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Destiny 2 classes and subclasses - how to unlock all Titan, Hunter, and Warlock subclasses, plus new skills and supers explained

Everything you need to know about Destiny 2's new Striker, Dawnblade, and Gunslinger subclasses.

One thing that caught a few of the die-hard Destiny fans by surprise at Destiny 2's original reveal was the lack of new classes all together.

Instead, each of the three Destiny 2 classes - the Titan, Warlock, and Hunter - has a new subclass: the Titan Striker, Warlock Dawnblade, and Hunter Gunslinger respectively. Here on this page then, we'll be taking you through those three new Destiny 2 subclasses, how to unlock them after starting the game, and what exactly we can expect from their additional abilities, skills, and reworked subclass trees.

Destiny 2 classes and subclasses - how Upgrade Points, class skill trees and abilities work

Classes and subclasses themselves work in a largely similar way to that of the original Destiny. You'll have a choice, on starting a new game with a new character, of whether you want to play as a Titan, a Warlock, or a Hunter.

How classes and subclasses work in Destiny 2

Back in the first Destiny, you would play as one of the two subclasses available at launch, before unlocking the availablity of the third which came through DLC down the line.

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The various abilities and skills within each subclass were unlocked by playing that subclass itself, but once you unlocked them, they stayed available. Effectively, that means it was costly to switch between them at first (you could do so whenever you liked) but, once you'd ground out the unlocks, it became a key part of smart, late-game play to be able to switch subclass on the fly.

As for Destiny 2, you'll start with a fixed class - the Titan Sentinel, Hunter Arcstrider, and Warlock Sunblade for the Titan, Hunter and Warlock respectively - and need to unlock the other classes before you can switch.

We'll dive into how to unlock those other classes, plus what we know about each subclass below, but before we do that it's worth knowing how exactly all the various bonuses each classes have will work, particularly if you're new to Destiny or a little rusty. The descriptions here relate to the images of the subclasses' menus in the sections just below:

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  • Super Ability - The big central node. Your class' defining active ability. Requires a charge to use, which accumulates through combat and some other potential modifiers. Activated with L1+R1 on a controller.
  • Class Abilities - The two options on the left. These are cross-subclass abilities, from what we understand, meaning you'll always have a choice of those two on display within each class, regardless of your subclass. Activated by holding the Crouch button. One of the two can be active at a time.
  • Subclass Passives ('paths', or 'trees') - Two groups of four on the right. Passive class abilities. As things stand, one path seems to be focused on modifying your Super, and the other more on the class' gameplay in general. You can only choose one cluster of four passives to be active at a time, but all four of those can be activated together. It's not entirely clear how these are unlocked in-game, but they appear to require some kind of Ability Unlock artifact for each of the four nodes within them.
  • Grenades - Group of three nodes at the top. These modify or change the effects of your grenades. One can be active at a time out of the three.
  • Mobility - Group of three nodes at the bottom. These modify or change the effects of your mobility, usually in the form of how your subclass' jumping works. As with Grenades, only one of the three mobility modifiers can be active at a time.

For original Destiny players these are some pretty interesting changes. Instead of a broad choice of any combination of skills, for example, you're now restricted to one of two paths, and the four passives within them. Essentially, it's the four on the top branch, or the four on the bottom branch - so it's just a choice of one branch between the two. Here's Destiny 2 project lead Mark Noseworthy clarifying things a little on Twitter:

How Upgrade Points work in Destiny 2

You'll earn one Upgrade Point for every time you level up in Destiny 2, but there are also some other ways - you can also get them for completing certain activities, like Adventures, as well.

You need to spend an Upgrade Point to unlock each skill in your subclass' skill tree, but note that, once spent, you won't be able to re-spend it in another subclass.

You can, however, earn Upgrade Points whilst playing as one subclass and spend them in another, so it may be worth holding onto your Upgrade Points until you unlock the subclass you really want to prioritise.

