Destiny 2 brings back Exotics – rare and powerful boomsticks. Let’s take a look at the collection and daydream about putting them to use.

Destiny 2 has a stronger focus on story but Bungie hasn’t abandoned the aspect most of us ended up obsessing over: Exotic weapons. As part of our Destiny 2 guide, here’s a list of the currently available Exotic weapons. If you’re looking for armour, see our Destiny 2 Exotic armour hub.

You can find all the perk and trait abilities of Destiny 2’s starting set of Exotic weapons below. Of course, more Exotic weapons are going to appear over time, and we look forward to discovering more as they’re added in over the weeks, months, and years to come.

By the way, Exotic weapons can be obtained as quest rewards in the Red War campaign, as random engram drops after you reach level 20, or by completing World Quests. More information on that can be found in our Destiny 2 Activities glossary.

Now, onto the guns. We’ll use the following key to describe Exotic weapon attributes:

  • HND: handling speed
  • MAG: magazine size
  • PRJ: projectile speed
  • RLD: reload speed
  • RNG: range
  • STB: stability
  • +: slightly increases
  • ++: increases
  • +++: greatly increases
  • -: slightly decreases
  • –: decreases
  • —: greatly decreases

Wardcliff Coil (Arc rocket launcher)

Previously known by the community as Dubious Volley or “Microphone rocket launcher”, the Wardcliff Coil was spotted in early Destiny 2 gameplay footage. Its nickname derives from an unreleased weapon of very similar – possibly identical – appearance discovered in the D1 database. However, the new, official name has since been confirmed by Destiny 2 creative director Luke Smith.

If Xur is selling this at any point, holy hell, buy it.

  • Intrinsic Perk: Mad Scientist
    This weapon fires a volley of rockets.
  • Launcher Barrel: Volatile Launch
    This weapon is optimized for an especially explosive payload. (HND-, PRJ-)
  • Magazine: Extended Mag
    (MAG+++, RLD—)
  • Trait: Mechanized Autoloader
    This weapon automatically reloads on ammo pickup.
  • Stock: Composite Stock
    This weapon has a versatile dual-purpose stock. (STB+, HND+)

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Riskrunner (Arc submachine gun)

In the form we originally saw it in the Destiny 2 console beta, the Riskrunner was thoroughly broken, synergising with the Warlock class ability to provide eternal ammo. Bungie soon sorted that out, and now using it really does mean running a risk – but if something zaps you with Arc energy, you can hit them back that much harder.

  • Intrinsic Perk: Arc Conductor
    Taking Arc damage increases weapon power.
  • Barrel: Arrowhead Break
    Lightly vented barrel. Greatly controls recoil. (HND++)
  • Magazine: Extended Mag
    (MAG+++, RLD—)
  • Trait: Superconductor
    When Arc Conductor is active, shots fired have the chance to become chain lightning and return ammo.
  • Stock: Short-action Stock
    This weapon is especially easy to grip. (HND+++)

destiny 2 beta sunshot exotic hand cannon

Sunshot (Solar hand cannon)

The Sunshot is a strange blend of the precise, sharpshooting action Hunters love so much, and the ability to spread the fun around with splash damage. Enemies you ping with the Sunshot will be highlighted, which is pretty neat for keeping track of the action, and they’ll also explode. What a good time!

  • Intrinsic Perk: Sunburn
    This weapon fires explosive rounds and highlights targets that take damage from Sunshot.
  • Barrel: Chambered Compensator
    Stable barrel attachment. Improves recoil and direction. (STB++, HND-)
  • Magazine: Accurized Rounds
    This weapon can fire longer distances. (RNG++)
  • Trait: Sun Blast
    Targets killed with Sunshot explode in Solar energy.
  • Grip: Textured Grip
    Friction on this weapon’s grip is particularly strong. (HND+++, STB-)

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Sweet Business (kinetic auto rifle)

The ultimate pray and spray weapon for all you frontline hipfire fans, Sweet Business kicks up into overdrive as you hold the fire button down – and will automatically reload itself as you walk over ammo pick ups. It’s sort of like a minigun, with an opportunity to never break off firing. Ideal. Leave the ironsights to the Hunters and wade into the action.

