Destiny 2 Best PvP Weapons right now (Season 23 Meta)

by | Dec 18, 2023

As you get more invested in Destiny 2, one of the first questions you’ll have is: What are the best weapons in the game?

And that’s not an easy question to answer, as it depends on whether you’re interested in PvP or PvE, casual or endgame content, etc. Today, we’ll focus on the best PvP weapons right now. We’ll cover both Exotic and Legendary weapons (including their PvP god rolls) and give you an overview of the current PvP meta.

Checkmark icon V3Updated as of Season of the Wish (S23). See Updates.

Best PvP Primary weapons

Destiny 2 Primary ammoIn this section, we cover the best Primary PvP weapons. And by Primary, we mean either Energy or Kinetic weapons that use Primary ammo. Just remember Primary weapons use “normal” ammo, aka, white ammo boxes:

WeaponsTypeAmmoSlotRequirementsIn loot pool?SourceSource ❘ DLCVerdictPart of?
Igneous Hammer art
Igneous Hammer
Hand CannonPrimaryEnergyLightfallNoTrials of OsirisTrials of Osiris
Lightfall Preorder icon
Lightfall
Slot: Solar Solar | Ammo: Primary ammo Destiny 2 Primary | Archetype: Aggressive

PvE God Roll: Rapid Hit (also good: Outlaw) + Rampage

► While not as strong as it was a year or so ago, Igneous Hammer boasts the best stats out of all 120 RPM Hand Cannons and comes with some sweet perks. Even though it isn't currently meta, this weapon can excel in any environment you put it in.
PVP
No Time to Explain Destiny 2
No Time to Explain
Pulse RiflePrimaryKineticBeyond LightYesBeyond Light CampaignBeyond Light Campaign
Beyond Light Destiny 2 icon
Beyond Light
Slot: Kinetic symbol Destiny 2 Kinetic | Ammo: Primary ammo Destiny 2 Primary | Archetype: Exotic

Exotic Perk: "Precision shots and shots against combatants affected by Stasis return to the magazine. At 10 stacks, a small portal will open, shooting bullets from an alternate timeline version of this weapon. Precision hits extend the portal's duration."

► An exceptional pick in PVP (and a fun one in PVE), No Time to Explain's ability to provide you with an extra set of bullets continues to be helpful in most areas of the game.
PVP
Fatebringer art
Fatebringer
Hand CannonPrimaryKineticFree-to-PlayYesVault of Glass RaidVault of Glass Raid
Free to Play Destiny 2 icon
Free-to-Play
Slot: Kinetic symbol Destiny 2 Kinetic | Ammo: Primary ammo Destiny 2 Primary | Archetype: Adaptive

PvE God Roll: Explosive Payload + Firefly
PvP God Roll: Explosive Payload + Eye of the Storm

► One of the most iconic legendary weapons in the game, Fatebringer comes with insane stats and great perks. While it does have some competition, namely Eyasluna, this almost-perfect Hand Cannon holds its ground as an all-time community favorite.
PVE,PVP
Destiny 2 Sunshot art
Sunshot
Hand CannonPrimaryEnergyFree-to-PlayYesExotic EngramExotic Engram
Free to Play Destiny 2 icon
Free-to-Play
Slot: Solar Solar | Ammo: Primary ammo Destiny 2 Primary | Archetype: Exotic

Exotic Perk: "This weapon fires explosive rounds. Targets killed with Sunshot explode in Solar energy."

► One of very few Lightweight Hand Cannons left in the game, Sunshot feels exceptionally great to use even while disregarding its exotic perk. However, looking at how many explosions you can set off with this weapon, it's clear why the community often regards Sunshot as both fun and a beast at ad clear.
PVE,PVP
Ammit AR2 art
Ammit AR2
Auto RiflePrimaryEnergyFree-to-PlayYesWorld loot poolWorld loot pool
Free to Play Destiny 2 icon
Free-to-Play
Slot: Solar Solar | Ammo: Primary ammo Destiny 2 Primary | Archetype: Precision

PvE God Roll: Stats For All + Incandescent (also good: Adrenaline Junkie)
PvP God Roll: Dynamic Sway Reduction + Tap the Trigger

► While the perk pool is solid with standouts such as Incandescence, the range of Ammit AR2 coupled with Arrowhead Brake to reduce recoil will have you shredding opponents in The Crucible and in PvE.
PVP
Destiny 2 Thorn
Thorn
Hand CannonPrimaryKineticForsaken PackYesExotic KioskExotic Kiosk
Forsaken Destiny 2 icon
Forsaken Pack
Slot: Kinetic symbol Destiny 2 Kinetic | Ammo: Primary ammo Destiny 2 Primary | Archetype: Exotic

Exotic Perk: "Rounds pierce targets and deal damage over time. Kills leave behind Remnants which, when absorbed, increase damage."

