The Ballistic Knife is a Special secondary weapon that appears in Call of Duty: Black Ops, Call of Duty: Black Ops II, Call of Duty: Black Ops: Declassified, Call of Duty Online, Call of Duty: Black Ops III, Call of Duty: Black Ops 4, and Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War. It also appears in several Finishing Moves in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare.
- 1 Call of Duty: Black Ops
- 2 Call of Duty: Black Ops II
- 3 Call of Duty: Black Ops: Declassified
- 4 Call of Duty Online
- 5 Call of Duty: Black Ops III
- 6 Call of Duty: Black Ops 4
- 7 Call of Duty: Modern Warfare
- 8 Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War
- 9 Trivia
- 10 References
Call of Duty: Black Ops
The Ballistic Knife is a secondary weapon. It is a one-hit kill when fired as well as when used to melee. Like the Tomahawk, the fired knives can be reused if picked up off the ground or wherever it embeds itself. The trajectory of the knife in flight is similar to the Tomahawk, but more direct; it goes much further before losing momentum and dipping below the aim point. The knife must be primed by pulling a pin before it can fire. It is recommended to switch to the Ballistic Knife after every spawn, and then back. After this is done, the second time it is drawn, its draw time is approximately as fast as a pistol's, and can make the difference between life and death. The Ballistic Knife also greatly increases melee speed, so it is often used in knife classes for the quick stab and the ability to reach out and touch an enemy from a distance.
The Ballistic Knife is best used when in conjunction with Perks Lightweight or Scavenger. Lightweight allows the player to run quickly and melee opponents entering a building, or coming round a corner or to make up for lost knife shots, while Scavenger can replenish lost knives. An even greater advantage, is when used with Lightweight Pro, which allows the player to jump from high points, and knife enemies on the ground below, and Ninja Pro, which allows the player to silently slip into a building, and knife enemies inside. However the Ballistic Knife is not recommended at long range combat, as the enemy can easily shoot the player, and knives which are shot may miss the enemy. When used in Hardcore, it has no aiming reticule or ability to aim down the sights and as such, is a poor secondary choice for inexperienced players. Be wary though, that despite what most players think, firing the Ballistic Knife will make a red dot appear on the mini-map. This means it is not suited for a stealthy role.
The Ballistic Knife also appears in the Wager Match modes Gun Game, Sharpshooter, and Sticks and Stones. In Gun Game, it is used as tier 20 and the final weapon to be used. In order to win, the final kill must be made by firing the knife, not by stabbing with it. In Sticks and Stones, the Ballistic Knife is used as the secondary weapon and cannot be replaced.
The Ballistic Knife is available through the Mystery Box for 950 points. The player is able to pick up knives after being stuck into zombies plus it allows for faster knifing and movement speed, as well as more damage per stab (one stab up to about round five without the Sickle or Bowie Knife). Although the Ballistic Knife has a much higher stabbing strength in Zombies, most players think this weapon is not useful due to its low ammo count, rate of fire, and damage. However, if there are multiple players in the game, the Ballistic Knife is a good secondary weapon, as when Pack-a-Punched via the Pack-a-Punch Machine, it can be very effective even at later rounds, in case the player's teammates are often down (more details on the Pack-a-Punched version below). If the Bowie Knife or Sickle is purchased, it will replace the regular melee knife when wielding the Ballistic Knife. This combination will be a one-hit kill to regular zombies up until round 10, a one-hit kill to Crawler Zombies up until round 13, and a one-hit kill to a Hellhounds until the third hellhound round. Even after, it is no longer able to instantly kill in one hit, it remains two hits up to almost round 20, and can still be just as lethal if in the right hands. The Ballistic Knife is very effective at making lots of points, due to its faster and more lethal knife attack. Therefore, (for the average player not skilled at running/knifing) if the player obtains the weapon at rounds four to ten, it is advised to use it with the combination of the Bowie Knife or a Sickle to make thousands of points. Once it loses its ability to kill with one knife attack, it should be upgraded and used until round 14. Even after round 14, it can kill the Crawler Zombies until round 16 with one stab. The user will also pull out the Ballistic Knife while downed instead of the usual pistol.
