Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, ranked

Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, ranked
Finlay Cattanach Updated on by

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Want the Destiny 2 best PvP weapons? There’s a huge arsenal of weapons in Destiny 2, and an ever changing meta. This can often make picking out the best weapons to bring into the Crucible, Iron Banner or Trials of Osiris a difficult task.

There are plenty of interesting PvE weapons like Ex Diris out there, but it’s just as important to optimise your PvP loadouts if you want to maximise your performance in player versus player theatres, especially with all the changes coming in Destiny 2 Season 23 and the arrival of the new Season of the Wish weapons. Here then are our picks for the current Destiny 2 best PvP weapons. These are guns that excel for one reason or another in fighting other Guardians in casual and competitive game modes. If you want to boost your chances of getting Ascendant Shards through vendor rank resets and flawless Trials wins, read on.

The best PvP weapons in Destiny 2 you need for Crucible, Iron Banner, and Trials of Osiris

Here are our picks for the best Destiny 2 PvP weapons. We’ve broken down our rankings by ammunition type catagory, that being Primary weapons/ Kinetic ammo, Special weapons/ Special ammo, and Power weapons/ Heavy ammo.

Our 7 best Primary slot weapons for Crucible, Iron Banner, and Trials

Here are our picks for the best primary slot weapons for PvP, ranked.

7. Centrifuse

The exotic Arc auto rifle from Season of The Deep may seem a strange choice at a glance. While poor rate of fire and middling stability do work against Centrifuse, the weapon does one thing exceptionally – synergising with Arc builds. Its intrinsic trait, Electrostatic Charge, builds up a gauge when firing or on the move. At high charge final blows unleash AOE explosions, and at full charge they inflict Blinding on nearby targets. With the Centrifuse catalyst, charging the metre whenever you’re Amplified, it’s probably not too hard to see why we included this on our list of the best Warlock builds. Centrifuse is perfect for modes like Control or Supremacy, where you may need to face off against groups of targets at once.

Where to get Centrifuse

You can pick up Centrifuse from the Monument to Lost Lights in the Tower, provided you have the Ascendant Shards and Exotic Ciphers for it.

Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, Ranked: Centrifuse vaporises a Fallen Dreg.
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6. Wicked Implement

Wicked Implement is an exotic Stasis scout rifle, also hailing from Season of the Deep. It has excellent range, high damage, and virtually no damage falloff. Combined with a sizable magazine and the ability to Freeze targets after six consecutive hits, it should be clear why this is a strong contender in PvP. That six-hit-Freeze ability is thanks to its exotic trait, Creeping Attraction, a buff activated by landing precision hits, which Slows targets. The Tithing Harvest perk then creates Stasis Shards on precision final blows, and picking up a Shard automatically fully reloads the magazine. It’s a weapon which rewards skill and precision, and if that’s your preferred approach in PvP, this is definitely a pick worth checking out.

Where to get Wicked Implement

The scout rifle has its own exotic mission hidden away in the Deep Dive seasonal activity. Check out our guide on the gun for a detailed breakdown.

Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, Ranked: Wicked Implement in a dark hallway.
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5. Le Monarque

Bows are often a weapon quite at home in PvP, and with the lightweight bow buff from the mid-season update in Season of the Deep, it’s clear they’re not going anywhere quickly. The reigning monarch of all bows though will probably keep its throne. Le Monarque is a combat bow with excellent aim assist, Snapshot Sights, high impact and high accuracy. It excels in all the most important categories for these types of engagements, and is a highly versatile weapon. Even better, its Poison Arrows exotic trait allows it to finish off combatants even if they’re able to disengage before the end of the fight, rewarding fast and strategic plays.

Where you can get Le Monarque

This is another one you can pick up at the Monument to Lost Lights in the Tower. Look for it in between the two Vault terminals.

Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, Ranked: Le Monarque
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4. Igneous Hammer

Igneous Hammer originally debuted all the way back in Season 13, but came roaring back with a vengeance in Season of the Witch. Great aim assist and amazing impact give this Solar hand cannon the capacity to hit hard. It’s also got an adept model, and it’s backed up by some stellar perk combinations. Keep Away and Eye of The Storm are a particularly excellent combo, granting superior range under the right conditions compared to most of its Aggressive Frame hand cannon counterparts.

Where to pick up Igneous Hammer

This one is a Trials of Osiris weapon. If you’re after the adept version, you’ll need to go Flawless.

Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, Ranked: Igneous Hammer.
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3. Rufus’ Fury

This Strand auto rifle is a fantastic pick for PvE, but it performs excellently in PvP too. It boasts a high rate of fire, solid mid-range capability, and extremely low recoil. Precision hits are easy to make with Rufus’ and given its high DPS, the rifle boasts an excellent TTK. With a wide perk pool including Frenzy, Rewind Rounds, Reconstruction and Hatchling, it’s not too hard to see why we’ve ranked it pretty highly on our list.