  • Intrinsic Perk: Payday
    Large mag. Increased Hip Fire Accuracy
  • Barrel: Polygonal Rifling
    Barrel optimized for recoil reduction. (STB++)
  • Magazine: High-Calibre Rounds
    Shots from this weapon knock enemies back. (RNG+)
  • Trait: Business Time
    Holding down the trigger boosts this weapon’s range and rate of fire, and automatically loads ammo pickups into the magazine.
  • Stock: Composite Stock
    This weapon has a versatile dual-purpose stock. (STB+, HND+)

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Coldheart (Arc trace rifle)

The Coldheart is a trace rifle – a new weapons category, of which it is the only example at present. It looks a lot like it fires a laser beam. You can collect this at the end of the story campaign if you pre-ordered Destiny 2 but we expect it will eventually be available to everyone, somehow. Here are its stats:

  • Intrinsic Perk: Cold Fusion
    This weapon shoots a steady cold fusion-powered laser.
  • Barrel: Extended Barrel
    Weighty barrel Extension. (RNG++, HND–)
  • Battery: Enhance Battery
    Strong battery life. (MAG++)
  • Trait: Longest Winter
    Coldheart’s laser does exponentially more damage the longer it is held on a target.
  • Stock: Hand-Laid Stock
    This weapon is optimised for recoil control. (STB++)

The Prospector (Arc grenade launcher)

The beautiful, almost old timey Prospector allows players to scatter grenades around in full auto, then detonate them all at once. Sounds like a good time! The reload is slow, so make your payload count.

  • Intrinsic Perk: Excavation
    Hold [Fire] to fire grenades. Release to detonate all live grenades simultaneously.
  • Launcher Barrel: Volatile Launch
    This weapon is optimized for an especially explosive payload. (HND-, PRJ-)
  • Magazine: Augmented Drum
    Heavy, high capacity drum. (MAG+++, RLD—)
  • Trait: Full Auto Trigger System
    Holding down the trigger will fire this weapon in full auto mode.
  • Stock: Hand-Laid Stock
    This weapon is optimised for recoil control. (STB++)

Tractor Cannon (Void shotgun)

A fantastic weapon for use in crowds, the Tractor Cannon has two useful perks for those mob situations. First, every shot pushes enemies away, giving you a bit of breathing room to dodge, GTFO or just dish out more damage. Second, when you inflict damage you’ll get a short boost to speed and weapon handling, which likewise makes those clutch situations a little gentler. Sounds like a good time.

  • Intrinsic Perk: Repulsor Force
    This weapon fires a powerful impulse to push enemies away.
  • Barrel: Extended Barrel:
    Weighty barrel extension. (RNG+, HND-)
  • Battery: Particle Repeater
    Constrains recoil for every bolt. (STB+).
  • Trait: The Scientific Method
    Damaging an opponent temporarily increases speed and handling.
  • Stock: Composite Stock
    This weapon has a versatile dual-purpose stock. (STB+, HND+)

MIDA Multi-tool (kinetic scout rifle)

The return of an old favourite: the ultra-snappy scout rifle, MIDA Multi-tool. With bonuses to range and stability, active radar and increased movement speed, it looks like a tidy bit of kit – but interestingly, it also gains a bonus when you equip the Legendary submachine gun MIDA Mini-tool as your energy weapon. If you’re curious of how to get the MIDA Multi-tool in Destiny 2, note that it can be obtained via the European Dead Zone World Quest, as detailed in the guide page linked earlier and the Arekkz video above.

  • Intrinsic Perk: MIDA Multi-tool
    This weapon boosts move speed.
  • Barrel: Corkscrew Rifling
    Balanced barrel. (RNG+, STB+, HND+)
  • Magazine: High-Calibre Rounds
    Shots from this weapon knock enemies back. (RNG+)
  • Trait: MIDA radar
    Radar stays active while aiming down sights.
  • Stock: Hand-Laid Stock
    This weapon is optimised for recoil control. (STB++)

Rat King (kinetic sidearm)

Another one of the lovely carved weapons, Rat King has excellent stability combined with good range and decent handling, reload and magazine size. That makes it a nice enough gun even without Exotic bonuses, but it can also turn you invisible and gets stronger if all your pals have it. A Rat King, by the way, is a probably apocryphal natural entanglement of rats tied together by their tails. This jolly fellow has been found as a reward for the World Quest on Titan, after which you can solve some riddles and complete the Rat King Exotic weapon quest.

  • Intrinsic Perk: Rat Pack
    This weapon becomes stronger when nearby fireteam members also have it equipped. Stacks up to six times.
  • Barrel: Smallbore
    Dual strength barrel. (RNG++, STB++)
  • Magazine: Tactical Mag
    This weapon has multiple tactical improvements. (STB+, RLD+, MAG+)
  • Trait: Vermin
    Reloading immediately after a kill grants a brief period of invisibility.
  • Grip: Smooth Grip
    This weapon is slightly easier to hold and aim. (STB+, HND+)

Vigilance Wing (kinetic pulse rifle)

Vigilance Wing sounds like a great weapon for those who enjoy playing in groups. Both its intrinsic perk and trait are about making the most of clutch when your allies are down, while its other capabilities mean it should make a very solid all-purpose kinetic. If you prefer to stick to small arms fire, this is gonna be one to watch.

