Challenge of Elders Guide (Week 4)

 

Brawler, Ironclad, & Super kill bonus
Brawler, Ironclad, & Super kill bonus

Armor Recommendations

The following suggestions are equally valid for all Guardians, no matter what subclass you’re going to use.

On your helmets this week, look for Inverse Shadow, but honestly anyone looking for a high score should be gathering Assists and waiting to collect kills until a roaming powerhouse is ready to go. Otherwise, Artifacts are the next most important choice – do your best to match your artifact up to your chosen Element and abilities to land a few extra Orbs. Finally, as you can probably guess, do your best to match up your body Armor to your Element as well as your weapon types.

In all reality though, Rank 5 Intellect is probably more important than any Armor-ability this week.

Weapon Recommendations

Weapon-wise, there are actually a couple of choices this week. Bad Juju seems to be the obvious pick with direct charging of your super on every kill, but I think it might actually be the worst options that I’m going to mention because it requires you to get sub-optimal kills. Now if you’re just looking to run through quickly and get your 30k, it’s probably fine. If you’re working on a solo run, it’s probably the only choice. But if your fireteam is aiming to finish a card in two runs, or even shooting for a real high score, this is not going to cut it.

The other Exotic Weapon that you should be thinking about is Telesto – it’s the besto, and much better than the resto, as we all well know. So Telesto generates Orbs for your teammates on double kills which makes it an incredible choice for certain subclasses (Sunsingers and Nightstalkers, I’m looking at you!) but again, it is requiring you to score sub-optimal kills in order to recharge your teammates supers. It’s still better than Bad Juju though, since it helps ⅔ of your Fireteam instead of just yourself.

There is a third Exotic of note here, which works out really well for any Warlock class, but also for Defender Titans, and that’s Monte Carlo. I’m sure we’re all very familiar with this Auto Rifle now, and not only is it the perfect archetype to easily collect Assists with, you can also pump rounds into the boss to recharge your Melee Ability, which if you’re running the right class recharges your Super in turn.

Finally, the optimal weapon strategy here is the same one I’ve been harping on for weeks now: Assists! Assist make every single kill count for more, and if you have your whole fireteam working on gathering assists, you can theoretically double your score. This is what the people making the top list in TWAB know that you don’t – use it, and maybe it’ll be your name up there next Thursday.

The best weapons for gathering assists do low damage per trigger pull and allow for precision shooting. I recommend the following primaries: low Impact Hand Cannons (such as the Omolon Kumakatok or the Water Star), low Impact Scout Rifles (like the Suros DIS-47), mid Impact Auto Rifles (like Haakon’s Hatchet or the Suros ARI-41), or the lowest Impact Pulse Rifle (Grasp of Malok). Pulse rifles are riskier since they fire three bullets at once and so do a lot of damage with each trigger pull.

If you’re not running Telesto as your secondary, A. reconsider, but B. you can also run a Sidearm which does fairly low damage on body shots and is also very handy for breaking shields, something the Primaries won’t do as effectively. This is a good choice for players on Assist-gathering duty. This also frees you to run Monte Carlo or Bad Juju as your primary.

Pro-Tip: If you have two fireteam members assigned to run Defender and wielding complementary-burn Sidearms, you’ll be in good shape to pile on both the Assists and the Orbs like nothing else. Back them up with a powerhouse roaming super like the Stormcaller and you have a real shot at blowing this challenge out of the water with disgusting super chains!

Dominate with Any Subclass

Now we’re going to break down and rank the best options for each Class and Subclass – you can have success with any Subclass, but some are clearly superior to others.

