Anyone that has been following the current meta in Destiny 2 knows that grenade launchers have fast become a preferred option for boss DPS. In the new Crown of Sorrow raid specifically, grenade launchers can make quick work out of the final boss, Gahlran, and will typically allow for a one-phase boss DPS section.
But what is it about grenade launchers that makes them so good? And which grenade launchers should players be looking for? There are a few options.
The key to grenade launchers’ rise to prominence has to do with several buffs Bungie made over the last few seasons. When Edge Transit became a meme with the launch of Forsaken, it seemed by liked Bungie’s goal was to eventually make grenade launchers a viable option in Destiny 2. Some of that can be attributed to nerfs to other popular boss DPS options – namely Whisper of the Worm and cluster bomb rocket launchers – but it also helps that most good grenade launchers not exotic. So which grenade launchers are the best?
Wendigo GL3 (Vanguard Pinnacle)
Arguably the best all-around grenade launcher is the Wendigo GL3, the new Vanguard pinnacle weapon introduced in Season of Opulence. This grenade launcher’s unique perk allows it to deal extra damage for every orb of light a player has picked up, up to 6 orbs total.
As we’ve shown in past coverage of Wendigo, with the explosive light perk active, the weapon can deal big damage. It’s great for reducing Strike bosses to nothing in a matter of seconds and it is really strong against Gahlran. But, the main caveat is that the player must pick up 6 orbs of light throughout an encounter in order to maximize their damage. With a lot of warlocks using Well of Radiance or a masterworked primary/secondary, that isn’t much of an issue but it is situational.
Mountaintop (Crucible Pinnacle)
The other popular grenade launcher that Destiny 2 players like to use is Mountaintop, the season 6 crucible pinnacle weapon. Mountaintop is so popular for a couple of reasons. The first is that it has spike grenades, which is an essential perk for grenade launchers because they do extra damage.
On top of that, Mountaintop shoots in a direct line for easy boss damage so there isn’t a need to arc a shot. And finally, Mountaintop is a primary grenade launcher, so it frees up other slots to use interesting loadouts, or to use another grenade launcher in the power weapon slot.
Anarchy (Scourge of the Past Exotic)
Speaking of, Anarchy is not the best for boss DPS on Gahlran but since players can use Mountaintop as the DPS weapon, they can get a little extra damage out of this exotic grenade launcher. A random drop at the end of the Scourge of the Past raid, Anarchy does passive damage by setting up a web of electricity between a series of nodes.
This comes in handy because a player can put down an arc web line or triangle to damage Gahlran and then switch to Mountaintop to do damage. Basically, Anarchy allows you to sneak in a little bonus damage while doing the big number DPS with Mountaintop.
Swarm of the Raven (Iron Banner)
But the latest grenade launcher to enter the limelight is the Swarm of the Raven, the grenade launcher for Iron Banner. Swarm of the Raven has been around for a while so it’s possible you have one lying around, but most likely you dismantled it.
Swarm of the Raven is so popular now because it is a void grenade launcher and thus gets the maximum benefits (50% extra damage) from a Tractor Cannon buff. There is obviously a lot more RNG involved in whether or not you get the grenade launcher but Iron Banner is live right now and will be back at least two more times before the season is over.
Outrageous Fortune (Vanguard)
If the grind for a pinnacle weapon or the thought of playing Iron Banner against Lord of Wolves has you down, there is another easier option in Outrageous Fortune. Available from the Vanguard in exchange for tokens or as a reward for strikes, Outrageous Fortune has the practically the same impact as Swarm of the Raven and can roll with Spike Grenades; it’s just not a void grenade launcher. It’s still plenty viable for boss damage, though, and arguably easier to get.
While grenade launchers are a popular option for boss DPS in Destiny 2, especially in the Crown of Sorrow raid, they are by no means the only option. Outbreak Perfected is still very strong if at least a few fireteam members are using it and heavy machine guns can do plenty of damage.
Really, the grenade launcher preference comes down to defeating Gahlran (or any Destiny 2 boss) quickly, and for those situations grenade launchers are the best right now.
Destiny 2 is available now for PC, PS4, and Xbox One.