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Hitscan (alternative spelling hit-scan; also known technically as line trace or trace for short) is a term that describes a hit registration system in which damage (or any effect) is instantly[1] applied if the game can draw a straight line between the source and target's hitbox. Usually, in WARFRAME, players refer to hitscan in relation to Weapons and Ability mechanics. Sometimes, the developers will refer to hitscan weaponry as trace fire in the game's patch notes.



Most hitscan weapons will apply damage to their target instantly if there is a clear line of fire between the reticle and the target's hitbox. If the weapon's Accuracy is below 100, then shots have a chance to deviate from the reticle, which means that a shot will hit a target if there is a clear line of fire between the deviated trajectory and the target's hitbox.

A non-zero Punch Through stat will allow hitscan attacks to ignore a certain distance of level geometry or object when performing the hit registration calculation, effectively "penetrating" them to hit targets hiding behind them.

Continuous Weapons are considered to be hitscan weapons.

Hitscan attacks are limited by the Range stat. Any shots beyond this range will not register, even if there is a clear line of fire between the shot and target's hitbox.

Hit-Scan Weapons List

Line of Sight[]

Main article: Line of Sight

Line of Sight is a property derivative of the hitscan mechanic where Area of Effects (AoE) will apply damage if there is no level geometry that blocks a straight line draw between the center of AoE and target.


  • Internally, hitscan weapons are denoted by HitType = "DHT_TRACE".[2]

Patch History[]

Hotfix 31.5.9 (2022-05-12)

  • Fixed Guardian Shell intercepting some player attacks, instead of solely intercepting enemy attacks as intended.
    • This also fixes heat trace weapons (eg. Ignis, Klamora Prism Amp, etc.) and beam weapons being visually reflected by Guardian Shell.

Hotfix 27.0.12 (2020-01-23)

  • Removed the hit-scan tracers from Imperator Vandal as it's now a projectile weapon.

Hotfix 22.13.3 (2018-02-21)

Beam Weapon Changes:

Beam Weapons & Warframe. Depending on how long you've played our game you've either only known them to function as they currently do (calculating per second), or remember a time when they calculated damage much differently. Perhaps 5 year-veterans speak of a different era of Beam Weapons.

Beam Weapon behavior was originally changed to help with performance but as we've made optimizations to the game over time, we can return them to their original status of hitscan weapons with pinpoint accuracy and zero recoil. Or at least we think we can.

Perfect accuracy and high fire rate is balanced by limited range and damage ramping up from 10% to 100% over 0.8 seconds when firing and decays back to 10% over 1 second after stopping. To help with ammo economy, Beam Weapons consume 0.5 ammo per trace - unless they are Flamethrowers.

Update 22.9 (2018-01-17)

  • Sarpa and Redeemer trace distance reduced to 300m to match the rest of the non-sniper weapons.

Update 22.0 (2017-10-12)

  • All trace fire weapons trace distance reduced to 300m apart from Sniper Rifles which stay at 1000m.

Update 20.7 (2017-06-07)

  • Changed Fatal Acceleration to allow fitting on all Shotguns since trace-hit shotguns have their falloff altered by projectile speed Mods (this was already happening from Riven drawbacks).

Hotfix 20.2.3 (2017-04-19)

  • Fixed hitscan weapons like Soma Prime hitting enemies outside of the rift upon deactivation of Limbo’s Stasis.
  • Fixed continuous weapons (Ignis, etc) receiving extreme Range when used with Limbo’s Stasis.

Update: Specters of the Rail 0.0 (2016-07-08)

  • Fixed the Fatal Acceleration Mod being usable on Kohm since it was changed to Hitscan a while ago, the Mod had no affect.
  • Fixed an issue with Disruptor Drones in the Law of Retribution not properly registering hitscan weapon fire.

Update: Lunaro (2016-06-15)

  • Fixed Zephyr’s Turbulence not deflecting bullets from hitscan weapons while in mid-air as per: this thread

Update 10.3 (2013-10-09)

  • Fixed clients not being able to damage ragdolled enemies with trace fire weapons.


  1. Technically speaking, it's instant if ignoring processing time, input latency, network latency, etc.
  2. See Overframe

See Also[]