When Pack-a-Punched it becomes "The Krauss Refibrillator" and will revive a player instantly if hit by the blade, which will give the trophy/achievement "See Me, Stab Me, Heal Me". Note the fact that if the player is downed, their knives will not revive other players, it will down them instead.
As with all knife strategies, Juggernog is highly recommended, as in extremely close-quarters with a group of zombies, it is likely that the zombies will hit the player multiple times, making Juggernog necessary. However, even with Juggernog, it is still wise to back off after each knife to avoid getting hit too many times.
For runners, it is recommended that when attempting to knife multiple zombies, rather that directly plunging the blade into their gut resulting in time used to pull the blade out, the player should stab while looking near but not at the zombie. This causes you to slash with the knife rather than stab.
Ballistic Knife vs. The Krauss Refibrillator
|Ballistic Knife||The Krauss Refibrillator|
|Damage||500 melee or shot (1000 melee with Bowie Knife/Sickle)||1000 melee or shot (1500 for melee with Bowie Knife/Sickle)|
|Rate of fire||N/A||N/A|
|Extras||More damage, increased melee damage, more ammo, quicker reload, when a downed player is shot, they are revived instantly|
See Me, Stab Me, Heal Me (15 / Bronze Trophy ) - Fire a Pack-a-Punched Ballistic Knife at a downed ally to revive them from a distance.
Call of Duty: Black Ops II
- "Spring-action knife launcher. Increases melee speed and can fire the blade as a projectile."
- — Create-a-Class description.
The Ballistic Knife can be unlocked in the customized classes by completing 5 challenges in the mission "Fallen Angel". The Call of Duty: Black Ops model is also available as the Spring Knife, which is unlocked in the exact same manner.
The Ballistic Knife reappears in Call of Duty: Black Ops II. When fired, it is much quieter than its counterpart from Call of Duty: Black Ops. However, the Ballistic Knife will still make the player appear on the mini-map when shooting the blade, which can put the user at a huge disadvantage. Usage of EMP Grenades, EMP Systems, refraining to fire the blade when needing stealth, or playing in Hardcore game types can help mitigate the stealth deficiency.
The fired knives can now be picked up by walking over them, much like the Combat Axe. This method is much quicker than in Black Ops. The weapon again appears in the modes Gun Game, Sharpshooter and Sticks and Stones. In the latter two game modes, it is very common for players to simply use the melee attack and not fire the blade at all.
Equipping the Ballistic Knife will grant the user a 2% increase in movement speed. This makes Lightweight a good perk choice to use with the Ballistic Knife, making the player move at a total of 109% normal movement speed. Switching to a Combat Knife, if available, may be more useful in certain scenarios for moving fast as the Combat Knife has a fifty percent longer sprint duration time than the Ballistic Knife.
The camouflages for the Ballistic knife can be unlocked by doing the following actions:
- DEVGRU Camouflage - Get 25 kills with the Ballistic knife
- A-TACS AU Camouflage - Get 50 kills with the Ballistic knife
- ERDL Camouflage - Get 75 kills with the Ballistic knife
- Siberia Camouflage - Get 100 kills with the Ballistic knife
- Choco Camouflage - Get 125 kills with the Ballistic knife
- Blue Tiger Camouflage - Get 150 kills with the Ballistic knife
- Bloodshot Camouflage - Get 200 kills with the Ballistic knife
- Ghostex: Delta 6 Camouflage - Get 250 kills with the Ballistic knife
- Kryptek: Typhon Camouflage - Get 300 kills with the Ballistic knife
The following are unlocked after completing all above camouflages:
- Carbon Fiber Camouflage - Earn 5 Revenge medals with the Ballistic Knife
- Cherry Blossom Camouflage - Get 25 melee kills with the Ballistic Knife
- Art of War Camouflage - Get 25 kills with retrieved Ballistic Knife blades
- Ronin Camouflage - Get 1 Double kill medal using the Ballistic Knife
- Skulls Camouflage - Get 2 Bloodthirsty medals using only the Ballistic Knife
- Gold Camouflage - Complete all Camo unlocks for the Ballistic Knife
- Diamond Camouflage - Get Gold on all specials to unlock Diamond for all Specials
- "The pen is mightier than the sword! This appears to be a combination of the two..."
