Destiny 2: Lightfall reveals new Strand subclasses’ powers and abilities

New subclass, new strategy

With the release of Destiny 2‘s Lightfall expansion on February 28 2023, a new Darkness subclass is available for Guardians to wield. Strand is the brand-new elemental power joining the existing subclasses of Void, Arc, Solar and Stasis. Strand offers players exciting new abilities and possibilities for traversing the Destiny environment.

Guardians will enter the secret city of Neomuna based on Neptune and, using Strand, will be able to explore it like never before. In the penultimate chapter of Destiny‘s Light and Dark saga, Guardians will explore a neon city using the Darkness to their advantage in the form of Strand. With influences and inspirations such as 1980s action cinema and superheroes, Lightfall promises to bring huge explosions and plenty of action, which is reflected in the new environment’s aesthetic.

With the new environment and new subclass comes new vocabulary. Creating something out of Strand is called weaving whilst defeating an enemy affected by Strand will Unravel them and make a Tangle. Tangles are small bundles of Strand fibers which explode when shot, causing area damage to any nearby enemies. Guardians can also pick up Tangles and throw them, causing yet more damage.

Three new debuffs also join the ranks. Suspending a PvE enemy will lift them off the ground and disable them, whilst this effect is similar in PvP except for opposing Guardians being able to move slowly and fire their weapons to fight back. Unravelling an enemy causes threads to burst out of them which attack nearby opponents and unravel them too, like a chain reaction. Finally, a Severed enemy has their damage output reduced.

Alongside these debuffs comes a major buff called Woven Mail. This encases Guardians in a mesh of Strand fibers to reduce incoming damage. In PvP, this only protects the body – headshots and melee damage will register as before.

Soaring through the skies of Neomuna

Image via Bungie

One of the most notable additions to Destiny 2 with the Strand subclass is the grapple. Players can hit their grenade button and their character will weave a hook made of Strand fibers which can grab onto anchor points throughout the world. The hook will then contract and pull the Guardian to its intended destination. Strand can create grapple points of its own, meaning that traversal is possible even without a solid anchor point. Guardians can melee during the grappling process to deal additional damage, unravel enemies and push them backwards.

The Bungie team has focused on rewarding players for executing a lot of actions concurrently, with sequences such as defeating an enemy with a melee to unwind them into a Tangle, grappling onto the Tangle to have the grapple ability refunded, snatching the Tangle from midair and throwing it at a group of enemies before grappling to the Tangle once more and then slamming to the ground out of the grapple to suspend a solitary enemy whilst the Tangle continues to a group of them and explodes. It sounds like a lot all at once, but this frenetic gameplay brings high rewards, that only scale to more monumental heights when you take a look at the individual Guardian classes.

Warlock Broodweaver

Image via Bungie

Warlocks are Destiny‘s magical class, wielding the power of the universe to devastating effect. They utilize Threadlings, small explosive minions made of Strand fibers, to their advantage. All Threadlings will run forward and jump on enemies before exploding, but the Warlock is more in tune with the Threadlings, who will return to the Guardian if a target isn’t found. For example, in a group of three Threadlings, if two find and defeat targets, the third will return to the Warlock before condensing into an orbiting form known as perching. The next time the Warlock attacks an enemy, the Threadling will attack the same one.

The Warlock’s new melee attack, Arcane Needle, is a deadly tracking projectile which unravels enemies upon impact and is capable of being chained up to three times in a row. As well as the new melee, new aspects are available. Weaver’s Call will create three Threadling eggs when a Rift is cast, which then hatch into Threadlings when they hit any surface. Any Threadlings perched when the Rift is cast will turn into additional eggs. Mindspun Invocation has multiple benefits for a Warlock. It will weave three Threadling eggs when a grapple melee is executed. As well as this, the Threadling grenade can be consumed to generate multiple perched Threadlings, and the Shackle grenade can be consumed to gain a buff which will explode to suspend other enemies after every kill.

