A Comprehensive Guide to Roles and Classes in Destiny 2

Destiny 2 features robust RPG elements that allow players to take on specialized roles in combat. Choosing the right class and subclass to match your preferred playstyle is key to success. This guide will dive deep into the roles, classes, and subclasses in Destiny 2, providing tips to excel in both PvE and PvP.

Roles and Classes in Destiny 2
Roles and Classes in Destiny 2

Overview of Roles

The three main roles in Destiny 2 are:

  • Tanks – Strong, heavy armor characters that can soak up damage. They draw enemy fire away from teammates. Titans specialize in this role.
  • Damage Dealers – Focus on dealing high sustained and burst damage to enemies. Hunters and Warlocks excel here with their ranged abilities.
  • Support – Provide healing, buffs, debuffs, and other tactical aid to assist their team. Warlocks have the most support abilities.

Hybrid roles are also common, blending two roles such as a Tank/Damage Dealer or Support/Damage Dealer combo. Let’s now explore each class and their subclasses in Destiny 2 for fulfilling these roles.

Titans – The Tanks

The Titan class specializes heavily in tanking damage on the frontlines to protect their fire team. Their subclasses offer different flavors of tanking:


Strikers are offensive tanks, focused on disrupting enemies to generate breathing room for allies. Their Fist of Havoc super delivers AoE damage, while Shoulder Charge, Flashbangs, and Pulse Grenades control enemy movements. Strikers tank damage through healing on melee kills.


Sentinels fill a classic defensive tank role. Ward of Dawn provides a safe haven for nearby allies. Offensively, Sentinel Shield can block damage from any direction while dishing heavy slams. Tactical tanking is enabled via shields that protect and buff teammates.


Sunbreakers offer an offensive area denial tank playstyle. Hammer of Sol lets them rain down solar flares to block approaches and control territory. Sunspots left behind continue burning foes. Thermite Grenades and Mortar Blast keep enemies at bay while the Sunbreaker presses the attack.

In summary, Titans are the heavily armored bruisers built to soak damage so their fire team can maneuver and counterattack. Their super abilities and area control options enable bulldozing or stalwart defending.

Hunters – The Damage Dealers

With their superior agility, precision weapons expertise, and lethal supers, the Hunter class lives up to its name as apex predators focused on dealing with damage. Their subclasses include:


Gunslingers specialize in bursting down foes with Golden Gun’s massive single-target damage and precision throwing knives. Their aerial mobility and Truesight dodges allow expertly aiming shots even while evading return fire. Tripmine grenades provide excellent area control. Overall, this subclass is ideal for crucible gameplay.


Applying an intimidating mix of speed and power, Arcstriders close distance to channel their Arc Staff for rapid CQC strikes. Deadly combos with Gambler’s Dodge and combination blow reward aggressive flanking maneuvers. Lightning Reflexes enhance their lethal evasion. Arcstriders excel at hit-and-run tactics on high-value targets.


Taking a more tactical approach, Nightstalkers specialize in battlefield control, flanking, and precision kills. Shadowshot neutralizes targets for easy team-focus fire. Invisibility and decoys allow re-positioning for the perfect angle of attack. Snare grenades and smoke bombs control enemy movements for a hunter’s preferred engagement. This subclass thrives in coordinated fire teams.

With superior mobility and damage output, Hunters live up to their reputation as lethal operatives who swiftly take down key targets. Whether up close or at range, they have the tools to apply high burst damage when it matters most.

Warlocks – The Mystic Damage Dealers

While capable of filling any role, Warlocks are most renowned for their potent damage-dealing abilities, enabled through mystical Light manipulation. Their subclasses are:


Voidwalkers weaponize the power of Void Light to drain enemies to dust. Nova Bomb delivers massive damage, while bloom and vortex grenades provide excellent area denial. Blink jump allows rapid repositioning for ideal ability usage, and devour sustains their assault. Voidwalkers specialize in multidirectional explosive attacks.


Stormcallers channel Arc Light into devastating storms of electricity. Ball Lightning and the powerful Stormtrance obliterate groups of enemies in seconds. Ionic Blink enhances mobility for maximum ability uptime, and Arc Soul provides a helpful offensive turret. Chain Lightning grenades also bounce between targets. Overall, an excellent close-quarters damage subclass.


Dawnblades rain down Solar Light, with the Dawnblade sword cutting swaths through airborne foes. Guiding Flame makes igniting targets simpler while Everlasting Fire and Angel of Light enhance aerial gunplay. Thermal grenades and Celestial Fire melee provide bursts of Solar damage. By owning the skies, Dawnblades dish constant fire with flaming weapons.

Warlocks truly embrace space magic on the battlefield, unleashing primal elements and weaving sustained spells to decimate hostile forces. When supported, their awesome powers reshape whole combat zones.

Titan Builds for Each Role

Now let’s explore some example Titan subclass and exotic armor builds for optimizing each role:

Tank Build

Subclass: Sentinel + Code of the Commander tree

Exotic Armor: Helm of Saint-14

This build maximizes the potent defensive support of Sentinel, with void detonators that heal and empower nearby allies. Saint-14 blinds any foes that dare approach your Ward of Dawn, rendering them helpless.

