Destiny Hand Cannons in Crucible Guide

Destiny Hand Cannons in Crucible Guide by SuperlativeSushi

I noticed that hand cannons were getting more popular lately so I might as well help anyone that wants to start using one, but are too used to auto rifles and scout rifles. Please note that in my opinion, this is not the type of gun you run and gun with (except for The Last Word). It is not a shotgun, you need precision to make the most out of it.

Note: I am just a decent player that wants to help.

*I am a Rumble and Skirmish player, so all of the examples will be from these two modes.

Little History – You can skip this part

I was once a SUROS user (a very decent one) and thought hand cannons were a joke, until a certain rumble match. No matter how many times I encounter this person, he would always be the one to kill me first. Even though every bullet I throw was a head shot, he would always win with little health left and as you have guessed it, he using a hand cannon (Hawkmoon). So, in disbelief, I tried out hand cannons and have loved them ever since.

My Personal Recommended Weapons



Three random bullets give considerable bonus damage, potentially killing your enemies with two shots.

Head shot damage is significantly more than other hand cannons.

Magazine size


When it recoils, the gun jumps up a lot and could block your view when aiming.

It’s an exotic and a PlayStation exclusive.


My favorite gun, so I might be biased when I say this is the best hand cannon in the game. Not only does it look like it was crafted by Hephaestus himself, it’s also as powerful as Zeus’ lightning bolts. Unfortunately, it’s as loud as opening a bag of chips in a movie theater. The potential to two shot your enemies is a godsend ability. Your enemies might call you cheap, but we all know they were just unlucky to receive those bullet buffs.

The Last Word Unfortunately, RNGesus has not blessed me with this, but I have heard great things.



Precision kills make reload faster than my sex life any other hand cannons. This saved me from numerous situations when enemies just run towards me and I have little to no ammo left.

Making enemies explode is pretty helpful…in Control. I have rarely seen people stick together close enough to actually make it useful.

Magazine size.

Frees up an exotic slot.


The perks are pretty lackluster, probably except for Field Scout, but if you’re pretty adept at precision kills, then reload shouldn’t that much of a problem.


The Raid weapon almost everyone wants because Bungie decided to nerf the Mythoclast back to the stone age…(ba dum tsss). Anyways the weapon is great. It’s not amazing, but it’s not average either. I would say that though the perks are not that great, it pulls its own weight with the precision kill reload speed. Explosive Rounds may cause your enemies to panic, but I don’t think that the reduced damage trade off is worth it. Honestly, it does a way better job being a PVE gun because explosive rounds have the ability to stagger.

The Devil You KnowGameplay


It has very nice perks that compliment hand cannons nicely.

Frees up an exotic slot.

Magazine size.


Nothing, other than that it’s outclassed by Hawkmoon in terms of damage.


This is the all around hand cannon and I’ll say it right now, The Devil You Know is a better gun than the Fatebringer. The increased damage after a kill makes it trump over the Fatebringer. HOWEVER, please note that Fatebringer demolishes The Devil You Know in the reload category. This is only my opinion, feel free to disagree.

This list is only my opinion and should not be solely used to dictate what weapons you use. I am sure there are a lot more amazing hand cannons. Feel free to have your own opinion.


Find an armor that increases hand cannon reload speed. It really comes in handy when you’re not a Gunslinger. You should be able to find some in the tower via Crucible, Vanguard, or Faction vendors for some marks.

I feel that increasing the amount of hand cannon ammunition you can carry is only useful for PVE as you will very rarely run out of ammo before getting killed.


You need to be able to aim headshots properly with hand cannons. To start out, go on patrol and find any enemies and aim not at them, but to the areas around them, like this. The point is that you need to teach your thumbs just how much you need to move at a certain angle or space so that the reticle lands near their heads. This is where the game’s auto aim function kicks in and will help you land those headshots. Remember, people in Crucible will move around, they will not just let you shoot their heads.

