The Taken King: Tlaloc Exotic Review

Release the storm. Hold nothing back.

Tlaloc is an Exotic primary scout rifle that was introduced with The Taken King; this weapon is a Rank 3 Gunsmith Quest reward.

8.9/10
8.7/10

The good: Decent all around, a top tier Exotic.

The bad: Average without Overflow.

Conclusion: With Overflow, it’s the new MIDA.

This is an Exotic Weapon
Scout Rifle (Primary Weapon)
Kinetic Base Damage280/310
Best In?PvP
Rate of Fire
37
Impact
48
Range
59
Stability
40
Reload
52
Magazine Size
20

Aim Assist
55
Equip Speed
45
Recoil Direction
80
Zoom
20

The Taken King: Tlaloc Weapon Review

Tlaloc is an Exotic Scout Rifle that can only be used by Warlocks; there is no circumventing this restriction. You acquire it as a Warlock, and it can’t be equipped by other classes.


For this reason, this weapon’s potential can only be discussed bearing in mind that a Stormcaller, Voidwalker, or Sunsinger must have it equipped – so we’ll try to offer some unique insight into how you can make the most of it as your favorite brand of space wizard.

Basics

Tlaloc shares the Vision of Confluence’s RoF/Impact archetype, which is widely considered to be the most versatile and powerful. It lacks the raw damage per shot of a heavy-hitter like The Scholar, but makes up for it by allowing sustained fire that quickly surpasses the former in DPS. These Scouts typically have just enough stability to manage their own recoil, and a fair amount of range and reload speed to make them a decent pick for most PvE engagements.
Tlaloc exotic pve review
With the right perkset, you can have an extremely well-balanced killer on your hands, and we’ll see shortly that Tlaloc has a few tricks up its sleeve to climb to the heights of even Exotic potential.

Stats

We want to preface this section by highlighting that this weapon’s unremarkable base stats are a temporary ailment. The disappointingly low base Stability, at 40, and average Range of 59, are not prohibitively detrimental – but they don’t exactly scream “Exotic”. Similarly, its Reload Speed is middle-of-the-pack, which is fine because of Tlaloc‘s very respectable base 20 Magazine Size. The RoF/Impact class, as we discussed above, can just about handle the higher kick. You’ll notice some reticle climb, but very little horizontal deviation, so a little downward pressure on the thumbstick can alleviate most aiming woes.

Essentially, the base model doesn’t really specialize in any one thing. It lacks the Range of the sniper-style Scout Rifles, and the RoF/Reload Speed of its more hybridized auto-rifle-style competitors. Thankfully, just about all of this will become a collective moot point when we take a look into its perks.

Perks

Tlaloc comes with the intrinsic perk “Grenadier”. As you likely know by now, this perk grants a preset amount of Grenade Energy back to the user following any kill. It’s not a flashy perk by any means, but its effects are immensely beneficial. Warlocks have some of the best grenades in the business: from the Sunsinger’s Fusion Grenades to the Stormcaller’s Storm Grenades, Warlocks excel at dealing heavy damage to a single target or groups of enemies. Grenadier means more uptime for your most useful projectile.

As far as ballistic first-row options go, you have the choice between Smooth Ballistics, Soft Ballistics, or Accurized Ballistics. It’s hard to recommend giving up base Impact for just a marginal boost to Stability, so Soft Ballistics shouldn’t be a top priority. Instead, go with Accurized Ballistics if you want a slight nod to range and a little extra damage, or Smooth Ballistics if you want to push it more into true Scout Rifle ranges. Either way, none of these perks will make or break your Tlaloc; so don’t worry too much.

Its first standalone talent, “Eye of the Storm”, provides a non-specific, stacking increase to “accuracy” as your health gets lower. Testing has shown that the first stack procs extremely early, after taking almost any amount of damage. The second will kick in just before your shield drops. Both will linger for about 5 seconds. Honestly, it’s difficult to notice a generic “accuracy” buff on a Scout Rifle, though you will find your hipfire to be distinctly less erratic. There’s no real way to build a strategy around this, but it can save your butt in a PvP pinch.

The real benefit to this perk is that it currently applies even when you don’t have your primary weapon out. This means that your favorite Fusion Rifle or LMG can benefit from Eye of the Storm while Tlaloc is stored safely away.

The middle column offers some noteworthy choices. Among them, Armor-Piercing Rounds is probably the least compelling. The perk has seen continuous refinements from Bungie and its potency is fairly limited at this point. The sluggishness penalty is a lot to bear when you’re waiting for your Super to build. On the other hand, Hand Loaded is just what the doctor ordered. It eliminates damage drop off in those middle ranges where you feel your Tlaloc should be putting up the big numbers – though it’s still not going to make you a ranged monster.

You can also choose Injection Mold if you want to thrust your Tlaloc into a more CQB niche, where you’ll gain boosts to handling and stability that will ensure Tlaloc is accurate and mobile even when your Super isn’t charged.

