Best & Worst Exotic Hunter Armor

Published on: Feb 17, 2015 @ 19:52

There’s a lot of Exotic armor in Destiny, but which pieces fall short? Which are worth using over the others, and why?

This article will analyze each piece of Exotic Hunter armor, ranking them tiers, just as we did with the Exotic Weapons for PvE & PvP.

We’d also like your feedback on which Exotics you feel are the best.

For the House of Wolves Exotics, you can find our initial thoughts for each of them here.

We have individual reviews for all of these items as well – click the armor category to read/watch them.




Leg Armor



  • Tier 1 armor is considered the best of the best, useful in nearly all situations.
  • Tier 2 armor is exceptional, but not as great as Tier 1 pieces.
  • Tier 3 armor is OK, worth using sometimes.

The armor in each tier is listed in alphabetical order.

PvP Rank

Tier 1

Achlyophage Symbiote

Almost perfect for Gunslinger’s, this helmet will allow you to increase your damage output, and will guarantee an extra kill in PvP if your aim is true.

The helm will increase your Discipline as well, decreasing grenade cooldown time, which meshes well with the two other perks. This will help you get grenade kills further away, and if you’re able to kill enemies with your grenades, you can use your Super a little quicker.

Knucklehead Radar

This is the only subclass-neutral helm. It’s going to provide a lot of Strength which works well with the Light the Blade perk, allowing you to use your melee ability even more.

Its unique perk, Sensor Pack, is extremely useful in PvP: you’re able to see your radar while looking down the sights of primary weapons (MIDA Multi-tool and Patience and Time have a similar perk).

Tier 2

Lucky Raspberry

Lucky Raspberry is the only chest piece specific to the Bladedancer. Lucky Raspberry’s main feature is the ability to spawn with grenade energy, allowing you to use your (more powerful) grenade more often.

Along with the grenade energy, your Arcbolt grenade will be improved by chaining further. You’ll be able to spawn with full grenade energy with any grenade, not just the Arcbolt grenade.

Mask of the Third Man

This is a helm that every Bladedancer should own. Mask of the Third Man‘s unique ability is reduces the amount of Super energy used when attacking with Arc Blade. Couple this helm with the Encore talent for even more time with the Arc Blade.

Radiant Dance Machines

Just barely making it into tier 2, Radiant Dance Machines are built around being more mobile while aiming. For a high mobility build, they can be a solid choice for a Hunter that’s trying to avoid crossfire.

“The Dance” perk won’t give you a huge increase in speed, but it is helpful enough to build around. Your ADS movement speed will be almost doubled from what’s normal.

Young Ahamkara’s Spine

These will double the time your the Tripmine lasts, just like the Sunbreakers with the Solar grenade. With Tripmines this is especially useful, lasting a total of 30 seconds – plenty of time to shut down a Control point.

The downside is that these grenades are easily disarmed if the enemy is aware of them.

Tier 3


This helm has an essentially useless unique perk and requires grenade damage/kills to make use of its other perks.

Only use this if you’re going to accurately use your grenades liberally, or actually think the zoom is helpful.

Crest of Alpha Lupi

This piece of armor is a subclass-neutral. As with each of the Exotic chests, you’ll get additional ammo for your weapons.

Unfortunately this chest specifically helps out hand cannon users, so that might make it less useful for you if you barely (or never) use hand cannons.

Keeper of the Pack cuts the revive time by about .6 seconds, allowing you to revive fallen Guardians (or them to revive you) in 1 second. Does it benefit you when revives are enabled? Sure, but not enough to warrant using over a tier 1-2 Exotic.

Don’t Touch Me

These are PvE-focused gauntlets that are subclass neutral. Not only is Inverse Shadow completely wasted in the Crucible, but its unique perk won’t save you nearly as much or as easily as it will in PvE.

PvE Rank

Tier 1

Achlyophage Symbiote

You’ll have another shot to use as you wish, great for extra damage or to clean up a kill. An extra shot is universally beneficial.

