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Destiny 2: The Best Hunter Builds for Every Game Mode

Hunters are best when a build leans into their high level of mobility and potential for up-close encounters. You’ll be spending less time standing still trying to hit enemies with AOE effects or charging headfirst into battle and more time skirting the edges, taking shots, and moving on to your next position. Their ability sets make them incredibly useful for laying out DPS, saving your Fireteam members, and playing the bait against more difficult enemies. Here, we’ve gathered the best hunter builds in Destiny 2 for each game mode.

So what are the top Hunter builds right now? Let’s find out.

October 2021 Update: Season of the Lost should basically be known as the season where Hunters kick some serious ass. Their subclasses received some much-needed love, alongside serious upgrades to a handful of Exotics. This also marked the introduction of Legendary Stasis weapons and some killer Stasis Armor mods, providing some very interesting opportunities to start refining builds.

February 2023 Update: Lots has changed since we last updated this article, including the new subclass 3.0 updates. In addition to that, Lightfall releases in less than a week as of this writing. We’ll update again sometime after Lightfall, so check back for that as well!

Best Hunter Build for Raids in Destiny 2

Hunter’s will want to be unleashing their Supers and other abilities as often as possible in endgame content. This is where your high DPS capabilities come in most handy, allowing you to remove multiple Minor enemies from the field or quickly deplete Major enemies and boss health bars. Here are a few options that leverage synergistic Exotic Armor and subclass combinations.

Star-Eater Scales Hunter Build

This build is all about replenishing your super as fast as possible and overcharging it. Star-Eater Scales grants bonus super energy from Orbs of Power, and also allows you to overcharge it by grabbing extra orbs. Once you’ve gotten the maximum bonus by picking up 4 Orbs while your super is fully charged, you’ll get an overshield when casting your super in addition to that super doing up to 70% bonus damage.

Gathering Storm is already the highest damage super in the game, and this makes it purely absurd. In addition to the incredible power this Exotic grants, it also allows you to focus the rest of your build on anything you want. With the exception of being able to generate Orbs, there’s nothing else you need to do to make this work.

Arc hunters have access to lots of fun tricks and synergies, most of which can be used alongside Star-Eater Scales. Having the utility to change your build and mods on the fly is really important in raids, and if you’re planning on trying something on the scale of a day 1 raid, this is one of the best Exotics to have going in.

The Details

Exotic Armor: Star-Eater Scales

Subclass: Arc with Gathering Storm

Primary Armor Stats: Resilience, Mobility, and/or Intellect

Armor Mods: (updating post-Lightfall)

The Bombardiers Hunter Build

The Bombardiers - Hunter Builds 2
Image: Bungie via HGG

This build takes full advantage of how elusive Hunters can be. Rather than relying on popping your Super to take down enemies, you’ll be attempting to dodge around the map and lay down Grenades. To make this work, you’ll need to run this with Stasis and The Bombardiers Exotic armor to ensure you leave explosives behind.

In short, you’re trying to stall enemies long enough to throw down explosives. To elongate your slowing abilities, run Stasis with the Winter’s Shroud Aspect, as well as the Whisper of Durance and Whisper of Refraction fragments. These will increase the time your slowing action is active, allow you to slow enemies when dodging, and replenish dodge abilities upon successful slowed kills. 

The more you slow enemies and the more you roll into them, the easier it will be to keep this efficient cycle running. Be careful trying this in Master (or higher) level content, though. Dodging around the room and dropping grenades everywhere is tons of fun and really effective in most raids, but on Master difficulty it might be too hard to effectively do so.

The Details

Exotic Armor: The Bombardiers

Subclass: Stasis

Primary Armor Stats: Resilience, Mobility, and/or Discipline

Armor Mods: (updating post-Lightfall)

Best Hunter Build for PvE in Destiny 2

PvE builds for Hunters should reflect the DPS and super output for endgame content. That said, your PvE builds can be more varied in which weapons you equip. As long as you lean into either movement or resilience/recovery, you can run with your favorites and throw caution to the wind. Here are two of our favorites.

Shards of Galanor Hunter Build

Shards of Galanor - Hunter Builds 3
Image: Bungie via HGG

Using grenades and dodging to build up your Super seems to be the go-to system with Hunters. Such is the case here, where your goal is to constantly burn your enemies and defeat them while this is happening.

