The Best PVE Weapons in Destiny 2 (October 2019 Shadowkeep Meta)

There are so many weapons in Destiny 2, Exotic or otherwise, that it can be really hard to know which weapons are best suited for PVE, Crucible, or Gambit. You’ve got a bank full of weapons, sure, but which ones should you actually be using? While it’s possible to just hop into PVE and see what your teammates are using, that’s not really a fun way to figure out what’s what. That’s why we’re here sharing the best PVE weapons in the current meta so you can work out your loadout before diving into the game mode.

We’ll be listing at least ten options and putting a spotlight on five of them, discussing what makes them useful. Keep in mind that you may need to do some adjusting depending on which weapons you don’t have and which slot you choose to outfit with an Exotic.


Our picks are based off a combination of a few different sources. The largest is what the Charlemagne Discord bot which reports the current meta. Among other things, the bot tracks weapon popularity for each game mode. This is super useful to get our baseline information. We also use general community consensus from the Destiny subreddit and our own experiences playing PVE.

This list was last updated on October 15, 2019.

Best PvE Weapons – Kinetic

Go Figure / Outbreak Perfected (Pulse Rifle)

Go Figure is the go-to Legendary pulse rifle at the moment. As a general disclaimer, some of these could be skewed by the simple fact that there are a lot of New Light players using suboptimal builds.

Right now, for example, Go Figure is more popular than Outbreak Perfected despite the fact that the latter is much better. Though that could also be due to exotics in other slots.

Izanagi’s Burden (Sniper Rifle)

Hands down, Izanagi’s Burden is one of the best PVE weapons in the game right now. It’s second to none when it comes to damaging bosses with precision damage. The bad news? If you don’t have it, you may not be able to obtain it right now. It sounds as if the quest Ada-1 gives doesn’t really work all that well with the new forge playlist. Some forges just crash and unless you have the Rekindle the Flames quest, you can not get the Key Mold needed to progress the quest.

The Mountaintop (Grenade Launcher)

Grenade Launchers are the best power weapons in the game, especially when it comes to dealing DPS. It should come as no surprise that The Mountaintop ranks highly.

Ace of Spades / Ten Paces / Duke Mk. 44 (Hand Cannon)

Ace of Spades is the most popular Kinetic weapon in Destiny 2 right now. Ten Paces is the most utilized Legendary weapon with Duke Mk. 44 trailing further behind. Again, we expect some shifting here as the weeks go on.

Breakneck / Monte Carlo / Pluperfect (Auto Rifle)

A Gambit Pinnacle weapon from a couple seasons back, Breakneck is a blast to use in PVE. Rampage pairs with its signature Perk Onslaught, meaning that as you kill enemies you not only do more damage but fire faster too. Incredible for add control.

Both the new exotic, Monte Carlo, and the season pass Auto Rifle, Pluperfect, are also popular.

Best PvE Weapons – Energy

The Recluse / Riskrunner / Subjunctive (SMG)

SMGs continue to be the meta choice for the energy slot.

The Recluse is so powerful because it can rapidly eliminate adds. Kill an opponent with any weapon and the SMG will get a damage boost. Kills with The Recluse itself will increase reload speed for a short time. It’s one of the best add clear weapons in the game. Of course, getting it requires being very good at Crucible as it’s one of the Season of the Drifter Pinnacle weapons.

If you can’t get The Recluse, then Riskrunner is a viable alternative. It’s especially powerful if you find yourself fighting enemies that cause arc damage.

Subjunctive is the easiest to get and a great alternative!

Fighting Lion (Grenade Launcher)

You may have noticed the return of grenade launchers. Fighting Lion is a pretty standard energy weapon if you’re not running The Mountaintop in the Kinetic slot. While Fighting Lion can be useful, it’s likely so high up on Charlemagne’s usage list because it’s one of the easiest Grenade Launchers to find and use to farm the Vanguard Pinnacle weapon for this season.

Misfit / Arc Logic (Auto Rifle)

I can’t say that I understand folks who like Misfit, it fires too fast and is a bit too inaccurate for my likes, but hey, it is the most popular Auto Rifle. Arc Logic is a good alternative if you don’t have it.

Subtle Calamity / Arsenic Bite (Bow)

Heck. Bows are back in style assuming it’s not just new players learning the ropes.

Other Good Weapons

Loaded Question (Fusion Rifle), Eriana’s Vow (Hand Cannon), Sunshot (Hand Cannon)

Best PvE Weapons – Power

Hammerhead / Fixed Odds / 21% Delirium / Thunderlord / A Fine Memorial / Avalanche (Machine Gun)

Destiny 2 machine guns reign supreme when it comes to basic PVE encounters. No other power weapon can deal such large amounts of damage to such a high number of enemies in such a short amount of time.