► Thorn has rocketed right back into the meta with the release of its Exotic Catalyst. This catalyst provides practically everything: Range, Mobility, Handling, and Stability upon a single kill, or absorbing a remnant. This allows for constant kill-chaining and lets good players take over any lobby.
PVP
Rose art
Rose
Hand CannonPrimaryKineticFree-to-PlayYesPlaylist: CruciblePlaylist: Crucible
Free to Play Destiny 2 icon
Free-to-Play
Slot: Kinetic symbol Destiny 2 Kinetic | Ammo: Primary ammo Destiny 2 Primary | Archetype: Lightweight

PvP God Rolls: Moving Target + Explosive Payload (also good: Eye of the Storm)

► Rose was a reward from competitive PvP, so it makes sense that it's a monster in The Crucible. The weapon has absurd stats and perks that allow it to rocket past its competition. Sure, it's harder to obtain than other options, but this grind is easily worth it if you're an avid Crucible player.
PVP
 class=
No Survivors
Submachine GunPrimaryEnergyDeluxe EditionYesGhost of the Deep DungeonGhost of the Deep Dungeon
The Witch Queen Destiny 2 icon
Deluxe Edition
Slot: Solar Solar | Ammo: Primary ammo Destiny 2 Primary | Archetype: Aggressive

PvP God Roll: Surplus + Target Lock

► No Survivors is the best energy slot SMG right now. A solid archetype, good stats, and brilliant dueling capabilities, thanks to Target Lock's damage and Surplus's stat-boosting perks, make No Survivors an excellent option in PvP. Pair No Survivors with a powerful Kinetic weapon like Conditional Finality and thank us later.
PVP
Unending Tempest art
Unending Tempest
Submachine GunPrimaryKineticFree-to-PlayYesPlaylist: CruciblePlaylist: Crucible
Free to Play Destiny 2 icon
Free-to-Play
Slot: Stasis Stasis | Ammo: Primary ammo Destiny 2 Primary | Archetype: Precision

PvE God Rolls: Demolitionist (also good: Perpetual Motion) + Adrenaline Junkie (also good: Headstone)
PvP God Roll: Perpetual Motion + Target Lock

► Many call Unending Tempest the king of SMGs. This Precision frame SMG has an excellent TTK, great range, and has all the right perks (Target Lock, anyone?) to compete with The Immortal. If you're a fan of SMGs, you need this weapon.
PVP
Destiny 2 Le Monarque art
Le Monarque
Combat BowPrimaryEnergyForsaken PackYesExotic KioskExotic Kiosk
Forsaken Destiny 2 icon
Forsaken Pack
Slot: Void Void | Ammo: Primary ammo Destiny 2 Primary | Archetype: Exotic

Exotic Perk: "Arrows fired quickly after a full draw become poison arrows. Precision hits with poison arrows spread poison to nearby enemies."

► Le Monarque is a ridiculously oppressive pick in PvP as it can be combined with a Hand Cannon to deliver blindingly fast combo kills with relative ease. It also comes with intrinsic Overload Arrows, which, combined with its poison effect, are highly effective against Overload Champions. This makes Le Monarque an incredible pick for PvE too.
PVP

⚠️ PS: This will soon be updated to include a few of the excellent Brave weapons, such as Luna’s Howl, The Mountaintop, Hammerhead and Elsie’s Rifle.

Best PvP Special weapons

Destiny 2 special ammoIn this section, we cover the best Special PVP weapons. And by Special, we mean either kinetic or Energy weapons that use Special ammo. If you sometimes get confused between Energy and Special weapons, just remember, Special weapons use “Special” ammo, aka green ammo boxes:

WeaponsTypeAmmoSlotRequirementsIn loot pool?SourceSource ❘ DLCVerdictPart of?
Destiny 2 The Chaperone art
The Chaperone
ShotgunSpecialKineticBeyond LightYesExotic QuestExotic Quest
Beyond Light Destiny 2 icon
Beyond Light
Slot: Kinetic symbol Destiny 2 Kinetic | Ammo: Special ammo Destiny 2 Special | Archetype: Exotic

Exotic Perk: "Fires a single-slug precision round. Precision kills briefly grant bonus handling, range, and precision damage with this weapon."

