I stalked 500 guardian’s resilience levels so I can voop them better. Here are the results…

I shared my results from a recent experiment to see which level of resilience a guardian can have in order to make the best out of them. Here are the results of my experiment:

I’ve been playing the game Destiny for a few years now, and I’ve generally been impressed with my guardian’s resilience. I knew that I could take them down, but being able to actually see their stats, level them up and see how they turned out has been extremely helpful.

Last week I wrote about how I was able to get the resilience levels of every single guardian in my game. I thought that would be a one time thing, but it turns out that I’m a little obsessed with the data. Since then, I’ve been gathering data on their resilience levels. I’ve made a spreadsheet with all of them (woot woot). My question now is: How can I use this data to make my game better?. Read more about does resilience matter in destiny 2 pve and let us know what you think.

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We’ve probably all seen videos on “what resilience levels should I run in this meta,” but have you ever wondered, “hmm… how many people really run each resilience level?” “Are liquid coils/accelerated really worth the sacrifices, realistically speaking?” you may wonder if you’re a Fusion Rifle aficionado like myself.

I spent most of last week mining Plug One.1s and was curious as to what the optimal damage level to strive for in the crucible is. To that aim, I played a number of crucible matches and recorded the resilience level of each individual guardian in my lobby. If that’s all you wanted to know, here are the results:


Level of Resilience The number of Guardians Percentage
1 12 2.4
2 59 11.8
3 97 19.4
4 104 20.8
5 93 18.6
6 58 11.6
7 32 6.4
8 19 3.8
9 16 3.2
10 11 2.2
TOTAL: 501 100

Note that since the sample size is 500, we can be reasonably certain of the percent frequency of each confidence level. As a consequence, the actual frequency of each resilience level has a 90 percent confidence interval of about +/-3 percent and a 99 percent confidence range of around +/-4 percent.

In games of Control and Iron Banner the degree of resilience was assessed. To reduce the possibility of guardians being counted twice, I rotated between game modes and only played four games in total each counting session (2 of each game mode). I was pretty sure that I recalled the names, appearance, and loadout of each guardian I examined since this was a tiny group.


Now comes the exciting part. So, what does this imply for the 30 or so Plug One.1s I’ve been farming in the last week, or the Exile’s Curses I’ve been hoarding? The first order of business was to see how many bolts each related charge time could kill at different degrees of resistance. To that purpose, I opened up another private lobby and (as you all know) shot my buddy u/HedgehogOK8370 over and over again… for the sake of science…

In contrast to the shotgun testing I did earlier this month, fusion rifles presented a totally different difficulty. It’s tough to determine how many bolts are needed to kill simply by firing a volley at point blank range since the game stinks and doesn’t display you all the damage numbers consistently, and because rounding is a problem. So, to put this to the test, I utilized the following methodology:


So I’ve become very skilled at drawing back my fusion rifle volley at the last second (giggity), to the point that I’m only hitting one or two bolts every time I fire the fusion rifle. Rather of counting how many bolts I needed to kill, I repeated the test 10 to 15 times each resilience level and charge duration to see if I could leave the victim with 1HP. If not, I raised the target’s resilience level by one and repeated the procedure. I repeat this procedure if I am still unable to abandon the target at 1HP. If I’m able to keep them at 1HP, the target’s resistance is reduced by one level. I determined that this is the maximum resilience that X charge time can kill in Y bolts after I confirmed that I am still unable to leave the target at 1HP at this repeated resilience level.

The test was also carried out with a 20% damage increase. The overwhelming majority of damage buff situations in the game fall under this category, including empowering rift, jumpstart, high-energy fire, Lumina, and so on. Weapons of light (33 percent) and reservoir bursts are exceptions (25 percent at full mag). However, they only appear a few times throughout a match and should have little effect on your fusion rifles’ intended rolls. A warlock empowering rift was utilized to obtain the most consistent findings.

Note: Due to a lack of Fusions in the precision/high impact frame families with this perk, I was unable to test HIR. However, since the damage increase is not continuous and changes based on the amount of rounds remaining in the magazine, it’s a pain to test and give a number to. However, based on damage statistics observed in VODs and taking into account possible damage rounding, HIR should enable you to kill guardians in the same amount of bolts with a resilience level somewhere between 2 and 5 higher. It’s pretty excellent in my view for such a simple to trigger damage increase.


Charge time and damage/bolt have a positive correlation, which is common knowledge in the vooping community. The shorter the charge time, with a few exceptions, the lesser the damage. The first apparent issue is: if fusion guns of various archetypes have the same charge time, would they produce the same damage?

It turns out that the answer is yes. My Plug One.1 with liquid coils (780ms charge time) has the same kill rate as my Exile’s Curse with Accelerated Coils and an Adept Charge Time mod. This makes assembling the data a little easier.

As a consequence, below are the results of the bolts to kill and the degree of fusion rifle charge time resilience:

edit?usp=sharing - I stalked 500 guardian

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1KdY2nPUmIQbQyaIb yuR0e8Ny FyJHZgWGGIcgmX7SM/edit?usp=sharing

Note that charge durations shorter than 660 milliseconds are excluded since even fast fire fusion rifles (540 milliseconds) can destroy all resilience with 6 bolts, thus the debate is unnecessary. Since I destroyed most of my Cartesian Coordinates, I wasn’t able to test 500ms, but I would expect it to be able to kill with 6 bolts up to at least 7 or 8 resilience.


