Exotic Rocket Launcher Analysis

Published on: Jan 4, 2015 @ 12:19

Gjallarhorn vs Truth vs Dragon’s Breath

We’ve published reviews for each of these weapons, but this article will serve to compare them directly, really showing off their strengths and weaknesses side by side.

Each of these weapons can be acquired randomly in PvE/PvP (end of match rewards, chests, etc.) or sold by Xûr.

Unique Perks

Gjallarhorn’s perks are Tracking, and Wolfpack Rounds that explode into grenades that also home in on targets and explode for more damage.

Of course tracking is great, but what makes this weapon into the PvE beasts that it is, is the additional tracking cluster missiles. The extra missiles act almost like another rocket, essentially making 1 round do double the damage that a normal rocket launcher would.

dark below dragons breath

Truth‘s main perks allow for proximity detonation and aggressive tracking. These are great in all situations, because whether you choose to take advantage of the tracking or not, the rockets will detonate quickly.

Dragon’s Breath has Tripod, giving one more rocket in the tube, and Pyromancer, which leaves a solar flare for about 4 seconds.

Unlike Dragon’s Breath or Gjallarhorn, Truth comes standard with a magazine size of 3, and the Pyromancer perk is deadly, but much less so when most enemies just move out of it completely before it can make a dent.


Rate of Fire

Dragon’s Breath actually has the highest rate of fire out of the three launchers at 18, but Gjallarhorn and Truth are at a close second each having 11. The difference is so minute though that you really won’t notice it in any fight.

Blast Radius

The highest blast radius is shared by Truth and Dragon’s Breath at 96, while Gjallarhorns is substantially lower at 76.

Truth and Dragon’s Breaths large blast radius will clear out larger areas than Gjallarhorn, but the additional cluster missiles make up for it.


As for velocity, which is how fast a rocket travels when in the air, Gjallarhorn is the clear winner at 90.

Truth’s 48, and Dragon’s Breath’s 39 are substantially lower, but fortunately can be upgraded. Dragon’s Breath low velocity means enemies can often move out of the way, even when it’s fully upgraded.


Truth has the highest stability at 83, with Dragons breath at 66 at Gjallarhorn at 58.

Stability isn’t something you’ll have to worry about when using any of the Exotic rocket launchers, making firing off consecutive rounds a piece of cake.

truth exotic review

Reload Speed

Truth also has the highest reload speed at 79, with Gjallarhorn at 69 and Dragon’s Breath at 52.

Truth and Gjallarhorn have the Flared Magwell perk that will max out their reload speeds, but in Truth’s case you end up losing out on the increased velocity from Javelin, making it a tough choice.

In PvE the reload speeds of Truth and Gjallarhorn are quick enough that you can dip behind cover, or just tank some damage while you reload.


In regards to magazine sizes, Truth shares the largest magazine size (its tooltip says 2, but it’s 3) with Dragon’s Breath at 3, but Dragon’s Breath needs Tripod.

Gjallarhorn is only capable of holding 2 in the magazine, but as stated above, the tracking cluster missiles after a rocket detonates makes up for it.


The obvious advantage of a rocket launcher is its massive damage that can be delivered to large clusters of enemies, or one big blow to a boss, in a quick amount of time. A rocket launcher allows you to quickly peek out and deal a blow to a boss, keeping you safe.

The ideal form of a PvE rocket launcher is something that can keep you out of harms way, and destroy a large portion of enemies, or at least deal one massive blow to a select target. Gjallarhorn takes that, and then turns it up a few notches with its Wolfpack Rounds.

gjallarhorn exotic comparison

The initial blast packs a huge punch, and the followup grenades will put a massive dent in any single foe. If you need to clear out a room, those cluster missiles will seek out targets that are normally well outside the blast radius of the other two launchers.

Truth does not do quite as much damage to targets in PvE that Gjallarhorn can do. Its tracking, proximity detonation, and large blast radius are all great – but these perks are much more useful in PvP.

