CoD MW3 Tyr Handgun
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Best SMG in Modern Warfare 3 Tier List

Super Meta Guns gets its own tier list.

Call of Duty’s SMG class has historically been an incredibly strong list of weapons, and MW3 continues this trend. That’s why we wanted to compile the best SMGs in Modern Warfare 3 so you can dominate your matches.

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Best SMG in Modern Warfare 3 Tier List

SMGs are the bread and butter of Call of Duty, and they are a fast player’s best friend and a camper’s worst nightmare. Every lobby will have a handful of operators running around with a MAC-10 and mowing down opponents. Below is our Tier List for all the Submachine guns in Modern Warfare 3.

TierWeapons
SWSP 9, WSP Swarm, Striker, Rival 9
ARAM 9, Striker 9, HRM9
BAMR9

As Season 2 of Modern Warfare 3 develops, we promise to update the tier list as Sledgehammer Game’s buffs and nerfs.

B-Tier MW3 SMGs

B Tier is for the slightly underwhelming weapons, either sporting bad damage, low accuracy, or a myriad of bad stats that ultimately result in the weapon not competing with the better SMGs in this list. It is not all doom and gloom; with some choice buffs from Sledgehammer Games, we can see the weapons in B Tier rise.

AMR 9

AMR 9 MW3 Loadout
Image Source: Activision via Twinfinite

If you’re looking for a good all-around SMG that can take down foes with decent range, break ankles in CQC, and run-and-gun your way through a map, then look no further.

The AMR 9 plays like a fast-paced Assault Rifle and can be kitted out with specific attachments to lean into that play style. Alternatively, you can tweak this weapon to be more balanced in all fights or edge towards a usual SMG close-range fighter. AR players may find a distant cousin in the AMR 9 and can be the perfect entry SMG. It does, however, suffer from its Jack-of-all-trades design, making it a good all-rounder, but fails to truly impress in any key area to score it higher on our list. Conversely, it can be the real difference maker in Warzone.

A-Tier MW3 SMGs

Our A Tier is for weapons that are in the perfect spot. They are strong and can contend with the best but have apparent weaknesses that do not overshadow the weapon. They need no buffs or nerfs and can remain in this state indefinitely.

Striker 9

Striker 9 MW3 Loadout
Image Source: Activision via Twinfinite

When we talk about Striker 9, it shouldn’t be a surprise that we bring up the dominating Striker. The former is simply overshadowed by the latter and isn’t able to put up enough damage to perform better than its big brother.

In the latest Season 2 update the Striker 9 received some hefty buffs and a few compensatory nerfs that promise to push the weapon even further beyond. We’ll have to wait and see whether the changes made were strong enough for this forgotten SMG to break new heights. Its recoil is now significantly easier to manage, which allows us to allocate different attachments and we expect its build to be fairly volatile until the mathematically correct Striker 9 appears.

HRM-9

HRM9 MW3 Loadout
Image Source: Activision via Twinfinite

Introduced halfway through Season 1 the HRM 9 made quite a splash, becoming supremely popular in its first few months. That popularity quickly dropped off as everything the HRM 9 brings to the table is often beaten by other powerful picks.

Its CQC isn’t comparable to the WSP Swarm or Rival 9 and its long-range is weaker than the WSP 9. That being said, we are comparing it to the best SMGs this Season, so the HRM 9 can impress when it’s in its element. The reason it finds itself in our A-Tier is for its strengths, but kept out of the S-Tier for its weaknesses.

RAM-9

RAM 9 SMG MW3
Image Source: Activision via Twinfinite

The brand spanking new SMG on the blockheads out the gate strong at the top of our A-Tier. This is a preliminary allocation since its playmate is through the roof since it’s the new spice and we expect things to dwindle over the coming months.

The weapon itself is supremely accurate and has a comfortable fire rate that puts it alongside the Rival 9 in versatility. The RAM-9’s damage per shot is higher than average and so is its mobility, so going off its base stats it’s sitting snugly above half of the SMG roster. But for now, the jury is still out on whether the new kid can break into the OP tier.

S-Tier MW3 SMGs

In our God-Tier are weapons that need to be nerfed and tweaked to bring them in line with the rest of the roster. These weapons usually shape the META and are picked the most across all games, sporting incredible damage, laser accuracy, and nonexistent weaknesses. Sledgehammer Games will be responsible for weapons of this class and will only be curbed by swift balance changes.

WSP Swarm

WSP Swarm MW3 Loadout
Image Source: Activision via Twinfinite

The WSP Swarm is a weapon built for exceptional mobility as you swarm and overwhelm your opponent in close-quarters combat.

It is the absolute best SMG in CQC engagements, pelting your enemies in a hail of bullet fire and bolting through maps at the highest speeds. Its recoil and accuracy are its only crutches but with the right build, it can be mitigated almost entirely. Thanks to the sheer amount of bullets it can chug out, it’s no slouch in a medium-range gunfight either, but you’ll be hard-pressed to beat certain other SMGs in that category.

WSP-9

WSP 9 MW3 Loadout
Image Source: Activision via Twinfinite

With the lowest fire rate of its class and mediocre damage per-shot ratio to match, it may be a surprise to find the WSP 9 so high on our tier list.

Well, it’s up here for good reason. The current SMG META has 4 of the best weapons of its class performing the best in all types of scenarios. The WSP 9 performs the absolute best at medium-range combat, sometimes outgunning assault rifles and battle rifles with the right setup. It’s still an SMG so it’s no pushover in CQC either, but expect its sister the WSP Swarm, and others like it to have more power in those engagements. This is why the META is so open, you must play to your weapon’s strengths, and even something as unexpected as the WSP 9 can dominate.

It also helps that it received some nice buffs in the latest Season 2 patch which saw an overall buff to every range and a quick ADS time.

Rival 9

Rival 9 MW3 Loadout
Image Source: Activision via Twinfinite

Movement is the name of the game for the Rival 9. This weapon’s handling is unprecedented for a weapon with as much damage and range as this beast.

From pre-season to Season 1 and now into Season 2 the Rival 9 has been dominating, offering an incredibly fast TTK with superb accuracy and unmatched handling to boot. There’s not much this SMG can’t do and that’s the main reason it finds itself in our S-Tier. Compared to the WSP Swarm it doesn’t have quite enough power to match the CQC, nor can it match the WSP 9’s long-range fights, but it comes close.

Striker

MW3 Striker Loadout
Image Source: Activision via Twinfinite

The Striker (better known as the UMP-45) is the reimagined SMG that dominated the old 2009 MW2 lobbies. And it does its ancestor some justice.

Our all-around best SMG may just be the Striker for everything that it brings to the table and its ability to out-duel any weapon regardless of range. Its recoil pattern is easy to control so most of our attachments can be tailored to other areas, and its other base stats are eye-wateringly high.

If you’re an SMG player you are spoiled for choice this Season as even the A-Tier weapons are justifiably useful and with 4 SMGs breaking into our S-Tier there’s going to be a gun that suits your needs.

That’s our Best SMG in Modern Warfare 3 Tier List. Be sure to check out all the related Call of Duty content below and stick with Twinfinite for all the best guides, news, and updates.


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Author
Tyler Towers
Tyler is a skilled Freelance Writer for Twinfinite, specializing in the most popular FPS games like Call of Duty, Apex Legends, and Valorant. He is also keenly interested in MOBAs and JRPGs, no matter how obscure they may be. With his Game Design degree from Sheffield Hallam University, Tyler has the expertise and knowledge to provide in-depth gaming industry coverage. When he is not knee-deep in ELO hell, he devotes his time to taking care of his beloved ragdoll cat, Ace.
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