Best Destiny 2 Warlock Builds: Strand Necrotic Grips and Solar Starfire Protocol loadouts

A Warlock holding a Strand Tangle over a green light.

Destiny 2: Lightfall has had some time to settle now, and Guardians are out there doing their best to figure out which Warlock build excels in the sandbox. Don’t worry, though, as we’ve got some suggestions for the best loadouts and a Strand build to get you slaying out in the universe.

Buildcrafting has seen a total revamp in Destiny’s most recent expansion, Lightfall, and there are a lot of rebalances of mods and systems to get your head around. While it’s much friendlier now, it’s still a lot to learn (or relearn). It’s understandable if you’re feeling a little lost with what is currently doing best in Destiny 2 right now.

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If you’re a Warlock, we’ve got a couple of build recommendations for you to check out in the game. While Warlocks have felt a little weaker over the last year, in Lightfall, the class is arguably the strongest.

If you want to harness that power, here are our favorite Destiny 2 Warlock builds, including one for Strand, as you’ll undoubtedly want to play with the new subclass.


Warlock Necrotic Grips Strand Build

Strand has entered Destiny 2 very strongly.

Like Hunter and Titan classes, Warlocks have a very strong Strand build that is excellent at dealing with most combat situations (although it will struggle in pure boss damage per second). You’ll want to use what’s new and exciting, and luckily this Strand build is one of the strongest in the game currently.

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Unfortunately, while Threadlings are the major focus for many of the Warlock’s abilities with Strand, including a new Exotic to make them better, they are inconsistent, unpredictable, and you have to play around them in different ways.

Instead, this new build is all about suspending, unraveling, and poisoning enemies, giving you complete control of any room.

Here’s how to make the Warlock Necrotic Grips Strand build in Destiny 2, from the Aspects and Fragments to the armor mods and weapons to use. 

Warlock Strand abilities, Aspects, and Fragments

  • Class ability: Healing Rift
  • Jump: Player choice (but I’m a big Strafe advocate)
  • Melee: Arcane Needle
  • Grenade: Shackle Grenade


  • Weaver’s Call: Your Grapple, Shackle Grenade, and Threadling Grenade have enhanced functionality. Your grapple melee spawns three Threadling eggs. Consume your Shackle Grenade and activate Weaver’s Trance. Final blows while Weaver’s Trance is active create a suspending detonation. Consume your Threadling Grenade and immediately generate five perched Threadlings.
  • Mindspun Invocation: Cast your Rift to weave three Threadlings and deploy any Threadlings you have perched.


  • Thread of Mind: Defeating suspended targets grants class ability energy.
  • Thread of Warding: Dealing damage generates grenade energy. (-10 Discipline)
  • Thread of Generation: Dealing damage generates grenade energy. (-10 Discipline)
  • Thread of Continuity: Suspend, unravel, and sever effects applied to targets have increased duration. (+10 Strength)

Warlock Strand Weapons and Exotic

Osteo Striga has always been good, but it might be the best primary in the game now.
  • Primary: Osteo Striga
  • Secondary: Your choice. We recommend a Void weapon though, so you can make use of the Volatile Flow artifact mod.

  • Heavy: Your choice. Adapt to what you need for the situation, but again, if it is Void, it can make use of the Volatile Flow artifact mod.

Warlock Strand Armor Mods

The mods make this build go wild and one of the strongest in the game.


Stat mod of chioceUp to 4 cost
Kinetic Syphon2 cost
Kinetic Syphon2 cost
Radiant Light1 cost

Note: You may want to trade one of the Kinetic Spyphons for a Heavy Ammo Finder for content where you need more heavy ammo.

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Necrotic Grips

State mod of choiceUp to 4 cost
Focusing Strike2 cost
Font of Vigor3 cost
Impact Induction1 cost


Stat mod of choiceUp to 4 cost
Font of Endurance3 cost
Charged Up3 cost


Stat mod of choiceUp to 4 cost
Kinetic Weapon Surge3 cost
Kinetic Weapon Surge3 cost

Note: If you can get away with not using a stat mod here, you may find more value in swapping it out for Stacks on Stacks, which will make many of your other armor mods more consistent.

Class Item

Stat mod of choiceUp to 4 cost
Time Dilation3 cost
Reaper3 cost

Warlock Strand Stat Priority

Strand is excellent out there, though expect some tough stat penalties.

Resilience, despite getting nerfed in Lightfall still remains a very important stat. Your Woven Armor will help here too, but still — being tough to kill will serve you great. 

After that, Recovery is always important for Warlocks. It will help you get your Rift back quicker — which will make you even more survivable, as well as top your health up quicker. On top of that, Discipline is also important as you will want to eat your grenades on cooldown to activate Weaver’s Trance, which will string up enemies.

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Warlock Strand Build: How to use

There is a fairly simple rotation here, and once you’ve got it going, it will chew through enemies largely without your input. In order to maximize this, the rotation looks like this:

  • Press and hold your grenade to consume it.
  • You will then the Weaver’s Trance for a whopping 25 seconds.
  • Use your Melee on a low-level enemy to start Unravelling, which spreads on kills.
  • Shoot your Osteo Striga to spread the poison.

