It’s been almost a week since Destiny has launched and many have made their way through the provided planets. The Crucible is packed tight with high level guardians ready to claim their fame. The worlds are crawling with fireteams with one goal in mind: kill everything in sight. But you? You just picked up the game and are already being pressured by a choice. What class do you choose to start your legend?
At the start of Destiny you are given the option of three classes: Titan, Hunter, and Warlock. Each having their own unique look and play style, it can be hard to make a choice. Not knowing what to expect can make all the difference between an enjoyable experience or frustration. Because we here at Twinfinite are so dedicated to you, the reader, we’re going to break down all three guardians for you. For now we’ll focus on what is essentially the support class. That class is the Warlock.
Ease of movement and mid to long-range attacks make for a strong balanced support to the Titan and Hunter classes. With its heavy focus on recovery and crowd control the Warlock is must have for strikes and fireteams in general. Access to two different subclasses allows you to pick a play style that best suits your needs. Destiny provides you two subclasses for each guardian. There is one that you start out with and the one that you unlock access to after reaching level 15. For the Warlock you have Voidwalker and Sunsinger. At a first glance the two don’t seem very unique but as you gain experience and unlock abilities they begin to distinguish themselves.
The later skills acquired through leveling each of the subclasses all share a focus. This is probably the most important factor in choosing which subclass of the Warlock will be best for you. It takes quite a bit of time to fully unlock any particular subclass so knowing which one you want beforehand will save you loads of time.
The Voidwalker, your standard beginning subclass, is a warlock powered by void light. In Destiny crowd control and resource management is just as important as damage output and defense. When facing hordes of hive or up against a squadron of the Cabal keeping them in manageable groups and strategically separated will prove priceless. Lucky for you the starting subclass for the Warlock was built for just that.
For all your crowd controlling necessities this subclass has a few abilities to make your job easier. Ranging from simple melee to a grand special attack you’ll have the tools you need to keep waves of enemies at bay. There are also several different modifiers to help hone your preferences.
First you have your grenade ability. When you first start out it is a pretty basic vortex grenade. You throw it, it explodes, and a globe of energy sits there for a few seconds damaging any enemies in its vicinity. After some hard-earned experience it evolves into something more. You can then upgrade your grenade into a Scatter Grenade or an Axion Bolt.
The Scatter Grenade is perfect for rooms with open spaces. Covering a sizable area, it is able to take out groups of enemies and even decimate shields. The Axion Bolt on the other hand is the go to grenade for areas with a lot of cover. when thrown it splits up and seeks out enemies. Perfect for forcing them out of cover so you or your teammates can pick them off.
Next up is your special, the Nova Bomb. Even at its entry-level form, this attack is a force to be reckoned with. Putting your guardian up in the air to cast down a bomb made entirely of deadly void energy, it is perfect for taking out elites, ultras and large groups of annoying enemies. Making the Nova Bomb even more of a threat are its own modifiers: Vortex, Shatter and Lance.
Vortex creates…well a vortex. It keeps enemies trapped in a pool of void energy causing continuous damage to any in its grasp. Shatter turns your Nova Bomb into a volley of three explosions covering a much wider area. Perfect for taking out entire teams in crucible or clearing almost any room in the campaign. Lance turns the bomb into a high-speed projectile perfect for taking care of groups of pesky snipers. Adding to the usefulness of the this powerful attack are some secondary modifiers to perfectly tune this ability to your liking: Vortex Mastery, Angry Magic, Embrace the Void and Bloom.
These secondary modifiers add all sorts of goodies to your repertoire in Destiny. Granting tracking and energy draining abilities to your Nova Bomb make it all the more useful. Bloom is a personal favorite due to its ability to cause a sort of chain reaction. Enemies killed with Bloom explode allowing them to do even more damage to surrounding baddies and possibly cause more blooms. In essence, the guys and gals at Bungie heard that you like crowd control so they put some extra crowd control in your crowd control.
All of the above abilities would be useless without having them readily available. All of the abilities in Destiny, with the exception of traversal, have cooldowns. This means that having a method to speed up the cool down of your grenades and fill up your special bar more quickly is a must have. For the Voidwalker subclass, that method is the Energy Drain modifier for your melee attack.
The melee is probably the best option for all three guardian classes when you’re in a pinch. The Warlock’s melee is able to speed up the cooldown process and in pure awesome fashion is compatible with bloom. That means you can run up to a group hit the one in the middle and watch the light show as they all burst into pretty purple explosions.
These abilities and modifiers clinch the number one spot for the Warlock’s ability to keep enemy groups at bay in Destiny. Of course if you rather be more of an in your face, let’s boost our team type of guardian you have another option: The Sunsinger.