► It certainly requires more skill than your average pellet shotgun, but in the right hands, The Chaperone is the deadliest shotgun in the entire game. Because of its excellent base stats and Precision-slug frame, The Chaperone has the longest one-hit kill distance of any shotgun in the game, provided you can hit your headshots.
PVP
Duality Destiny 2
Duality
ShotgunSpecialEnergyBeyond LightYesExotic KioskExotic Kiosk
Beyond Light Destiny 2 icon
Beyond Light
Slot: Solar Solar | Ammo: Special ammo Destiny 2 Special | Archetype: Exotic

Exotic Perk: "Fires a pellet spread in hip-fire or a single high-damage slug while aiming. Pellet final blows grant a stacking precision damage and reload speed buff. Precision hits with slugs extend the duration."

► Duality is still, to this day, one of the most potent Special Weapons in the game. It is the king of shotgun versatility, and in the hands of a skilled player, it can turn any lobby upside-down with its unique Pellet/Slug Shotgun playstyle. It's also a very stylish weapon netting it some bonus points.
PVP
Cloudstrike Destiny 2
Cloudstrike
Sniper RifleSpecialEnergyBeyond LightYesExotic QuestExotic Quest
Beyond Light Destiny 2 icon
Beyond Light
Slot: Arc Arc | Ammo: Special ammo Destiny 2 Special | Archetype: Exotic

Exotic Perk: "Precision final blows generate a lightning bolt at the target's location. Rapid precision hits create a lightning storm at the point of impact."

► Cloudstrike is a monster in all areas of the game. It pumps out substantial damage in PvE compared to other snipers, and it can easily eliminate an entire team of Guardians in The Crucible. Plus, it's super fun and satisfying to use. What's not to love?
PVP
Matador 64 art
Matador 64
ShotgunSpecialEnergy30th AnniversaryYesGrasp of Avarice DungeonGrasp of Avarice Dungeon
Destiny 2 30th anniversary icon
30th Anniversary
Slot: Arc Arc | Ammo: Special ammo Destiny 2 Special | Archetype: Precision

PvP God Roll: Perpetual Motion + Opening Shot (also good: Killing Wind)

► Matador 64 is one of the best Shotguns in the game. Being part of the Precision Frame family gives it a boost, but its excellent perks bring it the extra mile, with Opening Shot and Perpetual Motion both being high-value perks.
PVP
Beloved art
Beloved
Sniper RifleSpecialEnergyBeyond LightYesPresagePresage
Beyond Light Destiny 2 icon
Beyond Light
Slot: Solar Solar | Ammo: Special ammo Destiny 2 Special | Archetype: Adaptive

PvP God Roll: Snapshot Sights + Moving Target (also good: Quickdraw)

► Arguably the community's favorite legendary sniper in the entire franchise, this "beloved" weapon is back and better than ever before. With low zoom, high aim assist, the ability to be crafted, and Snapshot Sights, it's no wonder Beloved is so popular in PVP.
PVP
Defiance of Yasmin art
Defiance of Yasmin
Sniper RifleSpecialKineticFree-to-PlayYesKing's Fall RaidKing's Fall Raid
Free to Play Destiny 2 icon
Free-to-Play
Slot: Kinetic symbol Destiny 2 Kinetic | Ammo: Special ammo Destiny 2 Special | Archetype: Adaptive

PvP God Roll: Snapshot Sights + Opening Shot
PvE God Roll: Firefly + Firing Line

► Defiance of Yasmin rarely gets any talk, which is strange given how solid its perk pool and stats are. Individual snipers are better in specific activities, but Defiance is a jack of all trades that's hard to beat in terms of overall potency.
PVP
Conditional Finality art
Conditional Finality
ShotgunSpecialKineticLightfallYesRoot of Nightmares RaidRoot of Nightmares Raid
Lightfall Preorder icon
Lightfall
Slot: Stasis Stasis | Ammo: Special ammo Destiny 2 Special | Archetype: Exotic

Exotic Perk: "Dual barrels split into Stasis and Solar damage. Landing nearly all Stasis pellets will freeze targets; landing nearly all Solar pellets will ignite targets."

