Destiny Hand Cannon Re-rolling Guide

Destiny Hand Cannon Re-rolling Guide by THE-OUTLAW-1988

Handcannons. The most effective weapon type in Destiny IMO: Not of all primaries, but of ALL WEAPON CLASSES. They are good at every range accept extremely close and long shotgun and sniper territory (some do infringe on sniper territory). The have the fastest average TTK classes in the crucible. They OHK 90% of mobs in PvE. They are simply the shit, and there are some exciting rolls to shoot for HCs. So let’s get to it.

Hand Cannon Archetypes

The Black Powder Pistols High Impact, Good Range: Abysmal Rate of Fire, abysmal stability, abysmal reload and bad Aim assist.

Timur’s Lash (Iron Banner, rerollable)

Ill Will (Crucible RNG, rerollable)

These are the Hottest of Garbage. Hot Garbage, what are you talking about? Look at the impact on these guns, OMG I just came in my gym shorts looking at that impact bar. Okay, but ask yourself what good is that impact. In PvP, these HCs can two head shot warlocks and Hunters with their armor spec’d all the way down –In other words, about as often as Hawkmoon one shots people. Outside of that their TTK is almost 17% slower than the lower impact HCs. In PvE the is only one enemy that these HCs can 1 shot that can’t be 1 shotted by lower impact HCs, Fanatics in VoG (So I’m told the high impact HCs can 1 shot, haven’t tested personally). Aside from that every mob that these fat hogs kill in 1 shot the lower impact HCs such as FB and Red Hand IX can 1 shot as well. Also, because of their slower RoF, the DPS of these of high Impact HCs is actually slightly less than the lower impact HCs and their sustained DPS is significantly less thanks to their slow reload speed. Their only saving grace is their superior range in PvE.

The Best Guns In Destiny Medium Impact and RoF. Average range reload and stability.

Fatebringer (VoG HM, set)

Jewel of Osiris (ToO, set)

Hawkmoon (Exotic, RNG PS4 Exclusive)

Six Dreg (PoE, RnG burn, not rerollable –shank slayer)

Red Hand IX (NM, rerollable)

The Fulcrum (FTW [I think], Rerollable)

Her Mercy (PoE, Rerollable)

You’ll notice the best Legendary PvP and PvE Hand Cannons (Jewel and Fatebringer) in this archetype. It’s the best weapon archetype of all weapon archetypes of all classes in Destiny –excluding certain exotics in their own unique archetypes. Why are they great? The have great range, accpetable rate of fire and one shot most things in PvE. They kills in 3 shots in PvP and ONLY ONE OF THOSE NEEDS TO BE A HEADSHOT. ‘Nuff said.

The Quick and the Dead High RoF, Low Impact and generally abysmal range.

Word of Crota (CE HM, set)

The Revelator (Crucible RNG, rerollable)

Up The Ante (Crucible Vendor)

People Generally don’t like these because of the low impact, and I agree with them. It’s noticeable in PvE on a few enemies, and in PvP you need to land two headshots to kill a target in three shots. However, due to their higher RoF, their Time to Kill is 15% quicker in PvP (.73 seconds to be exact, only .06 seconds slower than Red Death). So if You are an extremely accurate player, these could be good in PvP.

Hand Cannon Perks

Tier 1 is the sights

They may alter aim assist, stability handling (handling includes reload speed, but that is only a small part of it). Handling affects how fast you aim down scope (ADS), how fast the weapon is readied after changing weapons or sprinting and how fast the gun sweeps while ADS (aiming down scope). Also guns with faster reload tend to have better handling, though there are exceptions and reload perks such as speed reload or flared mag DO NOT improve handling. As a general rule of thumb with sights, you are choosing between handling, stability and aim assist (AA). The changes to stats on hand cannons are smaller than any other primary, and, as such, aren’t very important. In 1A you’ll get either Steadyhand or Truesight. Steadyhand has the best stability, poor AA and poor handling; True sight is the balanced sight, meaning it’s okay with all three stats. In 1B you’ll roll Fastdraw which is a balance between stability and handling or Suresight which is has the best AA and good handling.. I prefer handling and tend to go with the quickdraw IS which will ALWAYS be in the Tier 1C node, it has the best handling. However, I believe that is the opposite of most people who go for aim assist. To each his own. Some people swear by the truesight, but I wouldn’t reload for a hand cannon sight since the changes are miniscule.

Tier 2 is where things get serious.

Battle Runner Kills increase briefly increase agility. I haven’t actually used this perk on a hand cannon, but, since you tend to do a lot of strafing and HC encourage mobile mid range engagement, I would thinks its OK in PvP and PvE. It’s far from a top tier perk though.

Zen Moment Causing damage increases stability. I would say this is the best HC perk for PvP, and a pretty good PvE perk as well.

