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Best Exotic Weapons in Destiny 2 2024

Destiny 2 is one of the best Looter Shooters around and has the gameplay loop down to a science. Nothing rounds off a session with your friends better than adding a new Exotic to your collection. The issue is, if you’re a new or returning player, how do you know what’s good? That’s what I’m here for. Let me show you the best Exotic Weapons in Destiny 2 2024.

Destiny 2: Best Exotic Weapons

Grading weapons is complex in Destiny 2 because the game has two very different parts. On the one hand, we have PvE, which includes Nightfalls, Strikes, Raids, Story, and seasonal content. On the other hand, we have PvP, which encapsulates the Crucible, Iron Banner, and Trials. 

Some Exotics excel in one part of the game, while others are serviceable in both. Below, I’ve listed where each weapon shines the brightest.

Top 10 Exotic Weapons in Destiny 2 2024

Sunshot

Sunshot
Screenshot: PC Invasion
  • Weapon Type: Hand Cannon
  • Element: Solar
  • Best Game Mode: PVE

Starting this list off hot, we have the Sunshot. This Solar Hand Cannon is well known for being one of the absolute best ad-clearers in the game. It may not look like much, but you can effortlessly incinerate mobs with this gun. If you need to demolish hordes of weak enemies, this is a superb pick.

In addition to its ad-clearing potential, the Sunshot has a superb Handling stat, which makes the gun feel incredibly snappy and responsive. This weapon has seen a boost in popularity as so many players are rocking Solar Builds, but it shines regardless of your Subclass.

Osteo Striga

Striga
Screenshot: PC Invasion
  • Weapon Type: SMG
  • Element: Kinetic
  • Best Game Mode: PVE and PVP

I slept on this weapon for the longest time until I got battered by it in Iron Banner. This disgustingly powerful SMG spreads poison, which makes it a great ad clearer, but that’s not all. The Osteo Striga fires homing rounds, so you dish out the damage even with poor aim. 

Homing rounds are fantastic and a real menace in PvP, where your projectiles will chase opponents around corners. Overall, the Osteo Striga is a superb SMG and works everywhere. I’m also quite fond of this SMG in Raids as it punches through some exceptionally tough enemies without breaking a sweat.

Polaris Lance

Polaris
Screenshot: PC Invasion
  • Weapon Type: Scout Rifle
  • Element: Solar
  • Best Game Mode: PvE

Solar builds are all the rage in the Season of the Wish, thanks to several potent Artifact buffs. If you use a Solar Class, the Polaris Lance is a deadly long-range option, and it is well worth the Exotic slot.

The Polaris Lance hits extremely hard and can stagger some bosses. It also ignites enemies and can delete hordes of enemies if they are grouped together. 

I use this weapon on my Solar Titan and love how powerful it feels. The only downside is it’s not so good up close. This issue is normal for Scout Rifles, but you will need a solid close-range weapon to complement it.

Ace of Spades

Best Exotic Weapons in Destiny 2
Screenshot: PC Invasion
  • Weapon Type: Hand Cannon
  • Element: Kinetic
  • Best Game Mode: PvP

There are plenty of exceptional Hand Cannons, but few can boast the potency and slick style of the Ace of Spades. The Ace is one of the best PvP weapons in Destiny 2, rewarding a skilled hand. 

If you kill an enemy and reload, your next few bullets deal additional damage. These shots can wreck even the toughest Guardians and are what makes the gun so infamous in The Crucible. I’m a big fan of weapons that allow me to see the Radar even when I ADS, so the Ace scores big points for me.

Quicksilver Storm

Quicksilver
Screenshot: PC Invasion
  • Weapon Type: Auto Rifle
  • Element: Kinetic (Strand with Catalyst)
  • Best Game Mode: PVE

The Quicksilver Storm is an incredible Auto Rifle with recoil so low that it feels like a laser. This weapon has an enormous magazine and fires mini rockets if you consistently land hits. If that wasn’t enough, this gun has a Grenade Launcher you can swap to by holding the Reload button.

With its Catalyst, the Quicksilver Storm is imbued with Strand, making it perfect for specific builds. There’s a case for keeping a Kinetic Quicksilver Storm, as it’s a superb weapon even without its Element.

Auto Rifles have a reputation for dealing low damage, but the Quicksilver Storm proves that’s not always the case. I love this weapon, and it’s great for when you want to relax and just hold down the trigger.