► Conditional Finality is remarkable. In PvE, it has Champion stunning capabilities and excellent potential damage with a hot-swap setup, rivaling even Izanagi's Burden. In PvP, it has great handling, solid 1-hit kill range, and can take down supers with its Freeze-Ignite effect.
PVE,PVP
Imperial Decree art
Imperial Decree
ShotgunSpecialKineticFree-to-PlayYesEngram FocusingEngram Focusing
Free to Play Destiny 2 icon
Free-to-Play
Slot: Kinetic symbol Destiny 2 Kinetic | Ammo: Special ammo Destiny 2 Special | Archetype: Aggressive

God Rolls: Threat Detector (also good: Slideshot) + Opening Shot

► Aggressive shotguns are one of the best options for PvP due to their pellet spread and high damage. Imperial Decree comes with excellent perks, making it a contender for Best Shotgun for the kinetic slot. Plus, it can be crafted, which cuts down on the luck required to get a god roll.
PVP
Mercurial Overreach art Destiny 2
Mercurial Overreach
Sniper RifleSpecialEnergyFree-to-PlayYesCrucible CompetitiveCrucible Competitive
Free to Play Destiny 2 icon
Free-to-Play
Slot: Arc Arc | Ammo: Special ammo Destiny 2 Special | Archetype: Adaptive

PvP God Roll: Snapshot Sights (also good: Discord) + Opening Shot (also good: Moving Target)

► Mercurial Overreach is a beast in The Crucible. With great stats, solid and unique perks, and a clean scope, it's no wonder why Guardians are beginning to prefer this over Beloved.
PVP
Scatter Signal art Destiny 2
Scatter Signal
Fusion RifleSpecialKineticSeason 23YesSeasonal activitySeasonal activity
Lightfall Preorder icon
Season 23
Slot: Strand Element Strand | Ammo: Special ammo Destiny 2 Special | Archetype: Rapid-Fire

PvE God Roll: Overflow + Controlled Burst (also good: Slice)
PvP God Roll: Perpetual Motion + Under-Over

► Scatter Signal is the Fusion rifle everybody's talking about in Season of the Wish. With amazing PvE perks, including Overflow and Controlled Burst, and the benefits of the Rapid-Fire Frame, it's easy to see why Scatter Signal is one of the most sought-after weapons this season.
PVE,PVP

Best PvP Heavy weapons

Destiny 2 Heavy ammoIn this section, we cover the best Heavy PVP weapons, also known as Power weapons. Unlike Primary and Special weapons that can be in either the Kinetic or Energy slots, Heavy weapons can only be in the Heavy slot. In other words, we’re talking about the weapons that use “heavy” ammo, aka, purple ammo boxes:

WeaponsTypeAmmoSlotRequirementsIn loot pool?SourceSource ❘ DLCVerdictPart of?
 class=
Commemoration
Machine GunHeavyHeavyBeyond LightYesDeep Stone Crypt RaidDeep Stone Crypt Raid
Beyond Light Destiny 2 icon
Beyond Light
Slot: Void Void | Ammo: Heavy ammo Destiny 2 Heavy | Archetype: Adaptive

PvE God Roll: Reconstruction + Killing Tally (also good: Rampage)
PvP God Roll: Rapid Hit + Killing Tally

►Commemoration remains a top contender amongst machine guns even years after its introduction. Reconstruction paired with the 30% damage buff offered by Killing Tally, makes this a no-brainer option in PvE. Given that Machine Guns are some of the few heavy weapons in PvP that can reasonably get a lot of kills, it's easy to see why players will enjoy using Commemoration.
PVP
Memory Interdict art
Memory Interdict
Grenade LauncherHeavyHeavyFree-to-PlayYesWorld loot poolWorld loot pool
Free to Play Destiny 2 icon
Free-to-Play
Slot: Void Void | Ammo: Heavy ammo Destiny 2 Heavy | Archetype: Adaptive

PvP God Roll: Impulse Amplifier (also good: Quickdraw )+ Danger Zone

► Memory Interdict is a fan favourite for PvP. With a perk such as Impulse Amplifier, you can easily take down opponents due to the massively increased velocity. And with Danger Zone, you can ensure you'll deal at least some damage with your shots in case you need to follow-up.
PVP
The Other Half art
The Other Half
SwordHeavyHeavyFree-to-PlayYesDares of EternityDares of Eternity
Free to Play Destiny 2 icon
Free-to-Play
Slot: Void Void | Ammo: Heavy ammo Destiny 2 Heavy | Archetype: Adaptive

