It’s good to be back, Guardians! With the new release, Destiny has been infused (ha) with new life. One of the most enticing updates is that of the Tower Vendors, who have all been given a fresh stock of randomly-rolled wares for you to buy with those Legendary Marks that have been gathering dust on the proverbial shelf.
We’ll lay it out in simple terms, and make note of the meta in which each recommendation excels (PvP vs PvE), and then it’ll be up to you to decide what your first weapon of the new Destiny season will be! As always, we’ll remind you that these are just our recommendations; it’s very possible you’ll discover a weapon we overlooked – and we encourage our readers to branch out and break from the crowd.
Future War Cult
The Pulse Rifle pride of Future War Cult is back with another PvP-friendly roll. This recommendation comes due as much to the PR’s inherent quality stats as the specific roll. With Glass Half Full and Headseeker, you’ll have a healthy amount of bonus damage as you near the end of your magazine, to make up for those situations in which you can’t pull off the 3-burst precision kill. Keep in mind, this won’t appreciably lower your TTKs, and headshots will always be the fastest way to down an enemy. In the middle column, Perfect Balance grants you helpful Stability, or Reinforced Barrel pushes your effective engagement range into Scout Rifle territory. You can’t go wrong either way.
If you’re going to buy one gun from FWC, it should be this one. With the buffs to Fusion Rifles, The Vacancy is poised to be a veritable murderous precision laser beam. Hot Swap and Rangefinder possess excellent synergy, buffing you with increased projectile speed and accuracy to take advantage of the Vacancy’s already generous Stability, and shoring up its one “weakness” in Range. Meanwhile, the healthy Magazine Size of 6 is happy to take a small hit in order to achieve perfect Stability with Braced Frame in the middle column. This is a flawless PvP roll and you are guaranteed to see improvements to your FR game if you make the upgrade over anything short of this roll.
Easy now, it’s nowhere near the silly good PvE roll that Dead Orbit boasted since the release of TTK. With that said, given the Hung Jury’s impressive base stats, Third Eye and Life Support are versatile perks to help take advantage of the consistency you can expect with this weapon.
Consider the Hung Jury to be a competitor in the PvP realm this time around, using the situational awareness and healing factor afforded to it by its distinct perks. The middle column allows you to select between a blistering reload speed at the reasonable price of a couple of rounds in the magazine with Feather Mag, or increased strafe and decreased stow and swap times in Single Point Sling. Candle sights keeps your FOV clear, and Flash HS4 imaging will highlight enemy targets. Not a bad selection.
After the mouth-watering roll that the Vacancy boasts, the Hitchhiker FR4 slides in as its first real competition. With the excellent Hot Swap, it too will gain accuracy and projectile speed when first drawn, and the still-somewhat-mysterious Hidden Hand promises increased target acquisition in the form of Aim Assist on top of that.
Tests are still required to see how Hidden Hand interacts with projectiles over hit-scan weapons, but we’re optimistic that it will interact favorably. Of course, even though the Hitchhiker comes standard with max Impact, this stopping power would be useless if you couldn’t get the projectile spread into manageable range. This is made possible with the arguably essential Braced Frame in the middle column. Tough pick for Fusion Rifles, huh?
Like Hawksaw, the Righteous VII represents a class of weapons that Bungie is nerfing the tiniest amount. However, this nerf of just over 2% damage will have no noticeable effect on the performance of the Righteous VII, a high RoF/low Impact Auto Rifle that is poised to deliver a hail of bullets with scary precision.
Like many of our picks this time around, it sports the excellent Counterbalance, as well as Perfect Balance, to rein in the otherwise erratic recoil. And you’re going to want to pick both of them, so that you can also choose Reinforced Barrel, which will allow the Righteous VII to approach the engagement range of the other Auto Rifle classes. If you’re dead-set on having that maximum amount of Stability, though, then Lightweight is a fine substitute. After all, you’re safe to get into CQB if they can’t even hit you.
Almost identical to the Crucible Vanguard’s Ruin Wake, the Objection IV is likely an even stronger pick. With the same deadly Counterbalance/Rangefinder combination, the Objection also has Smallbore to buff its Range even further. Although this will strip a few precious rounds from the magazine, Objection has a few extra to spare over the aforementioned Ruin Wake, and the performance boost you’ll get will more than cover the nerf.