Keep doing this with Cabals, Vex, Fallen, and Hives until you’re confident enough with your estimations.



This should apply to every gun user as well. Use your radar. Run to a safe spot and do a tornado with your camera once in a while (Rotate your camera about 1080 degrees). Not only will this help you determine the location of your enemy with 90% accuracy (other than above or below you), it will also, most importantly, give you time to set up your distance and give you the chance to estimate where your target’s head will be when they reveal themselves from around the corner. This will give you the first hit advantage you need to win that direct confrontation.


Watch the second kill. I am in a relatively safe spot and as soon as I saw the red marker, I aimed the gun and estimated where the head will be. It will not always be pointed exactly to the head (as per my example). This is where your practice comes in, you will have to be able to move your reticle close enough to the head to be able to trigger the auto aim functionality in the game, allowing you to get the headshot.


I will reiterate again, majority of the hand cannons were made for precision kills. Do not run and gun your enemies, it is not a shotgun. You see that red marker getting solid fast? That person is running towards you. Assess your surroundings and back off. Ask yourself, are you in an area where he could easily run towards you and blast a shotgun or fusion rifle at you? Then walk back while aiming your gun. Remember, the farther he is, the more chances you have to shoot him. You are holding a gun that can potentially two or three shot him. You can kill him first.

Same principle applies when you’re facing an auto rifle. They have a lot more potential recoil than you, use that to your advantage.

This wouldn’t necessarily work for a SUROS or Scout Rifle, but as you get your head shots in, you can make it a draw.


The worst thing about the hand cannon is its atrocious rate of fire. However, hand cannon users will use that to their advantage and use the time in between shots to estimate where your enemies will go. Your targets are not crippled elderlies on their death beds, they will walk back and forth, side to side, and duck and jump.

Example 1

Example 2

Notice in Example 1 and 2, I didn’t try to follow them on my reticle. I estimated where their jump will end and proceed to aim over there and pray to auto aim to do the rest of the work. Furthermore, you can find another example of estimation in Example 1 when after I killed the first guy, I realized that there was another guy coming (thanks to radar) and immediately tried to predict where his head will be once he shows himself.

Note: When your enemy hides behind an object that he can either jump up, go left, or go right (see Example 2 when he hides behind the box thing), aim in the middle. That way, your reticle is closer to all three possible areas of escape. Remember your practice? This is why it was important to learn how much space or angle you have to move in order to properly aim at their heads when they show themselves.

Stay Calm

Staying calm is a matter of confidence. Tell yourself you can win, unless you’re going to be sandwiched or know that you won’t be able to finish off that one guy before his other teammates show up. Do not freak out. Continue to predict. Panic will only result in you losing concentration and fail to get those satisfying headshots only hand cannons can offer. In a game where a single headshot can mean winning or losing an encounter, you need those headshots.

Example 1

Example 2

General Tips for Crucible

  • Cancel your reload animation by sprinting when your guardian pushes the magazine inside the chamber.
  • Only if you’re REALLY confident with your headshots, use the spawned heavy ammo to lure people. This not only gives you surprise factor, but also estimation.
  • Don’t send hateful messages to other players just because they do better than you.
  • Seriously, especially in Skirmish, please wait for your teammates and do not immediately grab the heavy ammo unless you see the other team rushing for it. Especially when you’re the worst one in the team.
  • Rumble is not a place where you run willy nilly.

Thanks for reading! I hope I’ve at least helped some of you that are struggling using hand cannons in PVP.