PvE God Roll: Eager Edge + Whirlwind Blade (also good: Frenzy)

► Like its "other half"', The Other Half lives and dies by the Eager Edge perk. A fun option in PvE and a surprisingly strong option in PvP, make it rank above other Adaptive archetype swords.
PVP
Wendigo GL3 art

Wendigo GL3
Grenade LauncherHeavyHeavyFree-to-PlayYesNightfall: The OrdealsNightfall: The Ordeals
Free to Play Destiny 2 icon
Free-to-Play
Slot: Arc Arc | Ammo: Heavy ammo Destiny 2 Heavy | Archetype: Adaptive

PvE God Rolls: Auto-Loading Holster (also good: Field Prep) + Explosive Light (also good: Cascade Point)

► Wendigo GL3's old curated roll is still available, and with spike grenades, it's actually better than its original incarnation for PvE. Try out Cascade Point for a different spin on DPS. For PvP, Grenade Launchers are top-tier, and the Wendigo GL3 is no exception. Impulse Amplifier + Rangefinder allows for a projectile speed of 58m/s, making securing kills remarkably easy with this weapon.
PVP
Cataphract GL3 art
Cataphract GL3
Grenade LauncherHeavyHeavyLightfallYesTrials of OsirisTrials of Osiris
Lightfall Preorder icon
Lightfall
Slot: Strand Element Strand | Ammo: Heavy ammo Destiny 2 Heavy | Archetype: Adaptive

PvP God Rolls: Impulse Amplifier + Vorpal Weapon

► Grenade Launchers are reliable options for PvP as they can typically secure very easy kills on multiple targets if you are accurate. On top of that, Cataphract features great stats and all the right perks to excel in high stakes PvP.
PVP
Gjallarhorn Destiny 2 900p Rocket launchers

Gjallarhorn , still a dominating Destiny 2 PVP weapon

Destiny 2 PvP Meta

Every sandbox change comes with a new meta. And while we love to criticize Bungie for not changing the meta often enough, the last few seasons have significantly altered the hierarchy of weapon types for PvP.

We just covered the absolute best PvP weapons right now, but it’s equally important to understand how the different weapon types compare to each other.

Alert iconAbout TTK: Measured in seconds, TTK, or time-to-kill, is critical in PVP because the lowest the TTK (generally less than a second), the faster you can kill your opponent. You can read all about it in our TTK guide.

PvP Primary weapons meta

Weapon Type RankTierTrendRole ❘ Current StateCategory
Hand cannon weapon type Destiny 2
Hand Cannons
S › Best
Best

S

Trend up► Hand Cannons feel great right now and can deal with all the other meta options, provided they are in the hands of a skilled player. They are unbelievably forgiving in terms of aim-assist and can compete at solid ranges. Hand Cannons are the jack of all trades, and while they may not dominate up close or far away, they are incredibly scary to face in a mid-range duel.

► Best Archetype: Adaptive (120 RPM) - Example: Igneous Hammer
PVP Primaries
Pulse rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Pulse Rifles
S › Best
Best

S

-► Pulse Rifles have seen a resurgence in the past few seasons, with constant buffs to all types of Pulse Rifles. It is hard not to find success with one due to the high-flinch potential of Rapid-Fire Pulses or the lethal time-to-kill of High-Impact Pulses.

► Best Archetype: High-Impact (340 RPM) - Example: The Messenger
PVP Primaries
SMG weapon type Destiny 2
Submachine Guns
S › Best
Best

S

Trend up► SMGs remain a staple of the PvP meta. SMGs absolutely shred enemies at close range and as soon as their top option is nerfed, a new top-tier SMG is introduced to replace it. SMGs have been, and seemingly will remain, meta for a long time to come.

► Best Archetype: Aggressive (720 RPM) - Example: The Immortal
PVP Primaries
Sidearm weapon type Destiny 2
Sidearms
A › Strong
Strong

A

-► Sidearms have lost their place at the top of the meta, but they remain a solid pick, especially for players using a Controller, as they inherently have manageable stability with a rapid time-to-kill. Honestly, the main reason they've lost their place at the top is due to how powerful SMGs are right now.

