Best & Worst Exotic Titan Armor

Published on: Mar 29, 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 Titan armor, ranking them tiers, just as we did with the Exotic Weapons for PvE & PvP.

Be sure to check out our Warlock and Hunter tiers as well.

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

An Insurmountable Skullfort

It grants Discipline (perfect for maximizing cooldown on those all-important grenades), gives full melee energy on respawn, and provides Transfusion free of charge; what’s not to love? This helmet is ideal for the punch-happy Titan.

Although it doesn’t grant the useful Rain Blows perk, Skullfort’s Transfusion is potent, activating on both regular melee and Shoulder Charge kills alike. You are free to select between Aftershocks and Headstrong with this benefit, and Amplify and Discharge become appealing options in lieu of Overload with Skullfort granting melee energy after every death.

Helm of Inmost Light

While it languishes in PvE, the Helm of Inmost Light finds a home in the Crucible. It grants two perks that buff the Titan super to scary levels, “Death From Above” and “Headstrong”. With these as gimmes, a Striker is able to select freely from the other appealing options in those rows, knowing full well that he or she will be able to make the most of their frequent and deadly Fist of Havocs.

Although its pure Strength is a little disappointing, the increased Melee Speed and utility of its signature perk is too good to pass up.

The Armamentarium

The Armamentarium makes a case for ‘best’ Titan Exotic by excelling equally in PvP and PvE. In PvP, you can gain an early surge of momentum by starting with an extra grenade. Strikers will love this boon, as their Lightning Grenades frequently terrorize Control battlefields and are excellent for snagging early kills and building a lead.

Defenders always appreciate another Magnetic sticky too. The pure Discipline will guarantee maximum grenade uptime, and increased special ammo can’t be overlooked in ensuring you’ll always have your backup plan ready.

Tier 2

Crest of Alpha Lupi

This is another example of an Exotic that shines in PvP. Its signature perk “Keeper of the Pack” has no equal in Skirmish and Salvage, providing faster revives and increased orb generation for tactical team play, though not universally useful enough to earn Tier 1 status.

Pure Intellect is ideal for Strikers and Defenders, and Special Weapon Ammo is always welcome during droughts between boxes. Unfortunately, this piece loses a bit of its niche potency in Control and Clash, and for that reason is best reserved for the aforementioned content.

No Backup Plans

These gauntlets are designed around doing one thing and doing it well. With a pure Strength roll and a signature ability that increases Force Barrier duration, you’re only going to find these worthwhile if you’re adept at scoring melee kills. Fortunately, Rain Blows will give you some leeway with your timing to assist in this. If you’re able to consistently deal finishing blows with Disintegrate, you will be hard to take down.

To this end, “Unbreakable” and “Relentless” are almost mandatory, creating a situation in which it’s feasible to keep your overshield up until the next one is ready. Ultimately, there are too many variables that can foil even the best laid plans, so these Gauntlets sit at the lowest end of Tier 2. But if you can make them work for you, opponents beware.

The Glasshouse

This Defender-specific Exotic can be tricky to implement under the best of circumstances, but provides an undeniable edge when fully utilized. It is naturally geared toward helping a Defender get their Ward of Dawn as quickly as possible, granting more Super Energy from Grenade kills on top of its Pure Intellect roll.

There’s a lot of perk synergy here, which is nice, as 5 extra seconds on both Weapons and Blessing of Light is not immediately overwhelming. If you’re patient, though, it can be a force to be reckoned with, providing crucial extra time to yourself and your allies for survivability or lethality.

Still, we know this isn’t easy to pull off or always doable, which is why The Glasshouse earns Tier 2.

Tier 3

Helm of Saint-14

It pains us to have to include the undeniably cool Saint-14 in the bottom tier of Destiny’s PvP-capable of Exotics. Although the pure Intellect roll is nice for assisting with Ward of Dawn’s cooldown, the rest of the perks just don’t quite fit. A monster in PvE, Inverse Shadow is literally useless in the Crucible.

Its signature perk, infamous for blinding any and all that walk into your bubble, is only useful if opposing players are reckless. On the off chance that someone decides they have a chance against you, you’ll squeal with glee as they immediately become disoriented and walk around until you invariably put them down.