Other Destiny Articles
Destiny Legendary Guns Comprehensive Guide
Destiny Savathun’s Song Nightfall Guide
Destiny Ghost Shell List By Type and Location
Destiny Skeleton Key Chest Loot Chart
Destiny PvP Guide to Getting Good
Destiny Heroic Wrath of the Machine Easy Guide
Destiny Light Level Boosting Caps List
Destiny Power Level Past 365 Light Guide
Destiny 365 Light Without Fireteam Guide
Destiny Wrath of the Machine Loot and Locations Guide
Destiny Wrath of the Machine Comprehensive Guide
Destiny Reputation Guide for Leveling
Destiny Intensive Reputation Guide
Destiny Tips and Advice
Destiny Exotic Armors and Stat Rolls List
Destiny Sniper Mega Guide
Destiny Sniping and Aiming Guide
Destiny Sparrow Racing League Guide
Destine Oryx Challenge Mode Guide
Destiny Oryx Basics Guide
Destiny Nightstalker PvP Guide
Destiny Salvage Comprehensive Guide
Destiny Black Spindle Guide
Destiny Pulse Rifle Guide
Destiny Pulse Rifle Stats
Destiny Sunbreaker Guide
Destiny Gunslinger Build Guide
Destiny First Firewall Quest Guide
Destiny TTK Dead Ghosts Comprehensive Guide
Destiny Taken King Endgame Guide
Destiny Golgorath One Gaze Guide
Destiny King’s Fall Guide Compilation
Destiny Light Levels Guide
Destiny Getting Black Spindle Guide
Destiny Exotic Sword Quest Guide
Destiny Kingsfall Raid Comprehensive Guide
Destiny Getting 300+ Light Guide
Destiny Fusion Rifles In-Depth Guide
Destiny Skolas Rounds 1 to 5 Solo Guide
Destiny All Emblems List
Destiny Guide for Returning Players
Destiny Sunsinger Beginner’s Guide
Destiny Beating Skolas In-Depth Guide
Destiny Skolas Fight Mechanics Guide
Destiny Safest Skolas Strategy
Destiny Easy Skolas Strategy
Destiny Skolas In-Depth Guide
Destiny Improving At Crucible Guide
Destiny Bladedancer PvP Guide
Destiny Fusion Rifles in Crucible Guide
Destiny The Ram In-Depth Armor Analysis
Destiny Hand Cannon Re-rolling Guide
Destiny Hand Cannons In-Depth Guide
Destiny Sniper Rifle Re-rolling Guide
Destiny Trials of Osiris Basics Guide
Destiny Level Iron Banner Alts In 6 Games Guide
Destiny Iron Banner Bounty Solo Queue Guide
Destiny Rocket Launcher Guide
Destiny Trials of Osiris Comprehensive Guide
Destiny Scout Rifle Re-rolling Guide
Destiny Raising Your KD Ratio Guide
Destiny Prison of Elders Treasure Chest Loot Explained
Destiny HoW Weapon Reforge Best Rolls Guide
Destiny The Elder Cypher Guide
Destiny Trials of Osiris Information
Destiny Prison of Elders Guide
Destiny “Wanted” Bounties Locations
Destiny Ether Chest Locations
Destiny House of Wolves New Weapon Perks List
Destiny Maximum Armor Rolls List
Destiny Legendary Hand Cannons Guide
Destiny Vendor Machine Guns Comparison
Destiny Edge Faction Reputation Guide
Destiny Glimmer Farming Guide
Destiny Aiming and Sniping Guide
Destiny Acronyms and Terms Guide
Destiny Sunsinger Warlock PvE Guide
Destiny Crota Solo With Dragon’s Breath Guide
Destiny Gunslinger Tripmines PvP Guide
Destiny Alien Damage Guide
Destiny Exotic Weapon Perks Guide
Destiny Material Chaining Guide
Destiny Gunslinger Hunter PvE Guide
Destiny 500 Roc Strikes Reward Breakdown
Destiny Flawless Raider Detailed Guide
Destiny Winning Rumble Guide
Destiny Orb Defender Crucible Guide
