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I'll cover you from the ridge. Just make it quick. These boys should be put out of their misery, not plinked to death with some old Varmint Rifle.Ranger Milo

The Varmint Rifle is a weapon in Fallout: New Vegas.


The Varmint Rifle is a low-powered hunting rifle, designed for hunting varmint and small game such as geckos. It utilizes a magazine-fed bolt-action system and is chambered for 5.56mm Rounds.

Although its damage and damage-per-second (DPS) are low, it can be very accurate at long ranges if used to manually target outside of V.A.T.S. With good Guns and Sneak skills, one-shot kills with Sneak Attack Critical headshots are possible against low level non-player characters. With the addition of the Night Scope and Silencer modifications, its usefulness later in the game is extended.

The Varmint Rifle has one of the best scope modifications for low light vision. Though it doesn't always make the opponent light up, it does let the player character make out their details.


The Varmint Rifle can fire a total of about 595 standard rounds, the equivalent of 119 reloads, or 75 reloads when modified with extended magazines, from full condition before breaking.

Ammunition TypeDurability
Standard, HP, AP & match595119
.223 Caliber Round745149



Ratslayer, a unique version found in Broc Flower Cave with all the mods pre-attached. It has better damage, critical damage, critical chance, spread, rate of fire and lower Action Points for usage in V.A.T.S. and a synthetic black stock.


Weapon name (current weapon is highlighted) Weapon name (melee or unarmed) Weapon name (current weapon is highlighted) Weapon name (gun, energy or explosive)
Damage per attack (damage per projectile) Damage per attack (damage per projectile) Damage per second Damage per second
Area of effect damage Area of effect damage Effect damage & duration Effect damage & duration
Bonus effects Bonus effects Attacks per second Attacks per second
Critical chance % multiplier Critical chance % multiplier Critical damage Critical damage
Critical effect damage & duration Critical effect damage & duration With all mods attached With all mods attached
Attacks in V.A.T.S. Attacks in V.A.T.S. Action point cost Action point cost
Damage per action point Damage per action point Weapon spread Weapon spread
Magazine capacity (shots per reload) Magazine capacity (shots per reload) Durability (number of attacks before breaking) Durability (number of attacks before breaking)
Weight Weight Value in caps Value in caps
Value to weight ratio Value to weight ratio Skill required Skill required
Strength required Strength required
Weapon name (current weapon is highlighted)Damage per attack (damage per projectile)Damage per secondAttacks per secondCritical Chance % multiplierCritical damageAction Point costDamage per action pointWeapon spreadMagazine capacity (shots per reload)Durability (number of attacks before breaking)WeightValue in capsValue to weight ratioSkill requiredStrength required
Varmint Rifle 18
Varmint Rifle With all weapon mods attached 18
Ratslayer 23



The animation is different depending on if the player is in first or third person.

Behind the scenes

  • Joshua Sawyer stated that the .22LR variant of the Varmint Rifle "did such pathetic damage that no one wanted to use it," resulting in it instead being chambered for the more popular 5.56mm/.223 ammunition, out of "convenience."[Dev 1] Several remnants of the original chambering can still be found in the game:


  • Playstation 3Playstation 3 After applying the silencer to an already scoped rifle, aiming towards the Freeside's North Gate from next to the Mick & Ralph's crier causes the screen to completely glitch out; however it returns to normal after exiting zoomed mode or by looking away.
  • Xbox 360Xbox 360 While zooming in with the weapon holstered with the scope, a black line will run across the screen.





Developer Statements
  1. Joshua Sawyer: "The .22LR variant did such pathetic damage that no one wanted to use it.
    .223 Rem. is a popular varmint caliber. Making the Varmint Rifle use 5.56mm/.223 was mostly for convenience."

    (Fallout: New Vegas developer statements/Weapons; Joshua Sawyer: Varmint Rifle .22LR caliber, 2011 November 8)
  1. Ranger Milo: "I'll cover you from the ridge. Just make it quick. These boys should be put out of their misery, not plinked to death with some old Varmint Rifle."
    (Ranger Milo's dialogue)