- — Marlton Johnson, when obtaining the Ballistic Knife in Die Rise.
The Ballistic Knife can be obtained from the Mystery Box for 950 points. It will remain a one-hit-kill up to round 4. Due to its melee-enhancing ability, it is a good early-game choice for point making, making the player less vulnerable when attacking zombies while also being more productive. The Ballistic Knife is less reliant on a Max Ammo than most other weapons, as ammunition can be retrieved after being shot, and the Ballistic Knife will always have its melee performance-increasing advantage regardless of ammo.
When upgraded, it will become the The Krauss Refibrillator. It reuses the old model and animations from Call of Duty: Black Ops like the Spring Knife. The Krauss Refibrillator's instant revival ability conflicts with the abilities of the Perks Tombstone Soda and Who's Who, making it a questionable weapon to use in combination with those two Perks. It is available in all maps excluding Mob of the Dead and Origins.
On Die Rise, the Ballistic knife takes a part in the main Easter Egg High Maintenance, on the side of Maxis. During one of the steps, players have to Pack-a-Punch the weapon, and shoot its projectile on one of the walls of the Budha room, after Zombies were killed in the room. Maxis hints towards the weapon saying "Reincarnation is key", pointing towards the Krauss Refibrillator's ability to heal players. Maxis will react to the players Pack-a-Punching the Ballistic knife, as well as when the step is completed, saying the energy of the broken souls was released.
On Buried, there is an Easter Egg that requires the Ballistic Knife. In the saloon, if a player with a Ballistic Knife hits the bullseye on the dartboard from behind the white chalk line on the floor, the piano will start playing by itself. If the player gets to the piano in the Mansion within ninety seconds, the player can see a Ghost playing the piano. The player can tip the Ghost ten points and the player will receive a free perk, regardless of the usual four perk limit.
Ballistic Knife vs Krauss Refibrillator
|Ballistic Knife||Krauss Refibrillator|
|Damage||500 melee or shot (now remains the same with Bowie Knife)||1000 melee or shot (now remains the same with Bowie Knife)|
|Extras||Instantly revives a fallen teammate when shot at. Melee attacks with a normal knife and the Bowie Knife (but not the Galvaknuckles) receive both a 10% damage increase as well as a 50% increase in animation speed when equipped along with the Krauss Refibrillator.|
Call of Duty: Black Ops: Declassified
The Ballistic Knife appears in Call of Duty: Black Ops: Declassified.
It can be found in the mission Rocket's Red Glare.
It can be unlocked and used in multiplayer. It is a secondary weapon like previous games.
Call of Duty Online
The Ballistic Knife returns in Call of Duty Online.
Call of Duty: Black Ops III
- "A knife that can fire its blade as a projectile."
- — In-game description
The Ballistic Knife was added to Call of Duty: Black Ops III on March 16, 2017, only available through the Black Market. Players could also play with the Ballistic Knife within the Sticks and Stones playlist.
The Ballistic Knife sports a very similar look and feel to its Call of Duty: Black Ops II iteration. The biggest changes made were is how the weapon is held (with it being pointed downward), melee animation, and the fire rate increase of the knife. It is possible that the fire rate increase was made so that it could have a better chance with competing with people who are constantly thrust jumping or using similar weapon like the NX ShadowClaw.
When fired, it is louder than its counterpart from Call of Duty: Black Ops II. Like always, the Ballistic Knife will still make the player appear on the mini-map when shooting the blade, which can put the user at a huge disadvantage, as weapons such as the ShadowClaw possess the ability to remain hidden.
The fired knives can be picked up by walking over them, much like the Combat Axe or the ShadowClaw.
Overall, the Ballistic Knife remains a great weapon for a player of an accurate nature.
