Let’s start this guide for the best SMGs in Destiny 2 for PvE, PvP, and Gambit in 2020 as of Beyond Light by having a moment of silence for Recluse, the undisputed queen of Destiny 2’s PvE scene until the moment it was sunset… Thank you. Onto the rest of this guide.
Best Destiny 2 SMGs 2020
Best for PvE & Gambit
- Escape Velocity (Kinetic) – Random world drop.
- Friction Fire (Kinetic) – Random world drop.
- Huckleberry (Kinetic, Exotic) – Rare exotic world drop.
- Ikelos_SMG (Energy, Arc) – Random world drop.
- Riskrunner (Energy, Arc, Exotic) – Rare exotic world drop.
- Seventh Seraph VY-7 (Energy, Arc) – Random world drop.
- Tarrabah (Energy, Solar, Exotic) – Obtained via the exotic kiosk.
While Recluse is out of the picture now anywhere where power matters, there are still quite a few decent SMG options PvE that now have a time to shine.
Huckleberry is among the most underrated weapons in the game. There are few better Kinetic trash mob clearing weapons in the game and it’s just a blast to use. Like almost any other SMG, it’s not going to be great against anything particularly tanky.
When I say almost any other SMG, what I’m alluding to is Tarrabah. Tarrabah is a pain in the butt to use. You have to charge up Ravenous Beast to get it to do anything special and you can’t stow it or even look at your ghost otherwise the bar restarts.
However, if you commit to the Tarrabah playstyle and get Ravenous Beast active, Tarrabah turns into an absolute monster of a weapon capable of even denting high HP majors.
If you’re planning on fighting lots of Fallen, such as in the Deep Stone Crypt raid (particular first and third encounters) Riskrunner will smoke Fallen thanks to its chain lightning capability after taking arc damage (a favorite of the Fallen).
As far as legendaries go, Escape Velocity and Friction Fire both have nice rolls that will serve you well, while Ikelos_SMG and to a lesser extent, Seventh Seraph SMG are good SMGs that have the added perk of generating the very useful Warmind Cells if you’re running a Warmind Cell build.