These instances are a few and far between, though, and not worth using a helmet with a giveaway plume that is better suited to PvE. Rain Blows is welcome, but a drop in the bucket in the face of its downsides.

Mk. 44 Stand Asides

If you were to look up “Tier 3” in the Dictionary, The MK. 44 Stand Asides would be pictured alongside it. Although their signature perk was ostensibly designed for PvP use, is is situational at best, downright pointless at worst. By adding 3 extra seconds to Shoulder Charge’s uptime, habitual sprinters can hope they’ll have more opportunities to use the deadly melee for a guaranteed kill, but this is already shoehorning Guardians into an unsustainable playstyle.

Shoulder Charge is best used tactically, with timing and a target in mind. Is three extra seconds to Shoulder Charge worth using them? Probably not. Other than this, the MK. 44 Stand Asides provide disappointing pure Strength, and extra Heavy Ammo carrying capacity – a pointless perk in PvP.

Ruin Wings

Another PvE dominator, the Ruin Wings find themselves borderline useless in the Crucible. None of its perks contribute toward one another, and the pure Strength roll is unfortunate for gloves that actively discourage melee with their lack of incentives.

Special Weapon reloader can be helpful for slow shotguns, and Impact Induction conceivably can assist in Grenade cooldown, but the signature perk is a non-factor. As heavy ammo granted is a function of base magazine size, Seeds of Ruin might as well not exist. Avoid these in PvP.

PvE Rank

Tier 1

Helm of Saint-14

This futuristic ‘Roman-style’ helm is a standout in more ways than one. It’s the ultimate Defender Exotic, turning the Ward of Dawn into an offensive powerhouse as well as a defensive one.

Its pure Intellect roll pairs perfectly with Inverse Shadow, as both guarantee loads of Super Energy from enemy kills to ensure you have your Bubble rocking as often as possible. Once enemies enter your dominion, they’ll be helpless, stumbling, and blind thanks to “Starless Night”. This leaves you free to eliminate them with the help of Rain Blows or the weapon of your choice.

The ability to use Ward of Dawn as crowd control is a delight in all sorts of content, and secures Saint-14’s spot as a top-tier PvE Exotic.

Ruin Wings

The Dark Below introduced this wild card and the community at large responded with unanimous joy. The pure Strength and Impact Induction is practically irrelevant when compared to the potential devastation that Seeds of Ruin offers. This Exotic perk acts as a universal “Surplus” for any Heavy Weapon, while offering the added benefit of stacking with any Surplus perk you happen to have.

If that weren’t enough, it also increases the drop rate for the best ammo of all. We don’t need to tell you how easy this can make encounters, and if you haven’t experienced the joy of near-unlimited Rockets, it’s time give Ruin Wings a shot. You won’t ever stop firing.

The Armamentarium

“Armamentarium” means “the medicines, equipment, and techniques available to a medical practitioner.” The chest is the equipment, and you’re the ‘medical’ Titan, prescribing grenades for your enemies.

This chest makes an equally strong case for your choosing it in PvE as well. Its myriad of ammo-boosting perks ensures you will never run out in any content. As an Exotic chestpiece can grant the most of a given statistic, Armamentarium could theoretically grant you 63% of the Discipline required to maximize your cooldown on Grenades.

To take advantage of this meaty boost, the Armamentarium provides that all-important access to a second grenade. With the wonderful options Titans have available for grenades, there’s a reason this Exotic is considered to be the best around. It is subclass neutral and universally useful!

Tier 2

An Insurmountable Skullfort

The Skullfort is very much of a Jack-of-all-trades Exotic in PvE. Its focus is split neatly between Grenades and Melee, and although its signature perk can not be fully taken advantage of, it is a worthy selection for most content. Its pure Discipline and Impact Induction work in tandem to help speed Grenade cooldown, which is crucial for keeping you ready to deal with anything.

The Improved Transfusion is helpful if not revolutionary, contributing to survivability while allowing for some perk flexibility. There aren’t many uses in which full melee energy on spawn will be worthwhile. Because of its split focus with admirable perks, Skullfort is a comfortable Tier 2.

