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COD Vanguard SMG tier list - Every submachine gun ranked from best to worst for beta

What is the best SMG in COD Vanguard beta? We've tested all the currently available SMGs in the COD Vanguard open beta, and we have ranked them from best to worst so that you know which ones to use, and which to avoid.
COD Vanguard SMG tier list - Every submachine gun ranked from best to worst for beta

Call of Duty: Vanguard's open beta early access is kicking off exclusively for PlayStation players this weekend.

WW2 fans around the world are excited to return to the era, but this time around with a twist, as the main story will see players assembling a group of misfits and seasoned soldiers on a special mission to stop "the new Hitler" shortly after the war's end.

But we are not here for the single-player campaign, rather we want to talk about the multiplayer beta. The COD Vanguard beta has a lot of exciting content, from all the new mapsperkskillstreaksequipment and exciting modes to enjoy. 

And although most of the players like to use betas to test stuff and simply get familiar with the game, some like to be competitive from the get-go. If you fall under this category, we've tested the weapons for you so that you can skip that step, and all you need to do is to grab them and start winning.

If you are interested in assault rifles, you can check out our Vanguard AR tier list, or read on to find out what are the best and the worst SMGs in the COD Vanguard beta.

COD Vanguard beta SMG tier list

COD Vanguard SMG tier list - Every submachine gun ranked from best to worst for beta
There are currently only three available SMGs in the Vanguard beta. (Picture: Activision)

First of all, please remember that tier lists are not an exact science. For our COD Vanguard beta SMG tier list, we've taken weapon stats, comments from several players, as well as the early meta into consideration.

Description of tiers

  • S-tier: Even without the perfect loadout, the S-tier SMGs in COD Vanguard are considered the best of the best. You simply can't go wrong.
  • A-tier: With the right attachments and a great loadout that suits your playstyle, the A-tier SMG can compete with the S-Tier.
  • B-tier: The B-tier AR can still pack a punch with the perfect loadout, and should be considered average.
  • C-tier: Only really effective in specific situations or for specific playstyles. You will require the perfect loadout to get the job done in the Vanguard beta.
  • D-tier: The trash tier. You would be better off simply going for one of the other SMGs on this list.

Submachine gun tier list for COD Vanguard

One thing to note before we continue is that there are currently only 3 SMGs available in the game, and we will add more SMGs to our tier as Sledgehammer adds more guns to the beta.


COD Vanguard SMG tier list - Every submachine gun ranked from best to worst for beta
The MP-40 is already a strong contender for the best weapon in the game. (Picture: Activision)

The WW2 staple, MP-40, makes its return to Call of Duty with Vanguard and it has already proven to be a serious threat during the early beta meta.

As the description says, the MP-40 is simply an all-around outstanding weapon and it will perform great in various situations.

It boasts a great fire rate while being quite easy to control, and as a cherry on top, it has a really decent base range, especially for an SMG, which makes it good in both mid-range and close-range engagements.


COD Vanguard SMG tier list - Every submachine gun ranked from best to worst for beta
The good old Thompson needs a bit of tweaking before the final release. (Picture: Activision)

The iconic M1928, more commonly known as Thompson or Tommy, is available in COD Vanguard as well.

Our initial testing shows that the weapon can be quite deadly as it has a really good fire rate paired with a bigger, 50 round mag, which will allow you to stay in combat longer before needing to reload.

A harder recoil than seen on the MP-40 might be an issue, especially because you will often spray with it, which can make it unreliable, but it compensates for that with its power, especially if you consistently hit headshots, as the headshot damage multiplier is currently quite big so much so that it might get nerfed before the final release.


COD Vanguard SMG tier list - Every submachine gun ranked from best to worst for beta
The Sten needs some serious buffs in order to become viable. (Picture: Activision)

Finally, the Sten is currently a B-tier SMG and that's only because we have only three SMGs at our disposal during the early access beta, otherwise, it would probably be at an even lower tier.

To put it simply, every stat seems worse compared to the other two guns in its class. Its fire rate is subpar, the range could be better as well, and it doesn't do much damage.

This is nothing too alarming, as the weapon can definitely be properly balanced by the time COD Vanguard releases, but currently, you should avoid it.

COD Vanguard SMG tier list - Every submachine gun ranked from best to worst for beta
The PPSH-41 and TYPE 100 are the other two confirmed SMGs but are currently still unavailable. (Picture: Activision)

And there you have it, these are our first beta impressions when it comes to SMGs in Vanguard. They are all definitely a lot of fun to play, but Sledgehammer Studios will need to do some balancing work in the upcoming months.

Asides from the three SMGs, it has been confirmed that the PPSH-41 and the Japanese submachine gun, TYPE 100, are also in the game, but we will have to wait a little bit longer before getting a chance to play them.


Don't forget to check out our dedicated Call of Duty section for franchise leaks, news, guides, loadout setups, weapon tier lists and much more.

For more Call of Duty news, be sure to check out our dedicated section or some of our MW2 Guides & Tutorials below:

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