Is there finally a shotgun that can dethrone the Pump Shotgun? The Primal Shotgun may give the Pump a run for its money.
The Pump Shotgun, affectionately known as the the Pump, has long been venerated and feared as the game’s best weapon. The Pump made the game infamous for its prevailing strategy: jump and land a headshot. At one point, over 25% of all eliminations were at the hands of the Pump.
Over the Seasons, Epic has tried to find a way to balance shotguns by vaulting the Pump, replacing the Pump and even nerfing the Pump. Chapter 2 Season 6 marks the Pump’s triumphant return, but there’s a new shotty in town that many are finding is even better than the classic Pump.
Is the Primal Shotgun better than the Pump?
Enter the Primal Shotgun. It’s loud, it eats ammo, and it absolutely shreds through enemies. Could this be the one to replace the Pump? Let’s take look at these and figure out which one is the king.Data from the Fortnite Wiki at Gamepedia
- Magazine size: 5
- Damage/DPS: 92/64.4 (U), 100/70 (R), 108/75.6 (E), 116/81.2 (L)
- Fire rate: .7 seconds
- Headshot multiplier: 2x
Believe it or not, the Pump was actually buffed this season. If that sounds exciting, wait until you see the DPS the Primal can do.
- Magazine size: 12
- Damage/DPS: 57/216.6 (U), 60/228 (R), 63/239.4 (E), 66/250.8 (L), 69/262.2 (M)
- Fire rate: 3.8 seconds
- Headshot multiplier: 1.25x
The Primal Shotgun has some twists on the shotty formula. It fires in a two-shot burst and reloads its entire magazine at once.
While the Pump does more damage per shot, the Primal deals its damage twice in a row, leading to some absurd DPS numbers. It has significantly less range than the Pump, but is also way less accurate.
That accuracy drop won’t be much of a problem, since you’ll be going up close and personal with this one. The Pump incentivizes you to make a headshot to get a decisive kill, but the Primal wants you to just run up and tear through the enemy.
In a one-on-one battle between a Pump and a Primal, the Primal will deal its damage faster, but has a longer reload time and slower fire rate. An uncommon Primal Shotgun can hit almost as hard as the Legendary Pump, but you’ll have to run up close.
The Pump also does significantly more damage to structures than the Primal, doing about 50 damage across all rarities. The Primal Shotgun only does 20 damage to structures, no matter what level.
Holding the Primal makes you feel almost unstoppable with its eerie howl when fired and massive damage, until you realize it devours your ammo and you have to reload in the middle of a fight.
In one game, I fought off a few waves of opponents as they trickled. After the first two enemies, the Primal ran out of shots and I was trying to reload just one shell to hit the enemy before I realized that this new weapon reloads all at once. This is the sort of situation where I’d rather the Pump. The reload time on the Primal can be killer.
Which to Choose
Which one should you craft your Makeshift Shotgun into? If you can get your hands on it early, prioritize the Primal for the early game. Spawn loot seems to have been lowered overall to facilitate the crafting mechanic, and the Primal Shotgun will help you fight your way through the early game looting.
From here, keep a look out for a Pump if possible. Like in my story before, you might need the consistency of the Pump for the later game. That doesn’t mean you should ditch the Primal, though.
With both in your inventory, you can lead fights with the Primal and then switch to the Pump when you need to reload. This comes in handy for when you’re facing off against multiple enemies with powerful loot in the final circles. The Pump can also be used to crack through structures before unloading the Primal onto the enemy.