Destiny 2 Meta weapons: The PVP, PVE and Gambit Meta today

by | Aug 11, 2021 | Weapons

You can always use whatever weapons you enjoy the most. But if you’re like me, as soon as you get destroyed in endgame content or the Crucible, figuring out the current Meta becomes crucial. 

The Meta refers to the most used weapons for a particular activity at any given time. Generally, these weapons are the most used because they are the most powerful/efficient, which means they can be used to your advantage when used right.

As understanding the meta is not easy for the average guardian, we created this guide to properly review the current state of the Destiny 2 meta.

Checkmark icon V3List updated as of Season of the Splicer (S14).  Link


Destiny 2 Meta tracker: Season 14 changes

This section covers all the latest and most noticeable Meta changes made by Bungie. In other words, these are the latest and most important buffs and nerfs, ordered chronologically:

Alert icon Always changing: Every buff or nerf has the potential to significantly change the Meta. For that reason, whatever commentary or analysis you find that is a season (or more) old is potentially irrelevant and outdated. Expect this page to be updated at least once per season.

SeasonWeapon TypeTrendCurrent State
Season 14:
Mid-season update

July 2021

Patch notes
Shotgun weapon type Destiny 2
Shotguns
Trend downAggressive Shotguns Nerf: Cone angle reduced from 4.0 to 4.25 degrees.
Shotguns Nerf: Reduced Shotgun damage falloff min by 2m. Increased Shotgun damage falloff max by 2m.
(Note that Slug Shotguns are unaffected by this change.)
Hand cannon weapon type Destiny 2
Hand Cannons
Trend down120 RPM Hand Cannons Nerf: Reduced precision damage multiplier from 1.8 to 1.6, preventing a 10% damage bonus from allowing two-tapping in PvP.
120 RPM Hand Cannons Nerf: Reduced aim assist minimum falloff distance by 1-2m depending on the Range stat.
120 RPM Hand Cannons Nerf: Reduced damage minimum falloff distance by 1m.
Season 14:
Season of the Splicer

May 2021

Patch notes 1 & 2
Linear fusion rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Linear Fusion Rifles
Trend upBuff: Increased precision damage by 15%
Buff: Increased reserve ammo by 20%
Quickdraw PerkTrend downNerf: The Handling bonus is now removed one second after switching to this weapon, or upon aiming down sights.
Shotgun weapon type Destiny 2
Shotguns
Trend downAggressive Frames Nerf: Replaced Quickdraw with Surplus on new and existing drops of Felwinter’s Lie and Astral Horizon.
Auto rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Auto Rifles
Trend upPrecision Frame Buff: 450 RPM Auto Rifles have an increased damage per bullet from 17 to 18.
Hand cannon weapon type Destiny 2
Hand Cannons
Trend down120 RPMs Nerf: These weapons will now have damage and aim assist falloff distance reduced by between 2 and 4 meters, based on the Range stat (This roughly halves the range buff they received in Beyond Light.)
Fusion rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Fusion Rifles
Trend upBuff: Increased damage falloff start distance, no effect on 100 range stat, +2m on 0 range stat.
Sword weapon type Destiny 2
Swords
Trend downVortex Frame Swords Nerf: Full energy Heavy attack ammo cost increased from 4 to 6.
Season 13:
Season of the Chosen

February 2, 2021

Patch notes
Rocket launcher weapon type Destiny 2
Rocket Launchers
Trend upBuff: Increased Rocket Launcher damage by 30% (Exotic Rocket Launchers have been adjusted individually and are affected to different degrees).
Fusion rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Fusion Rifles
Trend upBuff: Increased Fusion Rifle damage falloff start distance based on Range stat. (6% with 0 Range, 16% with 100 Range).
Buff: Reduced camera movement from firing a Fusion Rifle by 9.5%.
Grenade launcher weapon type Destiny 2
Grenade Launchers
Trend upBuff: Breech Grenade Launcher projectiles now detonate on impact with a character, even if holding the trigger (making them easier to use).
Sniper rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Sniper Rifles
Trend downNerf: Increased ADS flinch to Snipers when taking damage from other players
Sword weapon type Destiny 2
Swords
Trend downNerf: Reduced Sword damage by 15%.
Season 12:
Beyond Light