Upgrade_Points

This is all quite a handy simplification over the old method, it seems. Either way, now that we know how those various points work it's time to dive into each class' specifics, below. Oh, and we've popped in a couple of additional videos from Eurogamer's friend Arekkz, too, which give an added layer of depth to each class guide as well.

How to unlock subclasses and how to get the Class Relics for all Titan, Hunter and Warlock subclasses in Destiny 2

When you start up Destiny 2 for the first time, you'll be locked into the new subclass of your respected class for the first few levels.

That means if you pick the Titan, you're playing the Titan Sentinel, if you go for Hunter you're on the Hunter Arcstrider, and if you pick the Warlock then it's Warlock Dawnblade for you.

These can be changed, however, once you unlock the ability to do so. According to Arekkz, this becomes available at around level 7 to 10 for the second subclasses Striker, Voidwalker, and Gunslinger, and then you'll need to be around level 14-15 to repeat the same method for the third and final subclasses - the Sunbreaker, Nightstalker, and Stormcaller.

How to unlock all Titan, Hunter, and Warlock subclasses

  • Once you're around level 7-10, for your second class, or 14-15 of the third, a Class Relic (which will be called a Titan Relic if you're a Titan, and so on) will become a likely drop from any chests you find.
  • The Relic tasks you to "rekindle your lost abilities by defeating enemies and fighting fellow Guardians in Public Events" - killing both PvE and PvP enemies works, whilst playing Public Events is the fastest method to get the progress bar to 100%.
  • Once you've done that, a new Milestone (a subclass quest) is unlocked back at the Shard of the Traveller, which plays out like the early mission you had on first regaining your powers. Complete it, and the new subclass is yours!

Destiny 2 Titan subclass skills and abilities

TITAN SENTINEL

The Titan Sentinel is the new class for Destiny 2, and thus the first that you'll get to play as a Titan. It replaces the Titan Defender, with the new Super, already known casually as the 'Captain America Shield' (and officilly known as the Sentinel Shield), replacing the old Ward of Dawn bubble - although the bubble is necessarily gone altogether!

Sentinel

Since the beta opened up, we've been able to get a proper look at the new subclass, so here's everything you need to know:

  • Super Ability:
    • Sentinel Shield: Summons a personal shield of Void Light. L1+R1 to activate, R1 to attack, or L2 to guard, and L1 to throw shield.
  • Class Abilities:
    • Towering Barricade: A large barrier that can physically block off areas as well as acting as cover.
    • Rally Barricade: A smaller barrier that you can peek over whilst using as cover, and instantly reloads your weapon when you take cover.
  • Subclass Passives: Code of the Protector
    • Rallying Force: Melee kilsl restore health for you and nearby allies.
    • Turn the Tide: Overshield from Defensive Strke lasts longer and increases melee damage and reload speed.
    • Ward of Dawn: When Super energy is full, press and hold L1+R1 to create a shielding dome (bubble!) to protect you and allies.
    • Defensive Strike: Killing enemies with melee attacks creates an overshield around you and nearby allies.
  • Subclass Passives: Code of the Aggressor
    • Shield Bash: After sprinting for a short time, melee attacks unleash a devastating Shield Bash that disorients enemies.
    • Superior Arsenal:Grenade kills recharge your Grenade energy.
    • In the Trenches: Kills while surrounded by enemies reduce the cooldown of your Super.
    • Second Shield: Gain an additional Shield Throw charge while Sentinel Shield is active.
  • Grenades:
    • Magenetic Grenade; Voidwall Grenade; Suppressor Grenade.
  • Mobility:
    • Catapult Lift: gives Lift a strong initial burst of momentum.
    • High Lift: Upgrades height of your Lift.
    • Strafe Lift: increases mid-air control of Lift.

TITAN STRIKER

The Titan Striker, meanwhile, was one we did have access to from the start. This is a rework of the old Striker subclass, so the changes are somewhat more subtle than before.

