How Does Damage Resistance Work in Destiny 2: A Complete Guide

Annanda Islam
By Annanda Islam
17 Min Read
Image Source: Bungie

Get a complete understanding of damage resistance in Destiny 2 with our comprehensive guide. Learn how it works, its impact on gameplay, and how to increase your resistance levels.

Destiny 2 is a popular online multiplayer first-person shooter game developed by Bungie. It takes place in a fictional world where players assume the role of a Guardian and embark on a journey to reclaim their lost home, the last city on Earth. The game features a variety of weapons, armor, and abilities that players can use to defeat enemy forces and progress through the game’s story.

In Destiny 2, weapons and armor have different damage resistance values, which determine their effectiveness against different types of enemy attacks. Armor resistance determines the amount of damage a player can absorb from enemy attacks before taking damage. In contrast, weapon damage determines the amount of damage a player can inflict on enemies. The higher the resistance or damage value, the more effective the armor or weapon will be in combat.

In this guide, we will take a deep dive into the mechanics of damage resistance in Destiny 2. We will discuss the different types of damage, the factors that affect damage resistance, and the ways in which players can increase their damage resistance. Additionally, we will provide tips and tricks for maximizing your damage resistance and help you understand the importance of choosing the right weapons and armor for different combat scenarios.

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What is Damage Resistance?

Damage Resistance Destiny 2
Image Source: Bungie

Damage resistance can come from several sources, including armor, weapons, and mods. Armor is the primary source of damage resistance, with each piece of armor having a set resistance value. Players can increase their armor resistance by equipping armor with high resistance values, using mods that increase armor resistance, and using armor sets that have a set bonus that increases armor resistance.

Some weapons have intrinsic perks that grant damage resistance, and players can also equip mods that increase resistance to specific damage types. By combining different sources of damage resistance, players can create builds that are designed to withstand specific types of damage and survive longer in combat.

In conclusion, damage resistance is a crucial mechanic in Destiny 2 for surviving endgame content. By understanding how damage resistance works and how to increase it, players can create builds that are tailored to their playstyle and the content they are tackling. Whether you’re a hardcore PvE player or a casual Crucible player, damage resistance is an essential part of any build.

The Resist Buff Explained

Damage Resistance Destiny 2
Image Source: Bungie

It is important to note that the Resist buff is not always a reliable indicator of your actual damage resistance, as it only shows certain sources of damage resistance, and not all sources are reflected in the buff. To accurately gauge your damage resistance, players should take note of the resistance values on their armor and weapons, as well as the effects of any active mods and perks.

Resist 110%2.5%
Resist 225%5%
Resist 340%7.5%
Resist 450%10%
Resist Buff

How Stacking Damage Resistance Works

Damage Resistance Destiny 2
Image Source: Bungie

It’s important to keep in mind that stacking multiple sources of damage resistance isn’t always the best option, as it can take up valuable mod slots and perks. Players should weigh the benefits of stacking damage resistance versus other benefits like increased mobility, reload speed, and weapon handling.

Another factor to consider when stacking damage resistance is the type of damage you are trying to resist. There are multiple types of damage in Destiny 2, including Kinetic, Arc, Solar, and Void damage. Different types of damage are more prevalent in different activities, and some mods and perks may only provide resistance against specific damage types. Players should take this into consideration when building their loadout.

In conclusion, damage resistance is a crucial mechanic in Destiny 2 for surviving against high-level content and tough foes. Understanding how damage resistance works, including its stacking properties, can help players make informed decisions about their loadout and gear. However, players should also be mindful of the trade-off between stacking damage resistance and other benefits, as well as the type of damage they are trying to resist.

Are Damage Resistance and Reducing Enemy Damage the Same Thing?

Damage Resistance Destiny 2
Image Source: Bungie

No, damage resistance and reducing enemy damage are not the same thing. Damage resistance is a mechanic that reduces incoming damage to the player’s character. The more damage resistance you have, the less damage you will take from incoming sources.

On the other hand, reducing enemy damage is a mechanic that decreases the amount of damage that enemies deal. This can be achieved through various means, such as diminishing the damage output of a specific weapon type or reducing the damage dealt by a specific enemy type. Reducing enemy damage can make it easier to survive fights and defeat tougher foes, but it does not provide any direct protection to the player’s character.

