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Is Hawkmoon The Best Exotic Hand Cannon In Destiny 2?

Is Hawkmoon the best? Let’s find out.

Is Hawkmoon The Best Exotic Hand Cannon In Destiny 2

Now that you can get Hawkmoon in Destiny 2, if you haven’t then check out our guide for how to do that, we need to decide something. There are now ten Exotic Hand Cannons in the game at the time of writing, that’s a lot. Is Hawkmoon the best of them all? Well, I think it’s worth diving in and finding out, don’t you? Let’s go through the starts, perks, and then the competition.


  • Impact – 78
  • Range – 61
  • Stability – 76
  • Handling – 83
  • Reload Speed – 63
  • Rounds per Minute – 140

Hidden Stats

  • Aim Assistance – 93
  • Inventory Size – 52
  • Recoil Direction – 96
  • Zoom – 14


This is a hard one to nail down now because Hawkmoon can drop with random rolls. I think this plays into how good it is, because you can get all sorts of good stuff in the possible rolls. I’ll only list the Intrinsic Perk here, but do check out the rolls you could end up with if you’re interested.

  • Intrinsic Perk: Paracausal Shot – Final round damage for any precision hits.

The Competition

Okay, there’s a lot of competition to look at here. Let’s go through them one by one.

Ace of Spades

Not only is this an iconic weapon, it lets you maintain your radar while aiming down sights, and has Firefly too. However, that sort of pales in comparison to the additional damage that Hawkmoon can deal with any precision hit.


Crimson is one of my favourite Exotics. The Intrinsic Perk makes it fire three rounds at once, but it’s the other perk, Cruel Remedy, which heals you with kills that’s what makes it powerful. If you’re purely focusing on damage though, which I think we should, it’s still not as good as Hawkmoon.

Eriana’s Vow

Now this is another Exotic that you should be interested in. It deals additional damage on the first shot while aiming down sights, and can pierce shields. It’s super powerful, and has a decent scope to back it up. Honestly, I think this is better than Hawkmoon, but not by too much.


Lumina definitely isn’t any competition for Hawkmoon. It doesn’t focus on dealing damage, it’s all about healing your fellow Guardians.


Really this is a PvE weapon. The Intrinsic Perk is designed to work against Taken enemies and make you a beast in Gambit. No competition for Hawkmoon, but still very good.


This one’s interesting. It’ll fill your Energy Weapon ammo up, but after that then it reloads itself and deals bonus damage. I think that’s quite powerful, but it does mean you’ve got to put a lot of work in to get that bonus damage. Hawkmoon is still better.


Sunshot is great fun. You target enemies and highlight them after a single shot, and your kills cause giant suns to spawn on corpses. I think this is definitely more powerful than Hawkmoon, but only for Guardians who aren’t great at precision shots just yet. Otherwise, Hawkmoon will get you a kill with a precision shot every time.

The Last Word

I love The Last Word but it’s Intrinsic Perk is all about accuracy. There’s no additional damage to be found here, so it’s not going to beat Hawkmoon.


Finally, we have Thorn. This weapon deals damage over time and refills its own magazine. I genuinely believe that it destroys the Hawkmoon, but it’s also a bit of a cheesy weapon. In terms of pure brunt and shots you make, Hawkmoon wins.


To conclude. Hawkmoon is better than most Exotic Hand Cannons. Overall, Sunshot beats it for PvP, as does Thorn if you’re looking to cheese kills. In PvE it’s Malfeasance that wins out, but only just. Let us know what you reckon in the comments.

I'm an avid Destiny 2 fan and player. I fell in love with Destiny 1 during the early alpha and have been hooked by the universe ever since. I really enjoy playing with other Guardians, speculating about the lore, and writing about as much of the Destiny universe as I can.

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