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Destiny 2 guide: The best guns for dominating PvE (Leviathan, Nightfall and more)

Want to increase your light level fast and make the Leviathian Raid and Nightfall strikes easier? You need the right weapon, but what are the best guns for PvE in Destiny 2? Here are some of our faves.

Destiny 2 is here, everyone. Not that we need to tell you because the level of coverage it has received has been, frankly, ridiculous. But then the last game proved immensely popular and it seems as if the alien shooter’s sequel is just as popular.

Many of you will live and breathe the player versus player (PvP) content, but huge amounts of Destiny 2 is of the player versus environment (PvE) variety. Like it or not, the only way to raise your light level to the maximum of 350 is done by shooting computer-controlled alien scum.

Luckily there are some guns that do the job better than others. Much better, in the case of Destiny 2‘s more overpowered offerings listed below in our round-up of the best PvE weapons, which will be updated over time as weapon buffs and nerfs come and go.

While we have your attention, we made a guide to weapon and armour infusion in Destiny 2, which may be worth a look if you want to maximise your favourite items.

Coldheart (exotic): The boss killer

The Coldheart Trace Rifle can be somewhat average in most PvE situations, but for hurting the big bad guys it is almost unrivalled. This is because of the Longest Winter perk, which increases the damage it does the longer you aim at an enemy.

So for concentrated fire, it is brilliant, especially when you get a group of fellow Coldheart users in a group because it can melt opponents with brutal enthusiasm.

The bad news is that most people got this gun from pre-ordering Destiny 2. Why we used the word ‘most’ is the good news because it can drop as loot for those who bought the game later.

How to get Coldheart?

Use the pre-order code and complete the campaign or hope it comes from an exotic engram.

Merciless (exotic): The other boss killer

Like Coldheart, Merciless gains a bonus when you shoot at the same thing but it stays alive. Except here it is a fusion rifle and the ability increases the rate of fire as opposed to increasing the damage, making it a belter for boss fights.

The magazine of eight bullets is pretty decent, as is the fact it also gets a bonus to damage if you reload immediately after killing an opponent and that the recoil level is manageable.

The gun’s strapline is “entropy is inevitable” and that sure seems to be the case. No wonder it is so popular in Leviathian.

How to get Merciless?

Hope it appears from an exotic engram or buy it from Xur, when he turns up at the weekend.

Sunshot (exotic): Burn, baby, burn

Hand cannons seem to be a tad less effective in Destiny 2, but the good ones are brilliant for PvE. One of the best examples is Sunshot, which hits hard and hits over a wide area, thanks to the Sun Blast perk.

Basically, an enemy killed by Sunshot (regardless of whether you scored a critical) blows up in a solar explosion, which damages everything around it. Groups of enemies can be cut through like butter, especially as it has a decent eight-round clip. It even highlights enemies for you in red.

It is worth noting that hand cannons suffer from a noticeable damage penalty over range, but the explosions remain just as potent so the likes of Sunshot are more versatile.

How to get Sunshot?

Pick it over the other two exotics when you complete the ‘Riptide’ mission on IO. Or hope Xur sells it or it comes out of an exotic engram.

Better Devils (legendary): Ex-to-the-plosive

Another handcannon that does damage in a small area as well as from the main kinetic bullet. This time, the legendary weapon Better Devils has explosive rounds where Sunshot causes solar damage, but its main strength is the fact it has 13 shots per magazine.

Not only does that keep you in the fight longer, the explosive nature of the bullets makes it better at range and great at clearing groups of enemies fast. And, being a legendary weapon, it frees up space for an exotic power or secondary.

Definitely a fiendisly potent weapon in the right hands, even in a PvP setting, providing you can land those critical shots for one almighty chunk of damage.

How to get Better Devils?

Boost your reputation with Lord Shaxx and hope it is given to you as a reputation reward, or play enough cruicible and be given it at the end of a match.

Nameless Midnight (legendary): Daylight robbery

Some say the Nameless Midnight scout rifle is the best all-round PvE weapon. We’re too busy using it to argue whether that’s true, but it really is a beast. Why? Because its rounds cause Explosive Payload perk causes area of effect damage, melting groups of foes with ease.

Even better is the fact Nameless Midnight is [spoiler] given to you as a reward from Zavala for completing two strikes (the two alternatives are decent, too) and that it is merely a legendary, saving you to roll with an exotic weapon in another slot.

We have since received the other two options – Origin and Nightshade – without too much effort, so fret not about your first choice. Although if you mainly play PvE content, Nameless Midnight should have your name on it first.

How to get Nameless Midnight?

Complete the milestone set by Zavala, which involves completing two strikes. Or hope it comes from a legendary engram drop.

Graviton Lance (exotic): A time and a place

Graviton Lance gets a huge amount of love, but it does require you to land all three of its projectiles or it really is just a sub-par pulse rifle. This is because of its perk Blackhole, which causes the final round to do extra damage.

This makes it a little bit of a pain at longer ranges, where the recoil makes landing all three difficult, if not impossible – particularly if you want critical shots, but up close and on larger enemies it dishes out high levels of damage, thanks to a magazine of 39 bullets (13 bursts).

It looks epic (mmm purple glow), too, for when cruising around the Tower or Farm, but the noise it makes when fired, though unique, can prove grating because of its bassy and bizarre nature.

How to get Graviton Lance?

Complete the ‘Sacrilege’ mission in the main campaign, which takes place on IO, and then speak to Aeshir to collect. Or get lucky with an exotic engram.

Borealis (exotic): Night night, mother f****er

Snipers take a backseat in Destiny 2, compared with Destiny 1, both in terms of PvE and PvP. But the Borealis and its ability to change damage types by holding down the reload button makes it rather special.

This is because you may need a certain damage type to kill an opponent, or gain a particular bonus on a Nightfall. Whatever the need, you can rain damage from as far away as you want until your power ammo runs out.

The one catch is that it is a PS4 exclusive for until the autumn of 2018 (fall if you are an American reader), which means Xbox One and PC gamers will just have to look elsewhere for the next best thing.

How to get Borealis?

Own a PS4. Sorry, Xbox and PC owners.

Sweet Business (exotic): The not-so-mini minigun

Miniguns are potent killers in real life and so is the Sweet Business Auto Rifle, which is a multi-barrelled death-bringer. It has 99 rounds in a magazine and fires fast, allowing it to rip through grips of lesser enemies in brisk fashion.

The fact it gains range and rate of fire the longer you hold down the trigger only increases its effectiveness, particularly on single targets, and any ammo you pick up is automatically loaded. Pair with the Titan Actium War Rig chest armour and you can fire indefinitely.

Best of all, though really not useful in the slightest, is the accompanying message: “I love my job.” It would definitely have been one of the more fun weapons to design, that’s for sure.

How to get Sweet Business?

Hope for an exotic engram drop that has it inside. That’s it, unfortunately, unless Xur sells it, which could happen.


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