All Damage Resistance Sources

Damage Resistance Destiny 2
Image Source: Bungie

In both PvP and PvE activities, the following sources of damage resistance are available:

Armor Mods: Certain armor mods can increase your damage resistance, with some of the most notable being Concussive Dampener (15% against concussive damage), Energy Converter (15% against energy damage), and Momentum Transfer (15% against kinetic damage).

Exotics: Certain Exotics, such as The Stag (25% damage resistance), Ward of Dawn (20% damage resistance), and Transversive Steps (10% damage resistance), can increase your damage resistance. Subclass

Nodes: Certain subclass nodes, such as Resilience (10% damage resistance), Shelter (15% damage resistance), and Iron Harvest (30% damage resistance), can increase your damage resistance.


Damage Resistance Destiny 2
Image Source: Bungie

Resilience stat in Destiny 2 Season of the Haunted grants damage resistance in PvE activities only, with the bonus becoming better the more points invested into the stat. At 100 Resilience, players receive 40% damage resistance, which stacks multiplicatively with other sources of damage resistance. The stat also grants bonus shields with each rank, increasing the effective health pool of the player.

Resilience TierResistance (PvE)
Tier 00%
Tier 11%
Tier 22%
Tier 33%
Tier 44%
Tier 58%
Tier 614%
Tier 720%
Tier 826%
Tier 932%
Tier 1040%
Resilience Damage Resistance

Damage Resistance Mods

Damage Resistance Destiny 2
Image Source: Bungie

Damage resistance mods in Destiny 2 are mods that can be added to armor pieces to reduce damage from certain sources. These mods come in different types, such as void, arc, and solar, and can be used to protect against damage from different elements.

They can also be combined with other mods to create more powerful combinations. Some damage resistance mods also have specific effects, such as reducing damage taken while using a specific weapon type.

NameSourceResistance (PvE)Resistance (PvP)
Elemental Diffusion SubstrateArtifact Mod5%N/A
Protective LightCombat Style10%N/A
Elemental DR ModsChest Armor15% against that elementN/A
Concussive DampenerChest Armor15% against AoE attacksN/A
Melee DampenerChest Armor15% against enemies within 4m of youN/A
Sniper ResistanceChest Armor15% against enemies over 30m from youN/A
Striking Light (Secondary Effect)Combat Style25% while sprintingN/A
Well of TenacityCombat Style40%N/A
Passive (Aggressive) GuardArtifact Mod50%N/A
General Damage Resistance Mods

Activity-Specific Damage Resistance Mods

Damage Resistance Destiny 2
Image Source: Bungie

Activity-specific damage resistance mods in Destiny 2 are mods that can be added to armor pieces to reduce damage from specific enemy types in certain activities. These mods are particularly useful for challenging activities such as Nightfall Strikes and Raids, where specific enemy types pose a significant threat.

Some examples of activity-specific damage resistance mods include Hive Barrier, Taken Barrier, and Fallen Barrier, which provide damage resistance against the corresponding enemy types. These mods are obtained through various means, such as completing specific activities or purchasing them from certain vendors.

NameSourceResistance (PvE)Resistance (PvP)
Riven’s CurseDreaming City Armor-3% per stack (Dreaming City only)N/A
Resistant TetherGarden of Salvation Armor5% per stack while tethered (GoS only)N/A
Enhanced Resistant TetherGarden of Salvation Armor10% per stack while tethered (GoS only)N/A
Dreambane ModMoon Armor10% per stack against Nightmare bossesN/A
Activity-Specific Damage Resistance Mods

Weapons And Exotics

Damage Resistance Destiny 2
Image Source: Bungie

In Destiny 2, various weapons and exotics can provide damage resistance to the player. Some weapons like Black Talon and Leviathan’s Breath provide brief periods of damage resistance against incoming attacks, while exotics like Wormhusk Crown and Mask of the Quiet One offer increased health regeneration and ability energy.

NameSourceResistance (PvE)Resistance (PvP)
Land TankOrigin Trait5% per stackN/A
Arc ConductorRiskrunner50% (Arc only)50% (Arc only)
Blocking (Swords)Swords50-80%50-80%
Blocking (Glaives)Glaives97.5%50%

Note: It’s worth noting that while these weapons and exotics can be helpful, they are not meant to replace the use of cover and strategic positioning in combat.

