Whether defeating Guardians in the Crucible or defeating the toughest of foes in PvE, Warlocks can always benefit a fireteam. Supporting allies with the Attunement of Grace or absorbing a storm of bullets thanks to Devour are just a few ways a player can take advantage of the Warlock’s nine unique subclass paths. With that said, Warlocks also have some of the most lackluster subclass paths in the game that players should typically avoid. Here is every Warlock subclass ranked from worst to best in Destiny 2.
Updated June 6th, 2021 by Charles Burgar: The meta has seen some massive changes since Beyond Light first released. Stasis has seen new Aspects, Fragments, and quite a few nerfs as well. Beyond that, some Warlock players have shifted towards using middle tree Stormcaller to counter Supers and take full advantage of the Charged with Light system. We’ve updated this article to reflect recent Stasis nerfs and general meta shifts seen in PvE and PvP.
10 Attunement Of The Elements (Bottom Tree Stormcaller)
Attunement of the Elements is a prime example of a niche subclass tree. This path grants increased Rift regeneration when allies are nearby while also granting those inside a temporary Arc Soul.
Arc Souls are the main reason to use this subclass, acting as a mobile turret that fires homing Arc projectiles. They are great for finishing off weaker opponents in PvE and PvP, but they require players to frequently cast Rifts. If you want to use Arc Souls that badly, you can use Getaway Artist and a better Stormcaller subclass. For those not interested in making a build around Arc Souls, this is easily the worst subclass in the game.
9 Attunement Of Fission (Middle Tree Voidwalker)
What was once an overpowered subclass when Forsaken released has seen considerable nerfs. Nova Warp is the worst Super in the game for PvE and mediocre in PvP, Handheld Supernova is mediocre at best, and its neutral-game perks are lacking compared to other Voidwalker specs. Gaining health on Void ability kills is a solid boon with this tree, but it pales in comparison to the Attunement of Hunger and its Devour buff.
As for players that want to decimate foes with powerful Void projectiles, they’re better off using Attunement of Chaos. Fission only edges out of the bottom spot due to Voidwalker’s excellent selection of grenades and Exotics that pair well with Void abilities such as Nezarec’s Sin.
8 Attunement Of Flame (Bottom Tree Dawnblade)
The Warlock’s Daybreak Super is surprisingly potent. It provides excellent mobility, solid damage, and the ability to stay in the air for long periods of time.
Those that want to maximize this Super should use the Attunement of Flame. This spec increases the Super’s duration on kill, grants it a diving attack, and makes its projectiles track targets. It’s a solid Super in PvP but comes at the cost of neutral game passives or benefits. For an ability that is used twice in a PvP game on average, it’s typically not worth it compared to other Dawnblade options.
PvE players may see a few use with this subclass with the Dawn Chorus Exotic Helmet, giving this Super sufficient damage to make it compete with Mobius Quiver Shadowshot or other excessive harm Supers. Again, is that worth sacrificing your impartial sport? For maximum sports, no longer truely. If you’re making a build that offers you tons of Super electricity, you may locate some value in Attunement of Flame.
7 Attunement Of Conduction (Top Tree Stormcaller)
Certain players swear by Attunement of Conduction. This spec is focused on enhancing the effects of virtually every ability.
Melee attacks chain lightning and return grenade energy. Even grenades chain lightning and refund energy with this spec. When used alongside Arcbolt Grenades, players can wipe out hordes of PvE foes or Guardians alike in a single grenade toss. Unfortunately, its Super augment named Transcendence is counterproductive for what the spec wants and rarely activates. It’s a subpar tree in PvE but devastating in the right hands when used against Guardians in the Crucible.
6 Attunement Of Hunger (Bottom Tree Voidwalker)
Attunement of Hunger, otherwise known as the Devour spec, is all about turning your Warlock into an unkillable Guardian of destruction that weaves abilities into their gunplay.
Devour is the centerpiece of this tree. When players consume a grenade or kill an enemy with their melee or Super, they will obtain a buff called Devour that restores a player’s health and shields with every kill. Needless to say, this is absurdly powerful in all content since players can instantly engage with new targets after a gunfight. It also reduces ability cooldowns while active, making it a perfect spec to use alongside Nezarec’s Sin or Verity’s Brow. Its lack of neutral benefits makes it tough to recommend in 3v3 PvP modes, but aggressive Warlock mains or those that prefer using Blink over Glides will love this spec.
5 Attunement Of Control (Middle Tree Stormcaller)
Chaos Reach is Attunement of Control’s Super, causing your Warlock to channel a deadly beam of electricity. It’s a powerful Super when used alongside Geomag Stabilizers, and the rest of the tree is solid as well.
Killing targets has a chance to spawn Ionic Traces that grant ability regen and even Super regen. This tree also grants a noticeable speed increase when a player’s shields break. Arguably the most powerful use of this subclass is using Chaos Reach as a spammable Super in PvP.
When you pair this subclass with Geomag Stabilizers and a high Intellect stat, you’ll be the first person in a lobby to get your Super. Disintegrate a few enemies with your beam, cancel to keep 33% of your Super, then wait around a minute to top off your Super again. This playstyle is widely used in Trials of Osiris to guarantee victory in certain rounds. Pair this with Charged with Light mods to buff yourself and your teammates every time you cast Chaos Reach.
