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Destiny 2: All Armor Mods and Armor Charge Analyzed (2024)

For many Destiny 2 players, armor mods are the most important part of a build. One of the biggest struggles that comes with build crafting your Guardian is deciding which mods provide the most benefit. To help remedy this issue, we’re providing you with helpful tips and advice for all the armor mods available for your Guardian’s use in Destiny 2.

Note that this breakdown only covers mods available to general and exotic armor pieces. We won’t be covering armor mods that are activity-exclusive, like the Solstice Kindling mods. We also won’t be covering mods that are added by the seasonal artifact, as those mods may or may not exist in future seasons. 

With that in mind, let’s get started!

Non-Specific Mods

We’ll begin by covering mods that aren’t specific to a certain armor piece. These mods provide general boosts to things like stats and ability cooldowns, and are helpful to equip regardless of what build you’re running.

General Armor Mods

Destiny 2: All Armor Mods Explained | General Mods
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.

General armor mods are going to be the bread and butter for all your Guardian builds. These mods add 5–10 points in their specified stat based on the amount of energy required to equip them. Your Guardian’s stats are extremely important in all Destiny 2 content, and aren’t something that should be ignored. Every armor piece can have a single General mod equipped to it, so you get a total of five General mod slots per build. These mods are best used to get your Guardian’s stats to a specific tier or threshold.

Font Mods

Destiny 2: All Armor Mods Explained | Font Mods
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.

While on the topic of stats, the Font mods all serve the purpose of increasing your Guardian’s stats while you have at least one stack of armor charge. Each Font mod will grant 30/50/60 stats to its specified stat while you have armor charge. These are best used to improve stats you can increase with General mods. They won’t provide any benefit to a stat past 100, so try not to equip these to a stat that has more than 70 points in it.

Consider using these on Resilience, Recovery, Discipline, and Intellect.

Surge Mods

Destiny 2: All Armor Mods Explained | Surge Mods
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.

All of these mods will provide the user with a plus 10 / 17 / 22% damage increase in PVE and a 3 / 5 / 7% increase to damage in PVP to the specified damage/weapon type. Something cool to keep in mind is that Empowering Rift or Radiant will stack with Surge mods. The damage you can reach with these combined buffs is pretty crazy, so we definitely recommend giving it a try. There are other damage buffs that have weird interactions with Surge mods, but they are too numerous to go over here.

Kickstart and Reinforcement Mods

Destiny 2: All Armor Mods Explained | Kickstart / Reinforcement Mods
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.

The Kickstart mods provide a percentage-based bonus reduction to the specified ability’s cooldown whenever the ability is used, even without any armor charge stacks. Kickstart mods are some of the most confusing mods in the entire Destiny 2 sandbox. Here are their number breakdowns:

  • PVE: 17 / 23 / 31 / 37 / 42 / 45 / 48 / 50% 
  • PVP: 11 / 12 / 14 / 17 / 20 / 23 / 27 / 31 / 34%

On paper, you might see that 50% ability refund and think that these mods are pretty good, but in practice, you’re really better off only equipping one of these mods and going for the 23% refund. The resources you’ll need to invest to reach that 50% is just too much to use consistently. Not to mention that much of the end-game content in Destiny 2 is defined by how much it tests your build strength and consistency.

To reach 50%, you’d need three copies of the same Kickstart mod and three copies of Charged-Up. That deprives you of a lot of really good mods in those two armor slots, as well as many of the best General mods. The community consensus seems to be that Font mods are better unless you already have 100 in the given stat. In that case, you should maybe run a Kickstart mod or two, assuming you don’t have any Font mods equipped, since these two mod types don’t play well with each other.

Emergency Reinforcement
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.

Emergency Reinforcement works just like the Kickstart mods only it provides damage resistance instead of ability energy. Multiple copies of this mod will not change the amount of damage resistance provided (which is 10%). Instead, the additional copies will extend the amount of time your Guardian has that damage resistance active.

This mod’s usefulness is up for debate. The biggest problem is that running this mod will limit your ability to run Font and Surge mods.

Finisher Mods

Destiny 2: All Armor Mods Explained | Finisher Mods
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.