Crest of Alpha Lupi

This chestpiece is very right for a few things, and mostly unfit for others. Thankfully, it has a pure Intellect roll that is friendly to its subclass neutral nature; both Defenders and Strikers appreciate Intellect over Strength. Keeper of the Pack can be a lifesaver in Nightfalls for fast revives, and more orbs is never a bad thing. Indeed, if you are with a coordinated group, a Defender or a Titan with the CoAL will be a valuable fireteam member.

For solo play however, this Exotic is completely outclassed, as its main benefits are entirely wasted. Increased Special Weapon Ammo is nice, but doesn’t save this Exotic from scraping the bottom of Tier 2 as a mostly niche piece of armor.

No Backup Plans

Though arguably more universally helpful than the Crest of Alpha Lupi, these gauntlets are also far too restrictive. For low-stress content, they can reach their full potential, helping to grant near-constant uptime on the useful Force Barrier by landing easy melee kills on low level enemies.

Unfortunately, as relying on melee is a dubious proposition in Nightfalls, Weekly Strikes, Crota’s End, and even Vault of Glass, you’ll find a hard time successfully incorporating these into your game in these activities.

When being unable to take advantage of Improved Disintegrate, you’re left with Rain Blows – similarly poor – and Special Weapon Loader, which at least gives you some utility outside of punch, punch punch. These narrowly avoid Tier 3.

The Glasshouse

Though it’s tough to measure up to the standard set by Saint-14, The Glasshouse comes close. Possessing the same Intellect roll, and reliably useful Quintessence Transfer perk, the Glasshouse is able to generate Super Energy with comparable efficacy. As no Titan is complete without Rain Blows, the Glasshouse provides this as well.

Once your Ward of Dawn is ready, enjoy the potency of its signature “Bathed in Light” perk, which grants 50% increases to Blessing/Weapons of Light durations on yourself and your allies. This perk can be a godsend when used correctly, and Atheon is known to be especially afraid of 5 coordinated Guardians with 15 seconds of Weapons of Light at their disposal.

Still, the Glasshouse loses out in solo content, where the buff is harder to use effectively. For this reason, it sits in the middle of Tier 2.

Tier 3

Helm of Inmost Light

Crucible sees this Helmet as something to be feared, but it is very disappointing in PvE. It grants pure Strength, which always comes at the cost of the more useful Discipline or Intellect, and a bevy of non-synergistic perks.

Invigoration is a perplexing choice on this helm, as the rare occasion in which an Orb of Light is able to help you recover your melee is probably one in which you have no immediate use for your melee. Moreover, it’s pointless in solo content.

Rain Blows is okay on Strikers, but hard to utilize effectively in trickier content where close-range combat can be a death sentence. We like it on Defenders for the safety of Ward of Dawn, but it’s a fine line.

Finally, whereas Fist of Havoc is deadly in Crucible, it is often far too risky in PvE. Bosses, Lightswitch enemies, Phalynxes, and Knights will all quickly kill a Titan who gets too close after having failed to finish them with his or her Super. Headstrong and Death from Above are fun in lower-level activities, but when paired with the other perks on this helmet, we’re left with a product that seems designed to fail in the tough stuff Destiny has to offer. For this reason, Helm of Inmost Light slips out of Tier 2 to the top of Tier 3.

Mk. 44 Stand Asides

Perennially in Tier 3, the Stand Asides are even worse in PvE. Although the one-hit-kill potential of Shoulder Charge is a helpful benchmark for supporting its abuse in PvP, PvE contains no such criteria that justify their “unique” niche. Enemies move predictably and do not outright flee, so lengthening the duration for activating Shoulder Charge is pointless; five seconds is plenty of time to place yourself in the fray.

We’re left with pure Strength, which is unfortunate, and additional Heavy Ammo, which is par for the course on Raid boots – the Legendary alternative you’ll be using at Level 32.

Unless you particularly like their look, or like trolling your friends who insist you use the best gear, the MK. 44 Stand Asides represent the nadir of Titan Exotics.


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


I’m aWrySharK, your resident Exotic guru and lover of all things min/max. At PlanetDestiny, my perfectionism is no longer simply a matter of form over function.


