Destiny Sniper Rifle Re-rolling Guide

Destiny Sniper Rifle Re-rolling Guide by THE-OUTLAW-1988

Sniper Rifles and Their Roles

I want to reflect on the state of snipers in Destiny. I am not the best sniper, there are A LOT of much better snipers than I. I do enjoy sniping though, and I believe I have a solid grasp of the class. So I want to ask: Bungie, why are you so afraid of snipers? Sniper are inherently penalized in the game by having no hip fire and sniper glare. In PvP these prevent players from using the sniper as a primary as some people do with shotguns and fusion rifles, and prevents snipers from camping. These limitations are understandable, since with a few tweaks snipers could easily become OP. However, the recent ammo nerfs in the crucible have hit snipers the hardest, I think most people agree. The reason is simple: more than 50% of shotgun or fusion rifle shots are kills whereas less than 50% of sniper shots are kills. The challenge with fusions/shotguns are setting up the shot. The challenge with snipers is LANDING THE SHOTS. So, not only do snipers burn through ammo faster, but they have SMALLER MAGS, on average, than fusion rifles and shotguns. I understand the reason for smaller mags, it’s PvE –plain and simple. Snipers are already the most effective special weapons in PvE, hands down, because they can the most consistent sustained DPS to high level targets and do it with the least risk to user. In PvE, pretty much everyone uses snipers as their specials for most high level content (shotguns in the PoE where things to tend to get up close and personal a notable exception). If snipers had larger mags, and carried more ammo they would absolutely dominate the PvE experience: Ice Breaker and Black Hammer are the two best PvE snipers in the game largely because of the ammo regenerating perks. If most snipers had 6 rounds as their base mag size like shotguns or fusion rifles, the gap between snipers and other special weapons in PvE would be even wider. However, snipers are less used in PvP because they are more difficult to use. This is because most of the enemies we snipe in PvE are large and slow whereas guardians are small and fast in PvP. Therefore, stability, handling and pretty much anything other than impact take a back seat to ammo perks in PvE. The mag size HoW snipers, for some reason, has been nerfed, and cannot roll field scout. The casket mag perk only brings the mag up to 5 rounds and cost you stability which is VITAL on snipers, whereas field scout brings it up to 6 rounds at no reduced stability. This is the main reason why, in PvP and PvE, Pre HoW snipers are just plain better than the new rerollable ones. If you have good snipers from before HoW, there’s no reason to waste motes rerolling these subpar specimens. Even if you don’t have any pre-HoW snipers, just get Black Hammer for PvE and Praedyth’s Revenge for PvP. They are much better than any of the vendor snipers. HoW improved vendor scouts, but it’s killing snipers, it really is.

So Why Bother with These Vendor Snipers?

If you don’t have any good pre-How snipers.

Sniper Rifles and Their Rolls

Let’s talk about the archetypes of snipers available right now.


Ultra-high RoF, Ultra low impact snipers that CANNOT kill in PvP with two body shots. (Steaming Elephant Shit)

20/20 AMR7 (RNG)

Sublte Nudge DN7 (Crucible QM)

They are weak in PvE and PvP no matter what you roll, dismantle immediately.

High RoF low impact two body shot kill snipers (Excellent for PvP)

Praedyth’s Revenge (Vault of Glass)

Eye of Sole (Trials of Osiris)

Amplified Geo-D6 (Vanguard)

Violator Xll (New Monarchy)

The fastest rate a fire a sniper can have while still being able to kill in two body shots. However, in PvE you want impact. You special ammo is valuable, and every shot needs to do a lot of damage since you don’t have many. This archetype would not be my first choice in PvE.

Meduim RoF/Impact Snipers (Nice balanced weapons in PvE and PvP)

Patience and Time (exotic)

Low-Grade Humility (Crucible RNG)

I used to be a big hater on this archetype, but it’s not bad. There is something be said for the balance. They fast enough to a lot of shots off when you have a window of opportunity in PvE (such as when a walker exposes it’s neck-thingy) and fast-firing enough in PvP that you rarely are ready to take another a shot before it’s ready to refire –in other word, it can usually shoot as fast as you can. In fact, in PvP, there is one very good reason to use this archetype: It can 1 shot guardians with an oversheild shield up.The higher rate of fire snipers can’t. In PvE they are effective, but still second to the low RoF high impact archetype IMO.

