite readily but I’ve stopped carrying a rocket launcher. I seem to remember using them more in my thousands of hours in the previous 3 games so am I missing something or are they not as relevant any more?

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I never used rocket launchers. In any of the bl games.


Absolutely nothing?


depends on what launcher you are talking about something opie op like backburner or something that does nothing like freeman or tunguska

If you’re still in the base game Ruby’s Wrath is a lot of fun. And any of the Torgue or Cov launchers are good. The Scourge is really good. The launcher dropped my Hot Carl is insane. And when you get to the big league Plaguebearer and Backburner are standard. Ion Cannon and Nukem are also more than good. What character are you playing?

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Some of the launchers are capable of the highest damage in game.

If playing FL4K or Moze, try a purple Torgue Hedgehog or Quickie in sticky mode.

Plaguebearer, Backburner, Mongol and Major Kong are impressive to say the least.

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“Rocket Launchers, huh! Good god, y’all. What are they good for? Absolutely nuthin’! Say it again…”

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Answer #1: fun
Rocket Launchers have been my go-to in almost every shooter I’ve ever played, because they’re just so much damn fun. What’s not to like about making gigantic spectacular explosions everywhere, making enemies fly around like confetti? Honestly, the fact you even had to ask the question I find deeply disturbing :crazy_face:

Answer #2: To keep your brain engaged and interested.
Rocket launchers actually take [slightly] more brainpower to use than most of the other guns, which, at least for me, makes the game more enjoyable. An SMG or a pistol basically require little more than point-and-click gameplay: you hover over an enemy, hold the mouse button, and wait until they eventually drop dead. On the other hand, a rocket launcher, because of its slow trajectory and large splash radius, requires quick-thinking and geometry. You can’t just robotically point and shoot because you run the risk of blowing yourself up, wasting precious ammo, or missing your target because they’ve moved. So you need to predict where your target will be at the time of impact - taking into account their behaviour, trajectory and speed, and lead the shot so your rocket meets them at their destination. Also, you can use the large splash radius to get more than one enemy at once (always satisfying), or to blast a wall or ceiling near an enemy who is hiding in cover. All of this requires a playstyle reliant on spatial thinking, and it’s fun.

Answer #3: Second Winds
As the weapon with the greatest potential for high damage in a short time, you should never leave the house without one. Reserve a slot for a rocket launcher, and switch to it whenever you go into FFYL. You may not even need more than one shot, and the large splash radius means that you don’t have to worry about aiming perfectly during the FFYL gun sway. Finally, since you’re already dying, you don’t need to worry about blowing yourself up. If you know there’s an enemy near you - even if they’re behind or above you and you can’t see them - just send a few rockets at your feet, and presto - Second Wind.


Yeah, if they’re not one’s cup of tea, don’t use them?

I didn’t care for most of them in BL1 because their damage was lackluster (or I was terrible at using them). I used them extensively in BL2 because they came with fun gimmicks and were fun to use, and the same goes for BL3. Specifically:

  • CoV Chukkas are like the Chemical Thrower from Bioshock… I love melting things with sustained goop like that (miss that BL2 PhysX goop though).

  • Vladof launchers are fun for their alt fires (Big Boys, Micro Rockets, Mortars)… I almost never use the regular fire.

  • Torgue I like for the sticky options… love the gimmick on their regular gear, but rocking it with launcher shots is strangely fun.

  • Atlas launchers are my favorites though:

    • Pattern Red - (burst fire with darts) - used with a projectile speed anointment for snagging big Rakk.

    • Pattern Null (auto fire with a puck) - for basic mobbing.

    • Pattern Black (semi auto salvos with darts) - for wrecking larger, individual targets.

    • Ruby’s Wrath - (Pattern Black with a singularity grenade) - used for dense mobs.

    • Plumage (Pattern Black with recurring grenade) - used for sparser mobs, or enemies immune to Ruby’s singularity.

    • Freeman (sight guided rockets) - my vehicle killer.


Clone. He has unlimited ammo


Of course, you can make all sorts of explosions with various Torgue weapons that don’t have a ridiculously small ammo pool or frequently take about an entire day to reload. The only launcher I’ve used in this series which was worth the drawbacks was the Ion Cannon before they made it eat so much ammo that I wouldn’t even use it with Moze.

I’m using creamer for the healing on my challange run moze.

… it’s a blast


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Say it again

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Depends. There’s a few really good ones that will outright murder everything but a lot of them are also kinda garbage.

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I’ve found some purple Torgue launchers that are obscenely strong after you factor in your character’s abilities, etc. Some of them are even like “+50% DMG per sticky” or something. OHKO anything, like those stupid Annointed Militants.

I’m really liking the Atlas Plumage, I think it might be OP but whatever, it wipes out Annointed enemies.

I’m not into OHKO weapons or cheesing the game with them, but seriously, ■■■■ those Annointed enemies and ■■■■ enemies having ESP and Matrix style powers, dodging my point blank shotgun blast. ■■■■ the enemy behaviours.


Until about 2 or 3 months ago, I had been playing BL3 since release and had literally NEVER used a launcher in almost 1,000 hours in the game. I just had no interest in trying them and had never really used launchers in any BL game.

Then I was introduced to the Plaguebearer. Fl4k and Moze can trivialize the most difficult content in the game with launchers and the PB in particular is just really fun to use. Count me as a convert. The PB has not left my regular loadout in a long time. So good and both Fl4k and Moze eliminate all ammo concerns with launchers, so you can spam away.

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I tried out a few launchers and thought there ok but never really had them as part on my load out. I did get excited when the hive dropped for me, loved it in bl 2 just like the maggie, tho kinda underwhelmed while testing it out, think it’s still in my bank from my very first run.

Ion cannon was so much fun until they nerfed it into the ground making each shot 6-7 ammo.

Last time I touched a launcher.

Thanks for the input guys. I’ll give some of the suggestions a try and maybe I’ll get a little more mileage out of the old rocket launcher.

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I barely ever used Rocket Launchers beside on Zane Clone and it’s not my standard loadout.
I did use them while leveling for some boss fight. Quickly emptied the ammo to get a quick start. I liked Atlas and their tracking devices for that.

I did had fun with the Vladof Jericho on mortar mode. My old friend I was playing with didn’t enjoy the friendly fire as much! :sweat_smile: