PVP in Destiny 2 can be very chaotic. There isn’t much time to sit around and plan out your next move, so you’ll have to think (and move) quick. Luckily, that’s exactly what the Arc Warlock is built for. It’s all about going fast and using Arc Souls do to the hard work for you. It’s a lot of fun to play, and is even viable in competitive play — the more people there are to run down, the better. In this article, we’ll take a look at the Arc Warlock as the best Warlock PVP build in Destiny 2, so let’s get to it!
Exotics are the bread and butter of PVP builds. They can change the entire way you play and grant unique effects. For this build, the Exotic armor piece is absolutely essential.
This build uses Getaway Artist, as it’s the easiest way to become Amplified in Destiny 2. Being Amplified allows you to sprint faster, jump further, and empowers several other abilities (most importantly, the Arc Souls). It also just straight-up looks cool. Remember how ugly Starfire Protocol was? And then Bungie released an ornament for it on the same day they nerfed it. Cold-hearted.
The way Getaway Artist works is pretty simple. All you have to do is hold down and consume your Arc grenade, and you’ll instantly become Amplified and receive a powerful Arc Soul.
There aren’t any “required” Exotic weapons, but we definitely recommend Centrifuse over anything else at the moment. Since everything it does involves sprinting and blinding explosions, it’s perfect. Being able to run around nonstop and blow up anything that gets in your way is the entire appeal of this build, so why not use a weapon that capitalizes on both of those things?
The intrinsic trait, Overcharged Capacitor, is where most of the appeal lies. Sprinting, sliding, and firing the weapon builds up a charge that increases range and reload speed. At full Overcharged Capacitor stacks, final blows cause a blinding explosion. You also never have to reload, since the weapon does that on its own whenever you’re sprinting.
Aspects and Fragments
Aspects, Fragments, and Abilities are all equally important for your build. It can be hard to figure out exactly which work where, so we’ll cover all of them in depth!
Arc Soul is the most important aspect for this build. It allows your class ability to give you and your allies an Arc Soul simply by walking through the Rift. Arc Souls are little balls of Arc energy that hover over your shoulder and automatically fire at nearby enemies like a turret. They’re great in PVP since they allow you to attack enemies whether you see them or not, and provide extra damage for 1v1 fights you get into.
The second part of Arc Soul is even more important for this build. It improves the power of your Arc Souls whenever you’re Amplified, which is incredibly easy to do thanks to our Exotic armor, Getaway Artist.
Lightning Surge isn’t a necessary part of this build, but it’s the stronger of the remaining options. With Lightning Surge, you can activate your charged melee to blink forward and spawn a series of lightning strikes that can jolt enemies. It’s great for the movement alone, and the lightning strikes are a really nice bonus.
If you’re going to sub in the Electrostatic Mind aspect, replace Lightning Surge with it. Just don’t get rid of Arc Soul.
Spark of Magnitude is a good inclusion in any build that uses one of the grenades it empowers. Lightning, Pulse, and Storm Grenade all get an increase in duration thanks to Spark of Magnitude. It’s a fairly simple Fragment, but it makes a ton of difference.
Since this build allows you to be amplified quite often, it’s nice to get some bonuses when you’re sprinting. Spark of Haste gives “greatly increased” resilience, recovery, and mobility whenever you’re sprinting. Not only does this work well with the speed boost from being Amplified, but it’s perfect for Centrifuse. You’ll be running a lot, so why not survive longer when you’re doing so?
Spark of Brilliance is one of the stronger offensive Fragments you can use in PVP. It causes a blinding explosion to occur whenever you defeat a blinded target, which is very easy to do with this build if you’re using Centrifuse. If you’re using a different weapon, it’d be better to sub in another Fragment like Spark of Discharge or Instinct, which can work with any build.
The last Fragment for this build is Spark of Momentum, which allows you to reload your equipped weapon by sliding over ammo bricks. This is great for quickly reloading your special weapon without having to stop, and it also gives a bit of melee energy whenever you do so. It’s a fairly generic ability, but it’s always nice to have.
