The Dragunov is the weakest sniper rifle in the game, however it also has the highest fire rate, largest magazine size, and is the the most durable weapon (Compared to other sniper rifles). As with all other weapons, a headshot will still be a one-hit kill.
Being the least powerful sniper rifle in terms of firepower, the Dragunov is one of the most tactical weapons in game. Manipulation of enemy AI is made relatively easy with this rifle. For example, a player can use this rifle to wound an enemy by shooting him in the leg, and rather than finishing the job, wait for the enemy to call for help. When a friend comes to the aid of the wounded mercenary, the player can easily finish the two of them off with a well-placed shot, or even wound both of them and use them as bait. The Dragunov is a very good rifle for wounding rather than killing outright; the M1903 requires more careful aiming and does not allow for quick sharpshooting and the AS50 usually kills with one shot anywhere on the upper body.
Due to its high fire rate, the Dragunov can be fired rapidly at close range for self-defense if you run into an unexpected enemy at close range. However, it is still recommended to use a submachine gun or light machinegun to deal with enemies at close range.
“This battle-tested Commie semi-automatic sniper rifle can be considered a more accurate and powerful version of the AK47. SVDs are fine guns but the ones found on Rook Island are cheap Chinese knock-offs, meaning they'll work fine but you may get lead poisoning.”
— Survival Guide
Far Cry 3
The SVD appears once again in Far Cry 3.
This weapon will become free after deactivating 3 Radio Towers.
The SVD is a semi-automatic sniper rifle and the standard weapon of Pirate snipers.
The SVD is the starting sniper rifle which can be quickly and easily unlocked. The sniper rife favors medium range combat. Players who prefer a high-damage, medium range playstyle benefit from the use of this weapon since it can kill all enemies, except Heavies, with two shots to any body part.
Due to being semi-automatic it tends to consume ammo rather quickly so larger ammo purchases are a necessity. Because of this, the SVD is the weakest weapon in the game, similar to the F1, STG-90, and the 6P9. However unlike the latter, the SVD does not have any attachments at all and lacks a signature weapon based on the SVD. Even then, the M-700 should be equipped and modified with a silencer to increase the choices of tactical or stealth play. The SVD should not be recommended.
The SVD is available in multiplayer at level 33, this time with a number of unlockable attachments. The SVD in both campaign and multiplayer is a good choice for someone who wants a rifle that is capable of getting two or more shots off in a quick time period.
- In Far Cry 3, the handbook describes that the SVD the Pirates (and by extension, Jason) use is a Chinese copy; likely meaning that it is not an actual Russian-made SVD, but rather a Norinco NDM-86.
- The text mentions that it can give you lead poisoning; this can be interpreted literally as the lead-based bullet many weapons use would cause it, or metaphorically as a reference to cheaply manufactured Chinese goods using lead based paint.
- Applying the Wood paint on the SVD makes it similar in appearance with its Far Cry 2 incarnation.
- The SVD is one of the weapons in Far Cry 3 that lacks attachments in the campaign.
- Likely for balancing reasons, the SVD in Far Cry 3 only holds 5 rounds in the magazine, as compared to the 10 rounds the weapon held in Far Cry 2.
The SVD appears again in Far Cry 4. It costs $35,000 in game but can be easily acquired for free by obtaining them from Royal Army snipers. It's a good sniper rifle for beginners who prefer damage over stealth, sharing a near identical damage output with the M-700 with the advantage of semi-automatic fire. However, it still does not support attachments, meaning it is incapable of stealth due to the lack of support for suppressors, and cannot have its magazine size increased, meaning that the player will have to do frequent reloads.
Another disadvantage is that it cannot one shot most enemies, unless the player can reliably score headshots. A good replacement for those that prefer stealth over damage is the M-700, the other easily obtainable sniper rifle that has the advantage of supporting two attachments, but fires only in bolt-action. Like many other weapons in the Far Cry series the Far Cry 4 SVD is also flipped having the charging handle on the left side, when original weapon has it on the right side.
“The preferred choice of designated marksmen the world over.”
— In-Game Description
Far Cry 5
The SVD appears in the Hours of Darkness expansion for Far Cry 5.
The SVD can be found scattered throughout the valley, both as loot drops and on the bodies of dead Viet Cong and NVA snipers. A suppressed version can be found near Major Vong on a case outside the shack directly opposite the camp on the North river bank.
- After being added to Far Cry 5, putting a suppressor on the SVD removes any sound the weapon makes during firing, as it does not have a suppressed firing sound.