This is an obvious one for a Pulse Rifle of this archetype. While the Vanguard Stock is admittedly a little weak, the Hakke AoD comes standard with Headseeker and Counterbalance, as well as Hand Loaded or Reinforced Barrel for a little extra Range. We recommend Hand Loaded, as the hit you take to Stability taking Reinforced Barrel isn’t quite compensated for with Counterbalance. In any case, this is a simple selection of perks that rounds off a quality weapon. Nothing revolutionary; just reliable death.
Don’t worry, folks. No Rangefinder on this one. However, now that Shotguns are being given a little extra oomph for the return of PoE in the form of a minor rollback on their previous damage nerfs, a roll like this could see some usefulness. Life Support and Performance Bonus both offer longevity & takes this weapon into the PvE realm. Reinforced Barrel is a must for not suffering the whims of absurd damage falloff at targets outside of spitting range. It’s not going to replace your PvP mainstay, but it could be a nice option if you have nothing to take into the up-close-and-personal frenzy of the Prison of Elders.
Think of this as a bit of a runner-up, as we feel that Sidearms still aren’t in an ideal place as a weapon class. In spite of that, you can’t argue the one-two punch of Crowd Control and Battle Runner, especially on a sidearm archetype that features a passive bonus to projectile speed, making them practically hitscan. You’re not going to have a ton of chances to take advantage of the brief increase to damage that Crowd Control offers, but when you do, the JabberHäkke will help you drop your targets, acquire and hunt your next prey, and dodge their bullets with equal flair. Pick it up once you’ve exhausted the other options.
Welcome back, high Impact Auto Rifles. At first glance, this weapon appears to be a poor option, with very low Stability and no other strong outliers. Thankfully, its roll seems perfectly designed to bring it into the limelight.
The combination of Counterbalance and Braced Frame turn an unwieldy Auto Rifle into a fine-tuned killing machine. The extra bonus of Crowd Control is just the cherry on top. It’s worth noting that with the decrease to Magazine Size from Braced Frame, you’ll have fewer rounds to take advantage of Crowd Control – but we feel that for those times in PvP and PvE in which you can drop a weak target early, the added damage will be a certain boon for keeping the pressure on your foes.
This PR class won’t be going anywhere anytime soon. They’re easy to use, kick minimally, and pepper your target with bullets so fast that they wonder where their health went. As if that wasn’t enough, this particular roll offers Fitted Stock/Counterbalance to practically negate recoil, and says “Eh, why not” in offering Smallbore on top of that. You won’t mind the reduction in Magazine Size if you never miss a shot. Expect Hawksaw to remain a Crucible favorite, especially with this roll in the mix.
While we’re disappointed that the class of weapons that seems almost designed to sport large magazines is losing them in all areas of the game to effect balance, you’ll still be able to succeed with the right MG. Ruin Wake is one such weapon. Stacked already with a desirable RoF/Impact class, and impressive Stability, this roll gives it a perk profile that lets it stand a cut above its class. Counterbalance will be more than enough Stability to allow for consistent precision kills, and Rangefinder will push its lethality out even further. Braced Frame in the middle column is overkill, so instead opt for Armor Piercing or High Caliber rounds to stagger or overpenetrate. Yes, it’ll be a little cumbersome – but with everything else it offers, you’ll be too busy winning to notice.
Notes on Snipers
While we would dearly have loved to include some of the new Sniper Rifles available to us in 1.21, none of their rolls stood out particularly. The relationship between RoF/Impact and Magazine Size is eternally stacked against the High RoW/Low Impact Sniper Class, and as such there is almost no reason to select one of these for any PvE content whatsoever. Taking that into account, we’re also disappointed to announce that the field is generally weak for PvP as well.
Even with the lower Impact Sniper Rifles joining the “Rez Snipe” game, none of their perks offer much over alternatives that have been available for a while, and the changes to the revive animation invincibility frames will likely make Rez Sniping harder anyway. Even the Thousand Yard Stare at the Vanguard only has Unflinching as a draw; its other perk is situational at best. Keep an eye out for good rolls in your engrams!
That’s it for us. Share in the comments what weapon you’re most excited for, and if you think we missed any winners. Good luck with the new patch, and happy hunting!
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