Destiny 2

Shotguns & Fusions: suggestions for tuning Exotics post-Beyond Light

destiny2 5 - Shotguns & Fusions: suggestions for tuning Exotics post-Beyond Light

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Exotic weapons represent the pinnacle of Destiny 2's gunplay, offering unique and memorable ways to engage with the game world. With Beyond Light, we're getting new unique exotics and a few reprised classics. However you feel about that, this offers us an opportunity to bring some life back to old D2 exotics.

The purpose of this post is to offer some suggestions toward improving the quality of life and identity of exotic fusions and shotguns. The goal is to give every weapon, esp the below average, a unique place and role in the sandbox without disrupting overall balance. So, I've added anti-champ perks to a number of exotics. A full-list of anti-champ additions for all exotic weapon classes can be found here.

I am not a dev, just a gamer giving my feedback. My hope is that our collective feedback reaches Bungie and makes it easier for them to create an even better experience for all to enjoy. Let's get into it!

Fusion Rifles

From a design standpoint, we have some pretty awesome exotic fusion rifles in the game. However, fusion rifles generally don't offer much compared to other specials. Reverting the damage falloff nerf with the exception of High Impact Frames (erentil) would be a first step. Legendary fusions would still need some sort of utility or damage buff to make them relevant in PvE again.

  • Bastion: is now an Anti-Barrier weapon.
    • +10% damage against majors & bosses
    • 80-100% of damage should penetrate combatant shields in PvE.
  • Jotunn: now has Unstoppable with Charge Shot.
    • burn aoe should proc some solar subclass abilities; otherwise leave it be.
    • catalyst could add a burn tick damage to the lingering aoe.
  • Merciless: increase base damage by ~10% and reserves from 14 -> 24.
    • NOTE: Reserves buff is coming in Beyond Light, probably ~22.
    • remember this weapon has Impetus (Kill Clip on steroids), but it's currently bugged.
  • One-Thousand Voices: As Shaxx would say… This is amazing!
    • add an anti-champ perk to this gun (overload & unstoppable?). Riven should have seen champions coming.
  • Telesto is the besto.
    • add Overload on the bolt explosion effect if it doesn't break the game lol.

Linear Fusions

  • Sleeper Simulant: return some of Dornroschen's ricochet damage (~25%).
  • Queenbreaker: move to the special slot as an Overload weapon.
    • reduce crit modifier from ~6.0x to ~5.33x to compensate.
  • Arbalest: is now an Anti-Barrier weapon.
    • NOTE: This will be adjusted in BL. I just hope it's usable against shielded targets in Match Game. It would have to be less effective than the matched element, but more effective than non-matched energy weapons.


In general, legendary shotguns needs some sort of buff to warrant using them in difficult content. Even if Bungie tones back stomp mechanics, shotguns will need a bit more power to justify the risk.


This could come in the form of damage (+10-15% damage) and/or weapon-specific survivability (+10-15% pve dmg resistance). Of course, it could be more complicated.


  • Legend of Acrius: Shock Blast now has Anti-Barrier properties.
  • Lord of Wolves: revert the 20% PvE damage nerf, especially since the range and spread was nerfed so hard for PvP.
  • Fourth Horseman: Increase damage against majors and bosses by 15-18%.
    • This is a tough one. On paper, the 4th Horseman appears to have phenomenal DPS. The burst damage is unmatched, but really doesn't mean much if it takes multiple mags to kill a major. It's really held back from viability by its short range, low total damage output, damage registration (tick rate) issues, and stomp mechanics.
  • Tractor Cannon: +15-20% base damage buff along with Overload. Remember, this is a heavy weapon, not a special.
    • Tractor cannon deals around the same base damage as an aggressive shotgun w/o any perks, yet it can't crit as much as one. The base damage buff makes it worthy of the heavy slot; the team utility/debuff makes it an exotic contender; and the boink makes it worthy of memes.
    • With Divinity and seasonal debuff mods, it's hard to justify using Tractor for serious activities even with it's utility. This damage buff might not that, but should improve viability.
  • The Chaperone is amazing after its recent buff. A catalyst that increases reserves or makes Roadborn proc on any combatant (non-Guardian) kill would be welcome.

That's all I've got for Shottys and Fusions. A big thank you goes to u/IAMADragonAMAA, Ehroar, and other documenters for various gaming resources. Thank you for sticking around and reading this long post.

Let's discuss your ideas, reservations, or general thoughts about the proposed adjustments. I couldn't add too much detail due to length, but I'm happy to share more detailed reasoning for those interested.

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