Ophidian Aspect (Warlock)
“Have I the aspic in my lips?”
Ophidian Aspect is easily one of the best exotic armor options for Voidwalker Warlocks thanks to its primary perk, Viper Totemic. This improves Energy Drain, readies weapons more quickly, and has a much faster reload for all of your weapons. That means you can heal off of melees more efficiently and spend less time outside of battle due to a steady stream of fire. That single perk alone would make a Voidwalker a nightmare to confront, but this armor’s other perks help a lot as well.
The third upgrade option allows you to choose between faster melee speed or bonus grenade energy on melee attacks. The fourth provides the option of increased grenade distance or bonus melee energy on grenade hits. Most armors offer those perks on kills only, so the fact that a hit is enough to help keep you charged shouldn’t be underestimated. The Ophidian Aspect arms are useful in both PvE and PvP, and that’s quite impressive.
Shinobu’s Vow (Hunter)
“No supplies. Armor in tatters. But the refugees had asked for help. And she had giver her word.” – Tale of the Six Coyotes
This one is for all of you Destiny: Rise of Iron Blade Dancers out there. With the Wrath of the Machine’s focus on close quarters combat, and the entire expansion allowing more freedom between range and melee, Blade Dancers are extraordinarily useful. Of course, with every other class getting some solid boosts through exotic armors, it’s only fair that Hunters do as well. Enter the Shinobu’s Vow gauntlets.
These gauntlets provide not only a more powerful Skip Grenade, but you also get two charges thanks to the New Tricks intrinsic perk. Players also have access to either the Momentum Transfer or Impact Induction perks, which grant bonus melee energy on grenade hits and bonus grenade energy on melee hits respectively. I will admit that these aren’t the most attractive gauntlets in Destiny, but you can choose worse exotic armors for your Blade Dancer. These also happen to be quite useful in both the Crucible and PvE side of things.
Transversive Steps (Warlock)
“In these boots, your relationship with consistent spacetime is… tenuous at best.”
These Warlock boots are quite possibly the oddest of all the new exotic armor pieces in Destiny: Rise of Iron. This is largely due to the Strange Angles intrinsic perk that allows for faster movement while crouching while also automatically loading your weapon if you pick up ammo for it. That makes these boots incredibly useful in tough challenges such as the Wrath of the Machine raid and even in PvP, since you will less likely have to stop and reload your weapon. If you’re running around with something like a Universal Remote, that spells trouble for your opposition.
The crouching speed may not sound like that much of a big deal either, but it makes Warlocks invaluable during the Siege Engine part of the raid. While everyone is slowed down by the weight of the engine parts, Transversive Steps let you dash along the path while crouched. So odd, but so useful.
“Whether on solid rock or shifting sand dune, the inexorable Sand Eaters never slow their pace.”
The Dunemarchers exotic armor for Titans helps turn the bulky class into the speedy tank it was always meant to be. The Speed Demon perk increases your sprint speed, provides tighter turns while running, and allows you to move much faster while aiming down the sights of your weapon. This allows you to rush through areas while taking shots at enemies and provides the ability to better cover your teammates.
When combined with the Memory of Jolder Iron Lord Artifact, the Dunemarchers are even more of a force to be reckoned with. Having no sprint cooldown turns your tank into a high-powered train that can zip around the battlefield. There’s also the potential to gain extra Heavy Ammo (machine gun and rocket launcher are random perks), and there is the chance for each Double-Down bonus as well.
“Don’t get too close.”
The Thagomizers are for all you Strikers out there who have been looking for a special piece of exotic armor in Destiny: Rise of Iron that will also impale innocent bystanders. Aside from those spikes, these grant the Amplify node for free, allowing you to pick something else to make you an even deadlier tank. On top of that, you also get a second melee charge.