November 10, 2020

Patch notes
Hand cannon weapon type Destiny 2
Hand Cannons
Trend up110 RPMs Buff: Increased rate of fire from 110 to 120. Damage falloff for 100 range stat now starts at 32 meters.
140 RPMs & 180 RPMs Buff: Damage falloff for 100 range stat now starts at 25m, was 20m.
180 RPMs Buff: Magazine scaled up by 37 percent.
150 RPMs Nerf: Moved all 150 RPM Hand Cannons to the 140 RPM subfamily, except for Sunshot which will remain 150 RPM.
Sniper rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Sniper Rifles
Trend downPVP Nerf: Lower zoom scopes have less aim assist, higher zoom scopes have more, scopes with around 50 zoom are unchanged. Lowest-zoom scopes have a large reduction in aim assist cone angle.
Auto rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Auto Rifles
Trend down600 RPMs PVP Nerf: Damage per bullet reduced from 15.75 to 14.25. Note: Prior to Season of the Worthy, damage per bullet was 13.75.
Scout rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Scout Rifles
Trend upPVP Buff: Now a little easier to use with an increase of how much each point of the aim assist stat widens the AA cone. At maximum, the AA cone is now 15 percent wider.
Rocket launcher weapon type Destiny 2
Rocket Launchers
Trend upBuff: Increased reserves by 1 or 2 rockets depending on Inventory stat.

Destiny 2 current PVP Meta: The Crucible Meta

This section covers the state of the Destiny 2 PVP meta.

Keep in mind that the PVP meta is the result of the combination of fast TTKs (time-to-kill) and ease of use. We cover TTK values for every weapon in the game in our TTK guide.

PS: If you’re looking for the top PVP weapons right now, you can check our Best PVP weapons guide. Unlike this guide that focuses on weapon types, that guide covers the specific weapons that currently dominate the Crucible.

Weapons real-world usage:

These are the most used weapons in endgame PVP (Trials of Osiris) in August 2021, according to wamind.io‘s stats:

Kinetic slot

Destiny 2 The Chaperone art

The Chaperone

Exotic | Shotgun

Destiny 2 Ace of Spades art

Ace of Spades

Exotic | Hand Cannon

Destiny 2 The Last Word

The Last Word

Exotic | Hand Cannon

Energy slot
The Palindrome Destiny 2 art

The Palindrome

Legendary | Hand Cannon

The Palindrome Destiny 2 art

Adored

Legendary | Sniper Rifle

Felwinter's Lie Destiny 2 art

Felwinter's Lie

Legendary | Shotgun

Heavy slot
Destiny 2 The Wardcliff Coil

The Wardcliff Coil

Exotic | Rocket Launcher

Destiny 2 Heir Apparent art

Heir Apparent

Exotic | Machine Gun

Destiny 2 Black Talon

Black Talon

Exotic | Sword

Weapon types Meta

These are the different Tier levels used for the list:

  • 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.

The list starts with S Tier and moves down until it reaches the bottom Tier:

PVP Primary weapons meta

Weapon TypeTierRole ❘ Current State
Hand cannon weapon type Destiny 2
Hand Cannons
Best

S

Hand Cannons are and have always been the top PVP choice in Destiny. Nerfs can bring them slightly down and give other weapon types a chance, but in the end, the top players will always gravitate towards hand cannons.

It all comes down to the very nature of hand cannons. They can deal a lot of damage in a short amount of time, meaning they are perfect at peak shooting in and out of cover (something an auto rifle, for example, cannot do).
Pulse rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Pulse Rifles
Best

S

Sometimes referred to as "dad rifles", pulse rifles are generally easier to use, have a good range, and good aim assist. And with the recent buff to the High-Impact archetype, top pulses, such as The Messenger, have become some of the most lethal weapons in the Crucible.

And by the way, not all Pulses behave the same. Some, such as Adaptive frames, are somewhat easy to use and could be considered "Dad rifles", whereas High-impacts are harder to master but have some of the most lethal time-to-kill in the entire game.
Sidearm weapon type Destiny 2
Sidearms
Strong

A

For some reason, Sidearms have never been particularly popular in PVP. But things are definitely changing, especially since their target acquisition was buffed last year. You now see more and more top players main sidearms alongside their favorite sniper.

On paper, sidearms certainly have a limited range, which puts them in direct competition with shotguns, but Sidearms still offer the best TTKs among primary weapons in Destiny 2. Don't be surprised to see them gain momentum as shotguns continue to receive nerfs.
Auto rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Auto Rifles
Average

B

Auto rifles had their 15 minutes of fame when they received a significant buff in Season of the Worthy, especially the 600 RPM variants. But Auto rifles were quickly reigned in and brought back to their usual place: the middle of the pack.

