Exotics are Destiny’s – and now the sequel’s – most sought-after loot. They're harder to get, they look sexier, and they have unique perks that will change your whole playstyle (or are just good fun). Destiny 2 will bring a truckload of new ones to our vaults, and these are what we’ve seen so far.
For a run-down on Destiny 2 PC, check our dedicated article.
While Legendary gear is the meat of your build, Exotics are the spice. Their perks shake things up so dramatically that you can only have one Exotic weapon or armour piece equipped at a time, for the sake of balance (or sanity).
Destiny 2 Exotic Weapons
In Destiny 2, Exotic weapons have only one row of perks. One is intrinsic (the gold one on the left), and will probably be active from the start, whereas the rest will have to be unlocked via experience points if this game is anything like the original.
All the Exotics we've seen so far have two unique perks each; the intrinsic, and the second-to-last. It seems the two work together to define each gun's gimmick. It's also notable that Exotics in the beta had no weapon mod panel, which means no shaders and no infusion – perhaps they'll all automatically drop at maximum attack in the final game.
This is exciting - Coldheart is a brand new weapon type that Bungie are calling a 'trace rifle.' Made by the high-tech tinkerers at the Omolon weapons foundry, Coldheart is powered by an energy-laced liquid that also doubles as a coolant. The gun's valves pump that liquid throughout its innards, much like a heart.
As Destiny 2's first trace rifle, Coldheart fires a constant stream of energy that designer Jon Weisnewski says will be great for single-target DPS, if you can keep it centred on the target's weak spots. It does Arc elemental damage, and hence will be equipped in your energy slot.
It looks great, but there's a catch: it's pre-order exclusive until December 5, 2017, at which point it'll be added to the regular game for all players. Check out some gameplay and hear about the design philosophy in the IGN First video in which it was announced.
Riskrunner is an Exotic submachine gun – a new weapon type for Destiny 2. It's an energy weapon dealing Arc damage, has a 40-round magazine, and fires a potent 900 rounds per minute.
Its intrinsic perk is Arc Conductor. This will increase weapon power when you receive Arc damage, and works in tandem with its second perk, Superconductor, which says "when Arc Conductor is active, shots fired have the chance to become chain lightning and return ammo."
Situational, then, but this is obviously one to bring on missions where you know you'll face a lot of Arc attacks. Chain lightning and returning ammo sounds like another recipe for mopping up adds.
Sunshot is an Exotic hand cannon with great handling, an eight-round magazine, and a fire rate of 150 rounds per minute. It looks like it'll sit in a high impact type and will do Solar damage, so it's an energy weapon.
Its intrinsic perk is Sunburn, which causes it to fire explosive rounds and highlight enemies it damages. Its second unique perk is Sun Blast, which causes killed enemies to explode with solar energy. That splash damage should help with add-killing duties.
Matt’s quite a big fan of this one, as you’ll read in his PC hands-on preview.
Is this the best named weapon in gaming history? Up there with Thunderfury, anyway. Sweet Business is technically an auto rifle, but clearly the correct word for it is 'minigun'. It has 99 rounds per magazine and fires 300 per minute.
Its intrinsic perk is Payday, which grants a larger magazine and increased accuracy when firing from the hip. Its second perk, Business Time, reads "holding down the trigger boosts this weapon's damage and rate of fire, and automatically loads ammo pickups into the magazine."
There's no overheat mechanic on Sweet Business, as in some other gaming miniguns, so its two perks together mean you can spam out damage indefinitely if you can pick up enough ammo, or if you double-tap crouch behind a Titan's rally barricade in what will surely become a leading PvE DPS tactic. Its range doesn't look great, but this'll be awesome for putting the hurt on bosses if they're close enough.
Destiny 2 Exotic armour
We first saw it in trailers a while ago, but Edge Magazine's September issue gave us the first gameplay details of an Exotic Warlock chest piece that's very likely to be this thing.
Aiming down sights in mid-air while wearing this Exotic will hold you in place - much like the Empyrean Bellicose Titan helm from the original Destiny. Moreover, it will hasten your grenade cooldown with each airborne kill (this mid-air business is why we're assuming Edge are referring to this particular armour piece - check out the wings). Apparently, we'll get this armour piece relatively early in the campaign.
There will be dozens more of these previewed before launch, and doubtless more added as the game progresses. You'll find them all right here.