Finisher mods are one of the most slept-on mod types in the game. This is likely due to the fact that they don’t have their values displayed in their descriptions. While you do need to have armor charge stacks and be able to perform said finisher in order to gain these effects, the bonuses might be worth it to the right build and playstyle.

These mods are also really inexpensive, and unlike Kickstart mods, don’t clash too much with Surge and Font mods since you have a much higher degree of control when activating their effects. We highly recommend giving these a try in your next build — especially a Void build, which loves to use finishers to become invisible.

Green Armor Charge Mods

Destiny 2: All Armor Mods Explained | Green Armor Charge Mods
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.

All of these mods have effects related to gaining or generating armor charge and are best paired with yellow and blue mods.

  • Radiant Light: Great to use with Well of Radiance or other defensive Supers like Titan Bubble. Be sure your allies are coordinated and close by to get the most out of this one.
  • Powerful Friends: This is a fine perk, but you should probably just consider running a mod that generates more Orbs of Power instead.
  • Shield Break Charge: Honestly not worth the energy cost. There are better, more consistent ways to gain armor charge.
  • Charged Up: This can be really good depending on the build you’re using. Generally, you won’t need the extra stacks — three is more than enough for most builds.
  • Stacks on Stacks: Considering this grants an extra armor charge stack from all sources, this mod can be pretty useful in a Charged-Up build. Other than that, it really isn’t worth it compared to the other mods you could take in this category.
Elemental Charge
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.
  • Elemental Charge: This mod’s usefulness is entirely dependent on your subclass and your playstyle. If you’re one to ignore the elemental drops of your subclass or you don’t have any Fragments equipped that spawn these elemental drops, this mod will be pretty useless to you. However, if you’re diligent about picking up these items, you’ll see a lot of value from this mod. This mod is paired especially well with the Arc Subclass since its Ionic Traces track your Guardian down.
  • Time Dilation: If you’re looking to get the most out of your Font or Surge mods, this is the mod you should be equipping. The class Item slot doesn’t have quite as many game-changing mods as the chest slot, hence why we run Time Dilation over Charged-Up.
Powerful Attraction
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.
  • Powerful Attraction: This mod’s usefulness is determined by your class and build. It is really useful in builds that use their class ability a lot, but outside of that, you can probably make better use of this mod slot with something else.
  • Empowered Finish: Unless your build focuses on finishers, you can probably skip this one. Finishers lock you in one spot, which can be a death sentence in higher difficulty content.

Helmet Mods

From this section on, we’ll be breaking mods down into groups based on which armor piece they are equipped to. In the case of helmet mods, these deal with improving target acquisition for your weapons, decreasing your Super’s recharge time, and generating ammo and Orbs of Power.

Ammo Finder/Scout mods

Destiny 2: All Armor Mods Explained | Ammo Finder / Scout Mods
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.
  • Special Ammo Finder: If your build is centered around a special weapon like a trace rifle, this mod is a must-have. It increases the drop rate of special weapon ammo based on the number of kills you get with the three specific categories of weapons. The weapon bricks dropped from this mod also reward extra ammo to your weapons.
  • Heavy Ammo Finder: Same idea as the special weapon variant. If you’re running an exotic heavy machine gun or any other heavy weapon that you’re using for add clear, you should really consider running this mod in your build.
  • Special Ammo Scout and Heavy Ammo Scout: This mod allows your fireteam to gain the same benefits as your Finder mods. If you’re running a well-coordinated fireteam with powerful special weapons, these mods are definitely worth considering.
Super Mods
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.
  • Dynamo: Best used in class ability-focused builds, especially Warlock builds since they receive a 2x multiplier to the super energy gained.
  • Ashes to Assets / Hands-On: These two mods are absolute staples for Super ability generation. The amount of damage and kills you can get with your melee and grenade abilities is crazy, so you’ll quickly build Supers with these mods equipped.

Orb Generating Mods

Orb Generating Mods
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.
  • Power Preservation: Kills with your Super ability spawn an Orb of Power for your allies that grants a small amount of Super energy. This mod can be a great choice for add clearing Supers when in a fireteam.
  • Siphon Mods: Pretty much every good build has at least one of these mods. Your weapons are your first and last line of defense against the darkness, so you’ll be using them a lot. The Orbs generated by these mods can be great fuel for the rest of your build’s armor charge needs, and will provide a small amount of Super energy when collected.