Increasing you grenade throw distance is a great help as well since it will better your chances of getting grenade kills, which will boost you Super energy charge rate, which then brings you back for more 4-shot Golden Gun action.

Don’t Touch Me

If you wanted to, you could solo the first part of Crota’s End without breaking a sweat! When you are struck by melee, you are granted 3 seconds of invisibility (6 seconds using Shadowjack).

There is almost no cooldown for the invisibility, so the moment you are exposed, you are lined up for another vanishing act when you’re struck.

Mask of the Third Man

If there are encounters that have swarms of enemies, like the first phase of Templar or the lamps in Crota’s End, you can easily double or triple the amount of time you’re able to use Arc Blade. Infusion comes in really handy in in Crota’s End from Crota’s Presence too.

This helm will also increase your Intellect, increasing  the passive charge of your Super.

Tier 2


Almost in tier 3, its unique perk is still pretty useless, but you’re able to take advantage of the other 2 perks much more in PvE because of how effortless it is to damage/kill enemies with your grenades.

Knucklehead Radar

In PvE Knucklehead Radar is stronger because you’ll always be able to damage enemies with your grenades more frequently, and you’ll also be able to increase your Super energy really easily just by killing enemies.

The radar might not be as useful in PvE, but it’ll be there if you need it which is always a good thing.

Lucky Raspberry

The extra range on the Arcbolt grenade is nice, but Improved Arcbolt Grenade will really be helpful in PvP for that immediate grenade when you respawn. Remember: it’ll work with any grenade.

There’s only 2 Hunter Chests in the game right now, and this one is arguably better – especially with a good fusion rifle like Plan C or Vex Mythoclast, as it’ll greatly increase the ammo. For the Vex Mythoclast, it bumps up the ammo reserve to 189 from its default 147.

The extra heavy weapon ammo unfortunately does not stack with other armor that provides the same perk, such as the Tireless Striders.

Tier 3

Crest of Alpha Lupi

If you do not play 3v3 PvP, or usually play by yourself in PvE, this isn’t the chest for you. Keeper of the Pack is medic-like and support orientated, so it’ll benefit your teammates more than it’ll benefit you specifically.

In PvE specifically, endgame activities rarely have the ability to revive. As for the increased Orb generation, its minimal and not worth it.

Radiant Dance Machines

Easily the worst Exotic piece of Hunter armor for PvE, the increased movement speed is certainly not as advantageous or noticeable as it is in PvP.

Young Ahamkara’s Spine

These gauntlets lose credibility in PvE as Tripmine grenades are not a popular choice due to their singular targeting habits.

The additional time you’ll get with the unique perk just ins’t necessary and hardly helpful.


Do you agree with this ranking? Which Exotics do you prefer using in PvE/PvP? Let us know!



Check out if you’d like to talk to others about Destiny in a friendly and welcoming community! :)

  • BAMozzy69 .

    I don’t really play PvP so my Exotics are primarily used according to PvE activity. Apart from the Abyss run in CE, the Don’t Touch Me Gauntlets are never used – even in this part, I often use Mask of the Third Man as it really helps in clearing those Thrall – I know Don’t Touch Me is working for you all the time but Mask only really benefits you when you have your super. Lucky Raspberry is quite useful too with the extra Ammo Boosts and I do use the Arcbolt Grenade primarily.
    Obviously the standout exotic is Achlyophage Symbiote. I do have the other Exotics but these are the only 4 that get used.

  • BOoya956

    Wow. The articles are getting to be pointless. I guess this was bound to happen since there is not much to do in Destiny.

    • cool_herc

      Actually, this is a decent article. If you don’t like the game or don’t feel there’s much to do in it, why are you bothering to access Destiny game sites and comment? There are plenty that do enjoy the game (those are the people whose comments I’m interested in reading). Surely you can find much better things to do with your time.