Discussion of Charge Time in Section 1:

Based on this, basic precision frame fusion rifles (740ms charge time) can kill guardians with a resilience of 6 or below in 5 bolts. According to the previously mentioned resilience level distribution, this represents about 85% of all guardians in the Crucible! When liquid coils (780ms) are introduced, the resilience threshold for 5 bolts rises to 8, representing an extra 10% of guardian. One charge time reduction perk (via MW, Accelerated Coils, or Adept Mod) with a 700ms charge time, on the other hand, may kill in 5 bolts on guardians 4 and lower resilience. This equates to around 55% of guardians in the Crucible, a reduction of 30% as compared to the base level for precisions.

To be honest, based on this information, I’m not convinced that Liquid Coils are a good idea. You can only 5 bolt 10% more guardians if you raise charge time AND take up a perk slot that might be additional 9 stability or range. This will happen even less often than this, since you may have been able to land 6 bolts on the guardian and therefore kill him/her/it anyhow, or you might simply whiff and only land 4 bolts or less. I don’t think it’s worth it to utilize a perk column that also raises the charging time for the length of time it takes to land 5 bolts precisely AND the frequency with which the target runs 7 or 8 resilience. There is one possible exception, which I shall discuss in section 2.

It’s a bit more fascinating to reduce the charging time. On the one hand, you can still kill the majority of guardians in the crucible in 5 bolts, and your charge time is quicker. In comparison to basic charge time, you still lose a perk slot and the ability to 5 bolt nearly a third of the guardians out there. I believe the trade-off may be worthwhile, but it would not be my first choice. If you truly want a quicker charge time, having a charge time masterwork on an adept Plug One.1 is definitely the way to go, since masterworking on adept weapons has a little bit less of an opportunity cost owing to how masterworking on adept weapons works.

What about frames with a lot of impact? On the other hand, I believe it’s hard to justify using Accelerated Coils/Charge time MW on these items since you TANK the number of guardians you can 4 bolt from 72 percent to just 33 percent, a nearly 40% reduction! Because high impact frames’ base stats are inherently worse than precision frames’, you’ll be more prone to bolt spread and low stability issues, so using 5 bolts to kill 2/3 of guardians in the crucible doesn’t seem like a good idea (especially since you’ll be missing out on particle repeater/stability MW).

On the other side, I believe liquid coils may be justified. While the increase of guardians you can kill in four bolts is just 15%, it’s still preferable than using liquid coils on precision frames. Plus, as previously mentioned, owing to the high impact frame’s lesser stats, trying to get the 4 bolt kill is certainly a better value. However, if you ask me, I’d still suggest utilizing the preset charge time.

Section 2 – Getting Started (and Other Damage Increases)

When damage perks are taken into account, there’s a bit more debate to be had. The percent times impacted column in Section 2 of the spreadsheet shows the proportion of target guardians for whom kickstart/other 20% damage boosting buffs will make a difference in the number of bolts to kill.

A damage perk that only makes a difference less than 1/3 of the time sounds rather pointless to me, particularly in the case of kickoff, which has extremely strict trigger requirements. However, keep the following in mind. 1) Doesn’t kickstart provide the added advantage of decreasing charge time, which isn’t represented in the spreadsheets? 2) Are there any other perks to choose from instead of jumpstart?

Regarding 2), here are the additional choices when it comes to the two weapons that may roll kickstart:

Cornered, Adrenaline Junkie, Backup Plan, Thresh, Reservoir Burst, Plug No. 1

Backup Plan, Vorpal Weapon, HIR, and Celerity are all part of Exile’s Curse.

For the Plug One.1, nothing here is particularly noteworthy. Cornered, Backup Plan, and Thresh are your sole PvP choices (unless you’re wedded to Ashen Wake or Shinobu’s Vow, in which case Adrenaline Junkie will suffice). Thresh isn’t as as good as we thought it would be, since it only adds 2s to your super every kill under normal circumstances. When it works, the backup plan is a lot of fun, but I find that the reduced charging time irritates me more than it helps. Cornered is an excellent game, and in my view, it’s the only other genuine competitor, and it’s also situational. One thing to keep in mind with the Plug One.1 is that the value of KickStart increases as your charge time decreases.

For the Curse of the Exile… Kickstart is difficult to suggest above other alternatives. HIR reserves is a fantastic perk that has a similar impact as Kickstart, although to a lesser extent. Even if the damage increase is little in contrast, since most resilience levels are on the lower end, you’ll already be receiving 80% of the advantage. Vorpal also has the advantage of being able to do one-burst supers instead of sprinting for a second and a half and then sliding.

Of course, there’s a case to be made that jumpstart reduces the impact of damage dropoff. While this is accurate in theory, damage dropoff is seldom the reason of fusion guns failing to kill on the first try. Even though jumpstart implies you can still kill in 4 or 5 bolts after you’re outside of the 20 meter range, you’re going to have a hard time landing all the bullets unless the stars align.


  1. For both precise and heavy impact frames, standard charging time is generally the best choice.
  2. On precision frames, liquid coils provide just a small increase in consistency and are not recommended unless used in conjunction with kickstart, when it may function a bit better.
  3. On precise frames, Kickstart accomplishes virtually little unless you have liquid coils or accelerated coils/charge time MW/adept charge time mod.
  4. The more impact/charge time reduction perks you add to Kickstart, the more valuable it becomes. But, honestly, why would you want to do that?
  5. On high-impact fusion guns, Kickstart accomplishes little to nothing, thus I wouldn’t suggest it. After all, HIR is a thing, and you could probably use it instead.

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This article broadly covered the following related topics:

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