  • Intrinsic Perk: Harsh Truths
    This weapon fires a five round burst. When a nearby ally is killed, gain health regeneration and increased movement speed.
  • Barrel: Corkscrew Rifling
    Balanced barrel. (RNG+, STB+, HND+)
  • Magazine: Alloy Magazine
    Faster reloads when the magazine is empty.
  • Trait: Last Stand
    Improved weapon performance when its wielder is the last living member of a fireteam.
  • Stock: Composite Stock
    This weapon has a versatile dual-purpose stock. (STB+, HND+)

Hard Light (Arc/Solar/Void auto rifle)

It’s no surprise to learn D1 favourite Hard Light is back in the game. In Destiny 2 Hard Light can be switched between three elemental energy affiliations, which is sweet, but it also brings back its old tricks. You will be headshot from across the map (thank goodness it’s not a kinetic weapon, with bonus critical damage). You will be shot in the back by someone in front of you, who seems to have missed. You will be shot when you’re standing behind the target. You will want one for yourself.

  • Intrinsic Perk: Volatile Light
    Rounds fired from this weapon have no damage falloff, over-penetrate targets, and ricochet off hard surfaces.
  • Barrel: Polygonal Rifling
    Barrel optimized for recoil reduction. (STB++)
  • Magazine: Alloy Magazine
    Faster reloads when the magazine is empty.
  • Trait: Arc Core/Solar Core/Void Core
    (Variable) Modifies this weapon’s damage type to Arc/Solar/Void.
  • Stock: Composite Stock
    This weapon has a versatile dual-purpose stock. (STB+, HND+)

Sturm (kinetic hand cannon)

Sturm gains a bonus when you equip the Legendary sidearm Drang as your energy weapon, which is very cute (Sturm und Drang is German for “storm and stress”, and is a term for a literary movement in which the hero is driven to violence, usually by greed, while real and especially negative human emotions and experiences are foregrounded). Kills with Sturm reload Drang from your reserves, and kills with Drang increase Sturm’s critical damage output. Dang! Want this pair of cuties? Here’s how to get Sturm and Drang in Destiny 2 in the wake of the Nessus World Quest.

  • Intrinsic Perk: Accomplice
    Kills with this weapon fill the magazine of the equipped Energy weapon from reserves.
  • Barrel: Extended Barrel
    Weighty barrel. (RNG++, HND–)
  • Magazine: Extended Mag
    (MAG+++, RLD—)
  • Trait: Storm and Stress
    Kills with Drang grant bonus precision damage until the next reload.
  • Stock: Combat Grip
    This weapon causes much less vertical recoil.

Fighting Lion (Void grenade launcher)

The Fighting Lion is a gorgeous grenade launcher with some fantastic bonuses. Exceptionally stable, its fast-travelling projectiles have a smaller blast radius but make up for it with some neat perks, including a controlled explosion and extra damage to shielded enemies. Best of all, if you kill a bunch of enemies who’ve taken damage from grenades, the magazine reloads itself. The description does not say “from reserves”, so we may be talking free Power ammo here, people.

  • Intrinsic Perk: Delayed Gratification
    Grenade projectiles will bounce off surfaces. Hold [Fire] to fire, and release to detonate.
  • Launcher Barrel: Countermass
    This weapon is weighted for vertical recoil. Greatly controls recoil. (STB++, HND++)
  • Magazine: Implosion Rounds
    Grenades travel fast and have a controlled explosion. Decreases blast radius. (PRJ++, STB+++)
  • Trait: Thin the Herd
    Direct hits with this weapon do more damage to shielded opponents. Rapid kills against grenade damaged enemies will refill the magazine.
  • Stock: Short-action Stock
    This weapon is especially easy to grip. (HND+++)

D.A.R.C.I. (Arc sniper rifle)

The D.A.R.C.I. is a sharpshooter for those who need a little help with their distance shooting. Use the scope to check out an enemy’s vitals, and then enjoy increased aim insist and a boost to Precision damage. Ban it from the Crucible immediately, in my opinion.

  • Intrinsic Perk: Personal Assistant
    Aim at an enemy to view its health and other critical information.
  • Barrel: Extended Barrel
    Weighty barrel Extension. (RNG++, HND–)
  • Magazine: Extended Mag
    (MAG+++, RLD—)
  • Trait: Target Acquired
    When Personal Assistant is active, this weapon has better target acquisition and deals more Precision damage.
  • Stock: Short-action Stock
    This weapon is especially easy to grip. (HND+++)

Merciless (Solar fusion rifle)

A gorgeous-looking beast, Merciless sets up a nice gameplay loop. Shoot an enemy without killing it, and its rate of fire increases until you get a kill. After a kill, reload immediately and enjoy increased damage output. Ohm the possibilities; in skilled hands, this will be a beast – especially as it’s pretty stable.