The current meta is actually really interesting to look at. Fixed Odds is likely the second most popular weapon due to the fact that new players can get it guaranteed from the Menagerie. A Fine Memorial is also somewhat easy to get.

Honestly the most surprising thing here is the return of Avalanche. With so many new players right now, it’s stunning to see a weapon that is no longer obtainable in the top ten.

Wendigo GL3 / Edge Transit / Through Fire and Flood (Grenade Launcher)

Grenade Launchers have seen a huge boost as boss melters this season, with anything that has Spike Grenades being especially favored. Edge Transit, long a joke, has become actually usable thanks to its Void attribute, which pairs nicely with Tractor Cannon.

Other Good Weapons


Update History

October 2019 (Update 2)

  • Kinectic – Added Monte Carlo, Duke Mk. 44, Pluperfect. Removed Austringer, Huckleberry, Trackless Wastes.
  • Energy – Added Subtle Calamity, Eriana’s Vow, Misfit, Arsenic Bite, Sunshot. Removed Every Waking Moment, Reckless Oracle, Telesto.
  • Heavy – Added Fixed odds, Through Fire and Flood, Zenobia-D, Avalanche. Removed Play of the Game, Swarm of the Raven, Love and Death, Deathbringer, One Thousand Voices.

October 2019

  • Kinectic – Added Go Figure, Ten Paces, Smuggler’s Word, and Trackless Waste. Removed Bad Juju, Midnight Coup, Rose, Blase Furnace.
  • Energy – Added Reckless Oracle, Subjunctive, Arc Logic, Every Waking Moment. Removed Sunshot, Ikelos Shotgun, Telesto, Graviton Lance, Jotunn, and Misfit.
  • Heavy – Added Wendigo GL3, Deathbringer, A Fine Memorial, One Thousand Voices, Love and Death. Removed Outrageous Fortune, Anarchy, Tractor Cannon, The Wardcliff Coil.

September 2019

  • Energy – Added Graviton Lance, IKELOS_SG_v1.01, Misfit, Jötunn. Removed Prometheus Lance, Tarrabah, Nation of Beasts, Hard Light.
  • Heavy – Added The Wardcliff Coil, Anarchy, Tractor Cannon, Edge Transit. Removed Fixed Odds, Wendigo GL3, Through Fire and Flood, One Thousand Voices.

August 2019

  • Kinetic – Added Rose. Removed Lumina.
  • Energy – Added Riskrunner, Prometheus Lens, Nation of Beasts, and Hard Light. Removed Beloved, Kindled Orchid, Trust, and The Epicurean.
  • Power – Added Play of the Game and Through Fire and Flood. Removed Bane of Sorrow and Legend of Acrius.

June 2019

  • Kinetic – Added Austringer, Lumina, and Bad Juju. Removed Go Figure, Duke Mk. 44, Threat Level.
  • Energy – Added Tarrabah, Beloved, Sunshot, The Epicurean, and Trust. Removed Riskrunner, IKELOS, Jotunn, Telesto, and Subtle Calamity.
  • Power – Added Fixed Odds, Wendigo GL3, Legend of Acrius, and Swarm of the Raven. Removed Play of the Game, Edge Transit, Through Fire and Flood, and Bad Omens.

June 2019

  • Kinetic – Added The Mountaintop and Threat Level. Removed Bygones and Thorn.
  • Energy – Added Fighting Lion, Loaded QUestion, CALUS Mini-Tool, and Subtle Calamity. Removed Nation of Beasts, Trust, Hard Light, and Misfit.
  • Power – Added Play of the Game, Edge Transit, Through Fire and Blood, and Bane of Sorrows. Removed The Wardcliff Coil, Tractor Cannon, Whisper of the Worm, and Avalanche.

May 2019

  • Kinetic – Removed Spare Rations.
  • Energy – Added Telesto, Hard Light, Misfit. Removed The Ringing Nail, Luna’s Howl, and Prometheus Lens.
  • Power – Added Bad Omens. Removed The Prospector.

And that’s that for our guide to the best PVE weapons in Destiny 2! Thanks for taking the time to check it out. We wish all of you trigger happy Guardians out there the best of luck in mowing down the forces of darkness.


Dillon Skiffington

Guides Editor at Fanbyte. Dillon is probably thinking about Destiny 2 right now.

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