Striker

Here's how they break down (remember we explain these various moving parts in the section just above, if you're new to Destiny's notoriously opaque mechanics):

  • Super Ability:
    • Fists of Havoc: Like the old ground pound, but now activating it just supercharges you, and you can then re-activate to slam the ground several times, or alternatively shoulder-charge enemies. L1+R1 to activate, R2 to activate ground slam, or R1 to shoulder charge.
  • Class Abilities:
    • Towering Barricade: A large barrier that can physically block off areas as well as acting as cover.
    • Rally Barricade: A smaller barrier that you can peek over whilst using as cover, and instantly reloads your weapon when you take cover.
  • Subclass Passives: Code of the Earthshaker
    • Seismic Strike: After sprinting for a short time, press R1 to shoulder-slam, releasing an Arc explosion.
    • Terminal Velocity: Fist of Havoc's ground slam attack leaves a damage-dealing field in its wake and deals more damage the longer it's in the air.
    • Magnitude: Gain an additional grenade charge, and increases the duration of grenade effects.
    • Aftershocks: Damaging enemies with Seismic Strike recharges your grenade.
  • Subclass Passives: Code of the Juggernaut
    • Frontal Assault: Melee hits reload your weapon and icnrease weapon stability.
    • Reversal: Melee kills immediately trigger health regeneration.
    • Knockout: Critically wounding enemies or breaking enemy shields increases your melee range and damage.
    • Trample: Killing enemies with Fists of Havoc extends its duration.
  • Grenades:
    • Flashbang; Pulse; Lightning.
  • Mobility:
    • Catapult Lift: gives Lift a strong initial burst of momentum.
    • High Lift: Upgrades height of your Lift.
    • Strafe Lift: increases mid-air control of Lift.

TITAN SUNBREAKER

The Titan Sunbreaker first appeared in a Destiny 2 leak, and acts as the final, Solar-based class for the Titan.

Here's how they break down (remember we explain these various moving parts in the section just above, if you're new to Destiny's notoriously opaque mechanics):

  • Super Ability:
    • Hammer of Sol: Activate to hurl flaming hammer projectiles at enemies, dealing significant damage with each hit.
  • Class Abilities:
    • Towering Barricade: A large barrier that can physically block off areas as well as acting as cover.
    • Rally Barricade: A smaller barrier that you can peek over whilst using as cover, and instantly reloads your weapon when you take cover.
  • Subclass Passives: Code of the Fire-Forged
    • Hammer Strike: While sprinting, using Melee unleashes a blazing Hammer strike taht weakens enemies.
    • Tempered Metal: Solar ability kills grant you and nearby allies bonus movement and reload speed.
    • Battle-Forge: Enemies killed by Hammer of Sol explode.
    • Vulcan's Rage: Hammers shatter into explosive molten embers on impact.
  • Subclass Passives: Code of the Siegebreaker
    • Mortar Blast: Strike an enemy with this Melee Ability to release a Solar explosion, setting nearby enemies on fire.
    • Sun Warrior: Solar Ability kills resotre your health. Grenade, and melee ability kills leave a deadly Sunspot in their wake.
    • Rings of Fire: While standing in a Sunspot, your solar abilities recharge faster and your Super lasts longer.
    • Solar Siege: Hammers create a Sunspot on impact. While standing in Sunspots you throw hammers faster.
  • Grenades:
    • Incendiary Grenade; Thermite Grenade; Fusion Grenade.
  • Mobility:
    • Catapult Lift: gives Lift a strong initial burst of momentum.
    • High Lift: Upgrades height of your Lift.
    • Strafe Lift: increases mid-air control of Lift.

Destiny 2 Hunter subclass skills and abilities

HUNTER ARCSTRIDER

The Hunter Arcstrider is the new Hunter subclass for Destiny 2, and replaces the old Bladedancer subclass from the first Destiny, with a new super that focuses on an electrified staff and a large amount of rapid mobility. It's the first one you'll get to play as a Hunter in Destiny 2.

Arcstrider

Like with the Titan Sentinel above, since the beta we now have access to this subclass, too. Details below!