► Best Archetype: Adaptive (325 RPM) - Example: Forgiveness
PVP Primaries
Auto rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Auto Rifles
A › Strong
Strong

A

Trend up► After a couple of recent changes and buffs, Auto Rifles are feeling great to use right now, especially in the more casual Crucible playlists. While they may not have the juice to compete with some of the top dogs, they are still a solid pick and can help you frag out with relative ease.

► Best Archetype: Precision (450 RPM) - Example: Ammit AR2
PVP Primaries
Combat bow weapon type Destiny 2
Combat Bows
B › Average
Average

B

-► Bows are incredibly unique. They have a remarkably slow time to kill, however, this isn't where Bows shine. Hotswap builds with bows can be incredibly potent and don't require much learning either. Bows also provide incredible value when teamshooting opponents. Despite this, Bows on their own are quite mediocre and need something behind them to really shine.

► Best Archetype: Precision (Slower Draw Time) - Example: Strident Whistle
PVP Primaries
Scout rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Scout Rifles
C › Weak
Weak

C

Trend down► Scout Rifles are struggling right now. In most situations, the maps are too small to benefit the long range of a Scout rifle. An Aggressive or High-Impact Pulse Rifle will better serve your needs. Plus, Scout Rifles are abysmal up close. There are one or two outliers that shine but, on the whole, Scout Rifles are in a weak spot.

► Best Archetype: Rapid-Fire (260 RPM) - Example: Fang of Ir Yût
PVP Primaries

PvP Special weapons meta

For the sake of clarity, the categories below do not include Exotics that use an abnormal type of ammo, such as  Eriana’s Vow or Arbalest. If you’re particularly interested in these unique exotics, check out our Exotic Tier list, including every exotic weapon currently in the game.

Weapon Type RankTierTrendRole ❘ Current StateCategory
Shotgun weapon type Destiny 2
Shotguns
S › Best
Best

S

-► With the introduction of fixed (and consistent) pellet spread patterns per archetype and the reversal of some widely disliked nerfs, Shotguns are finally back. With consistent changes in the right direction, Shotguns are once more a staple pick among many PvP players.

► Best Archetype: Precision (65 RPM) - Example: Matador 64
PVP Specials
Sniper rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Sniper Rifles
S › Best
Best

S

-► Sniper Rifles are in an excellent spot right now. After the nerfs to Linear Fusion Rifles, it only makes sense that Sniper usage picked up. And with weapons that come stacked with aim assist and excellent perks, such as the Defiance of Yasmin or Beloved, it's easy to see why Snipers have risen up the ranks.

► Best Archetype: Adaptive (90 RPM) - Example: Beloved
PVP Specials
Fusion rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Fusion Rifles
S › Best
Best

S

Trend up► Fusion Rifles have been at the top of the meta for a while now, and it doesn't seem to be changing. Fusions can cover the close to medium ranges excellently, and a good Fusion Rifle player can be incredibly frustrating to play against, no matter the range of the engagement.

► Best Archetype: Precision (780ms Charge Time) - Example: Main Ingredient
PVP Specials
Linear fusion rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Linear Fusion Rifles
A › Strong
Strong

A

-► The special ammo Linear Fusion category of weapon is rather barren, but the two weapons that occupy it, Arbalest and Lorentz Driver, are both forces to be reckoned with. While they have received some deserved nerfs throughout Seasons 17-19, they remain a solid choice for many players wanting a long range option.PVP Specials
Trace rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Trace Rifles
B › Average
Average

B

-► Trace Rifles are quite a niche pick and will fall short as a competitive option in most players' hands. Even once you learn to master Trace Rifles, you'll be better off with a Special weapon that can provide a one-hit-kill t rather than one that can be out-dueled by a Primary weapon.

► All Archetypes are 1000 RPM - Best Option: Coldheart
PVP Specials
Glaive weapon type Destiny 2 art
Glaives
B › Average
Average

B

Trend down► With their buffs in Season 19 and the hit registration improvements they've seen, Glaives can be quite annoying to play against. That said, they are outclassed by other mid/long range options and can't compete at close range due to their lackluster melee.

► Best Archetype: Adaptive (55 RPM)- Example: The Enigma
PVP Specials
Grenade launcher weapon type Destiny 2
Grenade Launchers
C › Weak
Weak

C

Trend down► Grenade Launchers are annoying to play against, and that's about it. They can be used in a hot-swap loadout, but you'll be better served by a Bow like Le Monarque. Grenade launchers can put pressure on your enemies, but they can't bring the heat like some other Special Weapons can.

