Metro Wiki
Metro Wiki

The subject of this article appears in the Metro 2033 video game. The subject of this article appears in the Metro Last Light video game. The subject of this article appears in the Metro Exodus video game.

A silent, revolving air gun that shoots metal bolts. Overpressurizing its tank increases power, but the extra pressure vents before long.

— Last Light in-game description

The Helsing (Russian: Хельсинг) is a multi-stroke pneumatic air rifle that was created from scrap and the Revolver by the Metro dwellers at some point after the Great War of 2013.


Metro 2033 & Metro: Last Light[]

The Helsing is one of the more effective guns available. Silent, powerful, and with ammunition that is near infinitely reusable, the Helsing can make an ideal weapon for stealth. In practice, however, it does not perform perfectly. It works very much in the same way the Tihar does, so the guns are frequently compared to one another, as both are stealth weapons with an emphasis on marksmanship. It hisses just like the Tihar when over-pressurized, and both use a similar pumping mechanism.

The differences between the Helsing and Tihar are numerous.

Unlike the Tihar's ball bearings, the Helsing fires arrows, which have much more consistent damage than the ball bearings, especially when used for stealth attacks (where the arrows are often lethal). These arrows are reusable provided Artyom can reach them, making them one of the best ammo types for the cost. The Helsing can equip a scope like the Tihar, but this scope is the PK-AV Scope used by the Kalash, not the open-eye optical scope of the Tihar. This can aid mid-range accuracy, and makes the Helsing quite lethal in skilled hands. Over-pressurized, the Helsing's arrows possess even heavier damage than the Tihar's bullets, though the difference is not quite overwhelming.

The Helsing suffers some drawbacks at slightly longer ranges; The Helsing's arrows have a short travel distance as well as a notable dip to their trajectories at extreme range (even fully-pressurized), made worse by a tendency to drift slightly at mid-to-long-range. Hitting a man-sized target at this range is little trouble for a skilled shot with the Helsing, picking that same target at a longer range becomes a lesson in aggravation as shots that would be easily landed by the revolver, Tihar, or VSV are infuriating endeavors for Helsing users. A good example is the light bulb in the small alcove on Black Station - normally, this must be shot out in order to reliably get inside this area to progress, should Artyom be take the Merciful route. This shot is virtually impossible to take with the Helsing; the bulb is too small a target, and even with the Helsing fully-pressurized, you will find yourself habitually unable to shoot out this light with the Helsing. All in all, the Helsing is simply not very good at longer ranges, especially without the scope; up-close and out to medium range is where the Helsing is at its best.

The Helsing has other drawbacks, as well. It tends to go through pressure quicker than the Tihar, and its pump is less efficient than that of its sniper rifle cousin. Due to how the pumping system on the Helsing operates and short ready-time before it can fire, it is extremely easy to accidentally discharge an arrow when trying to over-pressurize the tank. It holds about half as much ammo as the Tihar, and fires and reloads much slower, which means that the Tihar is genuinely better for rapid-firing when the situation intensifies or goes awry. Making the situation a bit more finicky, the Helsing's pressure gauge is somewhat hard to read compared to the Tihar's. It is especially prominent on 4:3 displays.

Helsing scope isometric M2033.png

The biggest drawbacks are financial; arrows are extremely expensive ammo because of their re-usability; for the price of 20 military grade rounds, one get as many as 40 rounds of 12-gauge buckshot, 100 5.45mm rounds, or 160 Tihar rounds. Arrows that cannot be recovered are lost, this can happen if Artyom does not scavenge the dead body or fire the arrow to unreachable areas. Arrows are the least common ammo type encountered in Metro 2033 and Metro: Last Light. The arrows are mostly found on walls, target ranges, or sometimes, windowsills and other Helsings. Moreover, the Helsing is also one of the most expensive weapons in the game, with only the heavy automatic shotgun and Kalash 2012 being worth more, should one wish to buy the scoped version - which is only available in Armory Station in 2033.

Later in the game, Artyom will encounter enemies who carry more pouches and armor. While the Helsing can penetrate pouches and some armor, it will usually cause the item to fall off the enemy. This can be a problem if the item falls out of reach, or if it penetrates an ammo pouch (as picking up the ammo pouch first will cause the arrow to vanish). If the enemy falls over on top of the arrow there is a risk Artyom will not be able to recover it.