Titans

#1 – Defender
Super Blessing of Light
Perks Gift of Light, Gift of the Void, Untouchable
Exotics Crest of Alpha Lupi
Stat Ranks Int 5 Dis 1 Str 5

It’s raining orbs! Despite being possibly the worst class for getting super kills, this is far and away the BEST support class for this week’s challenge. You’ll drop so many Orbs from your Bubble, it’s not even funny. Gift of Light is perhaps optional – since you’re not collecting Melee Kills on purpose, you could just as easily roll with Unbreakable and grab a Melee kill at the beginning of each Assist run (yes, your job is not to get kills, but to get Assists and make Orbs). Gift of the Void and CoAL is how you do your real work – pop that bubble within easy sight of the Boss and watch 6 Orbs drop down, practically recharging your allies instantly!

Pro Tip: If there are two defenders in the party, chain your bubbles one after that other, not at the same time!

#2 – Sunbreaker
Super Forgemaster, Suncharge
Perks Melting Point, Flameseeker, Cauterize
Exotics Crest of Alpha Lupi
Stat Ranks Int 5 Dis 1 Str 5

Forgemaster is the obvious choice here, giving you more hammers and hence more kills per Super use. Melting Point is a great melee choice, helping warrior Sunbros burn down the boss (and annoying Majors) faster, and Flameseeker and Cauterize take full advantage of your Super to let you go all tanky-tank.

The obvious choice aside, Suncharge is actually a powerhouse ability as well, stacking Melee bonus points onto your super kills and smashing through Majors and groups effortlessly. It does eat more Super energy per use, but the extra points could well be worth it if you use it well.

Some people might be tempted to roll out Scorched Earth and Firekeeper to get the Overshield in Sunspots, but the name of the game is Super Kills, so I wouldn’t go that route.

#3 – Striker
Super Aftermath
Perks Flashbang, Amplify, Aftershocks, Juggernaut
Exotics Crest of Alpha Lupi
Stat Ranks Int 5 Dis 1 Str 5

Fist of Havoc is definitely not your best choice, point-wise. The other subclasses will generate a lot more Orbs and make gathering Assists easier, or just plain get piles of Super Kills. But Striker? Striker kills a single group of enemies, and that’s it. If you insist on going this route, CoAL at least gets you one extra Orb, and Aftermath / Aftershocks might net you a few more kills as unwitting enemies walk into your killzone.

Warlock

#1 – Stormcaller
Super Superconductor
Perks Rising Storm, Transcendance, Electrostatic Mind
Exotics The Impossible Machines
Stat Ranks Int 5 Dis 1 Str 5

Holy Orb in the sky, Batman, this is the subclass to use! I mean seriously, the number of super kills you can grab on every use is utterly sick. Superconductor is a clear choice, doubling your chaining to wipe groups of enemies that much faster. It’s even more important now that we have to be more careful about using the super when there are no targets in range. The Impossible Machines lets you really pile on the kills too, granting Landfall so that you can wipe the first stack of adds just by activating your super.

Electrostatic Mind might be the sickest perk you have, charging your super faster when allies are near (like, say, between rounds?), and also dealing damage to nearby enemies as you float past. Then again, Transcendance is just as good, granting you a much slower drain on your super energy and therefore even more time to collect kills. But wait, there’s more! That’s right, Rising Storm means that every Melee hit (not kill!) also charges your Super up faster, as well as recharging Thunderstrike itself so you can do it again!

#2 – Sunsinger
Super Song of Flame, Radiant Skin
Perks Radiant Will, (Brimstone, Sunburst)
Exotics Light Beyond Nemesis,

Heart of the Praxic Fire

Stat Ranks Int 5 Dis 1 Str 5

Song of Flame is an amazing ability, and pretty handy if your allies have any useful Assist-gathering or enemy-dampening neutral abilities (Flashbang, Smoke). Otherwise, you might as well be selfish this week and just roll with Radiant Skin. Radiant Will is also an obvious call and makes your super last that much longer. Something hopefully everyone is aware of is that weapon kills in Radiance generate Orbs (well, any kills really). So if you’re running, say, Telesto, the answer is yes, it sure as heck will be raining light for your Allies! Another great combo for this subclass is Brimstone and Sunburst. This precludes using Radiant Will to extend your super duration, but also allows your to generate 1-2 Orbs against groups of unshielded red enemies.