► Best Archetype: Lightweight - Example: Truthteller
PVP Specials

PvP Heavy weapons meta

Weapon Type RankTierTrendRole ❘ Current StateCategory
Rocket launcher weapon type Destiny 2
Rocket Launchers
S › Best
Best

S

-► Rocket Launchers remain a staple in many players' loadouts. They can provide high-range one-shot kills, and can also do AoE damage which can potentially allow you to clear teams if they are close enough together.

► Best Archetype: Precision (15 RPM) - Example: Gjallarhorn
PVP Heavies
Grenade launcher weapon type Destiny 2
Grenade Launchers
S › Best
Best

S

-► Heavy Grenade Launchers are an incredible option for those who are confident in landing their direct hits. They can functionally serve as a Rocket Launcher, but instead of coming with only a single shot, Grenade Launchers can bring 3, which, of course, means more potential kills.

► Best Archetype: Adaptive (120 RPM) - Example: Memory Interdict
PVP Heavies
Machine gun weapon type Destiny 2
Machine Guns
A › Strong
Strong

A

-► Machine Guns are still an incredible option for Control as they can provide many kills. However, they do require multiple shots to kill which can lead to you potentially being Sniped or peak-shot by a Primary Weapon.

► Best Archetype: Adaptive (450 RPM) - Example: Corrective Measure
PVP Heavies
Linear fusion rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Linear Fusion Rifles
B › Average
Average

B

► Linear fusion rifles are in the middle of an identity crisis. They are stronger than sniper rifles and have more aim assistance, but they still require Heavy ammo and a headshot to one-shot an enemy. On top of that, they also have a charge time to take into account. Compared to a sniper rifle that fires immediately and only uses Special ammo, Linear Fusion rifles make little sense for the Crucible.PVP Heavies
Sword weapon type Destiny 2
Swords
C › Weak
Weak

C

-► Swords are perhaps the most fun option (especially with Eager Edge); however, they are too inconsistent to warrant any competitive use. Furthermore, benefitting from third-person view is no longer possible without Heavy ammo, making the only niche usage swords had redundant.

► Best Archetype: Adaptive/Lightweight- Examples: Half-Truths/Quickfang
PVP Heavies

Alert iconWhat is the “Meta”? Meta refers to the most used weapons for a particular activity. Generally, these weapons are the most used because they are the most powerful/efficient. The Meta can change in a heartbeat, but you can rest assured, though, this overview is up to date with the current season and will be updated as soon as a new meta arrives.

These are the different Tier levels used for these Tier lists:

  • S Tier – Best: Highest ranking weapon types.
  • A Tier – Strong: Very strong weapon types, but not on the same level as S Tier Choices.
  • B Tier – Average: Decent choices that can be lethal in the hands of a skilled player.
  • C Tier – Weak: The middle of the pack, somewhat mediocre.
  • D Tier – Worst: Lagging behind the competition, these don’t have much to offer.

Best Crucible weapons: Loadouts

Until now, we have split our top PvP guns into Primaries, Special and Heavy weapons. This makes sense when comparing weapons against each other.

But once you start building towards the ultimate loadout, a weapon’s slot becomes crucial. That’s because you can only carry one Kinetic, Energy, and Heavy weapon at a time. Also, remember that you can only equip one Exotic at a time, which means that finding the best Legendary weapons is extremely important, too. We also cover the best Kinetic weapons this season here.

PVP Destiny 2 900p v3

Best Crucible weapons, Destiny 2

These are some of the most lethal PvP loadouts right now:

-Kinetic--Special---HeavyMeta
Destiny 2 Ace of Spades artAce of SpadesMatador 64 artMatador 64The Other Half artThe Other HalfPVP
The Immortal artThe ImmortalCloudstrike Destiny 2CloudstrikeMemory Interdict artMemory InterdictPVP
Conditional Finality artConditional FinalityIgneous Hammer artIgneous HammerTyphon GL5 artTyphon GL5PVP

Before you go…

If you’re looking to take your game to the next level in PvE, definitely check out our Top PvE weapons round-up.