Every now and then, an outlier will see some usage in the Crucible, such as the new Chroma Rush, but in general, ARs suffer from a big drawback: They force you to stay out of cover all the time (unlike a hand cannon or pulse), which makes them less effective in competitive modes or against skilled users.
SMG weapon type Destiny 2
Submachine Guns
Average

B

SMGs are far from being the "meta" choice in PVP. Other weapons types can be almost as lethal while significantly offering better range.

Still, SMGs can get the job done. In fact, a very good SMG with the right perks, such as the new Shayura's Wrath or the Multimach CCX, can be a true menace in the Crucible, with low TTKs and decent range.
Combat bow weapon type Destiny 2
Combat Bows
Average

B

Combat bows are definitely a niche choice for PVP. You will rarely see a guardian using a bow in the Crucible, and that's because bows are far from being the most optimal tool to get the job done.

With a headshot, bows can "almost" kill an enemy, but during the time you'll need to shoot a second arrow, your enemy will be either gone or you will be already dead. Exceptions such as Le Monarque do exist of course, but in general, you'll be better served with other weapon types.
Scout rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Scout Rifles
Weak

C

To be clear, everything this applies to every Scout rifle in the game, except Dead Man's Tale, an exponentially superior Scout than the rest.

Whether we're talking about PVE or PVP, Scout rifles have been in a sad state for a long time. In PVP, they have some of the worst TTKs in the game and will lose most fights in close to medium range. They do offer good range, but most maps cater to closed-quarter combat.

PVP Special weapons meta

For the sake of clarity, all weapon categories consisting of only 1 or 2 exotics have been excluded. Weapons such as Eriana’s Vow are too unique to be representative of an entire weapon type.

Weapon TypeTierRole ❘ Current State
Shotgun weapon type Destiny 2
Shotguns
Best

S

Shotguns are so strong right now, they have been officially identified as a problem. They are simply too dominant in the current sandbox.

Shotguns are extremely lethal, easy to use, and encourage players to use them even more than primary weapons. And as Destiny 2's maps are relatively crowded (they were conceived for 8 players only), close-quarters combat is heavily encouraged, thus allowing shotguns to shine.
Sniper rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Sniper Rifles
Strong

A

► Sniper rifles have always been a top choice for PVP. But unlike shotguns, they have a higher skill-ceiling. In other words, it's harder to master a sniper, but in the hands of a skilled player, there's nothing deadlier than a sniper rifle in the entire game.

Overall, snipers are in a weird place right now. Recent nerfs to their flinch and aim assist have made them harder to use, which lead to even more people using shotguns. But if you do cross paths with a sniper user, beware. If they are still using one, it's because they know how to use it...
Trace rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Trace Rifles
Strong

A

► If you try to use Trace Rifles as any other Special weapon, you'll be very disappointed. Shotguns, snipers, and even fusion rifles are meant to be one-hit-kill weapons. Trace rifles, on the other hand, are not. They are slow.

But if you try to use them as a primary weapon, you'll see their true potential. With enough ammo, they behave like souped-up auto rifles, reaching the TTK of some of the best primary weapons in the game.
Fusion rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Fusion Rifles
Average

B

► Fusion rifles have been struggling for a while. After their big range nerf a few seasons ago, mainly due to the infamous Erentil FR4, Fusion rifles have lagged behind shotguns and snipers.

Bungie is clearly trying to rectify the situation, offering a few minor buffs here in there. Fusion rifles still have a long way to go before becoming competitive again, but standouts such as Bastion or the newer PLUG.ONE can still dominate a lobby.
Grenade launcher weapon type Destiny 2
Grenade Launchers
Average

B

► The reign of Special ammo Grenade launchers came to an end the day the Mountaintop was retired. And the Crucible has been a happier place ever since. Jokes aside, Mountaintop was a real problem. It was too strong, downright broken, while the rest of its kind left a lot to be desired.

These days, special ammo grenade launchers have finally found some balance. Some of the latest breechloaded grenade launchers are very good on paper, but unlike Mountaintop, they require some skill to be lethal in the Crucible.

PVP Heavy weapons meta

Same as before, weapon categories consisting of only 1 or 2 exotics have been excluded. In this case, snipers, shotguns, and fusion rifles have been excluded:

Weapon TypeTierRole ❘ Current State
Rocket launcher weapon type Destiny 2
Rocket Launchers
Best

S

Rocket launchers are in a great place right now for PVP. As ammo economy is not an issue in the Crucible, their insane high-burst damage per rocket allows them to shine.