  • guest

    Helm of Saint 14, tier 3 in PvP? You gotta be kidding me…

    Came back here after 4 months break cuz of your sloppy articles and it’s still happening.

    • Is there a particular reason why you disagree? We of course encourage other opinions, as everyone’s will likely be a bit different, but I’m curious where you’d place it and why.

      • guest


      • TheThoricAura

        Well I mean, Saint-14 guarantees zone defense when also rolling with Armor of Light, because most people are too cocky when trying to attack a bubble, I’d definitely put it in Tier 1, anywhere above glasshouse

        • Funky_D_Luffy

          HoS-14 is tier 3 because I am not going inside your bubble. Clear as that. I may either go away, or if I’m feeling frisky, I’ll stand outside your bubble with a shotgun trained on your face, waiting for you to try me, and see which of us has the faster trigger-finger, cowboy. Still, I am not going inside your bubble, so what good does blind do you? It may work on Level 3 with a Grimoire score of 265, but not the rest of us. I am not going in the bubble. Unless, well… I have a Fist of Havok primed. So much for Zone Defense, then. Enjoy your respawn.

          • cool

            or unless i have a nova bomb ready to blast inside your bubble. in any case, if a enemy player comes inside your bubble, its quite sure he has his super ready and will annihilate anyone and everyone present in it

          • BurningPlayd0h

            What a ridiculous blanket statement. I have people go into my bubble all the time.

        • Thiago123

          Guarantees Zone Control? Unless they have a Nova Bomb…or a Golden Gun….or a Fist of Havoc.

          There are plenty of great strategies for bubbles in PvP, primarily as orb factories with multiple Titans. Sitting in them as a primary means to cap a zone is not one of them.

          • BurningPlayd0h

            Then it just works as bait for their supers. Watch for their wind up and clear the bubble.

          • Thiago123

            Good luck with that. We all know Titans are the most agile class and can easily escape nova bombs, golden guns, and smashes on reaction alone. They are so nimble and have their heads on a swivel. I’ve never seen a titan sit over-confidently in their bubble before…

            It really makes me angry when I play pvp, never get titan kills with my supers. They always escape!

            Seriously though, specifically in the zone control example, there will usually be more than 1 hanging out so it won’t be a straight 1 for 1 super exchange. Even if it was, it clearly shows that it isn’t a viable strategy for zone capture/control.

          • Mmonx

            Well if I can stay alive and get a couple kills I can easily pop another immediately after the one goes so ya it has pretty amazing zone control most of the time tho not always, frigan blade dancers :(. can get pretty trolly at times lol.

        • Mmonx

          I definitly agree! One can say that people wont come in the shield to fight but really 90% of the time they will either that or i’ll put it where they have to go in it (or go around the entire map) and if u come to close to the shield I can easily jump up and stick u with a grenade (although if they have a fusion rifles it can get messy). Also u guys think that u can easily take me with a super but any experienced/skilled defeneder knows how to defend or avoid almost any super (arc blade is difficult).

          • Anon

            Exactly, people are stupid. They enter bubbles all the time. Hell, sometimes I do it myself if I think they’re running Weapons or Blessing, even when I see the mohawk. Just remember where they were and point your shotgun accordingly.

            If they’re running Armor that’s another matter, those you should super instead. I don’t go in those bubbles more than once.

            Sure, most of the time in Crucible, you’re not forced to enter an S-14 bubble, even on Control. But what people aren’t discussing is how useful S-14 is for Salvage. Assuming they’re using the Bastion perk, the bubble will outlast the relic timer. So unless you have a super ready, you’re going to have to enter the bubble or you’ll lose the relic.

            I normally run Striker in Crucible and don’t think twice, but S14 is dominant in Salvage and I always run Defender there.

      • Anon

        You guys missed S-14’s incredible value in the Salvage game mode. With the Bastion perk, the bubble will outlast the relic timer, so only supers can prevent losing it (assuming they’re running armor and entering the bubble is death).

        Yes, a super will easily pop the bubble, and kill anyone who didn’t get out during the wind up animation. But that will require the other team to exercise discipline in saving their supers, and also that some or all of them even have the offensive supers necessary. If they’re running the ever-popular Sunsinger, they’re screwed. Defenders can drop their own bubble on top, but that is super fun and should be embraced.