Play to its strengths and the Helsing is incredibly powerful and useful; however all that power comes with a cost. It is a true professional's weapon and one to be respected. It is one of the most effective stealth weapons in the game. When properly pumped, it is an instant and completely silent kill weapon except for when aiming for the helmets of armored soldiers. It can best be compared to the throwing knives, but a lot more reliable: carry as many as you can instead of just five, better range, can pierce through armor and easier to aim (on Ranger Mode). Both the scoped and unscoped versions are great, although the scoped version allows a better ranged view although the weapon is not accurate enough to actually make proper use of it.

It is overpowered to a point where one can reliably murder every single person in levels like Dry, Outpost, Frontline or Black Station without ever raising an alarm or even a bit of suspicion. That, and the reusable ammo make it a very effective weapon on ranger difficulty, the only problem being not being able to carry a shotgun too (though this is no longer a problem in redux version); since it is not very useful against mutants. Still, carrying a proper Kalash should be more than enough to take care of any of the mutants, since the game is, even on ranger hardcore, a lot easier than the sequel, Metro: Last Light. The librarians, as an exception, are easy kill with the Helsing; a few arrows should do it, it is recommended to take Helsing to the Library if you do not want to run from them. Consider swapping it out only at driving to Sparta, from whereon only heavy fighting with nosalises and the like will occur.

Metro Exodus[]

The Helsing converted into a crossbow

The Helsing makes another appearance in Metro Exodus, where it can now be extensively modified in ways that drastically change how the rifle functions - one option allows Artyom to transform the gun into a full crossbow that can also use arrows with explosive tips.

The Helsing first appears in the Taiga level, found attached to the back of a statue shortly after Artyom awakes following a railcar crash. By default the Helsing comes in the crossbow configuration with a one bolt ammo capacity that must be reloaded and cocked after every shot. This can be upgraded with various magazines that allows 3, 6 or 8 shots respectively before reloading, however the weapon still has to be cocked after every shot. Artyom has the option of upgrading the helsing with a pneumatic system, this changes the Helsing drastically allowing it to fire in semi auto at the expense of a slight decrease in damage as well as having to regularly pump the pneumatic system to keep performance optimal. The crossbow Helsing is the weapon of choice of The Children of the Forest.

Variants and Customization[]

Metro: Last Light[]

The Helsing has two attachment slots and five available attachments in total. Attachments in the misc slot can be equipped both at once, so the Helsing can have up to three different attachments at the same time.

Available attachments
Slot Icon Name Effect Description
LL Optics Upgrade Slot.png
LL Reflex Sight Upgrade.png Reflex sight Range +25%
Accuracy +25%
This pre-war sight makes aiming the gun at close and medium range easier, without sacrificing much of the field of view.
LL x2 Sight Upgrade.png 2x sight Range +50%
Accuracy +25%
This pre-war optical sight facilitates weapon aiming at medium range but limits the field of view, making it hard to use in the confines of tunnels.
LL NV Sight Upgrade.png IR sight Range +50%
Accuracy +25%
A piece of pre-war military tech, this Night Vision sight allows for precisely hitting targets in the dark.
LL Extra Upgrade Slot.png
LL Airtight Valve Upgrade.png Airtight valve Doesn't lose air if overpressurized The air bottle fitted with this high-quality valve of pre-war make does not leak air even when overpressurized.
LL Laser Upgrade.png Laser sight Accuracy +25% A pre-war laser sight facilitates aiming the weapon at close range, making precise snapshots easy to achieve.

Metro Exodus[]

Helsing has the same Stock upgrades as the Valve, but they have to be collected separately, possibly due to Artyom losing most of his gear at the beginning of the Taiga level. Helsing does not have a barrel, so instead, the bow mechanism can be upgraded, increasing bolt damage and the range of the weapon by lowering bolt drop off over distance. The bow can even be replaced with a pneumatic system, which improves rate of fire as it removes the necessity to cock the weapon after each shot.