The Warlock’s super, Needlestorm, will create dangerous spikes out of Strand fibres that stick into both enemies and the environment before exploding and then reweaving into a horde of Threadlings that seek out any survivors.

Hunter Threadrunner

Image via Bungie

Whilst all three Guardian classes have access to the grapple tool in Lightfall when using Strand, Hunters use their exceptional movement and speed to further the possibilities. Hunters will receive a new rope-dart weapon which brings maximum agility and they’re also able to attack multiple enemies at once in mid-air. Using their new melee attack, the Threaded Spike, Hunters can throw a rope dart which bounces between enemies to damage and sever them. When it returns, it grants the Hunter melee energy for each enemy hit. Timing the return of the rope dart to perfection rewards an additional burst of melee energy.

Hunters also have new Strand aspects to experiment with. The Ensnaring Slam allows them to slam down and suspend all enemies nearby whilst the Widow’s Silk brings multiple benefits. It grants an additional grenade charge as well as creating a persistent grapple Tangle when using the grapple ability and fully refunds the grenade ability. Hunters can set up grapple points to chain together and the entire Fireteam will benefit from using these meaning that fast traversal is more achievable than ever in Destiny.

These new abilities and aspects combine with the new Hunter Super attack, Silkstrike. This enables Hunters to enter the third-person view as they grapple through the world and use the rope dart to pick off enemies. Whilst the super is active, Hunters can grapple more frequently and the rope-dart becomes multi-functional, having both a light and heavy attack. The light attack is best suited to single opponents and can be used whilst airborne or on the ground. On the ground, it can be used in frequent succession. Hitting an enemy with the dart’s tip will deal additional damage, whilst defeating an enemy with it causes them to explode. The heavy attack swings the rope dart around in a circle and damages any enemies within its radius.

Titan Berserker

Image via Bungie

Finally, the tanks of the Destiny universe, the Titans. Titans can produce giant blades of Strand matter which surround their hands. The new Titan Strand melee ability is Frenzied Blade which sounds as dangerous as it is. The Titan dashes forward to slice at enemies with their arm blades to sever them, and with three charges stored these attacks can be chained together.

The new Titan aspects include Into the Fray which gives Woven Mail to Titans and their nearby allies upon destroying Tangle weaves. This reduces damage taken whilst regenerating the Titan’s melee energy faster. Drengr’s Lash gives Titans the ability to blast forward when casting their class ability, which suspends enemies in the rippling shockwave path left behind.

The new Titan Super, Bladefury, grants Titans a more powerful version of their Frenzied Blade melee attack as a new light attack that increases the next attack’s speed when successfully landed. This also builds energy for the heavy attack which hurls a pair of seeking projectiles forward to suspend and damage enemies.

Grenades and grapples and fragments, oh my…

Image via Bungie

As has been the case with previous subclass reworks and introductions, Strand will also see three new grenade possibilities. Grapple, which is controlled with the grenade button; a Threadling grenade, which splits into three projectiles that weave into Threadlings upon collision; and the Shackle grenade which detonates in mid-air suspending opponents before sending seeking projectiles to suspend other nearby foes.

New fragments are also available to further customize a Guardian’s build, including the Thread of Ascent which reloads equipped weapons and increases weapon handling and airborne effectiveness upon grenade abilities being activated. The Thread of Fury rewards melee energy for damaging enemies with a Tangle whilst the Thread of Finality generates Threadlings when finisher moves are used. Finally, the Thread of Warding grants Woven Mail to Guardians upon picking up an orb of power.

Guardians worldwide are preparing for Strand and Lightfall by powering up their characters whilst harvesting as many valuable resources as possible. The Seraph’s Shield operation is fully underway with some interesting and exciting narrative twists. Destiny 2: Lightfall will be released for PC, Xbox and PlayStation on February 28, 2023.

Cheri Faulkner
Guides Writer || Cheri is a freelance guides writer for Destructoid having joined in early 2023. She is also published in the likes of NME, Metro, TechRadar, The Loadout, PCGamesN and more as well as writing about music in the pages of Metal Hammer and Prog Magazine.