    • JediJulius

      Their reasons for Tier 3 are perfectly valid and kind of true. A lot of times, only hotheaded opponents run into a Ward of Dawn, so the perk is very niche. Plus, some people may save a super for when a Ward is popped to destroy it ASAP.

  • Jordan Hill

    Informative and eloquent as always. Great contributor, keep it up mate.

  • Matthew Lee

    I’m still somewhat surprised that for whatever reason with regards to the orb build defender (bubble does orbs, heavy mg does orbs, melee does orbs) it really is the ultimate support build. I’m very surprised that this has not made your listing even with regards to the recent article regarding orbs. I’ve been in several games both pvp and pve where yes I cannot make enough in the way of kills but it is in actuality with my team mates being able to repeatedly proc their supers being able to be done every thirty seconds or so and the tide can turn even faster than when heavy ammo drops. Yes, there will not be a lot of kills but so long as the orbs are being circulated throughout the team, then the supers can keep going off. Beyond that, love the site, still extremely informative and absolutely the best supporting website outside of bungie itself. I’d love to play a game or two with some of the staff here sometime on xb1.

  • Bmeowmix

    Am I the only one that finds The Armamentarium extremely overrated? Other than the lightning for PvP and maybe magnetic for PvE Titan grenades are pretty useless. Also, even with the high discipline, you often don’t have both grenades charged since the second grenade charges at half speed. Much rather have Mk. 44s for PvP or No Backup Plans for PvE.

    Also, you guys really don’t give The Crest of Alpha Lupi enough credit. In multiplayer PvE (other than raids) these are one of the best (if not the best) exotics since you can revive without breaking sprint, meaning survivability while reviving is way higher

    • Christian

      Titan grenades are by far my favourite and I honestly think most are underrated. Suppression grenade is the best thing I’ve ever used. It has the highest explosive damage and even prevents a lot of enemies from attacking entirely. Flashbangs are good too. Any enemy blinded easily becomes a sure kill.

      I like the additional heavy ammo for Armamentarium too. it makes the crota encounter a breeze given the insane amount of rockets you can carry (:

      • Surgetech

        I do agree with you that Titan grenades are great.
        The additional heavy ammo perk ends up being a waste, because the raid boots give that perk and since the perks don’t stack, it doesn’t really help. So, the Armamentarium is not really all that great for Crota.

        • Christian

          True. It gives players a good reason to switch out for some other gear (:

      • Bmeowmix

        I suppose that flashbangs and suppression grenades can be good for PvP, but not great. Suppressions still can’t kill by themselves so you choose between a somewhat easy one-hit kill and suppression effects so magnetic is usually better.

        Flashbangs on the otherhand don’t seem to work much at all. Maybe it’s just me, but when I used them on enemies or when enemies used them on me they usually didn’t blind much at all.

        And regardless of the effectiveness of Titan grenades it isn’t often that both are charged at once if you use them a lot, and if you don’t use grenades a lot you should probably be using something not centered around grenades.

        Heavy ammo is great though, but since so many people have raid legs it isn’t too useful

        • Christian

          They do more than enough damage for me. They knock PVP foes all the way down to at least 10% health. Anything thrashes an opponent after that. But it’s just so much fun watching players struggle without their abilities. It makes you realize how much players rely on that stuff. Throw that into a control zone and they are just fish in a barrel. No Radar, No Grenade, No Double Jump, Blink etc, no supers. Really, really useful. Magnet grenades are amazing for single targets. But entire teams are severely cumbered by these beauties.

    • BurningPlayd0h

      Flashbangs are insanely useful for PvE. Suppressor grenades make a lot of enemies easier to take on too, especially wizards which it prevents from firing.

      • Bmeowmix

        Suppression grenades don’t really do much against most enemies. Flashbangs are pretty good for PvE though I guess.

  • Drakan

    Good analysis, thanks.

  • Matt

    IMO Stand Asides are just as good as No Backup Plans. Both are just fun to tool around with but not really amazing. I run Stand Asides on many small maps so I can just run around and shoulder charge.