      • BOoya956

        If you are satisfied with playing a mediocre game than more power to you. You have the right to express your opinion. All you have to do is ignore mine if you don’t like what I stated. All this information is regurgitated from his past articles. Sorry Ryan not your fault. Just waiting for new info.

        • Best Hunter NA

          I personally don’t feel this is regurgitated at all. Sure he has given reviews of the exotics but not a tier list for PvP or PvE. This is great for new players to understand which exotics are worth using for hunters. Also, it’s almost like you’ve never experienced a lull between content patches in a game before.Until HoW, there obviously won’t be raid guides or a ton of new guns to review .You never even responded to Ryan’s question below of what content you’d like to see, so clearly, you can’t think of anything creative or constructive. Keep your thoughts to yourself next time, unless you have something useful to say. As cool_herc said, if you think it is a mediocre game you wouldn’t be on this site in the first place, and second, go play a different game then, we could care less. Thanks.

          • BOoya956

            To be honest all games are pointless. Don’t get upset. Its just a game. Some people like it some people don’t. Everyone has the right to express themselves.

          • BenRM

            Everyone has a right to express themselves… except for the people who disagree with you it seems.

        • Pat Mcfeely

          If your not content playing Destiny why bother comment on articles pertaining to it. Your opinions are pointless if they don’t add substance to the discussion.

    • Keith Christmas

      It’s only sort of pointless. If you’re a regular visitor to this site, then yes, this article is all pretty familiar stuff. But if you’re someone who’s never been to this site before who’s just googling info on armour or whatever, it’s useful for the site to have this article up.

      Having said that… As someone who visits the site regularly, the repetition of content is starting to get a tiny bit concerning, especially with several months to go until the next DLC. And when it does hit… They’ve already reviewed the new exotic armour in advance, there’s only three new exotic weapons, and the raid armour isn’t worth reviewing (not like you’ve got a choice about wearing it if you wanna hit max level).

      So basically they’ve got the raid weapons to review, and maybe some of the new vendor legendaries (and those reviews tend to boil down to “the vendor variant is alright, but it might be worse/better depending on what perks you get if it drops”). Hard to imagine what the site is gonna come up with to fill the time…

    • What article content would you like to see specifically?

      • Kenshiro Genjuro

        I think what we have all wanted to know is how many different dances are there, and which ones are for which character builds?

      • BOoya956

        Wow! Thanks for responding. I was trying to prove a point about how you actually respond to the community unlike someone else we know. I do feel like you gone over the perks of all weapons and gears like every week. Yes, I do feel like I am getting burnout ( I read your burned out article. You need to more stuff like that). I am not saying I don’t like Destiny (just a little upset) and I enjoy going to planet Destiny just to read the articles, but it is missing something. I would like to see more explanation and maybe some mapping of the planet zones, strikes, and raids. There are many players that still don’t know where the Rocket yards at (Literally). You can add some grimoire lore, best spots for glimmer farming, major and ultras location. Also, you can add a petition tab were community members can vote for certain changes Destiny might need (since we play it like every single day).

        Thank you for responding and I did not mean to disrespect. Just got a little tired of reading same thing over and over. Keith Christmas was right. I do visit you site like everyday.

        Once again thank you.

  • Delsin Rowe

    Lucky Raspberry should be Tier 1 PvP due to spawning with grenade energy. I was very successful using it in Iron Banner, playing GunSlinger with Trip Mine grenades.

  • Knucklehead Radar is working very well for me in PVP. To see the radar while aiming is a great advantage. The extra ammo it gives for hand cannon is very good as well.

  • Pat Mcfeely

    Mask of the Third Man should be tier one especially if you play Bladedancer in any capacity.

  • Jason Peterson

    I have 700 hours of time playing as a Hunter, and I have all of these but Mask of the Third Man.

    100% agree with this list. Well done.

  • Ryan

    I agree with all of this list as well,nice work.