Izanagi’s Burden

Izanagi
Screenshot: PC Invasion
  • Weapon Type: Sniper Rifle
  • Element: Kinetic
  • Best Game Mode: PvE

You’ve probably noticed the lack of Sniper Rifles on this list, so I’m thrilled to recommend Izanagi’s Burden. This Rifle hits like a Spider Tank thanks to its Exotic Perk, Honed Edge

You can double-reload Izanagi’s Burden to spend all the ammo in the magazine for an extra powerful shot. This bullet can easily hit for over 200,000 damage and punch holes in the toughest enemies in the game. 

Even if you don’t use the powered-up shot, Izanagi’s Burden has a decent rate of fire and is perfect for long-range engagements. Great Exotic Sniper Rifles are a rarity in Destiny 2, but this gun proves there are always exceptions to the rules.

Wish Ender

Wish
Screenshot: PC Invasion
  • Weapon Type: Bow
  • Element: Kinetic
  • Best Game Mode: PvE + PvP

The Wish Ender is arguably the best bow in Destiny 2 and you can use it just about anywhere, from Raids to GM Nightfalls. This Exotic Bow has never been a ‘bad’ Exotic but recently got buffed to deal with Barrier Champions.

The bow’s utility against Champions is excellent, but it also excels against shielded enemies as it has unusually high penetration. The Wish Ender hits like a truck and deals a ton of damage while you stand a safe distance away. You even get soft ‘wall hacks’ with the Queen’s Wrath Exotic Perk, which is deadly in the Crucible.

Gjallarhorn

Jelly
Screenshot: PC Invasion
  • Weapon Type: Rocket Launcher
  • Element: Solar
  • Best Game Mode: PVE and PVP

The Gjallarhorn, AKA the Jellyhorn, has a legacy few other weapons in Destiny can hope to emulate. Back in Destiny 1, it was so powerful that players wouldn’t even let you raid with them if you didn’t have one!

Compared to the D1 version, D2’s Gjallarhorn is a shadow of its former self, but it’s still one of the best Rocket Launchers in the game. This powerhouse shines in content in all areas and is fantastic for DPS phases against bosses.

Dragon’s Breath

Dragons Breath 2
Screenshot: PC Invasion
  • Weapon Type: Rocket Launcher
  • Element: Solar
  • Best Game Mode: PvE

The Dragon’s Breath is a strong contender for the best Rocket Launcher in Destiny 2. This Exotic heavy weapon fires rockets that deal damage over time and leave a trail of fire in their wake. The fire damage quickly ramps up to absurd amounts, and the trail is surprisingly strong against weak targets.

The Composite Propellant Perk is a little awkward to use as it increases the weapon’s damage if you let it rest between shots. I usually use the Dragon’s Breath as an opener and swap to my other weapons before switching back to the Launcher. 

I use this weapon for the hardest content in the game, including GM Nightfalls.

Witherhoard

Best Exotic Weapons in Destiny 2
Screenshot: PC Invasion
  • Weapon Type: Grenade Launcher
  • Element: Kinetic
  • Best Game Mode: PVE and PVP

The Witherhoard is a Grenade Launcher that ‘Blights’ enemies, making them take damage over time. The DoT is enough to land Witherhoard a spot on the list, and if that wasn’t enough, enemies that succumb to the debuff leave a blighted pool on death.

As someone who finds Grenade Launchers a little awkward to use, I’ll make an exception for the utility that Witherhoard brings to the table. If you’re into Grenade Launchers, this is arguably the best and shines in every mode of Destiny 2.

Honorable mentions

Those are my picks for the top 10 best Exotics in Destiny 2, and the hardest part of making a list like this is choosing a select few that stand above the rest. Let me leave you with a couple of honorable mentions that almost made the cut:

  • No Time To Explain – Pulse Rifle
  • Hawkmoon – Hand Cannon
  • Lumina – Hand Cannon
  • Malfeasance – Hand Cannon
  • Tractor Cannon – Shotgun
  • Thorn – Hand Cannon
  • Thunderlord – Machine Gun

Most Exotics are viable, although a wise Guardian is more selective for tougher content like Dungeons, Raids, and Grand Master Nightfalls. Go forth, and may your next Exotic Engram be one to remember!


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