The extra Orb from Light Beyond Nemesis is your best bet point-wise, and also supports the super chain your fireteam needs to keep rolling. Heart of the Praxic Fire does let you get a few more Super Kills though, and is therefore much better for solo attempts.

#3 – Voidwalker
Super Vortex
Perks Soul Rip, Annihilate, Vortex Mastery
Exotics Obsidian Mind
Stat Ranks Int 5 Dis 1 Str 5

Voidwalker, despite being ranked 3rd here, is still a very decent choice for this challenge. If you use your super carefully to lock down a spawn point, Vortex and Vortex Mastery will keep the kills coming and Obsidian Mind will earn its passage. You also have a moderately helpful Melee ability in Soul Rip, although it does require sub-optimal kills. Nonetheless, it combos well with Monte Carlo.

In fact, if you’re running with Defenders who are making orbs for you, you can really keep the Nova Bombs coming at a somewhat disturbing rate.

Hunter

#1 – Nightstalker
Super Black Hole
Perks Light of the Pack, Predator
Exotics Crest of Alpha Lupi
Stat Ranks Int 5 Dis 1 Str 5

Nightstalkers, as we all well know, make excellent team players. Between Black Hole, Light of the Pack, Crest of Alpha Lupi, and Telesto, you can rock the world with a maximum jaw-dropping 12 Orbs of Light per Super Use. Twelve. As in an even dozen. What else do you need to know?

#2 – Bladedancer
Super Razor’s Edge, Showstopper
Perks Fleet Footed, Encore
Exotics ATS/8 Tarantella, (Mask of the Third Man)
Stat Ranks Int 5 Dis 1 Str 5

So Blade Dancers are really bad at making Orbs, but if for some reason you hate playing as a Nightstalker, the Super Kills Challenge is one place where Blade Dancers have a real opportunity to shine. Razor’s Edge and Showstopper have similar utility and different use cases – take your pick. Most of your Super Kills should be straight-up Arc Blade shots anyway. Fleet Footed is just there to make sure you’re moving at maximum speed, and Encore of course gives you more time (and more stabs) to keep the electric death train rolling.

A lot of people probably thought of Mask of the Third Man as the obvious go-to Exotic here, and it’s not bad – each Arc Blade strike uses less super energy, so you get more of them in per Super use, hopefully meaning more kills. The downside is that it won’t do anything for your lackluster Orb generation and may only yield 1-2 more kills depending on how many shielded foes are left. Better in my opinion is the ATS/8 Tarantella, which shaves a hearty 30 seconds off of your Super regen time, getting you back off the bench and into the action that much sooner.

#3 – Gunslinger
Super Combustion, (Gunfighter)
Perks Circle of Life, Keyhole, Over the Horizon, (Gambler’s Dagger)
Exotics Achlyophage Symbiote,

Crest of Alpha Lupi

Stat Ranks Int 5 Dis 1 Str 5

Gunslinger is a tough one to run here, largely because your total kills per super is fairly weak for a roaming super, as is the time you have to collect them. Combustion and Keyhole are the perks to work – land that first shot on a group exiting a spawn for maximum effect. Over the Horizon is also worth taking thanks to a small stat boost that accompanies it, unless you’re trying to stretch your super duration with Circle of Life, in which case Gambler’s Dagger is the better pick. You’ve had plenty of opportunity the last few weeks to practice throwing knives in PVE – now put them to use!

So there you have it – our best advice for crushing skulls in this week’s Challenge of the Elders! Are you using an alternative build? Do you think we missed a key connection? Which Subclass do you think is best? Let us know in the comments!

Jonathon V

I love talking about Weapons, Perks, Stats, Lore, and all things Destiny. Find me as Kyt_Kutcha on PSN and Reddit, or listen to me co-hosting the Massive Breakdown podcast on Soundcloud and iTunes.

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