That’s it. As things die, everything will start to cascade. The Poison from your Necrotic Grips, the Unravelling from your Melee, and the Weaver’s Trance will deal immense damage to surrounding enemies and string them up aggressively. Just keep all of these abilities procced and you will bring rooms of enemies crashing down.

Warlock Solar Starfire Protocol Build

New fragments make the already great Starfire build even better in Destiny 2 Lightfall.

The Starfire Protocol Solar build has dominated the Warlock class for a while now in Destiny 2. So much so it became quite oppressive, muscling out many other builds due to its absurd power. For those hoping the build would get a nerf so they might consider something else, bad news — it got stronger.

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It’s wild to see this build get a buff, but thanks to the two new fragments Ember of Mercy and Ember of Resolve, the build’s one weakness, its survivability is helped even more. This build uses Fusion grenades as boss damage, and it can compete with the best weapons in the game. This means you can be very flexible with your build and open up your Heavy for other interesting prospects.

Warlock Solar abilities, Aspects, and Fragments

  • Class ability: Empowering Rift
  • Jump: Player choice
  • Melee: Player choice but we like Celestial Fire for range
  • Grenade: Fusion Grenade


Touch of Flame

  • Your Healing, Solar, Firebolt, and Fusion Grenades have enhanced functionality.
  • Healing Grenade: Improves the strength of cure and restoration effects applied.
  • Solar Grenade: Increases linger duration. Periodically emits blobs of lava around its perimeter.
  • Firebolt Grenade: Increases target search radius and maximum target count.
  • Fusion Grenade: Explodes twice.

Icarus Dash: Dodge quickly while airborne. While Heat Rises is active, you have an additional dodge. While airborne, rapidly defeating targets with your Super or weapon grants Cure to you.

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  • Ember of Mercy: When you revive an ally, you and other nearby allies gain restoration.Picking up a Firesprite grants restoration.
  • Ember of Searing: Defeating scorched targets grants melee energy and creates a Firesprite.
  • Ember of Resolve: Solar grenade final blows cure you.
  • Ember of Ashes: You apply more scorch stacks to targets.

Warlock Solar Weapons and Exotic

Witherhoard remains a powerhouse
  • Kinetic: Witherhoard
  • Energy: Energy: Ideally Calus Mini-tool with Incandescent. Anything with that perk on is great though.
  • Heavy: Adapt to what you need, but again, if it is Void, it can make use of the Volatile Flow artifact perk. If you can get something with auto-loading, even better so you can swap the heavy into your rotation of throwing grenades, and have it be ready a couple of seconds after

Warlock Solar Armor Mods

Here are all the mods in one image


  • Stat mod of choice – up to 4 cost
  • Ashes to Assets – 1 cost
  • Ashes to Assets – 1 costSolar Syphon – 3 cost


  • Stat mod of choice – up to 4 cost
  • Firepower – 1 cost
  • Firepower – 1 cost
  • Bolstering Detonation – 1 cost

Starfire Protocol

  • Stat mod of choice – up to 4 cost
  • Font of Endurance – 3 cost
  • Charged Up – 3 cost

Note: If you can get away with a stat mod that only costs 2, you can throw on an element resistance mod


  • Stat mod of choice  – up to 4 cost
  • Stacks on Stracks – 4 cost
  • Recuperation – 1 cost
  • Recuperation – 1 cost

Note: If you can get away with not using a stat mod here, you may find more value in swapping it out for a Weapon Surge mod matching your heavy. That said, your Fusion Grenades will be doing most of your damage so it’s not essential.

Class Item

  • Stat mod of choice – up to 4 cost
  • Bomber – 1 cost
  • Bomber’- 1 cost
  • Reaper – 3 cost

Warlock Solar Stat Priority

The Starfire Protocol in all of its glory

Resilience, despite getting nerfed in Lightfall still remains a very important stat. It’s especially useful here as outside of your Well of Radiance and throwing grenades to get Cure, survivability is the biggest issue here.

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After that, Recovery is always important for Warlocks. It will help you get your Rift back quicker – as well as top your health up quicker. Intellect is likely next, though not crucial. You’re going to get your grenades back constantly in this build, so don’t worry too much about your Discipline.

Warlock Solar build: How to use

This build really can do it all. It has survivability, enemy clearing, and enormous boss damage. It’s also relatively simple to use. Everything revolves around your grenades here, and when you get going, you will be getting grenades as fast as you can throw them. 

In general, use this as you would any subclass. When possible though, throw your grenades while inside your empowering rift. Due to the Cure on enemy kills here, you just need to throw your grenade to get health back in a pinch. Also, pick up Firesprites for more health too.

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However, where this build goes wild is in boss damage phases. For that, your rotation should look something like this:

  • Place your Well of Radiance
  • Shoot Witherhoard into the boss.
  • Throw grenades on cooldown.
  • Reapply Witherhoard every 7 seconds or so.

That’s it. Because of the explosion and the tick damage from Witherhoard, your grenades should come back instantly. However, if you want to get fancy, if you have a heavy weapon with something like Auto-Loading Holster on it, you can swap to that in between slinging grenades for a little extra damage. 

So, there you have it — those are the best Warlock builds you should be using right now for Lightfall in Destiny 2.

On the hunt for more content, Guardians? Check out the following guides below for all of the latest tips, tricks, and explainers:

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