Destiny 2: Best SMGs for PvE and PvP

Shane Black
Destiny 2 SMGs

SMGs are some of the best weapons in Destiny 2 when engaging in close-quarters combat thanks to their high rate of fire that can dish solid damage in a short amount of time. They’ve not always been the dominant choices in the game’s meta, but they have always proven to be great backup options.

There are many SMGs to choose from in the game, and finding the right one isn’t always easy. You may accidentally find yourself scrapping one when you should have used it instead.

So before you make that mistake, it’s important to know which SMGs are the best in Destiny 2 as The Final Shape begins, so you know what to hold on to when you get it.

Best SMGs for PvE

1. Oseo Striga

Destiny 2 Osteo Striga


  • Impact: 25
  • Range: 80
  • Stability: 37
  • Handling: 26
  • Reload Speed: 18

The Oseo Striga is the top choice on the list thanks to one specific ability: Screaming Swarm. This allows the SMG to fire out a stream of toxic, target-seeking projectiles that can be an instant victory in PvE situations. Further, any Final Blow or multiple precision hits that land can cause a burst of poison to explode out, damaging your target and anyone around them.

Even in PvP, it can be a solid choice, but it’s truly the PvE encounters where the Oseo Strige shines. We’ve lost count of how many combat victories we can thank the weapon for, and it is more than deserving of our top spot.

2. Riskrunner

Destiny 2 Riskrunner


  • Impact: 20
  • Range: 50
  • Stability: 55
  • Handling: 46
  • Reload Speed: 35

The Riskrunner is similar to how the Oseo Striga works, but this one operates using Arc energy. It starts with Arc Conductor, which, when taking Arc damage, will allow the weapon to power up and resist more incoming Arc damage and as you get more kills the duration will be extended. But even more, it has Superconductor so that when you are firing when Arc Conductor is active, the shots will chain off to other enemies and replenish your ammo as you fire.

It’s one of the best ad-clearing weapons in the game, especially when using an Arc build. Toss a grenade at your feet, let the Arc energy begin to conduct itself through you and you can wipe out hordes of enemies in a second.

3. The Manticore

Destiny 2 The Manticore


  • Impact: 15
  • Range: 41
  • Stability: 58
  • Handling: 68
  • Reload Speed: 30

Using the Manticore will give you an airborne aspect to your fighting that can be incredibly useful in any situation. When firing the gun while airborne, its damage output will increase, while using it on the ground will charge up its antigrav repulsors that you can then use to shoot yourself up into the air to buff the damage.

It can be a great tool for taking your enemies by surprise and getting the drop on them. However, the antigrav repulsors do slow you down so you won’t be flying around like you may hope. Because of this, an enemy with good aim can easily shoot you out of the sky, and that is why The Manticore is a better PvE weapon than it is a PvP one.

4. CALUS Mini-Tool

Destiny 2 CALUS Mini-Tool


  • Impact: 15
  • Range: 30
  • Stability: 49
  • Handling: 65
  • Reload Speed: 31

The CALUS Mini-Tool is all about movement and speed in Destiny 2, as it has a movement speed and target acquisition while aiming down the sights, as well as an overall improved movement speed just when having the SMG equipped. Further, breaking an enemy’s shield with the SMG will give Kinetic will get a brief bump.

Being able to maneuver around a battlefield can be a huge benefit. Covering more ground in a shorter amount of time could be the difference between life and death, so bringing this weapon with you is never a bad idea.

5. No Survivors

Destiny 2 No Survivors


  • Impact: 22
  • Range: 44
  • Stability: 17
  • Handling: 57
  • Reload Speed: 26

The benefits of No Survivors are a little different than other SMGs on this list, as it can change depending on which Elements you have equipped for your Class. Here is a breakdown of how it works:

  • Solar: increases reload speed
  • Arc: increases handling
  • Void: increases stability
  • Stasis: increases recoil control and movement speed when aiming down sights
  • Strand: increases airborne effectiveness

You can also reload the weapon instantly by reviving teammates or using Finishing Blows on enemies thanks to its Restoration Ritual trait.

Best SMGs for PvP

1. Tarrabah

Destiny 2 Tarrabah


  • Impact: 22
  • Range: 43
  • Stability: 20
  • Handling: 50
  • Reload Speed: 35

The Tarrabah is one of the best SMGs for PvP situations in Destiny 2 because of its Ravenous Beast skill. When using this weapon, dealing and receiving damage will charge up the skill’s meter, and when it’s full, all you have to do is hold the reload button down to activate. Doing so will give the gun a big boost in damage for eight seconds. This is enough time to shred through a player or two.

You will need to be a little more cautious when using it to passively build your meter. When it’s full, wait for the enemy to be directly in your sights to take them out. A little tricky, but worth it when you pull it off.

2. The Huckleberry

Destiny 2 The Huckleberry


  • Impact: 22
  • Range: 48
  • Stability: 36
  • Handling: 56
  • Reload Speed: 0

The Huckleberry can also be another great option for PvP thanks to its Rampage ability. This allows the weapon to increase its damage after every killing, stacking up to three times. Additionally, it comes with Ride the Bull, which will increase its rate of fire and recoil as you continually fire and will also partially reload the weapon when getting a kill with this.

If you can manage its recoil well enough, The Huckleberry can become a force to be reckoned with, and if you can take on enemies whose shields have already been depleted (i.e. red health bars), then you can clean up the skirmish in seconds.

3. Funnelweb

Destiny 2 Funnelweb


  • Impact: 15
  • Range: 39
  • Stability: 44
  • Handling: 7-
  • Reload Speed: 31

In the same vein of ease of movement, the Funnelweb gives you better accuracy while you are moving with it, and can also benefit from getting a kill with a grenade. You will get some increased damage after a grenade kill, or killing someone with the weapon itself.

But it also comes with a trait called Veist Stinger, which has the chance to reload your clip for you and increase your movement speed when aiming down the sights. This can help you become more evasive and dangerous in a fight. Being able to maneuver around a PvP situation can be very useful in keeping yourself alive.

4. Rapacious Appetite

Destiny 2 Rapacious Appetite


  • Impact: 22
  • Range: 43
  • Stability: 6
  • Handling: 53
  • Reload Speed: 22

The Rapacious Appetite is a unique weapon that makes you more powerful when none of your abilities are charged up, granted you have the Unsated Hunger trait. This trait will give you better handling, reload speed, and stability when no abilities are fully charged.

This can be a game-changer, keeping you alive until your powers return. It makes you more formidable when you should be at your most vulnerable. The Crucible has a much slower time with charging your abilities so having this suped up is a great way to counter that.

6. Shayura’s Wrath

Destiny 2 Shayura's Wrath


  • Impact: 25
  • Range: 59
  • Stability: 44
  • Handling: 27
  • Reload Speed: 24

Our final SMG on this Destiny 2 list has a special trait called Alacrity. This trait gives you an increased reload speed, aim assist, stability, and range when you are either the last person alive on your team or going solo.

This perk can keep you alive when your team is waiting to come back in a PvP battle. It also means you won’t have to hide or stay on the ropes; you can fight back fairly well and keep your team’s hopes of victory alive and well.

Destiny 2 has a lot of changes coming to it with The Final Shape, so check out how an explanation of the new Pathfinder system, when the new Raid is going to release, as well as a breakdown of the new Dread enemy type.

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