Destiny Striker Titan PvE Guide
Destiny Bladedancer Hunter PvE Guide
Destiny Weapons of Light in Crucible Guide
Destiny Is It Worth Upgrading Via Xur Guide
Destiny Venus Cave Glimmer Farming Guide
Destiny Max Grimoire Guide
Destiny Exotic Armor and Weapon Combinations
Destiny Character Builds by Subclass
Destiny How to be Successful in Iron Banner
Destiny Iron Banner Rank Math
Destiny Important PvP Tips
Destiny Leveling Up Iron Banner Effectively Guide
Destiny Iron Banner Weapons and Reforging Guide
Destiny Jolders Hammer Best Rolls Guide
Destiny Voidwalker Warlock PvE Guide
Destiny Melee and Shotgun Tips
Destiny Obsidian Mind Guide
Destiny Mastering Blink Guide
Destiny Swordbearer Guide
Destiny Bladedancer PvP Build Detailed Guide
Destiny Shotgun Rankings
Destiny Warlock Exotic Armor Rankings
Destiny Defender Titan PvE Comprehensive Guide
Destiny Effective Hunter Swordbearer Guide
Destiny Earning Reputation Guide
Destiny Infinite Heavy Ammo Guide
Destiny Decrypting Class Items for Rares Guide
Destiny Elemental Enemies List
Destiny Sunsinger In Depth Guide
Destiny Abyss Without Lamps Guide
Destiny Hunter Exotic PvE/PvP Tier Guide
Destiny Hunter Exotics PvE Tier Guide
Destiny Titan Exotics PvE Tiers Guide
Destiny Flawless Raider Guide
Destiny Hard Mode Crota Tips
Destiny Nightfall Tips
Destiny Crota HM Health Guide
Destiny Crucible Control Zones Needed to Win Guide
Destiny Heavy Ammo Glitch Guide
Destiny Warlock PvE Exotic Guide
Destiny Crota HM Detailed Guide
Destiny Flawless Raider Tips and Tricks
Destiny Cheesing Bounties Guide
Destiny Crota’s End No Cheesing Guide
Destiny Crota’s End Raid Leader’s Guide
Destiny Faction Weapons, Shaders and Ships List
Destiny Gunslinger Guide
Destiny Extremely Fast Strikes Guide
Destiny The Dark Below Video Guides
Destiny Eris/Xur Bounty Guide
Destiny Crota’s End Solo Video Guides Compilation
Destiny Currencies and Materials Guide
Destiny Dead Ghost Locations Guide
Destiny Eris/Xur Urn Bounty Easy Guide
Destiny Crota’s End All Phases Guide
Destiny Crota’s End Phase 4 Quick Guide
Destiny Crota’s End Detailed Information
Destiny Defeating Crota Guide
Destiny Crota’s End Guide
Destiny Preparing for The Dark Below Guide
Destiny The Dark Below Raid Item Checklist
Destiny Flawless Raider Guide
Destiny Eris Morn Guide
Destiny Updated Leveling Up Guide
Destiny Enemy Weapon Damage Guide
Destiny Templar Raid Guide
Destiny One Shot Snipers Guide
Destiny Strange Change Guide
Destiny Best Weapon of Each Type for Crucible
Destiny Control Player Improvement Guide
Destiny Iron Banner Detailed Guide
Destiny Iron Banner Basic Tips
Destiny Quick 300 Materials on Any Planet Guide
Destiny Energy Drain Guide
Destiny Iron Banner Guide
Destiny Beating Atheon with Randoms
Destiny Collecting Ascendant Materials Guide
Destiny FAQ
Destiny Guardian Optimizing Guide
Destiny Early Endgame Guide
Destiny Weapon Loadouts Guide
Destiny Vault of Glass Loot Table
Destiny A Dubious Task Guide
Destiny Atheon Hard Mode Comprehensive Guide
Destiny Atheon and Gatekeepers Hard Mode Guide
Destiny Hand Cannons in Crucible Guide
Destiny The Last Word Guide
Destiny Truth Guide
Destiny Titan Bubble Shield PvP Guide