Targeting Mods

Targeting Mods
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.

These mods are best used for PVP activities like Crucible and Gambit. Ammo is much more plentiful in PVE, and you typically have more time to line up shots compared to PVP. You’re probably better off getting more experience with the weapon you’re using or swapping to a weapon you’re more accurate with instead of wasting a valuable mod slot.

Gauntlet Mods

These mods focus on reducing ability cooldowns, increasing the reload speed of your weapons, and lowering the ready and tow time of your weapons.

Grenade Ability Mods

Grenade Ability Mods
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.
  • Fastball: A good choice for grenade spam builds like Sunbracers Warlock.
  • Firepower: A must-have for grenade spam builds or any build that uses its grenade semi-frequently.
  • Momentum Transfer: A great mod for keeping a consistent cycle of abilities going. Highly recommended.
  • Bolstering Detonation: Same as Momentum Transfer, but for class ability energy instead of melee ability energy.

Melee Ability Mods

Melee Ability Mods
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.
  • Heavy Handed / Impact Induction / Focusing Strike: All are the melee equivalent to the previously mentioned mods. These aren’t quite as universally useful since melee abilities don’t have the same range and destructive potential as grenades. They can still be worth using depending on your build.

Loader Mods

Loader Mods
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.

All of these mods increase the reload speed of their associated weapon type. Generally more useful in PVP and end-game activities.

Dexterity Mods

Dexterity Mods
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.

Much like loader mods, these are best used in PVP, but still provide value in endgame content where those split seconds of weapon-swapping time could mean the difference between winning and wiping.

Chest Mods

These mods focus on providing your Guardian with increased resistance, offering improvements to glaives and swords, reducing flinch, and providing additional ammo reserves. 

Resistance Mods

Destiny 2: All Armor Mods Explained | Resistance Mods
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.

All of these mods are pretty much essential for endgame content like Nightfalls, Dungeons, and Raids.

Lucent Blades

Lucent Blades
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.

Great for sword and glaive builds, but those weapon types aren’t very good at the moment. It’s best to avoid these for the time being.

Unflinching Aim Mods

Unflinching Aim Mods
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.

Another set of mods that are mostly used in PVP. Flinch is annoying, but not enough to waste a mod slot to prevent.

Reserve Mods

Reserve Mods
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.

These mods are pretty much essential for all builds that have exotic special/heavy weapons. More ammo = more damage.

Leg Mods

These mods focus on gaining benefits from picking up Orbs of Power, gradually reloading your weapons, and increasing the amount of ammo you get from picking up ammo bricks.

Orb Pickup Mods

Destiny 2: All Armor Mods Explained | Orb Pickup Mods
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.
  • Recuperation / Better Already: Both prevent you from dying as often, but aren’t really as useful as a mod that restores ability energy.
  • Innervation / Invigoration / Insulation: These mods really allow you to spam your abilities so long as you’re collecting Orbs. Pretty much every build will have at least one of these mods equipped.
  • Absolution / Orbs of Restoration: Best paired with one of the mods mentioned above for maximum efficiency.

Holster Mods

Holster Mods
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.

These mods are really useful for boss phases and general play. If you have the available energy to spare, definitely consider running one.

Scavenger Mods

Scavenger Mods
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.

These mods are another one of those essential mod types for any build that uses special weapons a lot.

Class Item Mod

These mods grant benefits to using your class ability and grant benefits to you when you perform a finisher.

Class Ability Mods

Destiny 2: All Armor Mods Explained | Class Ability Mods
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.
  • Distribution /Outreach / Bomber: Great mods for builds that use their class ability a lot. Even then, you need to be near targets to get the benefits, so it isn’t always effective.
  • Reaper: This mod is best used in PVP to guarantee an Orb of Power on your next kill. Not as useful in PVE, where there are just so many better ways to generate Orbs.

Proximity Ward

Proximity Ward
Image: Bungie via HGG / Adam W.

Pretty much a throw-away mod. Finisher mods already have built-in damage resistance, so this mod isn’t really necessary. It’s also too expensive for what it does, even in finisher builds.

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That about wraps up our breakdown of all the armor mods currently available in Destiny 2. Thanks for reading ! If you’re looking for more useful Destiny 2 guides, consider signing up for our newsletter today.

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