Assault Rifles, or “AR” for short, are the default weapon for most players in every Call of Duty release, and Modern Warfare 2 is no different. One could argue that MW2 developer, Infinity Ward, is the best at developing, refining, and balancing ARs in their Call of Duty games, so you can always expect plenty of variety in that weapon class.
Modern Warfare 2 has eight Assault Rifles to being with, and while all eight have their own value and level of accessibility, some are far and away better than the others. This isn’t so much a list of “best and worst” as it is “best and good but not as good”.
Best AR in Modern Warfare 2 – Every Assault Rifle ranked
This is probably going to be a controversial entry in at No.1, but don’t sleep on the Kastov-762: it’s a very good AR in Modern Warfare 2.
What is especially great about the Kastov-762 is that it has a high level of mobility for a weapon as heavy and damaging as it is. Unlocking all assigned attachments truly unlock the real beast that is the 762, so while it can take a while to realise its full potential, once you get there you should realise how special an Assault Rifle this gun is.
It has a powerful “punchy” feel to it, and deals more damage than the M4, which is often at the top of best AR lists. Its downside is that it has perhaps the biggest recoil of all ARs, so your attachment kit should target recoil as much as possible.
This will probably surprise absolutely no one but the M4 is one of the best ARs in Modern Warfare 2 right now.
Its one of the first weapons you’ll have from the start, so you can expect to see it quite a bit on the battlefield. But even with its popularity, don’t sleep on the power that is the M4: it is super balanced and powerful, and highly adaptable.
If you’re looking for a powerful “entry level” AR in MW2, the M4 is probably your best bet.
The Kastov-74u is another underappreciated AR that shouldn’t be slept on in MW2. It has superb handling, which is unsurprising given its sleek size and high level of mobility.
If you’re looking for a quick, run-and-gun AR, then the Kastov-74u is for you. It bombards enemies with bullets at a super high rate for an AR, putting it closer to an SMG than AR, but with the damage rate to boot.
Like the K762, you’ll need to counter some very heavy recoil, so be mindful of that when fleshing out your loadout and unlocking attachments.
The TAQ-56 gives me SCAR-H vibes from the OG 2009 Modern Warfare 2, and I’m totally okay with that. What it lacks with damage output and rate of fire it makes up for with the lowest recoil of all AR, and a super quick TTK.
It has some refinements needed to really make it a great weapon, and you’ll need to battle against its low damage output to start, but once you flesh out its kit, your accuracy is going to be near-unbeatable, making the TAQ-56 a super efficient AR.
I want to love the Lachman-556, and it wants you to love it, but it never really feels right to me. Objectively, however, I can acknowledge that with its long range and low recoil, it’s a super efficient weapon. It lacks quite a bit of damage, however, and while it feels a lot like the M4, it’s never quite on the same level, even with a fleshed out kit.
Still, there’s some versatility and power thereto be had if you can get the loadout just right.
Much like the Lachman-556, the STB-556 objectively feels like a solid weapon, but always seem to just fall short of greatness.
It’s easy to use, has super low recoil, and a wide variety of useful attachments. It’s just not very damaging, even at high accuracy, and falls just short of being a truly great AR.
There’s really not much to say about the Kastov-545. It’s very much like the 74u, but just always seems to lack much in the way of punch, power, or versatility. It’s small and mobile enough to have the feel of an SMG, but it’s not particularly fun to use and it still feels like an AR in parts.
Give it a shot, sure, but I can confidentally say your time with it won’t last long.
The M16 should be better than it is. For a short-burst AR, it should feel better, but it’s so definitvely uninspiring that it’s difficult to recommend. It’s solid enough in single-shot mode, and can be quite brutal with the right loadout, but it’s overall handling and recoil mean you need to be far more precise to be effective than with any other AR. Use at your own risk.
How would you rate assault rifles in Modern Warfare 2? Sound off in the comments below!