Recurve bow

From RimWorld Wiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Recurve bow

Recurve bow

A recurve bow. Its construction behaves like a tuned spring, storing energy more efficiently and delivering a faster shot.

1.3 kg
Dmg Type
Armor penetration
87 ticks (1.45 secs)
99 ticks (1.65 secs)
25.9 tile(s)
70% - 78% - 65% - 35%
Avg. accuracy
56 (m/s)
Burst Count
1 (per burst)
4.52 (3.25)
Stopping power
Wood 40
Silver 66

The Recurve bow is a light, single-shot ranged weapon in RimWorld which deals a slightly higher amount of damage per shot; moderate time between shots; moderate range and slightly higher overall accuracy.


The recurve bow has the highest armor penetration out of all neolithic-tier ranged weapons, even being somewhat higher than the greatbow's. Projectile velocity is also good, roughly matching that of pistols and shotguns; arrows fired from a recurve bow stab instead of cut due to this, which results in heavier bleeding which is comparable to a greatbow's projectile. Range is also good for a neolithic weapon, as well as overall accuracy and a stopping power that's high enough to stagger humans. Recurve bows are also somewhat easy to acquire due to their low technology requirement and resource costs, as well as the cheapest weapons that can stagger humans.

Despite being good for a neolithic weapon though, caution is still advisable when engaging enemies with basic firearms such as autopistols and revolvers. Medium-distance accuracy is good enough that the recurve bow's DPS towards 25 cells is actually comparable to that of the revolver's, though the latter will still handily beat this weapon if much closer than that distance.

Overall damage output and range for the recurve bow are both still slightly lower than the greatbow's though, and the greatbow will still fare better against armored targets than the recurve bow despite the armor penetration advantage.

Since the recurve bow's accuracy is somewhat consistent overall and projectile velocity is good, it's somewhat of a jack-of-all-trades and is thus usable with effect at all distances within its range. Regarding combat roles, the recurve bow can do well as both a damage-dealing weapon as well as a support weapon. This weapon's also good for hunting due to its respectable per-shot damage as well as range.

Against an unarmored human, a recurve bow can kill with 3 hits to the torso, 2-3 hits to the head, 2 hits to the neck, or 1 hit to the brain; cripple limbs in 2 hits; and cripple or destroy eyes and digits with a single hit. It'll generally take around 5 hits (~21.5 seconds average) to incapacitate that human from pain shock.

Overall, the recurve bow is best paired with a careful shooter up to level 11, and with a trigger-happy shooter beyond that point.

It's advisable to replace all short bows that your colony may have with recurve bows as soon as possible since recurve bows are a significant overall upgrade while only being slightly more expensive. The recurve bow would also typically be supplanted by greatbows.

Melee Combat

Tool Attack Damage Type Power AP Cooldown Likelihood Base DPS
Overall - - 9 13% 2.00s - 4.50
Limb Blunt Blunt 9 13% 2.00s 50.00% 4.50
Limb Poke Blunt 9 13% 2.00s 50.00% 4.50


Recurve bows can be purchased from neolithic war merchants and orbital combat suppliers, tribal and outlander settlements, or obtained from the following raider kinds:

Raider Kind Chance Average Quality Health
Hunter 92.89% Normal 50-180%

Recurve bows can also be manufactured at any smithy or crafting spot once the recurve bow research has been completed; from 40 wood and 5,000 ticks (83.33 secs) of work. Do note that you start with the required research project already completed with the lost tribe scenario. A crafting skill of at least 5 is required.

Recurve Bow vs. Comparable Weapons

This section goes over how well the short bow fares against comparable weapons (similar value, tech level or similar characteristics) in 1 vs. 1 combat.


  • All testing is semi-automated which allows for large sample sizes to be gathered per set of results with ease
  • All pawns have a skill level of 8 in shooting
  • No pawns have any traits that affect combat performance
  • All pawns are of 18 years of age and completely healthy
  • Pawns are divided by walls to prevent stray shots from skewing results in any way
  • Weather conditions are kept clear and no cover is used

Results in the tables below are the percentages of battles that short bows either won or tied against the weapon listed in the first column of said tables, with a sample size of 2,000 battles per result. Higher percentages are better.


For the unarmored testing, all pawns wore normal quality plainleather pants and plainleather button-down shirts.

Recurve bow vs. 3 7 12 18 25 32 40
Greatbow 55.40% 48.85% 45.15% 45.50% 44.70% - -
Short bow 61.15% 68.75% 74.30% 77.25% - - -

Flak Armor

For the flak armor testing, all pawns wore normal quality steel simple helmets, flak jackets, flak vests, plainleather button-down shirts and flak pants.

Recurve bow vs. 3 7 12 18 25 32 40
Greatbow 57.75% 53.85% 46.55% 48.40% 46.25% - -
Short bow 63.40% 68.25% 79.25% 77.20% - - -

Marine Armor

For the marine armor testing, all pawns wore normal quality marine helmets, marine armor, plainleather button-down shirts and plainleather pants.

Recurve bow vs. 3 7 12 18 25 32 40
Greatbow 61.25% 55.15% 48.35% 48.70% 46.25% - -
Short bow 65.40% 74.50% 79.30% 81.15% - - -


The graphs assume a normal quality recurve bow against an adult human that's out in the open in clear weather. For DPS, projectile speed has also been factored into the equation, with the weighting based on the base amount of attacks that it'll take to put the aforementioned target into pain shock.

Recurve bow's accuracy with various shooters without any trait. Recurve bow's DPS with various shooters without any trait.

Recurve bow's accuracy with various shooters with careful shooter. Recurve bow's DPS with various shooters with careful shooter.

Recurve bow's accuracy with various shooters with trigger-happy. Recurve bow's DPS with various shooters with trigger-happy.