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.

Stats

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.

Velocity

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.

Stability

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.

Magazine

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.

PvE

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.

PvP

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.

Alternatives

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.

Overall

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.

Gjallarhorn

Gjallarhorn

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

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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LATEST POSTS BY AUTHOR

  • Robert

    And after playing since the beginning I haven’t received any of these. About 200 hours of playtime. Oh, how I love RNGesus. One day, Destiny, one day.

    • BAMozzy69 .

      Truth was on sale about 2weeks ago and Dragon’s Breath was sold by Xur this week.

      • Robert

        You’re right, I missed the truth sale and I don’t think I was interested in dragon’s breath as I was fine with my hunger of crota. Silly me, lol. I just really want that gjally one day.

        • Zach

          Over 350 hours here and I haven’t EVER gotten an exotic from rng, unless you count my 10 exotic bounties which really arnt that hard to get

        • BAMozzy69 .

          Gjallahorn has also been sold by Xur although not for a while so could be sold again. I think I got mine from either a Nightfall or VoG raid – I can’t remember which now.

          • Robert

            That was forever ago though. Hopefully he sells it again soon. Inn not one of those guys that somehow thinks my weapon gets worse or less special if everyone has it.

          • BAMozzy69 .

            It certainly was a while ago now and can’t see him selling it for a few weeks as we have had both Rocket Launchers sold recently. I keep hoping Xur sells Hard Light as that has never been sold as it seems that the game will not give it to me. I have seen a number of friends get it from Raiding or Nightfall but I cant seem to get this at all.

          • Fenrir

            To be honest, i do not think it will be sold evee again. After selling the suros regime two times, everybody used that weapon because it is an amazing weapon in both pvp and pve.

            I think it is too powerful to be sold again, i hope i am wrong but that is my personal point of view.

          • BAMozzy69 .

            Well Truth has been sold quite a few times and that is a very powerful Rocket Launcher too. As this article shows, Truth has the edge in PvP and a very close 2nd in PvE so overall very much comparable to Gjallahorn.
            I am sure Xur will sell it again – maybe not for a few weeks though as he has sold 2 Rocket Launchers in the past 3 weeks.

  • BAMozzy69 .

    I have all 3 of these and really struggle to see the point in Dragon’s Breath. I cannot think of a situation where I would rather carry Dragon’s Breath over the others. I suppose you could use it to control the flow of enemies a bit but the duration of the Solar Flare is not that great. I know some bosses don’t move that much and therefore the DoT of that flare may help but I doubt that I would be thinking ‘I wish I equipped Dragon’s Breath’ if I am using either of the other two.
    I would still rather carry Hezen’s Vengence or Hunger of Crota, at least I can then equip an Exotic in another slot

    • Christian

      That’s the general problem with Heavy Weapons. They have to be prominently effective to be worthwhile. If they aren’t really good, then they simply aren’t worth equipping. Gjallarhorn, to me, seems to be the only heavy weapon in the game I can justify equipping. Truth and Dragon’s breath are great weapons, there is no question. But there is no reason why you’d use one of them over a Primary or Special Exotic.

      • BAMozzy69 .

        I would say that Truth has several reasons to be Equipped and some are are the same reasons as Gjallahorn. Truth has tracking and just as effective against bosses. As this comparison shows, Truth is the Exotic Rocket Launcher to equip in PvP and a very close 2nd in PvE. If you can justify equipping Gjallahorn as your Exotic of choice, Truth can easily be substituted in without compromising your build or effectiveness.
        In a Void Burn situation, its also the only Void based Exotic too.
        Dragon’s Breath though is a big struggle to justify. In PvE & PvP both other Exotics are much better. Even if there is a Solar Burn, you can’t justify taking Dragon’s breath as Gjallahorn is also Solar.
        It seems there is a plethora of Solar based Rocket Launchers with the 2 Raid ones being Solar too and given the choice, I would equip both Raid Launchers over Dragon’s Breath – even Hezen’s Vengeance with its lower (300) attack stat.
        I know the perks suit a Solar build but I really don’t understand why Bungie introduced the Dragon’s Breath. It really doesn’t compare and is totally outclassed by the Raid and other Exotic Launchers. In fact both (I am on XB1) new Exotics are very disappointing and I hear that the timed PS exclusive weapon isn’t great either.

        • Christian

          There is no question Truth is a great weapon. But it performs about the same as my “Steel Oracle” with tracking rounds. There is a very limited difference between the two, it’s certainly not worth giving up use of Thorn, Suros Regime or Bad JuJu.

