XûReview: Is That Worth Buying?

Item Class Subclass Buy? Strange Coin
Super Good Advice 23
Legacy Special Weapon 31
The Taikonaut Titan Any 13
Young Ahamkara’s Spine Hunter Gunslinger 13
Starfire Protocol Warlock Sunsinger 13

The Taikonaut

Reminiscent of the human astronauts who first discovered the Traveller on Mars, the Taikonaut’s old-school vibe brings with it a handy exotic perk. If a Launcher lacks tracking, Taikonaut adds it for no charge whatsoever. Dragon’s Breath pairs well with this helm.

However, if you’ve got a G&H baby that needs that little edge in PvE, the Taikonaut does nice things. It also increases the rate of Heavy Ammo drops, which has been known to be inconsistent on Exotics (see: Ruin Wings). You’ll still want boots with +Rocket Launcher ammo, so you can get 2 rockets guaranteed on a pickup, and store enough to justify an Exotic that focuses solely on them.

In PvE, heavy ammo can be the difference in a team-wipe or not, so having more is certainly fantastic. In PvP, tracking rockets paired with Grenades & Horseshoes make it very difficult to miss. Plus, HMGs have a long time to aim down sights, and in game modes like Control, the extra radar can create some crazy killing sprees. The Taikonaut is must-buy for Titans.

“Radar remains visible while zooming with Heavy Weapons” can be useful in PvP too. With MGs and their slow movement/long ADS times often meaning the difference between a kill and a death.

Young Ahamkara’s Spine

An old favorite. The Exotic perk grants you an extra tripmine grenade for your Gunslinger, and also lets your tripmines linger long after you throw them, allowing your Guardian to dictate the pace and direction of battle. With enough Discipline, you can get multiple tripmine grenades up at once, leading to some very interesting scenarios. To see success in the crucible, try tossing them behind sight lines to pre-emptively control a chokepoint.

In PvE, this loses its luster in situations which there’s no obvious walls or areas where enemies rush through; you’re left with the “extra” grenade, which quickly becomes redundant. Of course, if you’re patient and economical with your other weapons, managing to save up two grenades for a beastly foe (think Heroic Ogres in King’s Fall) can be a very viable strategy.

Starfire Protocol

This chest piece grudgingly remains a perfectly satisfactory option for any and all content. Its innate perk automatically grants you a second Fusion Grenade, freeing up the “Gift of the Sun” row for the option of Touch of Flame or Angel of Light. Now, Touch of Flame and Fusion Grenades seems a little silly; who needs such paltry lingering damage after a massive burst from a single Fusion?

However, with Viking Funeral, this turns a single target nuke into a way of denying shield regeneration and eking out every last bit of damage. As for Angel of Light? It remains a confusingly situational perk: deadly in the right hands for playing mind games with PvP opponents, suicide in lesser hands for painting a giant glowing target and removing you from the haven of cover. It also can be useful to avoid melee rushes from mobs like thralls and corrupted psions.

In spite of this, Sunsinger’s have two other excellent grenade options, and Starfire Protocol does nothing for these. Thus it is not a great all-around option if your needs branch out from single target damage.

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.