The camouflages for the Ballistic Knife can be unlocked by doing the following actions:
- Jungle Tech Camouflage - Get 10 kills with the Ballistic Knife
- Ash Camouflage - Get 20 kills with the Ballistic Knife
- Flectarn Camouflage - Get 40 kills with the Ballistic Knife
- Heat Stroke Camouflage - Get 60 kills with the Ballistic Knife
- Snow Job Camouflage - Get 80 kills with the Ballistic Knife
- Dante Camouflage - Get 100 kills with the Ballistic Knife
- Integer Camouflage - Get 120 kills with the Ballistic Knife
- 6 Speed Camouflage - Get 160 kills with the Ballistic Knife
- Policia Camouflage - Get 200 kills with the Ballistic Knife
The following are unlocked after completing all above camouflages:
- Ardent Camouflage - Get 10 Longshot medals with the Ballistic Knife
- Burnt Camouflage - Get 50 Survivor medals by killing a player with the Ballistic Knife
- Bliss Camouflage - Get 50 Revenge medals by killing a player with the Ballistic Knife
- Battle Camouflage - Get 2 rapid kills 5 times with both kills coming from the Ballistic Knife
- Chameleon Camouflage - Get 5 kills without dying 5 times with all kills coming from the Ballistic Knife
- Gold Camoflauge - Complete all Camo unlocks for the Ballistic Knife
- Diamond Camouflage - Unlock Gold for all secondaries
- Dark Matter Camouflage - Earn Dark Matter by earning Diamond Camo on all weapons in the game
Call of Duty: Black Ops 4
- "Spring-action knife launcher. Can be used in melee or as a projectile weapon."
- — Description
- Operator Mod: Dual Wield
The Ballistic Knife is available in the zombies mode from the Mystery Box for 950 points. It is able to melee kill zombies with a single strike until wave 5. When Pack-a-Punched it becomes the The Krauss Refibulator++, gaining increased reserve ammo and stronger melee damage. While Pack-a-Punched, It is able to melee zombies in one hit until wave 12.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare
The Ballistic Knife appears exclusively as a weapon used during Finishing Moves. Some are available only to specific Spetsnaz operators, while the "Payback" Finishing Move is available to all operators.
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War
The Ballistic Knife returns in Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War. It will be added as part of Season Three content for the game.
- In Zombies, only one player at a time can have a ballistic knife.
- There is a slight knock-back when firing. This is more noticeable when standing still.
Call of Duty: Black Ops
- The Ballistic Knife had a different Create-a-Class picture in game trailers; it had a bigger handle and a different blade shape.
- Tally marks can be seen on the left hand knife that is used to melee with via Theater Mode.
- In game-winning killcams, a fired Ballistic Knife will frequently appear to miss the target due to moderate lag commonly associated with killcams.
- Its melee attack does not count as a knife kill if the player stabs someone in multiplayer. Instead it counts as a kill for the Ballistic Knife.
- It has the symbol of the USSR on the left side of it.
- If the player shoots the Ballistic Knife at the oil tanks in the multiplayer map Array, the fired knife will just either roll slowly in the air and then fall down, or just stay in mid air.
- When the Sickle is bought, the Ballistic Knife's ammo is replenished.
- On the Ziplines in Call of the Dead, the Ballistic Knives float in mid air, due to the hands disappearing.
- If one shoots a mannequin in the multiplayer map Nuketown in the back, the knife will end up on the floor instead of sticking into them.
- The killfeed icon on the Wii is different and looks like the knife icon facing the other way.
Call of Duty: Black Ops II
- The Zombies variant has no crawling animation. Instead, it simply disappears off-screen when crawling, like in previous games. The same happens with the campaign's Manual Crossbow.
- In Zombies, prior to an update, the pick-up button had to be pressed in order to retrieve the fired knives like in Black Ops. This has now been patched.
- When using the Ballistic Knife in combination with the Galvaknuckles or Combatant Suppression Knuckles, the Ballistic Knife will not be used to melee. Instead, it will use the standard animation of either of the Galvaknuckles or the Combatant Suppression Knuckles.
- When Diamond Camouflage is applied, the Combat Knife that is held with the Ballistic Knife will be gold and the string around where it is held will be diamond, which is the opposite of what it is on the normal combat knife.
- This combat knife can't be customized by applying camouflages on the default knife, unlike other knives such as the normal combat knife and the Tactical Knife.
- Blades fired can be destroyed by a Trophy System.
- The Ballistic Knife cannot be placed in the Weapon Locker.
Call of Duty: Black Ops4
- "The Aviary", along with a stylised bird logo, is visible on the side of the blade.