But when your Super is charged, enemies beware. “Overflow” is a completely new perk that is possessed solely by the Tlaloc. It offers increased handling (reload speed and swap times go way up), stability (barely any kick), and most crazily, rate of fire buffs for as long as your Super is charged. It does all of this without tweaking the base Impact of the gun in any way to compensate. This effectively means a massive boost to DPS: a true vertical buff.

In PvE, Tlaloc will go from a middling Scout Rifle to a devastating add-dispatcher that can even lock down majors with furious volleys of precise, high-Impact energy.

In PvP, you’ll have a Scout Rifle with the Impact of a VoC and the RoF of the MIDA Multi-Tool. Your TTK will be in the upper echelons of all available weapons, and you’ll be lethal at any range.

PvE

Overflow and Grenadier are a very synergistic combo. As you’ll have to hold on to your Super if you want to get the most out of Tlaloc, you’re certainly going to want to be able to use the other tools at your disposal. For the Warlock, this means grenades, grenades, and more grenades. And as you drop enemy after enemy with your Tlaloc, you’ll have plenty to go around. Sunsingers with Gift of the Sun can benefit the most from this combination, though proactive Stormcallers and Voidwalkers will be getting rid of their grenades just as soon as they get them back.
Tlaloc exotic pve damage
…but you might be too busy pumping the trigger to even remember to throw them. It’s very rare that Destiny will allow a single weapon to gain such a massive edge over others in its classes. While it can’t quite match up to something like the Touch of Malice, its drawbacks are limited only to the time in which you’re not using your Super.

Which, to be fair, is a pretty steep penalty in certain situations. The newly-introduced Stormcaller is arguably the #1 Super for add-clearing potential. With Transcendence and Superconductor, a Stormcaller can deal obscene amounts of damage across a wide swath of foes. In fireteams that are trying to be orb-positive, having a stubborn Warlock sitting at the back leaning on the Tlaloc is not going to be conducive to team play. Voidwalkers, being less mobile with their Super, are a little more likely to hold on to it for that one huge group of enemies. Sunsingers in end-game content might be best suited to the Tlaloc, as they’ll almost certainly be running Fireborn for survivability. If they’re spec’ing gift of the sun, we can think of no better primary weapon to run.

All in all, if you’re looking for a PvE standby that accommodates being thrifty with Super Energy – and indeed, encourages it – then the Tlaloc is the gun for you.

PvP

This Exotic scout rifle is every bit the champion in PvP that it is in PvE. DPS is often the metric by which we measure PvE potential, but TTK is the #1 stat in the Crucible, and Tlaloc does not disappoint in this category. With the caveat that you do have to wait until your Super is charged (it helps to have a secondary you’re comfortable with), once it gets there, you’ll be a scary foe to face in a firefight.
Tlaloc exotic pvp review
The gun is a 4-hit kill (3 headshots, 1 bodyshot), and it can dish out this lethality with the same fire rate as the MIDA Multi-Tool. With the decline of Thorn and The Last Word, Scout Rifles have earned a bit more room to breathe, and Tlaloc gobbles up all of that air with relish.

With that said, Tlaloc is not always going to be your go-to Crucible weapon. It often can take well over three minutes to charge a Super in the Crucible, and depending on your playlist and team, you may feel the need to use it right away. If you’re a player who can’t wait to Radiance, Nova Bomb, or Stormtrance your way to victory, then the Tlaloc is not for you. The edge this Scout Rifle offers is finer, and rewards individual skill above quick points.

Aware players will get the most out of this weapon, as its real niche is in having every advantage to win firefights decisively. Playlists like Rumble, Skirmish, and Salvage are the best for Tlaloc; the benefit of using your Super in these is often outweighed by the cost of losing Overflow’s buff. Of course, it’ll do just as well in Control – you just might miss your Super sooner than you’d think.

Cosmetics & Sound

It has a beautiful and simple design, including a clean, transparent Omolon sight that leaves your FoV unobstructed. The spare white with blue accents gives Tlaloc an elegant feel, and the sci-fi touches only contribute to the idea that this was a weapon meant for a Warlock. A particularly cool feature is the dual lenses towards the stock of the frame, that appear to focus energy into a refined beam. On top of the cosmetics, the sound of the muted pulse of each projectile leaving the Scout Rifle is very satisfying – especially considering how fast their victims drop.

Conclusion

You know, Bungie might have a thing for Warlocks… While it may start out deceptively average, Tlaloc goes from being a minor nuisance to a major pain once your Super is full. It can dish out damage like no other Scout Rifle in the game, and is a pure force in both PvE and PvP. It’ll do this with stylish flair while steadily feeding you Grenade Energy, and is more than a worthy reward for your Warlock. We fully recommend the Tlaloc in both metagames, and encourage you to try it out!

For PvP this weapon earns a 8.9/10 and for PvE a 8.7/10.

Joel

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.

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