Rocket launchers, and especially the exotics, can basically guarantee a kill without requiring much skill nor effort. And if used right, you can easily get multi kills in 6v6 modes. Rocket launchers even have a place in competitive modes, namely the Wardclif Coil, due to their consistency.
Machine gun weapon type Destiny 2
Machine Guns
Strong

A

Machine guns are always a safe bet in PVP. They have excellent TTK, are very consistent from medium to long-range, and have enough ammo to kill easily 2 to 3 guardians, 4 if you play your cards right.

Not all machine guns were created equal, though, as some of them are much stronger than the rest, especially the exotics (Heir Apparent immediately comes to mind). But with the right perks, legendary Machine guns can also shine
Grenade launcher weapon type Destiny 2
Grenade Launchers
Average

B

Grenade launchers can be good options in PVP. They are powerful and can come with great perks, including the newish Chain Reaction, which can easily net you multi kills when hitting enemies grouped together. When used with something like Proximity grenades, grenade launchers can be even more reliable and easy to use.

Compared to the other Power weapon in the game, grenade launchers remain strong contenders. And when you take into account the exotics, namely The Colony, they can basically give you free kills.
Sword weapon type Destiny 2
Swords
Weak

C

Swords may be a top-tier choice in PVE due to their high-risk, high reward approach. But in PVP, the risk is much higher than the reward.

You can, of course, use a sword to benefit from the third-person view and wait for opponents around corners. But in many situations, you could find yourself completely vulnerable out in the open while chasing an enemy. On top of that, 3-peeking with swords is considered a douchy approach by the community, and with reason!
Linear fusion rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Linear Fusion Rifles
Weak

C

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. In PVP, you want a Heavy weapon that can either easily down several guardians or guarantee a kill in a high-stakes match. It isn't impossible to do with a linear fusion rifle, but other weapon types can accomplish that more easily.

For the record, we may know what changes are coming to the Meta with Beyond Light, but as long as we cannot test the changes ourselves, the Meta tier lists below will remain up to date with the Season of Arrivals meta.


Destiny 2 current PVE Meta: The DPS Meta

This section covers the state of the current Destiny 2 PVE meta. Unlike PVP, the meta in PVE is often defined by what the highest DPS weapons currently are. If you’re looking for DPS values for every weapon type and Exotics, our DPS guide covers them all.

PS: If you’re looking for the top PVE weapons, you can check our Best PVE weapons guide, including the top 25 weapons for PVE right now.

Weapons real-world usage:

These are the most used weapons in endgame PVE (Grandmaster Nightfalls) in August 2021, according to wamind.io‘s stats:

Kinetic slot

Chroma Rush Destiny 2 art

Chroma Rush

Legendary | Auto Rifle

Extraordinary Rendition Destiny 2 art

Night Watch

Legendary | Scout Rifle

Witherhoard art Destiny 2

Witherhoard

Exotic | Grenade Launcher

Energy slot
Destiny 2 Riskrunner

Riskrunner

Exotic | SMG

Gnawing Hunger Destiny 2 art

Gnawing Hunger

Legendary | Auto Rifle

Destiny 2 Sunshot art

Sunshot

Exotic | Hand Cannon

Heavy slot
Falling Guillotine Destiny 2 art

Falling Guillotine

Legendary | Sword

Destiny 2 Anarchy

Anarchy

Exotic | Grenade Launcher

Shattered Cipher Destiny 2 art

Shattered Cipher

Legendary | Machine Gun

Weapon types Meta

These are the different Tier levels used for the list:

  • 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.

The list starts with S Tier and moves down until it reaches the bottom Tier:

PVE Primary weapons meta

Weapon TypeTierRole ❘ Current State
SMG weapon type Destiny 2
Submachine Guns
Best

S

Submachine guns are in a great place right now. With good DPS, decent ammo, and acceptable range, SMGs are seen as the perfect compromise between range and damage.

On top of that, specific SMGs such as the IKELOS_SMG_v1.0.2 or Extraordinary Rendition are exceptionally good. True top-tier PVE choices, including endgame activities.
Auto rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Auto Rifles
Strong

A

Auto rifles, in general, are not as strong as SMGs. They simply cannot do as much damage as SMG.
On the flip side, they offer better range, and in some situations, excellent ammo.