4 Attunement Of Chaos (Top Tree Voidwalker)
Top tree Voidwalkers might miss out on Devour’s health regeneration, but the Attunement of Chaos more than makes up for it with its powerful grenades and Super.
Cataclysm is a great augment for Nova Bomb, causing it to track targets and explode into bomblets that are devastating in all game types. Better yet, Chaos Warlocks can overcharge their grenades to deal absurd amounts of damage while increasing the grenade’s duration. Combining this tree with Contraverse Hold makes for near-infinite grenades that can take down virtually all enemies in seconds. Whenever Oppressive Darkness is the artifact mod, there is simply no better Attunement for damaging opponents in hard PvE content.
3 Shadebinder (Stasis)
Crowd control is a major part of the Shadebinder subclass for Warlocks, allowing them to turn their opponents into devastating explosive crystals. Their crowd control is top-tier inside of PvE and PvP, and having access to four Fragment slots allows them to truly embrace the Fragment system of Stasis. Shadebinders only lack sheer utility and mobility, something top tree Dawnblade excels at.
- Iceflare Bolts: This is arguably the best Aspect in Destiny 2. Chaining freezes from grenades or melee abilities is a great way to set up massive shatters.
- Bleak Watcher: This icy turret is much more useful than players might realize. The inflicted Slow will shut down aggressive players and force enemies to retreat, making this an excellent pick in PvP. It’s a solid PvE Aspect if you need more crowd control.
- Glacial Harvest: As strong as Stasis shards are, Glacial Harvest is the worst Harvest Aspect in Destiny 2. It has an internal cooldown that scales based on how many shards you make, likely to counteract how easy it is to freeze as a Shadebinder.
- Frostpulse: The freeze duration nerfs really hurt Frostpules’s viability in PvP. You have a quarter of a second to hit someone you freeze with a Rift in PvP, making this difficult to use. For PvE, it’s extremely situational and only worth using if you’re pairing Frostpulse with Vesper of Radius.
Top Five Fragments:
- Whisper of Fissures: Shattering a Stasis crystal or frozen enemy deals much more damage, giving Shadebinder some solid add-clear potential with the right build.
- Whisper of Bonds: Since you can freeze enemies so easily, this Fragment grants a surprising amount of Super energy.
- Whisper of Hedrons: You can freeze an enemy at will and gain a massive boost to your Mobility, Recovery, Resilience, weapon stability, aim assist, and in-air accuracy. This is an excellent Fragment for PvP and a decent choice for PvE.
- Whisper of Hunger: If you use Glacial Harvest, you can almost fully recharge a Penumbral Blast by freezing a Guardian or a boss.
- Whisper of Rending: It only works on Kinetic Primary weapons, but this Fragment makes it much easier for Shadebinders to shatter Stasis crystals and frozen targets.
Builds for Shadebinder typically focus on constant ability uptime. Using Iceflare Bolts with Coldsnap Grenades is a devastating combo in PvE and PvP, although Warlocks can also use Duskfield Grenades and a Grenade Launcher with Demolitionist to clear waves of enemies in a single shot
Players which are more into experimental builds can attempt a Rift-focused build with Frostpulse and Vesper of Radius. Use the Whisper of Refraction, Fissures, Bonds, and Hedrons to turn Rifts right into a big Arc explosion that can clean waves of enemies. Warlocks that want to dominate the battlefield via controlling their enemy’s motion have in the end met their fit.
2 Attunement Of Grace (Middle Tree Dawnblade)
Veteran Destiny players typically agree that the Attunement of Grace for Dawnblade Warlocks is overpowered for PvE. It has one of the best Supers in the game, instant ability regen, on-demand healing, and a melee ability that grants bonus damage to all allies.
Calling this subclass tree loaded would be an understatement. Virtually all PvE content can benefit from a Grace Warlock providing overshields and damage buffs. They become even stronger when Exotics are considered. The Sunbracers Exotic allows for near-infinite grenades that can heal allies while Phoenix Protocol can make wave-based modes trivial. It’s also a solid choice for 6v6 PvP, but it loses out to one other Dawnblade spec when it comes to the Crucible. Pair this subclass with Warmind Cells for some absurd synergies and add-clear.
1 Attunement Of Sky (Top Tree Dawnblade)
It couldn’t have been any other tree; the Attunement of Sky is the strongest subclass a Warlock can use in PvP and one of the best for PvE.
This tree has one of the first-class Supers in the sport for PvP, perfect in-air accuracy alongside near-endless flow uptime, constant melee regen with mid-air kills, a melee skill that tracks objectives from afar, and the capacity to sprint now not as soon as but twice in a short timespan. It most effective lacks health regeneration, some thing which can without problems be remedied with Karnstein Armlets or Elemental Wells. Sunbracers also pair well with this by using providing countless grenades that still furnish melee electricity, inflicting an endless capacity loop that is easy to tug off in PvE.
Players might argue it lags behind the raw support power of the Attunement of Grace in PvE, but this tree is so game-changing for Crucible, Gambit, and speedrunning PvE content that it slightly edges out over middle tree Dawnblade as the best subclass for Warlocks in Destiny 2. If subclasses ever get overhauled, expect Bungie to nerf aspects of this tree.