Once you’ve laid out your Super, having Shards of Galanor equipped will allow you to return up to half of your Super recharge by getting hits and kills. This should simultaneously recharge your other abilities, allowing you to jump right back into the dodge, melee, grenade cycle right away and finish off your Super recharge in a few minutes or less. Pair this with fragments like Ember of Beams and Ember of Torches to improve your super and easily become radiant, making this cycle even more effective.

Your weapons will be less of a concern here, but if you can try to use anything that can take out Minor enemies in one to two shots and apply Solar burn or help with Scorch effects. Something like the CALUS Mini-Tool would be fantastic here.

The Details

Exotic Armor: Shards of Galanor

Subclass: Solar with Blade Barrage

Primary Armor Stats: Mobility, Resilience/Recovery, and/or Discipline

Armor Mods: (updating post-Lightfall)

Frost-EE5 Hunter Build

Frost-EE5 - Hunter Builds 4
Image: Bungie via HGG

There’s so much you can do with Stasis as a Hunter without having to switch up the core Aspects and Fragments you’re running. While this build won’t be focused on slowing enemies to recharge abilities, it will still be a useful part of it. Running the Winter’s Shroud Aspect with the Whisper of Durance and Whisper of Refraction Fragments will help you quickly eliminate enemies as you actively sprint and dodge around the map.

Here’s why you’ll want to be sure you keep moving. The Frost-EE5 Exotic will increase the melee, grenade, and dodge ability regen as long as you keep moving. Anytime you dodge, your sprint speed will increase, making it far easier to maintain your movement. 

To round out this build, you’ll want to run Glacier grenades and any weapon that produces high DPS from mid-to-close range. You can run Discipline as one of your main stats to help with this, or you can go with Mobility (to help with dodge cooldown) or Resilience (to stay alive longer).

The Details

Exotic Armor: Frost-EE5

Subclass: Stasis

Primary Armor Stats: Mobility, Resilience, and/or Discipline

Armor Mods: (updating post-Lightfall)

Best Hunter Build for Crucible in Destiny 2

For Crucible, you want to either focus on keeping yourself alive so that you can get up close or supercharging your ability regeneration. You want to be sure that your choices allow you to take out other Guardians in one to two hits and that you can last long enough to then leave the area. Here are a few options that take those two concepts to the extreme.

Mask of Bakris Hunter Build

Mask of Bakris - Hunter Builds 5
Image: Bungie via HGG

The Mask of Bakris replaces your standard Hunter dodge with a quick use teleport ability. Once you’ve dodged, you’ll trigger a perk that increases the damage done by your Arc weapons for a short time. And if any enemies happen to be slowed or frozen, this damage buff is increased even further. This part of the Exotic does not work in PvP, but if you decide to try it in PvE it’s incredibly important. In PvP, it’s all about the improved dodge which allows for better movement than anything else.

This is another Stasis build that will have you focused on dodging and grenades. You can take much of what you’re using for your Bombardiers build and apply it here. Equip the Winter’s Shroud Aspect with the Whisper of Durance and Whisper of Refraction Fragments for increased slowed duration and the dodge/freeze ability. From there, you can focus on equipping mods that help you cycle grenades and dodge more often.

Mask of Bakris might not be at full power in PvP, but if it was it’d be too good. As it is, it still allows Hunters to dash around and grab surprise kills even easier than Warlocks with Blink. It’s also incredibly fun to use, as is any Exotic that improves movement.

The Details

Exotic Armor: Mask of Bakris

Subclass: Stasis

Primary Armor Stats: Mobility, Recovery/Resilience, and/or Discipline

Armor Mods: (updating post-Lightfall)

Wormhusk Crown Hunter Build

Wormhusk Crown - Hunter Builds 6
Image: Bungie via HGG

This build focuses on movement and dodging but with an added health and shield boost by using the Wormhusk Crown. This Exotic gives you a small regeneration perk activated by dodging. This is perfect when you’re in dire straights in Crucible, and can mean the difference between being eliminated and getting an elimination.

The rest of this build is really up to you. While we have recommendations on what to run to help keep you firing from mid-distance, you should only care about bumping up your Recovery and Mobility stats. The rest is up to how you like to play when running and gunning.

Exotic Armor: Wormhusk Crown

Subclass: Arc with Arc Staff or Void with Spectral Blades

Primary Armor Stats: Recovery and Mobility

Armor Mods: (updating post-Lightfall)

Best Hunter Builds for Trials of Osiris in Destiny 2

More than likely your favorite Crucible builds will translate well to Trials of Osiris. However, with this game mode being far more strategic and builds more versatile, there are some options that can help you gain an edge. These not only take advantage of the current PvP meta but lean into being useful for defensive PvE play as well.

