After months of speculation, Bungie finally shed some light on how weapon retirement will actually work. In a nutshell:

Legendary weapons and armor will have a Max Power Level they can reach through infusion. That Max Power Level will be set at the Player Power Cap attainable 3 Seasons after their release. This means Legendary gear will have a one-year lifetime during which it can be used for difficult and Power-enabled activities.

This information comes from Bungie’s latest blog post (or TWAB), which also gave us more information about their roadmap for the game. Yet my biggest question remains:

When is this going to impact my favorite weapons?

This table should help you better visualize when this retirement will affect the most popular weapons in D2:

Summer 2020
Season 11
(next season)
► Max Power Level for infusion will become visible.
► No weapon or armor will be impacted
Pinnacle (and Ritual) weapons impacted
Other weapons impacted
Fall 2020
Season 12: Big expansion
► Weapons and armor from Seasons 1-8
Strikes:All Black Armory weapons, including:
Loaded Question Destiny 2 artLoaded Question | Fusion RifleDestiny 2 Hammerhead artHammerhead | Machine Gun
Oxygen SR3 Destiny 2 artOxygen SR3 | Scout Rifle Destiny 2 Galliard-42 XN7568 artGalliard-42 XN7568 | Auto Rifle
Destiny 2 Wendigo GL3Wendigo GL3 | Grenade LauncherDestiny 2 Blast Furnace artBlast Furnace | Pulse Rifle
Edgewise Destiny 2 artEdgewise | Machine GunDestiny 2 Kindled Orchid artKindled Orchid | Hand Cannon
Crucible:Destiny 2 Stryker's Sure-Hand artStryker's Sure-Hand | Sword
Destiny 2 Luna's HowlLuna's Howl | Hand Cannon All Menagerie weapons, including:
Not Forgotten Destiny 2 artNot Forgotten | Hand CannonDestiny 2 BelovedBeloved | Sniper Rifle
Redrix's Broadsword Destiny 2 artRedrix's Broadsword | Pulse RifleAustringer Destiny 2 artAustringer | Hand Cannon
Destiny 2 The MountaintopThe Mountaintop | Grenade LauncherDrang (Baroque) Destiny 2 artDrang (Baroque) | Sidearm
Destiny 2 The RecluseRecluse | Submachine GunAlso:
Destiny 2 RevokerRevoker | Sniper RifleDestiny 2 Spare RationsSpare Rations | Hand Cannon
Randy's Throwing Knife Destiny 2 artRandy's Throwing Knive | Scout RifleDestiny 2 Mindbender's AmbitionMindbender's Ambition | Shotgun
Gambit:Destiny 2 BygonesBygones | Pulse Rifle
Breakneck Destiny 2 artBreakneck | Assault RifleDestiny 2 Dust Rock BluesDust Rock Blues | Shotgun
Destiny 2 21% Delirium21% Delirium | Machine GunGnawing Hunger Destiny 2 artGnawing Hunger | Assault Rifle
Hush Destiny 2 artHush | Combat BowAll Iron Banner weapons.
Exit Strategy Destiny 2 artExit Strategy | Submachine GunAll Escalation protocol weapons.
All Moon, Altars of Sorrow and Vex Offensive weapons.
Winter 2020
Season 13
► Weapons and armor from Seasons 9
Strikes:All Obelisk weapons, including:
Buzzard Destiny 2 artBuzzard | Side ArmSteelfeather Repeater Destiny 2 artSteelfeather Repeater | Assault Rifle
Crucible:Breachlight Destiny 2 artBreachlight | Sidearm
Komodo-4FR Destiny 2 artKomodo-4FR | Linear Fusion RifleMartyr's Retribution Destiny 2 artMartyr's Retribution | Grenade Launcher
Gambit:Perfect Paradox Destiny 2 artPerfect Paradox | Shotgun
Python Destiny 2 artPython | ShotgunWorld drops:
The Old Fashioned Destiny 2 artThe Old Fashioned | Hand Cannon
Last Hope Destiny 2 artLast Hope | Sidearm
Spring 2021
Season 14
► Weapons and armor from Seasons 10
Iron Banner:All Trials of Osiris weapons, including:
Point of the Stag Destiny 2 artPoint of the Stag | Combat BowDestiny 2 Astral HorizonAstral Horizon | Shotgun
Hidden Quest:Destiny 2 The SummonerThe Summoner | Assault Rifle
Felwinter's Lie Destiny 2 artFelwinter's Lie | ShotgunEye of Sol Destiny 2 artEye of Sol | Sniper Rifle
World drops:
Dire Promise Destiny 2 artDire Promise | Hand Cannon
Destiny 2 Interference VIInterference VI | Grenade Launcher
All Seventh Seraph weapons.

Weapon retirement is still a few months away, but it’s important to know that some of your favorite weapons will be “retired” before the end of the year.

Also, Exotics won’t be affected by this change, making the top exotic weapons even more important. On the armor side, the effects should be somewhat limited by the upcoming ability to transmog the looks of your favorite armor pieces into newer gear.

How will weapon sunsetting in Destiny 2 work, exactly?

Bungie’s May 14, 2020, TWAB is a must-read if you want to know everything there is to know about weapon retirement, but these are the key “rules” you need to know:

  • Each Legendary weapon and piece of armor will have a Max Power Level it can reach through infusion.
  • Exotics will not have a Max Power Level.
  • The Max Power Level for these items will be set at the player Power Cap attainable 3 Seasons after its release Season (4 Seasons total).
    • This means all Legendary gear has a one-year span of time during which it can be used in activities where being at or near the player Power Cap is important (difficult and Power-enabled activities).
  • The Max Power Level for these items will be visible in-game in Season 11, but no items will be at their Max Power Level at the start of Season 11.
    • This means all your gear will be relevant in all activities during Season 11.
Destiny 2 weapon retirement

Example of how Max Power Levels will be displayed in Season 11

  • At the start of Season 12, weapons and armor released in Seasons 1-8 will have a Max Power Level at the Season 11 player Power Cap
  • Gear from Seasons 9, 10, 11, and 12 will all be infusible to new player Power Caps for 1 year after their release.
  • Weapons and armor from the Last Wish and Garden of Salvation raids, will be granted exceptions and will have a higher Max Power Level”

Those are the basics. But you may have additional questions, such as:

  • Can I still use gear that has reached its Max Power Level?
    • Yes. You will always be able to equip and use any piece of gear.
    • Reaching the player Power Cap is beneficial, but not strictly required, for most activities in Destiny. You can continue to equip and use all gear in these activities.
  • Does this apply to armor as well as weapons?
    • Yes – all Legendary gear that provides Power will have a Max Power Level.
  • When gear drops after its debut Season, what will its Max Power Level be?
    • It will have the same Max Power Level as it did in its initial release Season.
  • Will gear ever have its Max Power Level updated?
    • Not directly, but gear can be re-issued in future Seasons. These re-issued versions will have a new Max Power Level based on the Season in which it is re-issued.

This is my own take on when some of the most popular weapons in Destiny 2 will be retired. But perhaps I missed some. If I did miss your favorites, let me know in the comments section.