Where to find Rufus’ Fury

Rufus’ Fury is a drop from the Root of Nightmares raid which came out with the Lightfall Destiny 2 campaign expansion. It’s also craftable once you’ve unlocked the pattern.

Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, Ranked: A Guardian kills another player in PvP with Rufus' Fury.
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2. Unending Tempest

The Stasis SMG that’s seemingly dethroned the long-lived The Immortal, Unending Tempest is the go-to choice for many in competitive PvP right now and a top-tier weapon. With an RPM of 600, solid aim assist, fantastic reload speed, and a decent range, it’s almost unmatched in time to kill, say for some obvious exceptions like Sweet Business. The weapon also boasts a vast perk pool, and there are plenty of god rolls to pick up. Target Lock, Moving Target, Dynamic Sway Reduction are among a few of the great options. Perpetual Motion and Tap The Trigger are a particularly favourable one, making an already deadly weapon more stable on the move and in the opening moments of an engagement.

How to get Unending Tempest

You can pick up Unending Tempest from Shaxx by earning Crucible Engrams. You can focus for the weapon if you want, too.

Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, Ranked: Unending Tempest.
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1. Thorn

Our top pick for primary slot weapons will probably surprise absolutely no-one. Thorn has seen a resurgence in popularity similar to Ace of Spades, once more proving its indomitability in the PvP meta. High impact, high aim assist and high handling all make this Kinetic hand cannon good, even if its not one of the highest RPM hand cannons out there. Mark of The Devourer, an exotic perk which grants piercing rounds and causes shots to deal damage over time, as well as leaving behind Remnants where a target falls, is what makes this weapon great.

Where can you get Thorn?

Thorn is another pick-up from the Monument to Lost Lights. You’ll need a Forsaken Cipher to unlock it.

Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, Ranked: Thorn.
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Our 7 best Special slot weapons for PvP gameplay

Here are our picks for the best PvP secondary slot weapons, ranked.

7. Witherhoard

Witherhoard is an exotic grenade launcher, and its popularity in PvP should come as little surprise. On grenade detonation, it leaves behind an area of Taken residue that continuously damages anything stood in it. In PvP, that Taken residue is enough to kill a guardian in seconds. Not only does this give Witherhoard excellent synergy with any loadout as a primer weapon, but it allows the launcher to act as a crowd control mechanism, pushing enemies back or momentarily cutting off approaches of attack.

How to get Witherhoard

Witherhoard can be obtained through the Monument to Lost Lights, under the Shadowkeep category.

Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, Ranked: Witherhoard.
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6. Beloved

An old favourite – a beloved weapon, if you will – this Solar sniper has endured in popularity for a very long time. At first glance, its lower-than-average impact and range might seem like detriments, but this is made up for by Beloved’s fantastic handling. Even better, it can roll with both the Quickdraw and Snapshot Sights perks, making it a remarkably flexible and mobile sniper rifle with few contenders.

How to acquire Beloved

Getting Beloved is pretty difficult right now, with its original drop location having left the game. Your only way to obtain it at the moment is to wait until Xur arrives, and hope he’s selling it in his stock rotation.

Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, Ranked: Beloved.
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5. Scatter Signal

The new Season of the Wish weapon Strand fusion rifle, Scatter Signal is already resonating with plenty of PvP players. It’s a rapid fire frame, and it’s got a healthy perk pool. Perpetual Motion, Slice, and Controlled Burst are among some of it’s best, and its origin trait, Dragon’s Vengance, refills the magazine, boosts range and handling, and decreases charge time when an ally dies nearby. On top of all that it’s craftable, too, making it one of the best fusion rifle picks for PvP at the moment.

How you can get Scatter Signal

Scatter Signal is easy to get right now. Just run seasonal activities like Riven’s Lair or The Coil, and complete seasonal bounties. Even if you don’t just get it as a drop, you can focus Wish Engrams for it at the vendor.

Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, Ranked: Scatter Signal.
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4. Last Man Standing

There are an awful lot of shotguns that excel in PvP, from Matador 64 to Chaperone- we could probably make a separate guide for them alone. One of the best though has got to be Last Man Standing. It’s an aggressive frame, high impact beast with excellent range and a fairly tight spread. Although its perk pool is small, there are still some fantastic possible combos, like Pugilist and One-Two Punch or Opening Shot and Swashbuckler. Combined with the Disaster Plan origin trait, which increases flinch resistance and range after picking up ammo until fired again, and the reason it takes this spot becomes clear.