          I use Gjallahorn because wolfpack rounds give a massive edge. They give a much, much larger damage output as well covering a massive spread of a damage. Truth doesn’t possess that capability. It tracks well and has all round good stats, but when I find high Velocity and Damage Radius weapon, it just cuts truth out for me.

          The new weapons aren’t all that great, but they will receive Buffs in due time, I’m sure. I’m guessing Bungie will avoid the “Pay-to-Win” scheme for a while, at least until comet. The Next Raid Exotic doesn’t look great either, but that will change before too long, surely.

      • boostedskyline

        My go-to heavy weapons are gjally, thunderlord/song of ir-yut, and corrective measure. Never bothered in getting truth, and I got dragons breath from the first chest in crotas raid but only now started leveling it up just because

  • Alex Davis

    I think the best upgrade for Dragon’s Breath would be to change it’s Pyromancer ability to have cluster bombs that all leave solar flares upon detonation (and last longer than the current one does. Maybe 6-7 seconds instead of 4).

    Also give it proxy detonation as it’s first perk and make 3 rockets standard. Honestly still, I don’t see that beating out Ghorn for best RL in PVE, but it definitely would be a massive upgrade that would make it very useful in many more situations.

  • Your pronounciation of “Gjallarhorn” is surprisingly close to mark. Thanks for that, I’m tired of being asked if I have “The galley horn”.

  • Jason Peterson

    I have all three of these as well as Hunger of Crota… I also don’t see any point in Dragon’s Breath other than a novelty weapon. Even taken on it’s own, it would be an interesting but passable legendary Rocket Launcher. As an Exotic.. I’m sorry but it’s junk, there are way to many other worthwhile exotics in my inventory to even bother using this thing.

    It doesn’t have tracking, Cluster Bombs, Proximity Detonation, Surplus, or good/high velocity. All desirable/useful traits you want in a Launcher. All it has is blast radius and ammo capacity… Which you can get in other legendary launchers. One Way Ticket 000 even from the Vangaurd and Hunger of Crota from the Raid.

    I’ve seen people go to extraordinary lengths and create hypothetical situations in a vacuum to try and justify Dragons Breath… Having to resort to “if X,Y, and Z are met, Dragon’s Breath is better than Gjallerhorn/Truth/HoC!”… I’m sorry but having to resort to such an argument really speaks for itself. Nothing really stands still in this game besides Fallen Walkers, and Gjallerhorn & Truth just need to point & shoot to be extremely effective. Solar Flare is just a gimmick at this ponit.

    As for the analysis, I feel like this was censored to avoid creating unnecessary angst among players about which rocket is best and by what margine. Dragon’s Breath is basically junk and should never be used unless it’s your only useful Exotic. Gjallerhorn is king in PvE by a huge margin due to it’s incredible damage output. Truth is MUCH better than Gjallerhorn in Crucible due to it’s very high velocity, blast radius, and it’s insane tracking & proximity detonation. You can dumbfire rockets into rooms by corners and kill people, you can cross-map people and kill them, you basically NEVER miss with Truth, and the blast radius kills anyone remotely near the explosion. I have seen some absolutely crazy rocket arcs from my Truth, and if you purposely lower the velocity it gets even better tracking. It’s absolutely worth the exotic slot in Crucible and is my go-to heavy.

    /novel.

  • Chad Udell

    One thing that Dragon’s Breath could be used to do well is to clear out a control point with a couple/three guardians on the opposing team with the large blast radius and pyromancer perk… This could also work well for ambushes around heavy ammo spawn points where teams tend to cluster.

  • Gjallarhorn

    The only thing I’d find Dragons Breath any good for is to; having it collect dust in the vault or for a dismantle to fully max either Truth or Gjallarhorn. (:

  • tittemilker69.78_23

    i like to shove ghallahorn in my vagina.P.S. I can fit 2

  • XxxDEWLORDxxX

    Most people say aye exotic primary but idk I use gally when in trouble like a sacrifice or taking down Crotas shield and if there are to many enemy’s building up so I like exotic launcher because there are a lot of alternatives to ice breaker like black hammer

  • MakkinjeM

    ”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.”

    This is exactly what Dragonsbreath needs. Perhaps an improvable flare as well (By use of Sunbreakers for example).

    An alternative would be to up the velocity to max. velocity, combined with proximity detonation and no upgrade on the flare (this means the flare it already had), with a stock 3 missile magazine.

    Choosing one or the other, would let it be a lot more in par with the other 2 Exotic Launchers.

    I have a feeling Bungie will come with a raid (or perhaps now Arena) boss, that will redirect tracking missiles against you, So i’m anyway fan of not making it tracking!