List of upgrades
Slot Icon Name Effect Description
Upgrade Stock Icon.png
Pneumatic Light Stock.png Light grip and forend None (default) Light grip built of readily available materials allows its user to shoot safely.
Valve Assault Stock.png Assault stock, grip and forend Stability +2 Handmade light stock. Slightly reduces recoil.
Valve Sniper Stock.png Sniper stock, grip and forend Stability +3 Sniper wooden stock that looks like it was salvaged from a professional rifle. Greatly reduces recoil.
Valve Heavy Stock.png Heavy stock Stability +6 A piece of pipe fashioned into a stock. Significantly increases weapon stability.
Upgrade Mechanism Icon.png
Helsing Recurve Bow.png Recurve bow None (default) Recurved limbs can give greater amount of energy and speed to the arrow than the straight-bow equivalent.
Helsing Compound Bow.png Compound bow Damage +1 Compound bow limbs include a pulley system, providing a substantial increase in bolt speed.
Helsing Twin Bow.png Twin bow Damage +3 Compact and powerful pulley system ensures extremely high bolt velocities.
Helsing Pneumatic Bow.png Pneumatic bow system Rate of fire +3 Pneumatic bow system speeds up the crossbow reloading process, increasing its rate of fire considerably.
Upgrade Sight Icon.png
Helsing Iron Sight.png Iron sights Aim with iron sights Standard sight used to assist in aiming.
Reflex Sight.png Reflex sight Iron sight replaced with reflex sight This pre-war sight makes aiming the gun at close and medium range easier, without sacrificing much of the field of view.
NV Sight.png NV scope Iron sight replaced with night vision scope This night-vision scope allows for accurate placement of shots even in complete darkness.
X4 Scope.png Scope 4x Iron sight replaced with 4x scope 4x variable zoom scope.
Upgrade Mag Icon.png
Helsing Small Mag.png Small magazine 1 bolt The simplest magazine, containing one bolt on the top of the bow, is also the lightest.
Helsing Standard Mag.png Medium magazine 3-bolt magazine Heavier than the small magazine, but capable of holding 3 bolts.
Helsing Extended Mag.png Extended magazine 6-bolt magazine
Stability -1
Big cylindric magazine containing up to 6 bolts. Noticeably heavier.
Helsing Huge Mag.png High capacity magazine 8-bolt magazine
Stability -2
Huge cylindric magazine contains 8 bolts. A lot heavier than all the other ones, but allows you to reload less often.
Upgrade Gadget Icon.png
Other slot empty.png No gadget None (default) Less gadgets, less problems.
Red Laser.png Red laser Crosshair replaced with red laser dot Made from a cheap laser pointer that was heavily modified to increase power output at the cost of reliability.
Green Laser.png Green laser Crosshair replaced with green laser dot High visibility laser sight reassembled in a custom-made body along with a bunch of modifications.
Extra IR Laser.png Infrared laser Crosshair replaced with IR laser dot with NV active The IR laser sight's invisible beam produces a very small dot on the target, which is only detectable with a night vision device.


Metro 2033[]

There are two versions of this handy weapon that can be picked up.

Helsing sideview M2033.png Helsing: A standard Helsing with no scope. Not sold in stores.
  • First one can be found at the near the end of Dead City 1. Go past the body the demon was feeding on - preferably after dealing with the beast - and head down the stairs and over the wall on the right, and towards a body. Now turn around and walk up the iron bar which comes up to the second level near the bus. Turn around again and jump onto the ledge, there will be a room with a body in it, near it is a Helsing and several Arrows. Be careful - this area, especially the entrance, is highly radioactive, and you will lose health rapidly and die if you get disorientated in here. It's recommended to pick this one to replace the shotgun, as it will help greatly with stealth in Dry and the communist part of Front Line.
  • Another can be found in a room guarded by Nazi soldiers in Front Line, right in front of you as you come up the ladder from the canals after going through the secret passage.
  • One in Defense level, in the secret cache with two safes (where you get a Moral Point), near a body.
  • In Black Station inside the train after crossing the first bridge and going down the stairs. It is on the seat at one end with a smattering of ammunition, and at the other end is a target with a couple more arrows.
Helsing scope sideview M2033.png Helsing with Scope: A standard Helsing with a scope.
  • The Helsing with scope cannot be salvaged; it can only be purchased in Armory station (and it costs a bundle - 87 MGR if you have a scope-less Helsing to trade in) at the weapon shop. A drawback to this one is that the scope is custom and thus "dirty", meaning it is hard to see anything through it except when in broad daylight, and if used with night vision it flares a lot. Finally, at the range at which scope is useful the Helsing is not - it is inaccurate, the arrows drop as it travels through air and it is not an instant-hit weapon so you have to lead moving targets.

