All Destiny 2 Hand Cannons: Ranked Tier List

The best way to be a space cowboy

by J.T. Isenhour

There are many weapon types in Destiny 2, but one weapon type always stands out from the rest as being the most satisfying and fun to use, Hand Cannons. The hand cannon weapon type is essentially the revolver of Destiny 2 without calling it a revolver. They hit hard but have the slowest fire rate in the game, yet many players love to use them. Let’s go over the best Hand Cannons in Destiny 2.

Destiny 2 Hand Cannon Tier List

With the recent addition of the Spire of the Watcher dungeon and its cowboy armor sets. Many guardians are busting out hand cannons to help complete their cowboy look. However, you don’t just want to look good, you want to do good as well. Here are the current hand cannons in Destiny 2 ranked:

S TierAce of Spades, Austringer, Eyasluna, Fatebringer, Rose
A TierCrimson, Hawkmoon, The Last Word, Sunshot, Malfeasance, Dire Promise, Judgment, Steady Hand, Vulpecula, Ancient Gospel, Bottom Dollar, Cantata-57, Exalted Truth, Frontier’s Cry, Igneous Hammer, Posterity, The Palindrome, Zaouli’s Bane
B TierThorn, Crimi’s Dagger, Seventh Seraph Officer Revolver, Something New, Survivor’s Epitaph, True Prophecy, Crisis Inverted, IKELOS_HC_V1.0.3, Nation of Beasts, Waking Vigil
C TierLumina, Sturm, Eriana’s Vow, D.F.A, Loud Lullaby, Pure Poetry, Annual Skate, Finite Impactor, Nature of Beasts

S Tier Hand Cannons

These hand cannons are some of the best you can get in the game, Excelling at both PvP and PvE. If you want to run a hand cannon for any reason, these are the few you would want to consider picking up. These will be the most common hand cannons you see in the game, but that’s for a good reason.

These hand cannons are sure to stick out no matter where you use them. Ace of Spades offers great ad-clearing potential in PvE with its Firefly perk as well as some high-damage shots after you get a kill and reload. However, it is also strong in PvP as it offers good range and recoil control while also letting you keep your radar active when aiming down sights.

The big reason that these are top-tier is they have some of the best perk rolls in the game. Many of the perks that they come with can be useful and if you happen to get a god roll on one of these, it really shows.

A Tier Hand Cannons

The hand cannons in A Tier tend to excel at either PvP or PvE given the right roll on them. Many of these are just one buff away from being the next S Tier hand cannon. They can be some solid workhorse weapons for getting through low to mid-tier content even without a good roll on them, but given a god roll you could use them in end-game content.

The only reason these are not S-tier is that they only tend to be good in a singular type of content. Crimson is really only useful in PvP since it gives you health on kill for its main effect, while Sunshot is really only seen in PvE since its shots are great at clearing out ads and work well with solar builds in the PvE sandbox.

They tend to have a couple of decent rolls that you will want to keep your eyes out for. Even if the weapon isn’t god-rolled, a decent roll would be worth keeping. If you happen across any of these in your inventory, you might want to give the roll a check to see if it is worth keeping around.

B Tier Hand Cannons

All of these hand cannons are pretty niche to use and only see use with a specific build that makes them good. However, any build that would buff these hand cannons would tend to work for a better hand cannon and offer better returns. Unless these receive a decent buff, you will normally want to look over these hand cannons.

Needing a build to make these hand cannons work well is what holds most of these back. Without some synergy, Thorn just applies a small dot onto guardians in PvP that does almost no damage but does prevent healing. If you combine it with Warlock’s Necrotic Grips though, it can be useful in both PvE as well as do some more damage in PvP.

C Tier Hand Cannons

These hand cannons have seen better days and would need a huge buff to be useful in any way. Maybe through a very niche build, you might be able to make the exotic hand cannons work, but the regular legendary hand cannons are overshadowed by most of the other hand cannons in the game.

Even with an appropriate build these hand cannons don’t see a lot of use. Lumina sounds really interesting on paper since it is one of the few weapons in this game that can heal and buff other players. But it is so awkward to use and does so little that it is players that it is useless. Tragically, D.F.A was brought back into the Vanguard loot pool and just missed the mark. The perks it came with are not that great for the fire rate the hand cannon has and it is outclasses by so many other hand cannons with the same rolls.

If you ever come across these in your inventory, you might as well dismantle them for resources unless you really want to collect a god roll of one for some reason. There is always a chance that these suddenly become good but the odds are quite slim to none.

If you are looking for a weapon with a bit more range than a hand cannon that hits quite hard, you might want to consider picking up one of these scout rifles. Outside of farming for weapons, there is still plenty to do in Destiny 2 before Lightfall comes out so make sure you are prepared.

Destiny 2 is available now for PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S.

- This article was updated on January 30th, 2023

About The Author

There isn't a Shooter or MMO game that JT hasn't played and He doesn't plan on missing out now. The only issue is that he can't pick just one to stick with and end up getting behind in everything. But after being around the writing world for three years, He's learned a few tricks to balancing everything in every game.