That doesn’t necessarily make these gauntlets the best PvE option, although the Momentum Transfer and Impact Induction perks do help against hoards of adds. It does serve pretty well in the Crucible, however. And you have the chance for to different reload perks, which can make all the difference if you get your perfect combination. Combine these arms with the Fabian Strategy, and you’ll be a menace on the front lines.
Celestial Nighthawk (Hunter)
“Starlight is your guide. No vacuum will contain you.”
Celestial Nighthawk has been a solid piece of exotic armor ever since it was first introduced. There’s no point in wearing this if you’re not a Gunslinger (unless you just want to look really cool), but if you are that particular, gun-toting subclass, then you’re in for a real treat. The Big Game perk changes the Golden Gun to a single shot that does six times the normal damage.
This may not be as helpful in PvP, unless you’re a sure shot, but in PvE it can help burn down bosses with ease. In Wrath of the Machine, Destiny: Rise of Iron’s raid, a Hunter can one-shot a captain during the final boss encounter, making life a heck of a lot easier when dealing with the servitors. It’s never a bad thing to be able to eat through a powerful enemy with a single shot. Stay awesome, Hunters.
Obsidian Mind (Warlock)
“Power from the ash.”
Yet another exotic armor piece centered on the Voidwalker Warlocks of Destiny, the Obsidian Mind helmet is all about keeping the Nova Bombs coming. Insatiable, this item’s intrinsic perk, reduces the cooldown of your next Super the more kills you get with your current one. So, if you’re up against a horde of enemies in Wrath of the Machine or the Omnigul Strike, or you’re running through Crota’s End for nostalgia’s sake, you can clear a screen, have a new Super charged up already, then clear the screen again.
This can also be useful in PvP as well, though it depends on which mode you’re playing. Elimination matches won’t benefit too much from this skill, but Control potentially can if you stumble across an entire team capturing a point. This is definitely a PvE focused exotic, though, and it’s definitely worth your time and consideration.
Bones of Eao (Hunter)
Whether you’re in PvE or the Crucible, there’s never a such thing as too much control in the air. Hunters don’t glide or do any of that other weird fancy stuff Warlocks do (aside from Blink… which they stole). They instead rely on double jumps, but the Bones of Eao adds a third jump to their repertoire.
That means they can get through most obstacles and change direction in mid air much easier than any other class. This can be a boon no matter where you are: raid, strikes, Crucible, etc.
Helm of Saint-14
“He walked out into the demon light. But at the end he was brighter.” – Paean to Saint-14
Ward of Dawn has always been a very useful Super for Titans. Popping a “bubble” and protecting you’re entire team from imminent death makes all of you Titans the real MVPs of Destiny. But what happens when enemies charge in? Now you’re dead inside of that warm, purple dome of love and everyone’s blaming the Titan (which totally isn’t fair). Thanks to this exotic armor’s Starless Night perk, enemies who dare cross the Ward of Dawn’s threshold are now blinded.
It’s not surprising that this is still a very useful armor piece in Rise of Iron. Teams will never not turn to a Titan for protection during incredibly tough challenges, so being able to defend and blind enemies for a few seconds will really help in tight spots. It’s not the most useful helmet for PvP, though, unless you can catch your opponents completely off guard (something much easier said than done).
“Hey, if it works for computers…” – Marcus Ren
Frost-EE5 pretty much helps Hunters do what they do already, just a little better. The Rapid Cooldown perk grants better control while running, but it’s the fact that it speeds up the charging of your grenades and melee ability while sprinting that’s really the selling point. If you’ve ever seen a Hunter out in one of Destiny: Rise of Iron’s battlefields, they can be seen darting about and taking out enemies in rapid succession. Boosting that ability only makes a Hunter even deadlier in the grand scheme of things.
The best part about this piece of exotic armor is that they’re just as effective in PvP as they are in PvE. Sprinting around multiplayer maps will allow you to keep those high-damage skills charged. When you happen across an opponent while turning tightly around a corner, you’ll be prepared.