Metro 2033 Redux:[]

The following is a list of the differences observed with original game with regards to obtaining the Helsing:

  • 3 or 4 arrows can be looted in Dry station.
  • The Helsing is still available for purchase at Armory. Though the scoped version is no longer for sale, Artyom can purchase the basic model and update it through the regular store upgrade system. Air tight valve attachments are no longer for sale at this station, neither for Helsing or Tihar.
  • Helsing can no longer be salvaged on the Frontline level.
  • Artyom can take advantage of an ammo stash located next to his seat during the cart ride of the Depot level to increase their arrow supply.
  • It can be still be salvaged from Hole Station during the Defense level in one of the offices upstairs (the one that is surrounded by metal bars). It can be found next to the locked safe.
  • Air-tight valves can be purchased at the very end of Defense level, in the little refugee camp next to the doors that lead to Nazi outpost.
  • It can be looted from a corpse at the beginning of Outpost, near the Nazi searchlight.
  • It can still be looted in Black Station in the train car (comes with an IR sight, one arrow loaded, and 4 other arrows available on other side of train car).

(note this information may not be complete, if you observe anything missing please add it)

Metro: Last Light[]

The Helsing returns in Last Light a few changes to its animation and sound, but as the same weapon otherwise. It is still an instant kill on any humans, except for the heavily armored Reds during levels like Depot. This weapon is extremely rare to find, due to the fact that you can customize it yourself, the Helsing you find has little or no attachment on it. One should be very careful here, although there is no other weapon in the game that would kill them in one shot either. This still leaves it as one of the best stealth weapons in the game. If one does intend to use it, do not forget to buy some arrows as they are also hard to find.

  • The Helsing can only be bought during the Quarantine level.
  • It can be found in Contagion on a table (unmodded).
  • Next to a corpse by a pillar in The Crossing (with laser sight, reflex sight).
  • One with a laser sight can be found in the room under the playground in The Dead City.
  • In the Faction Pack DLC, in Kshatriya, it is found on the floor next to a dead body in the bathroom of the Library, near the Balaika. It is likely the crossbow that Bar and Su mention earlier in the level, owned by the previous stalker, Grisha.

Related Achievements/Trophies[]

Metro 2033[]

Ach-Air gunner.jpg Air Gunner 30 Game points.png
Kill 30 enemies using pneumatic weapons

AirBender.jpg Air Bender 20 Game points.png
Kill 30 humans with only pneumatic weapons

Weaponsmith.jpg Weaponsmith (Metro 2033) 40 Game points.png
Kill at least 1 enemy with each weapon available in the game.

Metro 2033 Redux[]

2033R Achievement Air Bender Icon.png Air Bender Bronze Trophy Icon.png / 15 Game points.png
Kill 50 humans with pneumatic weapons.

Metro: Last Light[]

LL Achievement Gunslinger Icon.png Gunslinger Bronze Trophy Icon.png / 15 Game points.png
Kill at least one Enemy with each Weapon available in the game.

LL Achievement Van Helsing Icon.png Van Helsing Bronze Trophy Icon.png / 30 Game points.png
Kill a Demon with the Helsing.

Metro Exodus[]

ME Achievement Robin Hood Icon.png Robin Hood Bronze Trophy Icon.png / 15 Game points.png
Kill 30 enemies with Crossbow.

ME Achievement Professional Icon.png Professional Bronze Trophy Icon.png / 15 Game points.png
Make at least one kill with every ranged weapon.


  • The name of the weapon is a reference to the repeating crossbow used by the protagonist in the 2004 movie Van Helsing, which used compressed gas to fire bolts in a similar manner.
  • Khan carries the scoped variant, and uses it to help Artyom in Dry Station, if he chooses a stealth approach.
  • If Artyom stands idle long enough with the non-scoped version equipped, he will clean the iron sights and adjust the fittings.
  • In the twelve-minute E3 preview of Metro: Last Light, the Helsing is seen with a reflex sight attached to it.
  • It is the only weapon that can be found (and not purchased) by the player character in the Kshatriya DLC mission.


  • In survival Ranger hardcore, If carrying the Helsing during reloading a checkpoint/dying, all the spare ammo may disappear.


Metro 2033[]

Metro: Last Light[]

Metro Exodus[]