See latest Updates

We keep our content up to date! These are the latest changes made to this guide:
  • December 18, 2023: Updates based on the Season 23 meta and the replacement of Ace of Spades, The Immortal, Round Robin, Exalted Truth, Fractethyst, Glacioclasm, Retold Tale, The Wardcliff Coil, Thunderlord, and Gjallarhorn.
  • September 13, 2023: Updates based on the Season 22 meta and the replacement of Austringer, Hawkmoon, Ikelos SMG V1.0.3, Tarrabah, Drang (Baroque), Forerunner, Main Ingredient, Dead Messenger and Typhon GL5.
  • April 29, 2023: Updates based on the Season 20 meta
  • April 13, 2022: Updates based on Destiny 2’s Year 5 meta
  • March 22, 2021: Updates based on Destiny 2’s Year 4 meta
  • October 17, 2020: The guide is published for the first time.

Stay tuned, and don’t forget to bookmark this page for next season!

About The Author

Ric Molina
Ric Molina
I've been covering gaming since 2012, and some of my work has been featured by large brands, including MSN.com, Forbes, Rock Paper Shotgun, and more. I've been obsessed with Destiny 2 (and now Diablo 4) for years now, and I hope to provide new and returning players with the guides and resources I wish I had when I first started.
More from Ric Molina
5 Comments
  1. Rockpicken

    Felwinter’s is a shotty not a handgun 🙂

    Reply
    • Ric (aka Prim)

      Yep, that was a typo…. Thanks for the heads up! 🙂

      Reply
  2. BoB

    The shadow price has got to be one of the bets auto rifles in the game (in my opinion) as long as you hit your shots it has almost the same if not better ttk than 140 handcannons and is better at range

    Reply
    • Ric (aka Prim)

      Auto Rifle tier list coming soon, stayed tuned 🙂

      Reply
  3. Tim

    Excellent list, thanks Prim and Patty! Two minor nitpicks though: Fractethyst can’t roll killing wind and “PVE God Roll” should probably be “PVP God Roll” in the verdict about Tomorrow’s Answer.

    Anyone using DIM can find their PVP god rolls from the list by entering the following search query:

    (
    name:”ace of spades”
    or
    (name:”the messenger” perkname:”rapid hit” (perkname:”desperado” or perkname:”kill clip”))
    or
    name:”vex mythoclast”
    or
    (name:”the palindrome” (perkname:”killing wind” or perkname:”quickdraw”) perkname:”rangefinder”)
    or
    (name:”shayura’s wrath” (perkname:”tunnel vision” or perkname:”killing wind”) perkname:”kill clip”)
    or
    name:”dead man’s tale”
    or
    (name:”multimach ccx” (perkname:”dynamic sway reduction” or perkname:”killing wind”) (perkname:”kill clip” or perkname:”iron grip”))
    or
    (name:”fatebringer” (perkname:”explosive payload” or perkname:”killing wind”) (perkname:”opening shot” or perkname:”firefly”))
    or
    (name:”darkest before” (perkname:”heating up” or perkname:”moving target”) perkname:”multikill clip”)
    or
    name:”vigilance wing”
    or
    name:”the chaperone”
    or
    (name:”fractethyst” (perkname:”quickdraw” or perkname:”slideshot”) perkname:”opening shot”)
    or
    (name:”main ingredient” perkname:”under pressure” (perkname:”high-impact reserves” or perkname:”tap the trigger”))
    or
    (name:”uzume rr4″ perkname:”snapshot sights” (perkname:”explosive payload” or perkname:”high-impact reserves”))
    or
    (name:”found verdict” (perkname:”slideshot” or perkname:”surplus”) perkname:”opening shot”)
    or
    (name:”adored” perkname:”killing wind” perkname:”snapshot sights”)
    or
    (name:”eye of sol” perkname:”snapshot sights” (perkname:”opening shot” or perkname:”vorpal weapon”))
    or
    name:”duality”
    or
    name:”lorentz driver”
    or
    (name:”riiswalker” (perkname:”quickdraw” or perkname:”surplus”) perkname:”iron reach”)
    or
    (name:”commemoration” perkname:”dynamic sway reduction” (perkname:”eye of the storm” or perkname:”rampage”))
    or
    name:”heir apparent”
    or
    name:”the wardcliff coil”
    or
    (name:”tomorrow’s answer” perkname:”tracking module” perkname:”cluster bomb”)
    or
    name:”xenophage”
    )

    Reply
Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Hunter Prismartic Build Twitter Card v2 Destiny 2

Best Destiny 2 Infographics

Get our exclusive D2 infographics before everyone else, for FREE! Also, a weekly email covering all the best loot at reset.

You have Successfully Subscribed!