Graviton Forfeit Hunter Build

An elusive Hunter can be deadly in Trials and may mean the difference between a round win and a wipe. This build takes full advantage of your ability to disappear and move nimbly around an area, as well as making it hard for your enemies to trust their mini-map. It takes an already deadly class and makes it even harder to fight off.

Graviton Forfeit makes Hunters remain invisible for longer and improves your melee recharge rate, reload speed, and Recovery during that time. Essentially, you can go invisible before a fight and have massively improved stats during important gunfights.

Exotic Armor: Graviton Forfeit

Subclass: Void with Spectral Blades

Primary Armor Stats: Recovery, Discipline, and Mobility

Armor Mods: (updating post-Lightfall)

Athrys’s Embrace Hunter Build

A well-timed melee attack can mean the difference between you and your enemy going down. This build helps supercharge that process by augmenting the Weighted Throwing Knife for increased auto-tracking and potential instant kills. The rest of your build is all about increased accuracy to help build up the strengthened Weighted Knife. You’ll need 3 precision hits within 2.5 seconds of one another.

With the improved Weighted Knife, you’ll be able to get free kills all day. A flawless Trials run is a breeze when kills are as easy to grab as they are with this Exotic. It’s also tons of fun, honestly, so we highly recommend it in either Trials or standard PvP.

Exotic Armor: Athrys’s Embrace

Subclass: Solar with Golden Gun: Deadshot (but don’t forget the Weighted Knife)

Primary Armor Stats: Recovery, Intellect, Strength, and Mobility

Armor Mods: (updating post-Lightfall)

Best Hunter Build for Gambit in Destiny 2

Gambit builds will be very similar to PvE. In fact, you can probably run the PvE-specific options we listed within Gambit and vice versa. However, if you want to create something more specific for this hybrid game mode, try out the following agility and ability-based builds.

The Sixth Coyote Hunter Build

The Sixth Coyote - Hunter Builds 7
Image: Bungie via HGG

This build is all about freezing enemies and shattering them as often as possible. To make this work, you need to continuously recharge your melee ability and have the Shatterdive and Grim Harvest Aspects equipped. These will create Stasis shards that regenerate your Melee energy and provide a quick and easy way to shatter any enemies in the surrounding area.

Now, this freeze and shatter action can get you in trouble when facing challenging enemies. Once executed, it leaves you exposed, which is where The Sixth Coyote Exotic comes into play. This provides you with two dodge slots, meaning that you can quickly evacuate even if your melee is spent. 

Your weapon choices don’t really matter as much with this build, but we recommend running with an automatic weapon, something for precision, and a sword. For stats and mods, be sure to up your Mobility and Resilience, and use mods that increase your ability recharge rate. Lastly, focus on equipping Fragments like Whisper of Hedrons and Fissures to increase the damage output from shattering crystals.

Exotic Armor: The Sixth Coyote

Subclass: Stasis

Primary Armor Stats: Mobility, Resilience/Recovery, and/or Discipline.

Armor Mods: (updating post-Lightfall)

Orpheus Rig Hunter Build

Orpheus Rig - Hunter Builds 8
Image: Bungie via HGG

This build is intended to help you create a cycle of Super and Grenade abilities. Focus on improving your Grenade and Super recharge stats to help pop your Tether. If you’re wearing the Orpheus Rig Exotic Boots, you’ll gain additional Tether shots and increase your ability regeneration based on the number of enemies you tether.

Like the Wormhusk Crown, the rest of this build is somewhat up to you. Generally speaking, you want to run with weapons that can do a lot of damage across a wide spread and equip mods that boost your recharge rates. Orpheus Rig is an Exotic that also helps your team a lot due to the number or Orbs Tether makes, so your team will love you for it.

Exotic Armor: Orpheus Rig

Subclass: Void with Shadowshot: Moebius Quiver (Tether)

Primary Armor Stats: Resilience/Recovery, Intellect, and/or Discipline

Armor Mods: (updating post-Lightfall)

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Prepare for the Hunt

We hope you enjoyed our Destiny 2 Best Hunter Builds feature! Hunter builds are fun to create and can work incredibly well between every game mode, meaning you can focus on your weapons and subclasses. To help the Hunter on your Fireteam find their favorite build, be sure to share this article on your favorite social platform, and sign up for our email list for more Destiny 2 content.

Happy gaming!

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