Super: Chaos Reach is the best super ability for this build, mostly because it’s just generally better than Stormtrance. You can instantly take out several enemies at once if you cast Chaos Reach at the right time, and it’s a great super to use for countering other supers or taking objectives.
Class Ability: Healing Rift is the easy choice here. In addition to providing a way to heal yourself quickly, it’s also best because there just isn’t any other option for this build. Since this build will have you Amplified quite often, you won’t have a ton of time to stand around in an Empowering Rift. You probably won’t find yourself loitering around in a Healing Rift either, but you can use it to get a quick health boost. It’s also great for triggering class ability mod effects like Bomber or Dynamo, though Empowering does that just the same.
Melee Ability: Chain Lightning is simply the best melee ability for Arc Warlocks in PVP. Simply put, when you melee someone with this ability, it jolts them and “chains” to other nearby enemies. It also gets a bonus when you’re amplified, which improves the chaining effect and allows it to hit more people.
Grenade Ability: Lightning, Pulse, or Storm Grenade are all good for this build since they use the Spark of Magnitude Fragment to lengthen their effects. Lightning Grenade sticks to surfaces and emits lightning, Pulse Grenade creates a large pulsing field of damage for a few seconds, and Storm Grenade creates a more focused stream of lightning wherever it lands. They’re all very similar, especially Pulse and Storm Grenade, but all three are equally as effective.
Movement Ability: This one’s entirely up to personal preference. Strafe Glide is great if you plan to fight while in the air, but Burst Glide is better for quickly getting out of a bad situation. Balanced Guide is also fine if you like it, but it’s hard to say which is objectively the best.
Choosing armor mods for our best Warlock PVP build is a bit difficult, as there aren’t really a ton of options for armor mods in Destiny 2 PVP. At least not in terms of how many options you get in PVE. Here’s a rundown of the best armor mods for PVP on each armor piece.
On your helmet, there are two great options. Kinetic/Arc Targeting is great on our Warlock PVP build because they make it easier to land precision hits, which you’ll always want to be going for. Dynamo also functions well with everything this build does. It reduces your super cooldown whenever you use your class ability near targets, which isn’t that hard to do. It might be a bit less consistent in 3v3, but it’s fantastic in 6v6.
Grenade Kickstart is an easy choice for this build. Since grenades are so important when using Getaway Artist, you’ll want them available as often as possible. Grenade Kickstart does that by granting ability energy every time you use a grenade (including whenever you consume one). The base amount of grenade energy you’ll get is 11.3% in PVP, but you can increase that by equipping multiple copies of the mod or acquiring Armor Charge stacks before consuming a grenade.
Dexterity mods also work great with any build, so you can use one of those as well.
The most important chest mod for our best Destiny 2 Warlock PVP build is Unflinching Harmonic/Arc Aim. With this mod, you get a strong 25% flinch resistance boost. If you have two of them, that bonus increases to 35%, and 40% with three.
There are a lot of great mods in the leg slot that deal with Orbs and Armor Charge, but the best for this build is Innervation. It refills some of your grenade energy every time you pick up an Orb of Power, which works great here. Absolution is also really good, as it gives energy to all of your abilities when you pick up an Orb, but does cost a bit more.
Making Orbs in PVP is not necessarily easy, but we’ll cover a good mod for that in the next section.
Class Item Mods
For your class item, the best PVP mod in general is Reaper. Reaper makes an Orb of Power whenever you get a kill after using your class ability. It’s by far the most consistent way to make Orbs in PVP.
Other than Reaper, you can make use of several other class item mods as well. Bomber is great with this build since it gives grenade energy after using your class ability (and synergizes great with Reaper). And if you don’t mind the high cost, you can also use Distribution to help with all your cooldowns.
Join the High Ground!
That’s it for our guide to the best Warlock PVP build in Destiny 2 — thanks for reading! Have fun out there in the Crucible, and be sure to let us know how this build worked for you down in the comments.