NameClassResistance (PvE)Resistance (PvP)
Wings of Sacred DawnWarlock15% while aiming midair10% while aiming midair
Contraverse HoldWarlock20% while overcharging a grenade20% while overcharging a grenade
The StagWarlock25% while in a Rift10% while in a Rift
Renewal GraspsHunter25% while in a Duskfield10% while in a Duskfield
ACD/0 Feedback FenceTitan33% per stack on the next melee hit taken33% per stack on the next melee hit taken
OmnioculusHunter50% while invisible10% while invisible
StrongholdTitan80% while blocking with a Sword80% while blocking with a Sword

Super Damage Resistance

Damage Resistance Destiny 2
Image Source: Bungie

In Destiny 2, Super damage resistance can be essential in combat situations. Some Super abilities, such as the Sentinel Shield for Titans, provide a high degree of damage resistance, allowing players to absorb significant damage while the Super is active.

Other Super abilities, like Dawnblade for Warlocks, provide more limited damage resistance and grant increased mobility and offensive capabilities. In addition, some exotics like the Aeon Soul gauntlets can enhance Super energy regeneration and duration, allowing players to make the most of their Super’s damage resistance and other benefits.

SuperClassResistance (PvE)Resistance (PvP)
Golden GunHunter60%0%
Deadshot Golden Gun (Knock ‘Em Down)Hunter66%15%
Chaos ReachWarlock68%20%
Glacial QuakeTitan79%47%
Blade BarrageHunter79.6%49%
Nova BombWarlock79.6%49%
Well Of RadianceWarlock79.6%49%
Nova WarpWarlock80%51%
Hammer Of SolTitan80%51%
Spectral Blades (Uncloaked)Hunter80%52%
Burning MaulTitan81%53%
Fists Of HavocTitan81%53%
Sentinel ShieldTitan81%53%
Arc StaffHunter81%53%
Gathering StormHunter81%53%
Spectral Blades (Cloaked)Hunter82%54.4%
Super Damage Resistance

Reducing Enemy Damage Sources

Damage Resistance Destiny 2
Image Source: Bungie

In Destiny 2, reducing enemy damage sources is an important strategy for surviving challenging encounters. One way to do this is by taking advantage of environmental cover and avoiding enemy fire. Another way is by using mods and gear that provide damage resistance against specific enemy types or elements.

Additionally, some abilities and Supers, such as Titan’s Ward of Dawn, can create defensive barriers that can protect the player and their allies. Finally, some weapons and abilities, like stuns and knockbacks, can disrupt enemy attacks and make them less effective. By combining these strategies, players can greatly increase their survivability and achieve victory in even the toughest battles.

NameSourceDamage Reduction (PvE)Damage Reduction (PvP)
PsychohackOrigin Trait20%10%
OverloadArtifact Mod25%0%
Renewal GraspsHunter Exotic50% while in a Duskfield20% while in a Duskfield
Warmind’s ProtectionCombat Style Mod50% while near a Warmind CellN/A
Reducing Enemy Damage

What Is the Best Damage Resistance Source?

Damage Resistance Destiny 2
Image Source: Bungie

In PvE, the best source of damage resistance is through a combination of Resilience and chest DR mods, as they can provide a total of 80% damage resistance. The Well of Tenacity mod can also provide an additional 40% damage resistance for a short time while active.

In PvP, the best source of damage resistance is through using a Super, as almost all Supers in Destiny 2 provide damage resistance while active. Other options worth using are the Hunter’s Omnioculus Exotic, the Sentinel Titan’s overshield, and the Warlock’s Stag Exotic.

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In conclusion, damage resistance in Destiny 2 plays a crucial role in both PvE and PvP activities. Whether it’s through equipping Exotic armor, utilizing Super abilities, or wielding mods, players can increase their damage resistance and survive longer in battle.

Understanding how to utilize these mechanics effectively is essential to performing well in the game and achieving success in both PvE and PvP activities. Ultimately, choosing the right combination of damage resistance sources will depend on the situation, so it’s important to be aware of what’s available and make the most of each opportunity to reduce incoming damage.

Annanda Islam is a passionate gamer and writer at GameRiv. With an innate passion for gaming, Annanda loves FPS action and RPG.