Let’s start this guide for the best SMGs in Destiny 2 for PvE, PvP, and Gambit by getting the obvious out of the way. Recluse right now is arguably the best pound for pound gun in Destiny 2, period.
Recluse is kind of a pain to get, especially if you don’t like PvP as you’ll need to grind competitive Destiny 2 until you reach Fabled rank to complete its pinnacle quest.
However, the grind is worth it as Recluse is the best SMG option, and arguably best energy weapon option for almost every situation in Destiny 2, be it raids, Crucible, Gambit or whatever.
Tarrabah, if you can get the drop from Crown of Sorrows, is a solid all round SMG in all modes as well, but it’s harder to get than Recluse and outclassed in most situations. However, Shadowkeep might change that, so check in with us later once that meta has settled.
As far as Gambit goes, in this case it essentially the same as the guns we would recommend for PvE. Recluse is the only SMG you should consider invading with because it’s such a great all-around SMG, but most likely you’re going to try and use one of your Power weapons anyway.
That said, other SMGs do exist, and if you’re working on getting Recluse still and want to explore other options, these are the best SMGs for PvE, PvP and Gambit in Destiny 2.
We’re going to go in alphabetical order, but just know that yes once again, Recluse is the best in almost every situation other than a the specific scenarios in PvE where Riskrunner and Huckleberry’s exotic perks can shine.
Best Destiny 2 SMGs
Best for PvE & Gambit
- Bug-Out Bag (Energy, Solar) – Random drop from Gambit Prime and The Reckoning. Multi-Kill Clip is nice perk if you can get the roll.
- CALUS Mini-Tool (Energy, Solar) – Reward from the Menagerie/Chalice of Opulence.
- Huckleberry (Kinetic, Exotic) – Rare exotic world drop. Incredible for clearing out packs of minor enemies.
- Recluse (Energy, Void) – Complete “The Stuff of Myth” pinnacle weapon quest from Lord Shaxx. Almost no weaknesses, great versus everything.
- Riskrunner (Energy, Arc, Exotic) – Rare exotic world drop. Use it versus the Fallen, not bad versus the Hive either.
- Tarrabah (Energy, Solar, Exotic) – Extremely rare drop from final boss of Crown of Sorrows.