Where to get Last Man Standing

You can grab Last Man Standing from the terminal vendor for Season of the Deep activities onboard the HELM. Focusing for it is probably your fastest path.

Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, Ranked: A Guardian gets a melee kill on another player after putting them to critical health with a hit from Last Man Standing.
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3. Jotunn

Probably the most infamous weapon on this list, it nonetheless remains true that Jotunn excels in PvP. This fusion rifle is a menace for one reason alone: Charge Shot. The exotic trait allows the wielder to charge up a shot, which when fired, tracks the opponent, explodes, and burns on impact. This is more than enough damage to kill a guardian in a single hit. While it might be a weapon favoured by PvP goblins, it’s effective regardless.

Where to get Jotunn

Jotunn is easier than ever to get these days. Just head over to the Monument to Lost Lights in the Tower to unlock it, provided you’ve got the right materials and enough Glimmer.

Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, Ranked: Jotunn.
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2. Cloudstrike

Cloudstrike is an exotic sniper rifle you’re likely to see a lot of if you frequent the Trials of Osiris before the weekly reset. This Arc sniper dominates thanks to its exotic trait Mortal Polarity. Precision final blows with this weapon create a burst of lightning, which is plenty strong enough to kill outright on its own. Alongside solid range, this sniper is the perfect tool for punishing poor spacing in your enemies and dealing devastating damage with single shots.

Where to pick up Cloudstrike

You can grab Cloudstrike from activities on Europa, specifically completing higher difficulty Empire Hunts.

Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, Ranked: Cloudstrike.
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1. Conditional Finality

The double barrel exotic shotgun is a terror to face off against in the Crucible. The gun revolves around its Split Decision trait, which allows the first shot to deal Stasis damage, and its Second to deal Solar. The Paracausal Pellets perk takes it further though, Freezing targets with Stasis and Igniting them with Solar if you land all the pellets in a shot on your target. In effect, this guarantees you’ll come out on top as long as your aim is on-point. It’s nearly impossible to reliably counter in close-quarters, comfortably earning it our top spot for special ammo weapons.

How to get Conditional Finality

Conditional Finality is a raid exotic, coming from Root of Nightmares. You can boost your chances for it to drop at the end of the raid by completing raid challenges.

Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, Ranked: Fighting a Wyvern with Conditional Finality.
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Our 7 best Power slot weapons for PvP activities and gamemodes

Lastly, here are our rankings for the seven best heavy weapons to use in PvP.

7. Retrofit Escapade

Retrofit Escapade is a legendary machine gun, and seemingly nothing too special at a glance. It makes it onto this list however for its wide perk pool full of strong perks like Frenzy and Fourth Times The Charm, and for its speed. With a 900 RPM, there are virtually no weapons outside of trace rifles that shoot faster than this rapid fire frame can. A good roll and sound strategy allow this weapon to tear through enemies very, very quickly, making it difficult to counter in any level of the Crucible.

How to get Retrofit Escapade

Originally obtained through Season of the Seraph, you’ll now need to wait until either Xur or Banshee-44 happen to sell it in order to pick this LMG up.

Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, Ranked: Retrofit Escapade.
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6. Gjallarhorn

Gjallarhorn certainly isn’t as useful in PvP compared to PvE, but it does still have two things going for it. Firstly, its enormous blast radius score of 100 makes it an ideal candidate for maximising the number of Guardians you take out with a hit. Secondly, Cluster Missiles released by Wolfpack Rounds are a great damage primer, wounding nearby enemies and setting them up for an easy kill in aggressive plays.

How to get Gjallarhorn

You’ll need the Bungie 30th Anniversary Pack to get this rocket launcher. If you have that, step into and complete the Grasp of Avarice dungeon, and complete the following quest steps with Shaw Han to create it.

Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, Ranked: Gjhallahorn.
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5. Commemoration

Another machine gun, Commemoration is near the top of its game in terms of power. It’s got strong stats across the board and an adaptive frame which balances power and rate of fire. Even better, it benefits from a vast perk pool, with Fourth Times The Charm and Killing Tally being a particularly devastating combo.

Where to find Commemoration

Commemoration is another legendary raid weapon, coming from Beyond Light’s raid on Europa, Deep Stone Crypt.

Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, Ranked: Commemoration.
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4. Reed’s Regret

A stasis linear fusion rifle, Reed’s Regret is very much built for PvP. The rifle doesn’t excel in range or impact, but similarly to Beloved, it’s handling and versatility are exceptional for its class. It can roll with both Quickdraw and Headstone, and it’s got an excellent aim assist as well as a precision frame. It can also be outfitted with the origin trait Alacrity, improving reload, range, and stability when you’re the last living member of your fireteam. This makes it a potent competitive weapon.