Damage Build

Subclass: Striker + Code of the Missile Tree

Exotic Armor: Insurmountable Skullfort

Maximize Striker shoulder charge damage with Skullfort which instantly recharges it on kill. Seismic Strikes and Reversal will ensure you are causing havoc across the battlefield.

Support Build

Subclass: Sunbreaker + Code of the Devastator tree

Exotic Armor: Phoenix Cradle

Sunwarriors with Phoenix Cradle provide ability regen and damage buffs to nearby allies. Roaring Flames also debuffs enemies hit by your abilities.

Hunter Builds for Each Role

And now some example builds for optimizing Hunter subclasses:

Damage Build

Subclass: Gunslinger + Way of the Outlaw tree

Exotic Armor: Celestial Nighthawk

This build focuses on massive single-target Golden Gun damage thanks to the precision and range boosts from Way of the Outlaw. Celestial Nighthawk concentrates all that into one devastating shot.

Flanker Build

Subclass: Arcstrider + Way of the Warrior tree

Exotic Armor: Raiden Flux

Maximize Arc Staff uptime and damage with Raiden Flux. Way of the Warrior enhances combo blows and swapping between armed and unarmed attacks to shred high-value targets.

Support Build

Subclass: Nightstalker + Way of the Trapper tree

Exotic Armor: Orpheus Rig

This build maximizes Nightstalker support abilities, with Orpheus Rig granting super energy on Shadowshot hits. Setting traps with grenades and smoke bombs will control the battlefield.

Warlock Builds for Each Role

Finally, some example builds for Warlock subclasses:

Damage Build

Subclass: Voidwalker + Chaos Accelerant tree

Exotic Armor: Controversy Hold

Spam-empowered grenades which gain damage reduction and improved regeneration through Contraverse Hold. Combine with Chaos Accelerant for even bigger explosions.

Support Build

Subclass: Stormcaller + Attunement of Conduction tree

Exotic Armor: Getaway Artist

Maximize ally offensive support with Arc Soul rifts and ionic traces refunding ability energy. Getaway Artist enables flexible Arc Soul uptime. Pulsewave also buffs nearby allies.

Healer Build

Subclass: Dawnblade + Attunement of Sky

Exotic Armor: Phoenix Protocol

The Attunement of Sky maximizes aerial support and healing. Phoenix Protocol extends Well of Radiance uptime for longer team sustain. Divine Protection also boosts ally survivability.

Team Synergy and Composition

When building a fireteam, strive for a balanced composition of roles and subclasses that provide good synergy:

  • Having a Titan tank upfront can allow glass cannon roles like Hunters and Warlocks to deal damage from relative safety.
  • Pairing AoE damage dealers with support/control subclasses creates opportunities to devastate clumped-up disabled enemies.
  • Mixing ranged and melee roles allow engaging from multiple angles and ranges.
  • Healers are tremendously amplified by tanks that can protect them and peel enemies.

There are countless effective team compositions – just ensure you have a balance of offense, defense, and utility. Also, consider balancing elements for maximum coverage of enemy shield types.

Weapons and Mods

Weapons and armor mods provide another layer of build crafting and synergy with subclass perks. For example:

  • Use Grenade Launchers and Rocket Launchers with Demolitionist to regenerate grenade energy for ability spam builds.
  • Lean into aerial combat with Icarus Grip mods and weapons like Sidearms and SMGs.
  • Taking Charge and High-Energy Fire amplify damage output significantly after gathering orbs of light.
  • CwL mods like Protective Light and Heal Thyself provide powerful defensive and sustain options.
  • Ammo finders and scavengers ensure you have enough ammo to maximize damage potential.

Masterworking Gear

Don’t forget masterworking weapons and armor for additional stats and orb generation to maintain buff and ability uptime.

Optimizing Gameplay

Here are some general tips for effective ability usage and combat flow for each role:


  • Time channeled supers during enemy burst windows to negate damage on allies.
  • Draw fire with aggressive pushes and disruption to enable damage roles to secure kills.
  • Peel enemies off squishier allies by forcing them to retarget you with taunts and disruption.


  • Pool all available buffs before unloading your highest burst damage combos and supers.
  • Flank distracted enemies and go for isolated high-priority targets.
  • Save supers for prime opportunities to burn down bosses or demolition tightly stacked groups.


  • Keep allies buffed while they engage and cleanse any debilitating debuffs.
  • Provide sustaining healing when larger burst damage is incoming.
  • Disable groups of enemies together to enable easy focus firing.
  • Assist in killing staggered enemies to maintain buff uptime on allies.


Mastering your class, optimizing your builds, and synergizing with your fire team are key to excelling in Destiny 2’s varied PvE and PvP content. Whether bulldozing through waves of enemies as a Titan, surgically eliminating targets as a Hunter, or weaving mystic spells as a Warlock, identifying your ideal role and subclass is the first step to victory. Equip your most powerful weapons and armor, coordinate with your fire team, and unleash your Light to achieve your greatest legend as a Guardian!

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