  • Super Ability:
    • Arc Staff: Form a staff of pure Arc energy amd acrobatically take out your foes. L1+R1 to activate, R2 to attack.
  • Class Abilities:
    • Marksman's Dodge: A directional dodge, activated by double-tapping the crouch button. Automatically reloads your equipped weapon whilst dodging.
    • Gambler's Dodge: Activated in the same way. Using this dodge near enemies generates melee energy.
  • Subclass Passives: Way of the Warrior
    • Combat Flow: Melee kills recharge your dodge ability.
    • Deadly Reach: Dodging increases your melee range, allowing you to lunge further to strike enemies.
    • Lethal Current: After dodging, each Arc Staff hit creates a damaging lightnig aftershock.
    • Combination Blow: Kill an enemy with melee to trigger health regeneration and temporarily increase damage.
  • Subclass Passives: Way of the Wind
    • Disorienting Blow: Strike an enemy with melee to disorient the target and nearby enemies.
    • Focused Breathing: Sprinting recharges your dodge ability. Increased max sprint speed.
    • Combat Meditation: While critically wounded, melee and grenades recharge drastically faster.
    • Lightning Reflexes:You are harder to kill while dodging.
  • Grenades:
    • Skip Grenade; Flux Grenade; Arcbolt Grenade.
  • Mobility:
    • High Jump: extra height to Double Jump.
    • Strafe Jump: Upgrades Double Jump with better directional control while in the air.
    • Triple Jump: Upgrades Double Jump with a third jump.

HUNTER GUNSLINGER

The Hunter Gunslinger, meanwhile, was one we did have access to from the off - but there have since been some changes, particularly to the subclass passives, that are worth bearing in mind.

Gunslinger

This is a rework of the old Hunter subclass, so the changes are somewhat more subtle than before. Here's how they break down:

  • Super Ability:
    • Golden Gun: Holding the controller's shoulder buttons summons a flaming pistol that disintegrates enemies with Solar Light. Think of it like Overwatch's McCree using his ability to fire six rapid shots from the revolver - only for some far heftier damage.
  • Class Abilities:
    • Marksman's Dodge: A directional dodge, activated by double-tapping the crouch button. Automatically reloads your equipped weapon whilst dodging.
    • Gambler's Dodge: Activated in the same way, using this dodge near enemies generates melee energy.
  • Subclass Passives: Way of the Outlaw
    • Chains of Woe: Precision kills increase weapon reload speed for you and nearby allies.
    • Deadshot: Significantly improves your ability to hit with Golden Gun.
    • Six-Shooter: Golden Gun can be fired quickly up to 6 times but has a shorter duration.
    • Explosive Knife: Throw a knife from range at enemies that explodes shortly after impact.
  • Subclass Passives: Way of the Sharpshooter
    • Kife-Juggler: Throws a knife at enemies when melee energy is full. A Precision kill with this immediately recharges it.
    • Practice Makes Perfect: Precision kills reduce the cooldown of Golden Gun.
    • Crowd-Pleaser: Enables precision hits with Golden Gun, which generate Orbs of Light for your allies.
    • Line 'em Up: Precision hits with Golden Gun increase its damage and extend its duration.
  • Grenades:
    • Incendiary; Swarm; Tripmine.
  • Mobility:
    • High Jump: extra height to Double Jump.
    • Strafe Jump: Upgrades Double Jump with better directional control while in the air.
    • Triple Jump: Upgrades Double Jump with a third jump.

HUNTER NIGHTSTALKER

The Hunter Nightstalker first appeared in a Destiny 2 leak, and acts as the final, Void-based class for the Hunter.

