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Best Marksman Rifle in Modern Warfare 2

Which is the best Marksman Rifle in MW2 right now?

Need help deciding which is the best Marksman Rifle in Modern Warfare 2? Marksman Rifles have always had to fight for a place at the table in Call Of Duty, fulfilling a very similar role to Sniper Rifles but sacrificing some of their big brothers' power for lightness and mobility. But with the advent of the similarly long-ranged Battle Rifles weapon category, Marksman Rifles really need to do something special in order to set them apart from their competitors.

Thankfully, there are at least a few Marksman Rifles in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 which are absolutely devastating - almost unfairly so - in the right hands. Below we'll walk you through our rankings of all six MRs in the game, and explain which one we think is the best Marksman Rifle in Modern Warfare 2 right now.

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What is the best Marksman Rifle in Modern Warfare 2?

The best Marksman Rifle in Modern Warfare 2 is the Lockwood Mk2, which just about clinches victory against the very similar SP-R 208 thanks to its increased handling stats. When kit out correctly, the Lockwood Mk2 is capable of chaining together lethal one-shot-kill bodyshots in an incredibly short space of time, making it not only the best MR but one of the best guns in Modern Warfare 2 at the moment.

Here is our tier list of the best Marksman Rifles in Modern Warfare 2:

  1. Lockwood Mk2
  2. SP-R 208
  3. LM-S
  4. TAQ-M
  5. EBR-14
  6. SA-B 50

Below we'll walk you through each of the Marksman Rifles on offer in MW2, their pros and cons, and why they deserve their rank in our Marksman Rifle tier list.

Lockwood Mk2

Modern Warfare 2 screenshot showing a close up of the Lockwood Mk2

The Lockwood Mk2 looks great and feels even better to use. It's one of the hardest-hitting Marksman Rifles on offer, but it also beats out its close competitor the SP-R 208 thanks to its superior fire rate and handling stats. This makes it perfect for lethal quickscope kills, particularly when you use attachments that boost ADS time, and the Longhorn Lever for an even faster rate of fire.

It's a deadly weapon in capable hands, capable of quick one-shot-kills at a faster rate than even the best Sniper Rifle in Modern Warfare 2. Learn how to kit it out to be as effective as possible with our Modern Warfare 2 best Lockwood Mk2 loadout guide.

SP-R 208

A close-up of the SP-R 208 Marksman Rifle in the Modern Warfare 2 Gunsmith screen.
Image credit: Rock Paper Shotgun/Activision

The SP-R 208 is very nearly as good as the Lockwood Mk2. It matches the Lockwood's damage profile, albeit at a slightly slower fire rate, and and is more than capable of dropping enemies in a single shot. It's very well-suited to being kitted out for speed and mobility, and it deserves a place in many a long-ranged loadout.

The only reason it can't quite reach the heights of the Lockwood Mk2 is because of its lower fire rate, slightly lower magazine capacity, and the fact that its only advantage over the Lockwood - increased precision and recoil control - doesn't matter that much when you're quickscoping. Still, it's a phenomenal Marksman Rifle, and one of the strongest weapons in the MW2 armoury - particularly when kit out as we illustrate in our Modern Warfare 2 best SP-R 208 loadout guide.


A close-up of the LM-S Marksman Rifle in the Modern Warfare 2 Gunsmith screen.
Image credit: Rock Paper Shotgun/Activision

The LM-S is the go-to Marksman Rifle if you want a faster-firing semi-auto option that can deliver follow-up shots much quicker than the punchier Lockwood Mk2 and SP-R 208. It's highly accurate over long distances, and combined with its fire rate this allows it to occupy a similar role to the powerful Signal 50 Sniper Rifle - albeit a more lightweight version. Both guns are very capable at long-range, and can deliver multiple shots in a very short space of time to ensure the kill.

However, in the current Modern Warfare 2 meta, it is pure damage and one-shot-kill potential that wins out, which is why the LM-S is knocked down into third place despite being a very formidable semi-automatic rifle.


A close-up of the TAQ-M Marksman Rifle in the Modern Warfare 2 Gunsmith screen.
Image credit: Rock Paper Shotgun/Activision

The TAQ-M is another hard-hitting Marksman Rifle that trades a bit of the Lockwood Mk2's damage for a slightly higher rate of fire and greater magazine capacity. 10 round mags by default is pretty nice for a rifle with such stopping power, but it's not quite worth the reduction in mobility and handling in our opinion.

It also lacks the lever or bolt attachment option of other Marksman Rifles that increases the other guns' rechambering speed or accuracy, which means it's not quite as versatile as those other weapons. Even so, like its close competitors, it's a dangerous gun with the potential for one-shot-kills if used accurately.


A close-up of the EBR-14 Marksman Rifle in the Modern Warfare 2 Gunsmith screen.
Image credit: Rock Paper Shotgun/Activision

The EBR-14 is the first Marksman Rifle you'll get to use in MW2, and while it's by no means a bad gun, it can't quite match the deadliness of most of the other MRs in the game. It functions very similarly to the LM-S, with a fast rate of fire and high accuracy over long ranges. And it illustrates how close the competition is between all six Marksman Rifles on offer, because there's actually very little difference between the EBR-14 and the LM-S.

The only real issue is a reduction in fire rate, and the fact that while the Gunsmith stats state that the EBR-14 has greater accuracy, in reality there's very little difference. So why would you choose the EBR-14 when you can pick the slightly faster-firing LM-S?

SA-B 50

A close-up of the SA-B 50 Marksman Rifle in the Modern Warfare 2 Gunsmith screen.
Image credit: Rock Paper Shotgun/Activision

Rounding off our list is the SA-B 50, a rifle which takes after the SP-R 208 in nature and function, but even lighter in weight and faster-acting than either the SP-R or the Lockwood. Unfortunately, this really isn't worth the high price of greatly decreased accuracy and recoil control. Chaining together one-shot-kills reliably is a fair bit harder with the SA-B 50 than with the Marksman Rifles it is trying to imitate. So while it is certainly stll a powerful gun, we'd recommend using another if you want the highest chance of topping the leaderboard and earning your favourite Modern Warfare 2 Killstreaks.

That concludes our list of all the Marksman Rifles available to players in Modern Warfare 2. Of course, long-ranged rifles like these work best in much larger battlefields, so if you've finished kitting out your favourite MR you may want to read up on the upcoming Warzone 2.0 release date.

In the meantime, be sure to check out our other weapon class guides, so you can learn about the best Assault Rifle, best SMG, and best Shotgun in Modern Warfare 2 as well.

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Ollie Toms

Guides Editor

Ollie is sheriff of Guidestown at RPS, and since joining the team in 2018, he's written over 1,000 guides for the site. He loves playing dangerously competitive games and factory sims, injuring himself playing badminton, and burying his face in the warm fur of his two cats.