Low RoF/High Impact (Kings of PvE).

Black Hammer (Crota’s End)

Efrideet’s Spear (Iron Banner)

Ice Breaker (exotic)

No Land Beyond (exotic)

Her Benevolence (PoE chest RNG)

The Supremacy (?)

Basically, they do the most damage. In PvE, you objective is to do the as much damage as possible as fast as possible. These are the snipers you are looking for… maybe not No Land Beyond as it’s RoF is a bit slower than the rest. Unless you’re using the final round exploit, there’s no good reason to use these snipers in PvP. Okay, so can one shot freshy revived guardians. I guess if you have one with a god tier PvP perk roll, that’s a good reason or if you’re using Ice Breaker for ammo regen or if you’re using No Land Beyond to farm salty guardian tears. Edit: okay, a lot of people like these in PvP. I personally don’t for their low RoF and usually low stability. To each his own, but I hope we can all agree (at the least) that black hammer is terrible in PvP since it has low aim assist, stability a 3 round mag and signiture perk that is absolutely worthless in PvP. Can we agree on that?

Perks, Perks, Perks!!!

People are jonesing at the Gunsmith these days. “Man, please just let me get one more roll, I promise I’ll come up with the motes tomorrow” (scratches forearm).

Tier 1: Scopes The scope on a sniper can dramatically affect range, stability, reload speed, time to ADS and Aim assist. However, it is set up so that Tier 1 A is a long range scope, B is medium range and C is short range by sniper standards. So I wouldn’t stress about scopes too much. Use them, see which ones YOU like best. Some people swear by certain scopes, and I can understand that. I personally won’t use any scope that’s not the ambush scope or the TACSYS SLS15, but those are the only two possibilities in Tier 1 C, so I have it easy.

Tier 1 A

EAGLEEYE SLR20 Longest-range scope. Heavy optics for pinpoint sniping. (Slow, too zoomy not a big fan)

HAWKEYE SLR15 Mid-zoom precision scope. Increased range and target acquisition. Heavy. (Slow, unstable)

SIGHTSYS SLS20 Very long distance scope. Superb target acquisition and recoil control. (My favorite long range scope. Target acquisition is nice)

Tier 1 B

LONGVIEW SLR20 Long-range scope. Excellent target acquisition. Improves weapon range. (Unstable)

LONGVIEW SLR10 Low-zoom scope. Improved range and handling. (Best in this perk node IMO for both PvP and PvE)

SHORTGAZE SLH10 Short-range scope. Quick to aim, with good range. (Unstable)

Tier 1 C

TACSYS SLS15 Mid-zoom scope. Useful for unpredictable situations. (Peerrrr-fect balance of aim assist, sweep speed, stability zoom, and ADS speed)

AMBUSH SLH25 Agile, snappy scope. Handles beautifully. Rewards a skilled hand (Fast, low zoom, low aim assist, ultra stable, I like it)

Tier 2: Primary Perk

HIDDEN HAND This weapon gains better target acquisition. (Great in PvP, useful in PvE too)

OUTLAW Precision kills with this weapon dramatically increase reload speed. (Great in both PvP and PvE)

TRIPLE TAP Rapidly landing precision hits will return one round to the magazine. (Great in PvE, useless in PvP)

RODEO Reduces the severity of this weapon’s recoil. (It’s okay)

SPRAY AND PLAY Increases the reload speed of this weapon when its mag is empty. (Great in both PvP and PvE, especially on snipers with small mags)

MULLIGAN Missing a shot has a chance to return ammo directly to the magazine. (Not entirely useless on snipers, but not desirable)

CLOWN CARTRIDGE Reloading this weapon has a chance to grant a larger than normal magazine. (it’s okay in PvP and PvE, but overrated IMO because it doesn’t proc that often and only gives 1 extra round)

Tier 3: decisions, decisions decisions

3 A

SNAPSHOT Aiming this weapon is incredibly fast. (Excellent in PvP, especially on snipers)

SPEED RELOAD Reload this weapon quickly. (good all around)

SKIP ROUNDS Ceramic-jacketed rounds ricochet on hard surfaces. Their extreme density lets you carry more rounds in reserve. Added mass slows down weapon handling. (Why, just why? I don’t understand.)