  • Intrinsic Perk: Conserve Momentum
    Non-lethal hits with projectiles make this weapon charge faster until its wielder gets a kill.
  • Barrel: Chambered Compensator
    Stable barrel attachment. Improves recoil direction (STB++, RLD-)
  • Magazine: Extended Mag
    (MAG+++, RLD—)
  • Trait: Impetus
    Reloading immediately after a kill increases weapon damage for a short time.
  • Stock: Fitted Stock
    This stock makes the weapon stable but heavy. Improves recoil direction. (STB++, HND-)

Graviton Lance (Void pulse rifle)

Okay, so that trait’s not much to write home about – plenty of guns make their kills explode. But how many rip a hole through spacetime on their way? This is just a fancy way of saying this pulse rifle has really, really tremendous range on the third shot of a burst, to go with its already impressive range bonuses. Nasty recoil, but control your bursts and you’re in for a good time.

  • Intrinsic Perk: Black Hole
    Third shot of a burst rips a hole through spacetime, doing high damage and recoil with no fall off.
  • Barrel: Hammer-forged rifling
    Durable ranged barrel. (RNG++)
  • Magazine: Accurized Rounds
    This weapon can fire longer distances. (RNG++)
  • Trait: Cosmology
    Kills with this weapon cause enemy targets to detonate.
  • Stock: Fitted Stock
    This stock makes the weapon stable but heavy. Improves recoil direction. (STB++, HND-)

Skyburner’s Oath (Solar scout rifle)

Since you shouldn’t really be hip-firing with a scout rifle this weapon’s trait is a bit silly – but the fact that it’s a full auto weapon with, presumably, much better range than an actual auto rifle is very interesting. That bonus to Cabal, and ability to shoot through Phalanx shields, is pretty tasty, too.

  • Intrinsic Perk: Slug Rifle
    This weapon fires Solar slugs that get stronger when aiming down sights.
  • Barrel: Extended Barrel
    Weighty barrel. (RNG++, HND–)
  • Magazine: Extended Mag
    (MAG+++, RLD—)
  • Trait: For The Empire
    This Weapon is full auto, does extra damage to Cabal, and penetrates Phalanx shields.
  • Stock: Short-action Stock
    This weapon is especially easy to grip. (HND+++)

Legend of Acrius (Arc shotgun)

Legend of Acrius has a strange pairing of trait and perk. The perk is basically “does a ton of damage, including to the guy behind the guy you’re shooting”. The trait extends your radar range. Uh. Okay? Sure. Well, Bungie couldn’t make it too OP, I guess – especially given its various bonuses to range. Should be trouble in PvP. We’ve got a guide for how to get your hands on the Acrius, but beware – there’s a lot of work involved in this one.

  • Intrinsic Perk: Shock Blast
    This weapon fires blasts of high-damage Arc energy that over-penetrate targets.
  • Barrel: Full Bore
    Barrel optimized for distance. (RNG+++, STB–, HND-)
  • Magazine: Accurized Rounds
    This weapon can fire longer distances. (RNG++)
  • Trait: Long March
    Detect enemies on your radar from further away.
  • Stock: Fitted Stock
    This stock makes the weapon stable but heavy. Improves recoil direction. (STB++, HND-)

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Borealis (Multi-element sniper rifle, PS4 exclusive)

The Borealis is a PlayStation exclusive Exotic sniper rifle for the time being. If you look at the footage through that link, you’ll see it can be purple, blue or orange, which means it can fire all three elemental energy types.

In Destiny 2 you can’t change the elemental affinity of Exotic weapons with mods like you can for normal energy weapons. But with this weapon, the ability to change energy type is inherent and will come in handy considering you want to match enemy elemental types. Solar vs Solar, and so on.

  • Intrinsic Perk: The Fundamentals
    Holding Square charges the weapons’s damage type cycling between Solar, Arc and Void.
  • Barrel: Corkscrew Rifling
    Balanced barrel (RNG+, STB+, HND+)
  • Magazine: Extended Mag
    (MAG+++, RLD—)
  • Trait: Ionic Return
    Breaking an enemy shield transfers one bullet from reserves to the magazine.
  • Stock: Hand-laid Stock
    This weapon is optimized for recoil control. (STB++).

Other Exotics seen in cinematics

We’ve seen some other Exotics which we can clearly recognise from D1 – but only in the hands of NPCs, so we don’t know whether they’ll be available in-game, or whether they’re just there as a nod to continuity since our arsenals were blown up. The weapons in this category are No Land Beyond, a sniper rifle; Ace of Spades, a hand cannon; and Razelighter, a sword.

When more Exotics are added to the game, we’ll let you know what they’re capable of.

Read more here: VG247