But a few auto rifles can truly excel and can be easily considered S-tier individually, namely the 720 RPM Chroma Rush and the 600 RPM Gnawing Hunger.
Sidearm weapon type Destiny 2
Sidearms
Strong

A

Sidearms may be some of the most slept on weapons in Destiny 2. Most guardians prefer to stay away from them due to their limited range. But on the other hand, their DPS is unmatched as long as you can get close enough to stay within their optimal range.

This makes sidearms slightly riskier in endgame content such as Grandmaster content.
Hand cannon weapon type Destiny 2
Hand Cannons
Strong

A

While Hand cannons easily dominate in PVP, they are currently lackluster in the DPS department. Their DPS is so poor, even Bungie acknowledged it and already announced an incoming PVE buff.

But to be fair, they are still viable for Master and Grandmaster content, mainly due to their peak shooting capabilities.
Pulse rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Pulse Rifles
Average

B

Pulse rifles are true work horses. They do reasonable damage, have a good range, and are, overall, safe and easy to use in Master and Grandmaster content.

They may not excel in the DPS department, are still extremely solid all-around choices.
Scout rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Scout Rifles
Average

B

Scout rifles are slowly making a comeback. They will be easily outclassed by every other weapon types in most content, but they are proving to be excellent for endgame content.

Their long range, combined with the surprisingly high DPS of some of the best Pulses, makes them finally viable for endgame content.
Combat bow weapon type Destiny 2
Combat Bows
Weak

C

Combat bows can truly excel in some niche situations. Namely, in very difficult content in which you want to stay as far away from enemies as possible.

With virtually infinite range, bows can deal good damage from insane distances.

PVE Special weapons meta

For the sake of clarity, all weapon categories consisting of only 1 or 2 exotics have been excluded. Weapons such as Eriana’s Vow are too unique to be representative of an entire weapon type.

Weapon TypeTierRole ❘ Current State
Grenade launcher weapon type Destiny 2
Grenade Launchers
Best

S

► Special ammo Grenade launchers used to be Top tier, but that was only because of the Mountaintop. Technically, the Mountaintop is still one of the best (if not THE best) special weapon for PVE.

Thing is, Mountaintop will be retired with Beyond Light and won't be viable for endgame content anymore. And as much as people keep saying Truthteller will replace it, no other grenade launcher will be nearly as good as the Mountaintop.
Shotgun weapon type Destiny 2
Shotguns
Best

S

► Shotguns are in a great place right now, and that's mainly due to the buff to slug shotguns but also the many new shotguns recently released with great stats and insane damage-dealing perks such as Reconstruction, Vorpal weapon, one-two punch, etc.

Overall, shotguns are finally hitting that sweet spot between risk and reward. Slug shotguns, in particular, are among the best shotguns in the game.
Sniper rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Sniper Rifles
Strong

A

► Up until Season of Dawn, snipers were the best PVE special weapons in the game. They were extremely lethal and safe to use in endgame content, as they allowed players to deal insane DPS from afar.

But Bungie decided to nerf them hard because they were "too safe", bringing them back to pre-Shadowkeep values. Except, they were buffed with Shadowkeep because they were too average...
Trace rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Trace Rifles
Average

B

► Trace rifles don't have much going for them in PVP. They can deal respectable total damage, which can be useful on a boss. But in PVP, you wan't the opposite.

With insanely high TTKs (remember, high = bad), it can take forever to down an opponent, unless they're absolutely terrible and barely move at all, or you have excellent tracking. Generally speaking, Trace rifles take too long to do significant damage and most opponents will either hide or counter you with something that hits harder, such as a shotgun.
Fusion rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Fusion Rifles
Average

B

► Fusion rifles were recipients of a significant nerf some time ago, making them technically weaker than before.

That said, fusion rifles deserve more love, because even if they were nerfed, they are still powerful. They are capable of dealing more damage than snipers while being safer to use (due to having more range) than shotguns.

PVE Heavy weapons meta

In PVE, your Power weapon of choice will often be a burst-damage weapon able to deal with bosses and/or damage phases or an ad clear weapon for difficult content with lots of shielded ads.

This table covers all the main Power weapon types, excluding of course those categories with only 1 or 2 exotics (such as snipers, shotguns, or fusion rifles):

Weapon TypeTierRole ❘ Current State
Sword weapon type Destiny 2
Swords
Best

S

Main roles: Add Clear & Single Target damage (i.e. Boss damage).

Current State: Swords are incredibly strong right now. Several buffs and a huge rework during Season of the Worthy made them much more usable. They are now safer to use, have a better ammo economy, and can deal much more damage.