FLARED MAGWELL Reload this weapon even faster. (–The difference between this and speed reload is?– flare magwell improves the reload by twice as much but slightly reduces stability.)

QUICKDRAW This weapon can be drawn unbelievably fast. (useful in PvP)

3 B

HIGH CALIBER ROUNDS Oversize rounds built to stagger targets and leave them reeling. Their mass makes a weapon harder to handle. (Useful in PvE and PvP, believe it or not)

CUSTOM OPTICS Precision glass for better zoom. (I’ve never once aimed down scope and wanted more zoom.)

LIGHTWEIGHT When held, this weapon grants +2 character Agility. (useful perk all around, especially since you run a slower with a sniper drawn).

ARMOR PIERCING ROUNDS These iridium-core rounds overpenetrate targets. Their mass slows down weapon handling. (Good PvE and great for sick PvP sniper montages)

SINGLE POINT SLING Switch weapons faster. Move quicker while aiming. (actually okay for both PvE and PvP since it lets you strafe the target into your sights faster.)

3 C

HAND-LAID STOCK Increased Stability Reduced Range (Great all around)

RIFLED BARREL Increased Range Slower Reload (Retarded on a sniper)

CASKET MAG Increased Magazine Size Reduced Stability (Best PvE perk in this node)

REINFORCED BARREL Increased Range Reduced Stability (even more retarded on a sniper)

INJECTION MOLD Increased Stability, Faster Handling Reduced Range (excellent, especially in PvP)

Tier 4: The Finishing Touch

REPLENISH This weapon’s magazine will be refilled whenever a Super is cast. (meh, could be good in a pinch)

UNFLINCHING It’s easier to aim under fire using this weapon. (TOP NOTCH LIFESAVER IN PVP)

GRENADIER Kills with this weapon reduce the cooldown of your grenade. (meh, just meh)

PERFORMANCE BONUS Kills with this weapon have the chance to grant bonus reserve ammo. (Good in PvE)

SHOOT TO LOOT Shooting any type of ammo picks it up. (Comes in handy in PvE, but to use a perk slot on my sniper for it…)

SURPLUS Expect to find more ammo for this weapon. (Solid PvE perk)


Notable Builds

The Bullet Factory (PvE): The scope is whichever you prefer, tier 2 is triple tap, tier 3 is casket mag (non-negotiable) and tier 4 is performance bonus. This would work best on a high impact sniper, since it’s PvE. with casket mag you can get and triple tap you can get 7 rounds per mag. 5 to 2 +1 to 3 to 0 +1 to 0 for a total of 7 shots if you get the triple tap to proc twice. Now perfomance bonus procs (I believe) around a 1/4 to return so five shots has the potential to become 8 if a good amount of your shots are kills. In PvE, with snipers, it’s all about ammo. Notice that that 3 of 7 tier 2 perks and 3 of 6 tier 4 perks involve ammo.

The Sharpshooter (PvP): A scope with high aim assist such as the SIGHTSYS SLS20, Hidden Hand, Injection Mold, and Unflinching. High aim assist, decent handling and unflinching –beastly. I would recommend a high impact or medium RoF/impact sniper (Low Grade humility) for this roll.

The Laser (PvP and PvE to a degree): Ambush scope, since it has the best stability, Rodeo, Hand laid Stock and Unflinching on a medium Rof/Impact sniper. This should max the stability in addition to effects of rodeo and unflinching to keep you right on target. I would recommend high RoF/low Impact for PvP and a medium impact/RoF (low grade humility) for PvE.

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