  • Super Ability:
    • Shadowshot: Fires a non-lethal Void Anchor that slows affected enemies, causes them to take more damage, and prevents them from using abilities.
  • Class Abilities:
    • Marksman's Dodge: A directional dodge, activated by double-tapping the crouch button. Automatically reloads your equipped weapon whilst dodging.
    • Gambler's Dodge: Activated in the same way. Using this dodge near enemies generates melee energy.
  • Subclass Passives: Way of the Trapper
    • Snare Bomb: Throw a smoke bomb trap from a distance with this Melee Ability. The smoke bomb sticks to surfaces and detonates when enemies are near, slowing and disorienting them.
    • Keen Scout: Sprint and sneak faster, and gane an enhanced tracker. Tethered enemies are marked for easy tracking.
    • Deadfall: Void Anchors fired from Shadowshot become traps and wait for prey. Void anchors have increased range and last longer.
    • Vanishing Step: Dodging makes you vanish from sight for a short time.
  • Subclass Passives: Way of the Pathfinder
    • Vanish in Smoke: Throw a smoke bomb explosive from a distance with this Melee Ability. The smoke bomb creates a cloud that makes you and nearby allies invisible.
    • Lockdown: Grenade and smoke effects last twice as long, allowing for strong territorial control and increased damage potential.
    • Heart of the Pack: Killing tethered enemies creates Orbs of Light and increases mobility, recovery, and resilience for you and nearby allies.
    • Moebius Quiver:Fire Shadowshow multiple times in rapid succession. Shadowshot now deals massive damage against tethered enemies.
  • Grenades:
    • Vortex Grenade; Spike Grenade; Voidwall Grenade.
  • Mobility:
    • High Jump: extra height to Double Jump.
    • Strafe Jump: Upgrades Double Jump with better directional control while in the air.
    • Triple Jump: Upgrades Double Jump with a third jump.
Destiny 2 guide, story walkthrough Class changes, Exotics, levelling and more explained. Destiny 2 guide, story walkthrough

Want more on Destiny 2? Our Destiny 2 guide tells you everything else there is to know on the game so far, including Lost Sectors, Treasure Map locations, Heroic Public Events, and Flashpoints on EDZ, Titan, Nessus and Io. Elsewhere we explain how to Power level to the 265, 300 and 350 Power caps, as well as what to spend Glimmer on, how to join Clans and how Mods, Infusion, and Engrams and Legendary Shards work, Crucible tips, a Destiny 2 Exotics list, details on the Nightfall schedule, Trials of the Nine and the weekly reset, how to unlock classes and subclasses, and how to complete the Destiny 2 Raid.

Destiny 2 Warlock subclass skills and abilities

WARLOCK DAWNBLADE

The Warlock Dawnblade is the new Warlock class in Destiny 2, and replaces the old Warlock Sunsinger. It's the first Warlock class you'll get to play in Destiny 2 as a result, with a Titan-hammers-like Super that lets you rain down flaming projectiles on your foes.

Dawnblade

Since then however, then have been a few changes. Check out the updated class guide below!

  • Super Ability:
    • Daybreak: Holding L1+R1 allows you to weave Solar Light into blades and smite your foes from the skies - think of the Titan's old Hammer of Sol super, throwing several blasts of Solar energy but from the air.
  • Class Abilities:
    • Healing Rift: Hold crouch to conjure a well of Light in a static circle around you that continually heals allies inside it.
    • Empowering Rift: Hold crouch to conjure a well of Light in a static circle around you that increases the attack power of allies inside it.
  • Subclass Passives: Attunement of Sky
    • Heat Rises: Airborne kills recharge Grenade and Melee energy. Casting Daybreak instantly refills all ability energy.
    • Winged Sun: You can fire weapons and throw grenades while gliding.
    • Icarus Dash: Allows you to dodge mid-air by double-tapping the crouch button.
    • Swift Strike: Strike an enemy with melee to burn them and temporarily increase your movement and reload speed.
  • Subclass Passives: Attunement of Flame
    • Everlasting Fire: Killing an enemy with Daybreak extends its duration.
    • Igniting Touch: Melee attacking enemies burn them and cause them to explode when killed.
    • Phoenix Dive: Holding crouch while in the air causes you to quickly descend and regenerate health.
    • Everlasting Fire: Killing an enemy with Daybreak extends its duration.
    • Fated for the Flame: Daybreak projectiles seek targets as they travel and, on impact, launch a streak of deadly flames.
  • Grenades:
    • Solar; Firebolt; Fusion.
  • Mobility:
    • Balanced Glide: Gain moderate speed and directional control over your glide jump.
    • Burst Glide: Glide jump ability provides an initial boost of speed.
    • Strafe Glide: Jumping while airborne activates Glide and starts a drift with strong directional control.

