The Bad Juju has returned with Destiny 2’s latest DLC, The Season of Opulence. This pulse rifle was a personal favorite of mine in Destiny 1 on my Voidwalker Warlock, because it served as a very strong weapon for Guardians in everyday content such as strikes, patrols, and heroic missions.
This exotic’s intrinsic perk is String of Curses; Kills refill the magazine, increase damage for a short duration, and grant Super energy based on the strength of String of Curses. It also fires full-auto. This perk synergizes very well with several subclasses and their respective exotic armor pieces to help ensure you’ll have your Super when you need it. The perk lasts roughly three-point-five seconds on its own, similarly to Rampage.
The weapon’s catalyst, available after unlocking Forty-Five tributes in the Tribute Hall, allows the weapon to generate Orbs of Light on multi-kills and extends the duration of the String of Curses buff by approximately one second. This is basically a Rampage Spec Mod for the weapon, which is perfect for the way the String of Curses perk works.
This weapon’s other perks are as follows. It comes with Hammer-Forged Rifling for plus ten to the gun’s Range stat. Next are Steady Rounds for plus fifteen to Stability with a minus five penalty to the weapon’s Range. Hip-Fire Grip increases the weapon’s Accuracy and Stability when firing from the hip. Finally, we have Short-Action Stock for a plus-fifteen bonus to the weapon’s Handling.
For stats, I’ll be comparing the Bad Juju to the other Exotic Pulse Rifles; the Outbreak Perfected, the Vigilance Wing, and the Graviton Lance. Bad Juju’s Range value of 41 is the lowest of the four, putting it the same range with most Hand Cannons. Its Stability rating of 65 is second only to the Graviton Lance. Its Handling of 46 puts it in third place among its peers, meaning it’s a bit sluggish to ready and aim down sights with. It’s the second fastest in terms of Reload Speed at a value of 52 . It’s tied with the Vigilance Wing and Graviton Lance for Aim Assist with a rating of 60.
For Recoil Direction, the Bad Juju comes with a solid rating of 85. This means it’s recoil pattern is most likely going to be vertical. I say “most likely,” because, as Fallout Plays has pointed out in his video on recoil direction, there is always an element of randomness to weapon recoil. This is important for the Bad Juju, as it’s exotic perk allows it to fire in full-auto, and a mostly vertical recoil helps players on controller better control the weapon.
In PVP, the weapon will deal 16 damage to the body and 25 to the head without any stacks of String of Curses. The String of Curses buff stacks up to five times, changing critical damage values against Guardians from 25 to 28 with one stack, then to 30 with two stacks, 33 at three stacks, 35 at four stacks, and finally capping at 38 with five stacks.
In PVE, String of Curses increases Bad Juju’s damage by 20 percent with one stack, 40 percent with two stacks, 60 percent at three stacks, 80 percent at four stacks, and finally 99 percent at five stacks. This in nearly a Thirty-Three percent damage increase over Rampage in PVE.
In terms of pairings, I prefer to combine the Bad Juju with the Way of the Sharpshooter and the Celestial Nighthawk exotic helmet for my Hunter. String of Curses works perfectly with the Practice Makes Perfect subclass perk and the Celestial Nighthawk’s exotic perk, Hawkeye Hack.
Of course, there are several other powerful combinations for Bad Juju I can recommend. There’s the Way of A Thousand Cuts subclass tree for Solar Hunters using the Shards of Galanor. Top Tree Nightstalkers using Orpheus Rig can also use this weapon to soften the impact of the recent nerf to this subclass’ favorite exotic armor piece.
For Warlocks, Stormcallers running Crown of Tempest with either the top or bottom tree, or middle-tree players using Geomag Stabilizers would also greatly benefit from using the Bad Juju. Attunement of Grace Warlocks feeling the pain of the nerf to the Phoenix Protocol robes will also do well to use Bad Juju to help recreate that utility they brought to activities such as Tier Three Reckoning. The same could be said for Top Tree Voidwalker Warlocks using Skull of Dire Ahamkara after the last sandbox update.
For Titans, I’d say Sentinels using the Code of the Commander and the Ursa Furiosa gauntlets are an obvious choice.
While Bad Juju is naturally a great weapon for Solo players, its ability to improve your orb production means it works excellently in team settings as well. Your fireteam can use the extra orbs your create with your multiple supers to feed their own, and begin to snowball enemies down with their own Supers.
With that being said, Bad Juju is no replacement for the current P-V-E meta of Mountaintop and Recluse. In fact, when I attempted my first several solo, undying runs of the Bad Juju mission itself, I was using Bad Juju and hitting a brick wall at the end because I just couldn’t kill the adds that spawn fast enough. But after swapping to my Mountaintop and Recluse I easily solo’d the mission without dying.
In summary, the Bad Juju is an excellent weapon for players looking to supplement their Super generation in PVE in either group or solo activities. It softens the adjustments made to our favorite exotic armor pieces, while staying balanced in terms of damage dealt and Super energy generated.