Creating a class in Destiny 2 is an important step, and picking the right one to play first can be a bit daunting for new players wanting to make the right choice. Luckily, creating a new class is easy, and with three character slots, there’s room to try out each one. But for those just joining the ranks of Guardians, let’s talk about the differences and which one you should play.
Last updated on September 3, 2020 at 5:55 a.m. PT.
Destiny 2 classes explained
Before we dive into the differences of the classes, it’s a good idea to understand what Destiny 2’s class system is all about.
Destiny 2 features three main classes: Hunter, Titan, and Warlock. Each of these classes has four different elemental subclasses: Arc, Solar, Void, and Stasis. These each boast their own skill trees to further customize your experience. For a full breakdown, check out the Shacknews Destiny 2 classes, subclasses, and perk trees guide.
This guide will be updated with more information on Stasis subclasses once Beyond Light releases.
The Hunter is all about being nimble, focusing on dealing damage to enemies then quickly getting out, and locking enemies down for allies. Let’s track down the truth of playing a Hunter.
As of Beyond Light, the Hunter features four subclasses: Gunslinger, Arcstrider, Nightstalker, and Revenant. Each of these focuses on defeating individual enemies through targeted attack, except for Nightstalker that utilizes a bow to tether enemies in a web.
The Gunslinger features either a Golden Gun that fires hit-scan bullets that instantly vaporise enemies or a single-use Super that throws out explosive knives, dealing vast amounts of damage. This subclass can be a favorite for PVP players, as Golden Gun is a guaranteed kill, capable of shutting down another player with ease. In PVE content, Golden Gun can be powered further by the Celestrial Nighthawk, reducing it to single shot that does six-times more damage.
The Arcstrider is all about nimble acrobatics, flipping around the battlefield, slamming enemies with an Arc-infused staff. While using this Super, a Hunter becomes harder to hit. One version of this Super also allows the Hunter to deflect incoming attacks. While useful in PVP, this subclass always shines in PVE content, where clearing waves of enemies quickly is crucial.
The Nightstalker, as mentioned above, is all about using a bow to tether enemies. This is used to lock down opponents, preventing them from moving and allowing allies to deal extra damage. One of the perk trees trades in the bow for a pair of spectral blades, turning the Hunter invisible for brief moments. This will likely be the go-to for a lot of Hunters in PVE modes, as it greatly benefits the team. However, it’s just as good in PVP, as it can knock another player out of their Super or lock down an entire enemy team.
The Titan is about getting up close and personal to the enemy, drawing attention away from the team, and creating chokepoints. Let’s punch our way to the heart of being a Titan.
With Beyond Light, the Titan now has four subclasses: Striker, Sentinel, Sunbreaker, and Behemoth. All of these classes involve the Titan moving surprisingly quickly around the battlefield, throwing shields like Captain America, hammers like Thor, or shoulder-charging into opponents with the strength of the Hulk.
The Striker is a hyper-aggressive Super that sees the Titan sprinting around the battlefield imbued with Arc energy, slamming its shoulder into any opponent. This is all about getting up and person with enemies. This is one of the most powerful Supers in Destiny 2, and continues to be a challenge to face in PVP content.
The Sentinel is a bit more reserved, as it comes with a shield that can be thrown or used as an actual shield. This subclass also features a perk tree that grants a deployable bubble that is nigh-impervious to attacks. For a lot of players, the bubble shield is a must-use option for PVE content given its strength and the buff it gives allies.
Sunbreaker is the Thor-like subclass featuring flaming hammers that can be thrown at enemies. This is about dishing out lasting fire damage and ensuring enemies receive necessary debuffs. Expect to see this subclass used mainly for clearing groups of enemies, as it can tend to be outshined by other subclasses in PVP.
The Warlock is about attacking from range, keeping damage going for as long as possible, and empowering the team. Let’s ruminate on what makes the Warlock special.
Beyond Light grants Warlocks four subclasses, Dawnblade, Stormcaller, Voidwalker, and Shadebinder. Each of the Warlock Supers are quite different from one another, with each one focusing on killing enemies from a distance.
The Dawnblade Super has the Warlock throwing burning swords at enemies while staying in the air for extended periods of time. One of the perk trees trades this throwable sword for one that sticks into the ground, granting allies significantly improved damage and healing capabilities. For straight up add-clearing, nothing quite compared with the power of the Dawnblade.
Stormcaller has a Warlock floating around the battlefield, casting electricity from its fingers. This is a great wave-clearing Super. There is an outlier in this subclass where the moving Super is traded in for a continual laser beam that is best used on single targets. In terms of taking down bosses, a well-equipped Stormcaller using the Arc laser beam can melt bosses in seconds.
The Voidwalker is all about throwing a massive ball of Void energy at enemies that explodes on hit, annihilating anything that was in its path. For a lot of players, the one-and-done Super means quickly dispatching a challenging foe or another player that has just activated their own Super. The Voidwalker also features a perk tree that focus on consuming your own grenade, increasing your healing potential – an extremely powerful asset for end-game content.
Which class to create and play
So you’ve got the rundown of all the classes, and now you’re left wondering which class to play first in Destiny 2. Really, it’s all going to be personal preference. If any of the above jumped out at you, go with that class. Find yourself not enjoying it? The good news is that Destiny 2 lets you create three characters, which means you can play all three classes.
But, if you twisted our arm, we'd say that based on its merits and the ease of use for players new to Destiny 2, that the Titan is a great option. It is rather tanky, comes with a wide range of abilities that allow it to deal damage or help the team. It's also frightfully powerful in Crucible. However, that's not to say it's better than the Warlock or Hunter.
At the end of the day, some players will lean more towards the agile Hunter, others may like the idea of the in-your-face Titan, and some may even prefer the distant nature of the Warlock. No matter which one you choose, chances are you’ll likely stick with what you pick first. Be sure to check out our Hunter Exotic armor guide, Titan Exotic armor guide, and Warlock Exotic armor guide so you know which piece of armor best matches your playstyle.
Picking what class to create and play first in Destiny 2 is a challenge. With three classes to choose from, and each boasting a myriad of subclasses and perk trees, it can be easy to feel overwhelmed. Thankfully, you can create one of each, but hopefully the class you choose will be your favorite. Swing by the Shacknews Destiny 2 complete strategy guide for more helpful content for newcomers and veterans alike.