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For the hack tool in BioShock, see Automatic Hack Tool.

Hack Tool Icon.png

The Hack Tool is a weapon in BioShock 2 and Minerva's Den. It enables the player to hack Rapture's various vending machines and security devices from a distance. It is the third weapon to be acquired in the game, and is first found in the Atlantic Express. It also appears under the flooded basement of the Boardroom in Minerva's Den, and it is also used by Reed Wahl in the DLC's final level. Like all other weapons, the Hack Tool has a quick-melee attack inflicting a minor amount of damage. In this attack, Delta clenches his hand into a fist and performs a straight punch.


A sketched blueprint for the Hack Tool.

The Hack Tool was an improvised piece of technology created by the clever minds of Rapture. It was more dependable than the effective though somewhat shabby Automatic Hack Tool which was spent after only one use and assembled from discarded parts. The Hack Tool, on the other hand, was purpose-built by technicians and engineers to make their daily work around the city's electronics less difficult. For obvious reasons, such a tool was never meant to be widely or commercially available to the general public, but with the instruction, the necessary parts, and the know-how to put it all together, pretty much anyone could craft a Hack Tool.[1] Inevitably, such instruments got into the wrong hands and malicious hacking became a problem in Rapture.[2]

BioShock 2[]

Main article: BioShock 2

Ammunition Types - Hack Tool[]

Remote Hack Dart.png
  • Remote Hack Dart - Base ammunition for the Hack Tool, Remote Hack Darts hack machines at a distance. Once the dart makes contact with a machine, the hacking minigame begins.
Auto Hack Dart.png
  • Automatic Hack Dart - Uncommon ammunition for the Hack Tool, Auto-Hack Darts bypass a machine's defenses to automatically hack a machine with no further work required.
Mini Turret.png
  • Miniature Turret - Rare ammunition for the Hack Tool, Mini-Turrets will automatically fire at enemies once deployed. They only last a set amount of time before auto-detonating.


  • When hacking with the Hack Tool, it is highly suggested the player do so from cover, or know a covered spot to quickly retreat to. To not do so puts the player in danger from the security device the player may be hacking (being shot at by a Turret, or detected by a Camera).
  • When the player encounters a Splicer who has control over a Security Bot, use the Auto-Hack Dart to quickly subvert the enemy's control, and turn the Bot against the Splicer unless you have a Security Command to save Auto-Hack Darts (also, killing the controlling Splicer first disables their Security Bot).
  • Auto-Hack Darts are most useful for hacking safes, since safes are the most difficult hackable devices. An Auto-Hack Dart is also very helpful for one door lock in Persephone which moves extremely fast. The disadvantage to this tactic is being unable to utilize the blue hack zones during a normal hacking process.
  • Hack Darts are fairly rare and very expensive, so it's recommended to save them for more pressing occasions. Hacking a stationary Security Camera is usually easy to accomplish manually, while attempting to hack an active Security Bot is a better use for the Hack Tool.
  • Remember that the Hacking Needle has a limited number of "passes," marked by the number below the screen with the colored zones.
  • Although it is possible to shoot enemies with the Hack Tool, doing so will deal no damage, destroy the Hack Dart and alert them to Delta's presence.
  • Misfired Hack Darts can sometimes be recovered from walls and non-hackable objects.
  • Mini-Turrets are helpful for defense, especially difficult battles like Little Sister gathering sessions or against Big Daddies and Big Sisters.

Recommended Plasmids[]

  • Electro Bolt will temporarily stun a hostile security device, letting the player hack them safely.
  • Winter Blast will freeze the device for even longer, as well as slow down the needle during the hacking process.
  • Decoy will distract nearby enemies, both machine and living alike, allowing the player to hack the target in peace.
  • Security Command will distract nearby devices for even longer, and can also be used to kill nearby Splicers. However, this may also lead to the device getting destroyed or seriously damaged.

Recommended Gene Tonics[]

  • The Careful Hacker line of Tonics will slow down the needle's speed during the hacking process, allowing for an easier hack.
  • EZ-Hack will increase the size of the green and blue zones when hacking a machine.
  • Hurried Hacker will allow the player to complete a hack instantly after hitting a blue zone. While this can potentially save the player's life if one is attacked during the hack, it'll also limit the number of bonuses one can gain with every hacked machine.
  • Quik-Hack works in a similar fashion, reducing the number of hacking stages. As with Hurried Hacker, this will speed up the hacking process at the cost of reducing the amount of bonuses one can gain. It is also recommended to avoid equipping Quik-Hack and Hurried Hacker at the same time, as both fulfill the same function.
  • Security Evasion allows the player to launch a Hack Dart at a security device without being detected.
  • The Short Circuit line of Tonics will increase the stun time when the targeted device is hit with Electro Bolt. Short Circuit 2 will cause electricity to shut machines down permanently, or until the player hacks it.



  1. Mattson's Audio Diary: First Two Digits
  2. Ryan's Audio Diary: Vandalism