    Don’t really get the love with Armamentarium. It was my first Titan exotic chest piece and I barely use it. All it gives is grenades, and that is a so-so perk iMO. In general I think Titans have a lot of very blah exotic armors to choose from. None really stick out to me in PVP. In PVE the Helm of St. 14 and Ruin Wings are excellent and all the rest are a tier or two below those IMO.

    • Bmeowmix

      No Backup Plans is great for non-lightswitch PvE. With a maxed strength load out it force barrier can be nearly constant (unless it gets destroyed). If you build around force barrier No Backup Plans really is great

  • BRUH

    why is insurmountable skullfort on both tier 1 and tier 2????

    • BRUH


  • BurningPlayd0h

    Id argue Saint-14 is a little more useful than you describe. I love dropping my bubble and having a bladeancer or sunsinger (sometimes even gunslingers when they dont know its there) run into and promptly find themselves blinded by he bubble while my teammates and I put the hurt on them.

    • ForeverLaxx .

      I like going in with my Sunsinger super active and killing cocky Defenders who think being blind means I don’t know where they are.

      • BurningPlayd0h

        Cool… That has little to do with the effectiveness of the armor and more with player skill.

    • Ares

      Agree that Saint-14 is way more useful than stated. I would argue that if you’re going to be a Defender Titan in PVP, you should run Saint-14 as a priority…bubbles are generally used in a defnesive manner encouraging enemy players to run in and get shotgunned down; Saint 14 is perfect for that as they will be blinded and unable to retaliate.

  • Ares

    An Insurmountable Skullfort does not grant the shoulder charge part of the transfusion perk, although you state it does – it only gives you health recharge with Storm Fist kills. I hope you take this only as constructive criticism and not malicious, but you really should not make these kinds of errors. It is not difficult to research things like perks on a helmet or effects on weapons. I have followed Planet Destiny since its inception and I remember, for example, that the site clearly said the Vex Mythoclast ignores shields (also false). This is why people trust Datto so much – he doesn’t make these erros and his information is always accurate. As a trusted source of Destiny information, I do not think it is too much to expect you to hold yourself to the same standards. Either way, I’ll keep listening because I think you guys endeavour to do a good job here.

    • Ares

      Edit: Although An Insurmountable Skullfort states that it only procs Transfusion on Storm Fist kills, I am seeing reports that it does actually proc on Shoulder Charge as well…I haven’t noticed this using the helm myself but I may well be wrong in my previous comment. If so, I apologise and stand corrected.

    • BurningPlayd0h

      It procs on shoulder charge. Dont believe everything you read until you try it yourself.

      • Ares

        Absolutely. Wish I’d been less impulsive. Alas, alcohol can make people just like that!

  • Mmonx

    Saint 14 should have been tier 1 for PVP and tier 2 for PVE, either Glasshouse or No Back Up Plans would replace its tier 1 spot (PVE), An Insurmontable Skullfort should have been tier 2 for PVP, and No Back Up Plans should be tier 3 PVP (it’s very hard to get melee kills with defender in PVP unless you’re in your ward).

    • BurningPlayd0h

      Saint-14 allows you to use your bubble in totally different ways in PvE amd increase survivability while in it more than any other exotic, no question.

      The Glasshouse and No Backup Plans give you a slightly longer overshield or damage buff… wow. Thats so useful when I can just refresh it as soon as it expires.

  • Jeff

    Nice. Good to know as I’ll finally be in position to get an exotic this week. Really want Alpha Lupi just for the look.

  • guest

    saint 14 is #1 in pvp and pve baby! ull be surprised how many people will try their chances going into a bubble lol

  • Dan

    Armamentarium is the only Titan exotic I’m missing. Hope I can pick it up soon

  • way51

    I know this will seem weird but sometimes I use a striker discipline build with glasshouse for ROC strikes. I haven’t fully upgraded the helm but it seems to recharge the super quite quickly, especially with the lightening grenade.

  • Ingulit

    Lovely article, though I have to disagree with extra heavy ammo being a useless perk in PvP (like you said in the Stand Asides section); getting twice as many rockets power heavy ammo drop–which the perk provides–is far from negligible. Extra heavy ammo is magnitudes better than the truly pointless extra primary ammo on your boots in PvP.