Swords are as high risk / high reward as it gets. If used right, a top-tier sword can basically delete any enemy, even on higher difficulties. No wonder The Lament and Falling Guillotine are still some of the best Power weapons available.
Rocket launcher weapon type Destiny 2
Rocket Launchers
Strong

A

Main role: Burst Damage (Secondary role: Add Clear)

Rocket launchers went through a rough patch that relegated to the least preferred Heavy weapon in the entire game.

Bungie has been hard at work at making them relevant again, and after two noticeable buffs, Rocket launchers are making a huge comeback. With great DPS potential and bigger magazines, they are among the best tools at your disposal, no matter the content.
Linear fusion rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Linear Fusion Rifles
Strong

A

Main role: Single Target damage (Secondary role: Burst Damage)

Current State: Linear fusion rifles have been in the middle of an identity crisis for a while, but that should finally change this season. With increased damage to critical hits, Linear Fusions are now much more lethal and rewarding, provided you can hit your shots.

It's still too early to tell how meta they can become, but keep an eye on Sleeper Simulant, or a Threaded Needle with Vorpal Weapon. These will be among your top DPS options this season.
Machine gun weapon type Destiny 2
Machine Guns
Average

B

Main role: Add Clear

Current State: Machine guns are not what they used to be, not for PVE at least. While a god-rolled Commemoration or a Thunderlord will definitely get the job done at clearing ads, they remain the shadow of their former selves.

Bungie itself has confirmed they need to be fine-tuned, but that could take a while... To be fair, they still have their place and have proven to be excellent to deal with elemental shields in Grandmaster Nightfall: The Ordeals.
Grenade launcher weapon type Destiny 2
Grenade Launchers
Average

B

Main role: Add Clear (Secondary role: Single Target Damage).

Current State: Grenade launchers went from the indisputable PVE choice to just an average, situational weapon type, in a matter of months.

To be fair, they remain viable, especially when getting too close to the enemy is impossible. Otherwise, they have been replaced by Swords as the go-to damage-dealing Heavy weapon type in the game.
Sniper rifle weapon type Destiny 2
Exotic Sniper Rifles
Weak

C

Main role: Single Target damage

Current State: Finally, we have Exotic Sniper rifles, a very niche choice represented by only 2 weapons, D.A.R.C.I and Whisper of the Worm.

Heavy Exotic Snipers are far from being meta right now. D.A.R.C.I is one of the most underwhelming Exoticsin the entire game, while Whisper of the Warm is the shadow of its former self due to the blanket nerf all snipers received a few seasons ago.

Destiny 2 Gambit Meta

This section covers the state of the Destiny 2 Gambit meta.

To be clear, Gambit is a strange beast. Combining PVP and PVE, figuring out the Meta for Gambit seems difficult on paper. But when you look at the most used Gambit weapons, it’s clear that the PVE side is more important.

In a decent Gambit team, most players should be geared towards efficient ad clear and DPS phases, which is the same for PVE. However, at least one member of the Fireteam needs to be geared towards invading and/or handling invaders.

This is why the Gambit meta is so similar to the PVE meta, with the exception of a few PVP-focused weapons such as Xenophage.

Weapons real-world usage:

These are the most used weapons in Gambit in August 2021, according to wamind.io‘s stats:

Kinetic slot

Witherhoard art Destiny 2

Witherhoard

Exotic | Grenade Launcher

Chroma Rush Destiny 2 art

Chroma Rush

Legendary | Auto Rifle

Extraordinary Rendition Destiny 2 art

Night Watch

Legendary | Scout Rifle

Energy slot
IKELOS_SMG_v1.0.2 Destiny 2 art

IKELOS_SMG_v1.0.2

Legendary | SMG

Salvager's Salvo Destiny 2 art

Salvager's Salvo

Legendary | Gren. Launcher

Destiny 2 Riskrunner

Riskrunner

Exotic | SMG

Heavy slot
Falling Guillotine Destiny 2 art

Falling Guillotine

Legendary | Sword

Destiny 2 Xenophage

Xenophage

Exotic | Machine Gun

Crown-Splitter Destiny 2 art

Crown-Splitter

Legendary | Sword

The Last Word

Terms such as “Meta” or “sandbox” may sound overwhelming at first, but just remember they basically refer to the current “state of the game”.

Understanding the Meta will ultimately help you understand the game better. What works right now and why. And hopefully, this guide should give you a proper overview of the current sandbox for you to digest.

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