WARLOCK VOIDWALKER

The Warlock Voidwalker returns in the open beta, but with several updates since it was first introduced in The Taken King expasion for the first Destiny.

Voidwalker

Check out the updated class guide below to see how it's changed:

  • Super Ability:
    • Nova Bomb: Holding L1+R1 hurls an explosive bolt of Void Light at the enemy, disintigrating those caught within the blast.
  • Class Abilities:
    • Healing Rift: Hold crouch to conjure a well of Light in a static circle around you that continually heals allies inside it.
    • Empowering Rift: Hold crouch to conjure a well of Light in a static circle around you that increases the attack power of allies inside it.
  • Subclass Passives: Attunement of Chaos
    • Chaos Accelerant: Hold L1 to draw power from your Super to overcharge your grenade, making it more deadly and effective.
    • Bloom: Void ability kills cause enemies to explode.
    • Cataclysm: Nova Bomb travels slowly and seeks enemies. Detonations shatter into smaller seeker projectiles, and the Nova Bomb can be detonated early by firing your weapon at it.
    • Entropic Pull: Strike an enemy with melee to drain your enemy's life force and use it to recharge your grenade.
  • Subclass Passives: Attunement of Hunger
    • Devour: Kill an enemy with melee to fully regenerate your health. For a short time afterwards, kills restore additional health.
    • Feed the Void: Hold L1 to consume your grenade energy to regenerate your health. Grants the Devour effect.
    • Insatiable: While the Devour effect is active, killing enemies extends its duration and recharges your grenade.
    • Vortex: Nova Bomb creates a singularity which continually damages enemies trapped inside.
  • Grenades:
    • Vortex; Axion Bolt; Scatter.
  • Mobility:
    • Blink: Jump while airborne to teleport a short distance.
    • Burst Glide: Glide jump ability provides an initial boost of speed.
    • Strafe Glide: Jumping while airborne activates Glide and starts a drift with strong directional control.

WARLOCK STORMCALLER

The Warlock Stormcaller first appeared in a Destiny 2 leak, and acts as the final, Arc-based class for the Warlock.

  • Super Ability:
    • Stormtrance:While active, Stormtrance allows a Stormcaller to float across the battlefield, electrocuting and disintegreating foe after foe.
  • Class Abilities:
    • Healing Rift: Hold crouch to conjure a well of Light in a static circle around you that continually heals allies inside it.
    • Empowering Rift: Hold crouch to conjure a well of Light in a static circle around you that increases the attack power of allies inside it.
  • Subclass Passives: Attunement of Ions
    • Chain Lightning: Deliver an electrrocuting Arc melee strike at extended range that chains from the struck target to another enemy nearby
    • Arc Web: When cast with full grenade and melee energy, Stormtrance lasts longer and fully restores health.
    • Ionic Blink: Press teh Sprint button to teleport during Stormtrance.
  • Subclass Passives: Attunement of the Elements
    • Gale Force: Electrified Melee Ability that hits at extended range and recharges your Super, grenade, and melee energy
    • Landfall: On casting Stormtrance, fire a bolt of lightning into the ground, creating a devastating shockwave under you.
    • Rising Storm: Your Rift charges faster when allies are near.
    • Arc Soul: Your Rift now grants you or any ally who uses it an Arc Soul to aid in battle.
  • Grenades:
    • Arcbolt; Pulse; Storm.
  • Mobility:
    • Balanced Glide: Jump while airborne to start an airborne drift with moderate speed and directional control.
    • Burst Glide: Glide jump ability provides an initial boost of speed.
    • Strafe Glide: Jumping while airborne activates Glide and starts a drift with strong directional control.

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