Hot Swap Don’t like it. Useful in PvP if you walk around with your secondary drawn most of the time, I guess.

Icarus Very fun, more useful than you would think on HCs in PvP and PvE (more PvP though)

Final Round Final Round causes bonus damage. Whatever.

Replenish Refill Magazine whenever super is cast. Not to great.

Grave Robber 25% chance to refill magazine with melee kills. A potential lifesaver at just the right time, but those times are few and far between and it will only work in 25% of them.

Triple Tap Best PvE HC perk IMO, useless in PvP.

Tier 3

3A: Armor Piercing Rounds, Snapshot, Speed reload or Flared Mag (better reload worse stability).On Hand Cannons, you need as much reload speed as you can get.

3B: Extended Mag, explosive rounds , High Caliber Rounds, Lightweight Extended Mag is a must on HCs with mags of less than 9 rounds. High Caliber is great in PvP. Lightweight is good everywhere. Explosive rounds deal more body damage in PvE, but the same amount of damage in PvP.


Brace Framed (increased stability reduced magazine). If you can do it and keep the Mag size at 9 or more, it could be really good.

Reinforced Barrel (increased range, reduced stability). Great for PvE, I wouldn’t recommend for PvP

Smallbore (increased range and stability, slower reload and reduced mag). For PvP, with HC loader gloves and a net mag size of 9 or even 8, go for it. In PvE, No.

Rifled Barrel (increased range, slower reload). Pretty good, especially with HC loader gloves or Firefly. Time your reloads well.

Injection Mold (Increased Stability, faster handling and reduced range). I would say this is good in PvP, bad in PvE.

Tier 4

Army of One Unassisted Kills with this weapon speed up grenade and melee cooldown. Excellent perk in PvP and PvE.

Grenadier kills speed grenade cooldown. OK.

Hidden Hand Increased AA. Excellent in PvP, useful in PvE.

Outlaw Precision kills briefly buff reload speed. The inverse of Hidden Hand.

Spray and Pray Increased reload speed when mag is empty. How often is your mag actually empty?

Hip Fire Better accuracy firing from the hip. Big fat long hard meh.

Luck in the Chamber One Random bullet does bonus damage. It is what it is.

Counter Balance Increased Stability. Again, it is what it is.

Fun Builds

The Vanilla PvE So you are gonna want a middle impact HC for this. Roll it with triple tap. For tier 3 either Rifled Barrel to increase range or just extended mag to increase the mag. Than try for outlaw in tier 4. Not very creative or exciting, but an excellent PvE workhorse if you don’t have Fatebringer.

The Vanilla PvP If you have an exotic HC, just use that for PvP. However, if you don’t have an exotic HC or Jewel of Osiris I would Recommend a middle impact or low impact archetype HC. Try to roll one with zen moment, braced frame or high caliber rounds and Hidden Hand. This gives you excellent stability and accuracy which are your best friends with HCs in The Crucible.

The Space Magic PvE I listed this roll with scout rifles as well. I think it would be more effective with HCs since they have slower reload, and tend to get more “unassisted” kills. You’ll need a piece of armor with the “grenade kills replenish super energy perk” for this to work, and it will work even better if you a perk which speeds up super cooldown with melee hits such as soul rip or striker perk with the name I don’t remember. Basically you want to roll Army of One, extended Mag (preferably, but not a deal breaker) and Replenish. This creates a feedback loop. Weapon kills recharge grenade and melee kills, Melee and grenade kills recharge super, super reloads weapon, rinse and repeat. With the right VW build this could especially effective. Let’s say you are running Skull of Dire Ahamkara which has the Quintessence Transfer perk and pure intellect roll along with gloves that have the “causing damage with grenade reduces Melee cooldown,” maxed intellect and Discipline overall, The Hunger and Embrace the Void. Now a weapon kills reduced grenade and melee cooldown. A grenade kill reduced melee cooldown, grenade cooldown and super cooldown. A melee kill reduces grenade cooldown and super cooldown. A super reduce grenade cooldown and reloads your gun.

The Baby Hawk PvP So you need an Ill Will, Timur’s Lash or Fulcrum because of their small mag size (I would say fulcrum is best). What you are going to do is roll luck in the chamber AND final round. You are also going to roll braced frame or smallbore to reduce the mag size. Now you have a five round mag with two shots that do bonus damage. Your first two shots have a ⅖ or 40% chance of two shotting with headshots (better odds than Hawkmoon actually). If you don’t two shot somebody with that, you have %100 chance of two shotting with your next target. The drawback to this is constant reloading. Honestly, it’s an exploit IMO: an unintended combination of perks that are OP in PvP, but that’s what the Devs get for putting final round and luck in the chamber in separate nodes.

That’s it. Thanks for reading.

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One Response to “Destiny Hand Cannon Re-rolling Guide”

  1. quickdraw!

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