The latest Exotic weapon for Destiny 2 has arrived and it’s quite different than other hand cannons. Dubbed the Lumina, this weapon is capable of not only killing angry aliens but healing allies and buffing their damage. This “support gun,” is wholly unique making it difficult to judge where it stands in the current PvE/PvP meta. Tied to a lengthy quest, one has to wonder if the Lumina is worth all of the effort or if you should let it rust in your vault.
Here is our official review of Destiny 2’s Lumina Exotic hand cannon.
The Lumina is a 150 RPM (Rounds Per Minute) hand cannon that holds up to 12 rounds in the magazine. Like other Exotics, there is no mod slot or alternative perks so there is no variation in what you can earn. Lumina has three normal perks and two unique ones that revolve around a healing mechanic. Here’s a quick overview of the Lumina’s perks:
- Noble Rounds: Kills with this weapon leave behind Remnants. Absorbing a Remnant converts your next hip fired shot into an ally-seeking Noble Round and partially refills the magazine.
- Blessing of the Sky: Using Noble Rounds on an ally heals them and grants both you and them a weapon damage bonus for a short time.
- Chambered Compensator: Increases stability, moderately controls recoil, Slightly decreases handling speed
- Accurized Rounds: Increases range
- Polymer Grip: Increases handling speed
Additionally, you can stack up to five Noble Rounds at a time, but a Remnant will only appear if you land the killing blow with the Lumina. Remnants appear as floating balls of light which can only convert into Noble Rounds once you touch them. This means if you kill an enemy with the Lumina you have to go to where that enemy died to obtain one stack of Noble Rounds.
The Noble Rounds have aggressive targeting, but will typically go towards your closest ally. There’s no way to direct the rounds to a specific person. When buffed you will do 35% increased PvE damage and a 19% increased PvP damage for 10 seconds. Rounds do not vanish if you stow the weapon and last until you die or use them. Finally, these rounds do not stack with other buffs such as Well of Radiance. We suspect this is to curb the insane DPS potential of this firearm.
Lumina For PvE
The Lumina for PvE is pretty damn fun. Unlike most Exotics, the ability to save your teammates or give them a quick boost is extremely useful. While most may see this as a way to buff yourself against bosses, the abundance of Noble Rounds actually makes it ideal for slaying majors. The 35% damage increase works across all weapons, so if you’re running a Loaded Question, sniper rifle, of Shotgun this buff allows you to melt them with ease.
Sadly, the inability to control where the Noble Round goes forces you to stay next to squamates. This can make delivering clutch heals awkward, especially in higher tier activities where fireteams are typically spaced out. Hopefully, a Masterwork Catalyst fixes this so you can direct the rounds because right now the healing is unreliable at any distance.
But when it does hit, those healing rounds can be an absolute life-saver. It can nearly heal a target to full, making it great for those clutch scenarios. You cannot heal yourself with this gun at all, so the Lumina is pretty underwhelming if you are just solo-queuing activities or on patrol. This is a gun designed for a group. Out of all my testing, I found that the Lumina shines in the Menagerie, Reckoning, and Gambit. These three modes allow you to consistently obtain Noble Rounds and expend them to the benefit of your team.
Gambit, in particular, was where this hand cannon excelled. The Noble Rounds are perfect for saving teammates and their precious motes. Plus, there are more than enough majors and mini-bosses to use the PvE buff against. Even though there are a few better exotics for Gambit, the Lumina could easily find a home in this mode. Remember, the damage boost is for every weapon so if you’re fast you can quickly swap to a heavy weapon while the buff is active.
Lumina for PvP
When it comes to PvP hand cannons there is a lot of competition. This put the Lumina in a tough spot because the gun is really fun to use. However, it forces a very specific playstyle that may not be suited to everyone. Since the Noble Rounds only heal allies, you can use it to save someone in a tricky fight and give them a good advantage. Keep in mind, you cannot see health bars, so you’ll need to train yourself to look for visual cues.
The Lumina is great if you like to run with your squadmates, as the buff tilts fights almost always in your favor. Yet, if you’re a lone wolf who likes to run around on your own then this isn’t the weapon for you. Lumina demands that you play alongside your team, especially in the Competitive mode where that burst healing really shines. It has decent range and stopping power for a 150 RPM hand cannon. Remember, if you have Noble Rounds you lose the ability to fire from the hip so you’ll almost always be aiming down the sights.
Is the Lumina Worth It?
This support hand cannon is a surprisingly entertaining weapon that can really cater to certain playstyles. If you like to play the support role in PvE activities then the Lumina is perfect for you. The weapon does enough damage to make it viable against most foes and the Noble Rounds are perfect for taking down powerful enemies. However, the inability to control who the healing rounds go to does produce some frustrations.
Even with its problems, we do think that the Lumina is worth picking up if you’re a PvE player that isn’t trying to optimize your DPS capabilities. It’s just okay for raids since the buff doesn’t stack and weapons like the Outbreak Perfected or Huckleberry still reign supreme for end game content. Lumina is simply an entertaining PvE weapon that isn’t a must have like the Outbreak Perfected. I will say the gun is quite good for Attunement of Grace Warlocks since the Noble Rounds trigger your Benevolent Dawn perk.
As for PvP, there are simply better options currently available for hand cannons and Exotics. Unless you like to play close to your team, the Lumina is just another Kinetic weapon that you sometimes cannot hip fire. I found that to be a major liability in a few scenarios where foe’s closed the gap. With that being said, if you get into the rhythm of healing/buffing your teammates between kills than this weapon can be absolutely nuts.
While not meta defining, the Lumina is an all-around solid hand cannon for both PvP and PvE.