What the Sunsinger lacks in crowd control it more than makes up for in damage output. No longer relying on the power of the Void, the Sunsinger uses solar light to set any opposition ablaze. Built for damage over time and stat boosting, this subclass is perfect for weakening enemies and giving you and your fireteam the edge over the darkness.
Every ability in the Sunsinger skill set is crafted to cause as much damage as possible. This begins with your grenade. After you spend some time and gain some XP with this subclass you will gain access to the Fusion grenade. Think of a sticky fireball that causes an immense amount of damage to your target and whoever is unlucky enough to cross their path. Modifiers make this an even more dangerous ability.
The Gift of the Sun and Touch of Flame abilities make the Sunsinger’s grenade one of the most dangerous abilities in Destiny. Gift of the Sun grants you the ability to carry 2 grenades, meaning you have two chances to cause major damage to any group you come across and is especially useful in the Crucible. Touch of Flame causes an ignite effect setting any enemy damaged by your attack to be set on fire for a period of time.
Once you unlock the Scorch ability for your melee, you become Destiny’s equivalent of the Human Torch. Scorch adds ignite to your melee and also drastically increases the damage output when used. Scorch is perfect in tight quarters when you’re in the middle of reloading.With modifiers such as Brimstone which causes enemies to explode and Solar Wind which knocks them back, enemies will think twice before approaching you. And if the damage still isn’t cutting it Radiance is there to save the day.
The Sunsinger’s special ability isn’t an attack but rather an ability boost which definitely should not be overlooked. Once activated, Radiance fills your Warlock with light boosting the effectiveness of all that you do and providing extra protection against hazards. It also drastically decreases the cool down for all attacks. But its modifiers put this subclass in a league of its own.
Song of Flame, Radiant Will, Radiant Skin, and Fireborn are what this subclass is all about. For those of you who enjoy running with a fireteam, Song of Flame reduces cooldowns for all nearby allies while boosting your abilities. Radiant Will extends the duration of Radiance and Radiant Skin reduces incoming damage respectfully. And then you have what may be the Sunsinger’s best ability: Fireborn.
Fireborn probably has one of the best sets of benefits Destiny has to offer, provided you have a full special meter when the time arises. While it doesn’t offer an additional stat boost like the other modifiers, it does provide one advantage that proves very useful during difficult missions and strikes. Fireborn allows you to activate Radiance after you die in order to revive yourself, pretty much turning your Warlock into a mystical phoenix.
You can’t have all modifiers equipped at once so take the time to experiment and see which combination best suits you. No matter what you choose, the Sunsinger is a powerful being. If used correctly and with the proper timing, it renders you almost immortal. Nothing like being a Guardian who is impossible to keep down.
The two subclasses offered are surprisingly unique and allow for some much needed flexibility. It’s a good idea to switch between them for the proper situations. Bungie manages to provide a smooth transition between the two so as to not mess up your flow, providing new move sets for each sub class and having them control similarly. This is great for the player as the Warlock’s method of getting around is extremely useful.
Traversal is the last factor to consider between the two subclasses. This is mainly because they are largely similar until you are well into either skill tree. In order to maintain consistency between Voidwalker and Sunsinger they both control exactly the same up to a point.
In Destiny, all guardians learn a jump ability. For the Warlock it’s Glide, an ability that allows you to float for a considerable distance making platforming simple and easy. As you progress you will unlock Focused Control and Focused Burst. While the former allows for better mid-air control, the latter adds a nice initial speed boost when you initiate Glide making the platform-heavy sections go by with ease. Regardless of which subclass you use, these two modifiers will be made available to you. But there are slight differences that do become available much later on.
For the Voidwalker, you will receive the option to trade in your Glide ability for Blink. A short distance teleport, Blink can prove very useful in avoiding incoming fire even though it can be a bit difficult to use and takes a lot of practice. The Sunsinger on the other hand never loses the Glide ability, improving heavily upon it instead.
Balanced Glide is a modifier available only to the Sunsinger that improves both control and speed. Then there is Angel of Light which allows you to hover in one spot for a short time as you aim down your weapon sights. For a game that provides multiple avenues for verticality, these two abilities are invaluable making you a deadly force on both the ground and in the air.
Destiny offers a lot of choice when molding your guardian into what you want them to be. Two distinct subclasses and a decent amount of ability modifiers aim to satisfy even the pickiest of players. For those of you looking to fill that support role among your friends, look no further than the Warlock. Using this and the class breakdowns provided for the Titan and Hunter, you’ll be able to choose a path and begin your very own legend.