Destiny Crucible Tips
Destiny Patience and Time Guide
Destiny Atheon In-Depth Guide
Destiny Bounties List
Destiny Tiger Strikes High Level Guide
Destiny Crucible Auto Rifles Guide
Destiny Time Efficient Way to Play Guide
Destiny How to Get Upgrade Materials Guide
Destiny Efficient Material Farming Guide
Destiny Titan Defender PvE Bubble Guide
Destiny How to Relic in Vault of Glass Guide
Destiny New Player’s Leveling Guide
Destiny Vault of Glass Relic Guide
Destiny Chest Farming Runs Guide
Destiny Thorn Bounty Tips
Destiny Fast Leveling Guide
Destiny Atheon Hard Mode Guide
Destiny Xyor Solo Guide
Destiny Gear and Light Quick Guide
Destiny Titan Exotic Armor
Destiny Sunsinger Basic Guide
Destiny Grimoire Cards Bonus Effects List
Destiny Exotic Gun Previews
Destiny Materials Farming Guide
Destiny Xyor Killing Guide
Destiny VoG Beginner’s Quick Guide
Destiny Endgame Detailed Guide
Destiny Hunter Exotic Armor Choices
Destiny Patrol Mission Solo Grinding Guide
Destiny Vault of Glass Condensed Guide
Destiny Gunslinger Tips
Destiny Vault of Glass Tips and Tricks
Destiny Frequently Asked Questions
Destiny Leveling Up Guide
Destiny Crucible Beginner’s Guide
Destiny Ascendant Shards Basic Guide
Destiny Bounty Complete Guide
Destiny Weapon Mods Guide
Destiny Max Light Level and Raid Gear Guide
Destiny Solo Weekly Nightfall and Heroic Strike Guide
Destiny Newbie’s Guide to Strikes
Destiny Skull Modifiers List
Destiny Legendary Armor Guide
Destiny All Exotic Bounties Guide
Destiny Vault of Glass Tips and Guide
Destiny Impact vs Attack Analysis
Destiny Exotic Invective Shotgun Bounty Guide
Destiny Eye of a Gate Lord Solo Guide
Destiny Basic Overall Guide
Destiny Redeemable Codes List
Destiny Light Levels Guide
Destiny Ascendant Shard Farming and Lvl 30 Grind Guide
Destiny PvP Tips and Guide
Destiny Dead Ghosts and Golden Chests Guide
Destiny Trophy Guide
Destiny Vault of Glass Detailed Walkthrough
Destiny Crucible Tips and Tricks
Destiny Gunslinger Tips and Tricks
Destiny Hitting Level 26 Reliably Guide
Destiny Ishtar Sink Nightfall Guide
Destiny Bladedancer Tips and Tricks
Destiny Endgame Guide
Destiny Weapon Stats Guide
Destiny Sunsinger Tips and Analysis
Destiny Bubble Titan Guide
Destiny Exotic Hand Cannon Weapon Bounty Guide
Destiny Summoning Pits Nightfall Guide
Destiny Optimal Build for Nightfall and Raids
Destiny 100 Iron Per Hour Farming Run
Destiny Hunter In-Depth Guide
Destiny Post Level 20 Things To Do
Destiny Dead Ghosts Locations Guide
Destiny Level 20 Tips
Destiny Guns Rarity Information
Destiny Tips and Tricks
Destiny Vault of Glass Guide
Destiny Raid Gear and Rewards Guide
Destiny PvE Class Comparison Guide
Destiny Elemental and Shields Guide
Destiny PvP Crucible Strategy Guide
Destiny Sparrow Guide
Destiny Public Events Guide
Destiny Beating Devil Walker Nightfall Difficulty Guide
Destiny Hunter Bladedancer Blink Build Guide
Destiny Glimmer Farming Guide
Destiny Max Vanguard Marks in 3 Hours Guide
Destiny Factions Guide
Destiny Vanguard, Faction Rep and Vanguard Marks Guide
Destiny After Level 20 Guide
Destiny Fastest Reputation Farming Guide
Destiny All Farming Methods Guide

Leave a Reply