How to pick up Reed’s Regret

Like Igneous Hammer, Reed’s Regret is a Trials of Osiris weapon. Similarly, its adept version requires you to go Flawless.

Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, Ranked: Reed's Regret.
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3. Memory Interdict

It’s the sort of weapon that’s easy to overlook due to its commonality, but the Memory Intedict Void grenade launcher performs excellently and has held a spot of high regard in PvP for a while. A solid blast radius, good RPM and excellent perk combo potentials like Quickdraw and Chain Reaction make it an extremely reliable pick for Guardian-on-Guardian violence.

How to get Memory Interdict

This one’s easy to get – just play Crucible matches. It can drop as a random reward or you can pick it up from Shaxx back at the Tower with Crucible Engrams.

Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, Ranked: Memory Interdict.
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2. Thunderlord

Second only to grenade launchers, machine guns are probably the easiest heavy weapon to get kills with in PvP. King of them all is Thunderlord. It’s got a slow windup and quite a kick, but besides these drawbacks it fires on all cylinders everywhere else. It’s got exceptional aim assist and excellent range, the Arc damage synergises nicely with Arc builds, and the Reign Havoc trait sends out deadly lightning shockwaves on precision hits, forcing enemies to space themselves out or risk chain-reaction deaths. With the catalyst, it can even draw rounds from reserve into the magazine on precision blows, forgoing the need to reload at all.

Where to get Thunderlord from

Thunderlord is a random, very rare world drop. You can pick it up through randomly dropped engrams or by purchasing engrams through Xur when he’s around.

Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, Ranked: Fighting a Wyvern with Thunderlord.
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1. Cataphract GL3

Our top spot can only really go to one gun. Cataphract may have a god-roll which dominates DPS metas for PvE, but it’s still a PvP weapon at heart. With great aim assist, a good blast radius, and solid stats across the board, it’s additionally backed up by a suite of exceptional perks and rolls. The Strand GL handles with a degree of versatility and deadliness that very few weapons – if any – can compete with in player-versus-player spaces. Oh, and it’s got an adept version.

How to get the Cataphract GL3 grenade launcher

Cataphract comes from Trials of Osiris, with its adept version available to Flawless players. You may want to focus some engrams at Saint-14 for this one.

Our Destiny 2 best PvP weapons for Crucible and Competitive, Ranked: Cataphract GL3.
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What’s the best PvP weapon in Destiny 2?

Because of how varied and situational PvP is, it’s simply impossible to choose any one weapon that really reigns above the rest. If we had to pick a favourite for each weapon slot, we’d say Witherhorde for its crowd control capability, Beloved for its versatility, and Cataphract for its everything. Though running all three at once might prove problematic with such limited ammunition.

What’s the best god roll for PvP in Destiny 2?

God rolls refer to a synergy between two rolled perks or more on a weapon in-game. A god roll is usually two already powerful perks that, together, become more than they were apart, massively improving the power, versatility or utility of a weapon. Even here, some rolls will just work better for players depending on playstyle and preferences. But there are a few that really stand out. Here are our top picks for combination perk rolls you want to keep an eye out for on PvP oriented weapons.

  • Rampage & Adrenaline Junkie. The former boosts damage when you get kills, stacking three-fold. The latter increases damage and handling for around 5 seconds after each kill. This combo helps to sustain the flow of combat.
  • Explosive Payload & Kill Clip. The former boosts body shot damage and causes shots to explode on impact for AOE damage, the latter grants a period of increased damage when reloading after a kill. Combined these both make handling asymmetrical or prolonged engagements easier.
  • Frenzy & Reconstruction. The former boosts damage, handling, and reload speed after being in combat for more than a few seconds. The latter passively reloads the weapon to double its maximum capacity. Together, these perks prep a weapon for superior performance once it enters extended combat, giving it better speed, power and a larger magazine, thus dominating opponents across the board.

That covers our list for the Destiny 2 best PvP weapons in the game right now. Again, these are just our choices, and not an exhaustive list. Everyone will find different loadouts that work best for them. Be sure to check in on the Destiny 2 best PvE weapons too if you’re itching to hop into the weekly Nightfall with the best optimised loadout you can get.

What’s the most important stat for Destiny 2 PvP weapons?

The most important stat for a weapon to have in Destiny 2 PvP is arguably handling or aim assist. Both of these control how quickly a weapon can be drawn and how easily it can be aimed and fired, so they have a massive impact on a weapon’s versatility and time to kill.

What is the Destiny 2 PvP meta?

Weapons with fast time to kill (TTK) ratings remain a core of the meta, but weapons with crowd control capabilities that can force players onto your terms are also favourable.

Are any PvP weapons also good for PvE?

Yes. The Cataphract GL3 Grenade Launcher is in fact the current best DPS meta for PvE, while also being a great PvP weapon.