Dragon’s Breath falls behind, mainly because of its lack of tracking, but also because its solar flares aren’t deadly enough. If a target is mobile, which most are, you end up having to work a bit harder to ensure maximum damage from your shot. While the Pyromancer perk does bring the ability to close off areas from advancing enemies, enemies will avoid it , meaning it won’t be able to do consistent damage.


In PvP a rocket launcher can have devastating effects, and can easily swing the tide of battle.

Tracking will have an even greater effect in the Crucible, as all of the enemies are moving, and unless the velocity if high, you’ll find that most people can dodge a rocket that isn’t capable of tracking.

Gjallarhorn and Truth each have the ability to track, and even Gjallarhorn’s additional cluster missiles will track down an enemy. Truth also has early proximity detonation which will pretty much ensure that each rocket will land a kill.

Dragon’s Breath lack of tracking simply makes the weapon more difficult to use, except on the smallest maps. With Dragon’s Breath you’ll be able to choose exactly where you want your rocket/flare to go, but this means that you might end up missing moving targets.

truth damage

Truth really wins out due to its extreme tracking, early detonation, and large magazine size. What more could you ask for?

Gjallarhorn comes in a very close second. In PvP the Wolfpack Rounds aren’t as deadly as in PvE, where they can easily take out a few enemies by themselves. It is a very reliable rocket launcher for clearing out a single enemy, or a very tightly packed group.

Dragon’s Breath falls into third place again, as the Solar Flare will rarely get you kills, and Tripod should come standard. Even with the large blast radius, it can’t compete against Gjallarhorn or Truth.

The solar flare has the ability to temporarily close off choke points, but because it lasts for just a few seconds, it’s not a good enough deterrent.


Don’t have one of the Exotic rocket launchers? Don’t want to use up your Exotic slot with a heavy weapon that you won’t use as much as an Exotic primary/special? Here’s a few alternatives:

One Way Ticket 000 and Valedictorian 9-44 are from the Vanguard and Crucible Quartermaster respectively. Fortunately either of these weapons have the chance at really awesome perks, but then again you may be unlucky and end up with perks like Unflinching, Fitted Stock, and Third Eye – which are almost useless for rocket launchers.

Radegast’s Fury, sold by Lord Saladin, has the same random perks as the other vendor rocket launchers, but the overall base stats for Radegast’s Fury are better. Fortunately the perks can be rerolled for this weapon.

Hunger of Crota, if you’re lucky enough to get it from Crota’s End, is very similar to Gjallarhorn. Not only does it look great, but its stats are very balanced and you’re guaranteed to have tracking and (non-tracking) cluster bombs, since the perks are static.


All of these launchers are worth leveling up and are fun to use. As with most Exotic heavy weapons, you’re generally going to be using them for specific situations, and each of these preform well.



Named after the mythic trumpet from Norse mythology that brings about the onset of the destruction and renewal of the universe. One of the most powerful weapons in the game, it certainly lives up to its majestic name, and is the absolute pinnacle of PvE rocket launchers.

Aside from elemental damage burns, Gjallarhorn is the top choice for PvE. It’s brutally effective and will make short work of any enemy.


truth exotic review

Its statistics are excellent in the areas that matter (blast radius, velocity, reload), which makes it all the more enjoyable to use. “Grenades and Horseshoes” + “Prototype Trueseeker” are perfect perks when paired together, and is a very fun weapon to use!

In PvP Truth is the winner, but only by a close margin to Gjallarhorn. The aggressive tracking combined with proximity detonation really makes it worth the exotic slot in PvP.

Dragon’s Breath

dragon's breath exotic review

Even though the blast radius on Dragon’s Breath is huge, and the rate of fire is the highest, it still feels like a middle ground between the Exotic rocket launchers. It isn’t a bad weapon, and for some situations, it may even preform better than the other Exotic launchers.

Having a 3 round magazine size standard and replacing the first perk with proximity detonation might be something Bungie should test, as it would make the weapon a little more versatile while bringing it up to the same level as the other rocket launchers.

Dragon’s Breath really feels like a compromise for something to use in both PvP and PvE. It works well, but is just really outclassed by the other two exotic launchers.

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