A new Gunslinger, hey? Aim true, Guardian. Most embarrassing thing a Hunter can do is snap off a shot of solar power only to see it spatter off a wall. Get out there and practice a bit. Feather the trigger.
Welcome back Guardians, this is a continuation of my subclass lore series, where I cover each subclass in Destiny. Of course, today we are talking about Gunslingers, the Golden Gun subclass of Hunters. We are going to cover a couple of different topics during this video, firstly we will briefly touch upon some of the most infamous Golden Gun Hunters in Destiny’s lore, secondly we will look at the philosophy/attitude of Gunslingers and lastly we will look closer at the mechanics of the Golden Gun, whether Hunters put solar energy into an existing weapons or whether they actually materialise a Golden Gun from nothing using solar energy. And the answer is not as obvious as you think.
A big thank you to lydell070898 who is part of my discord who provide all of the quest line dialogue for the Gunslinger, he actually started a fresh hunter to capture both PvE and PvP questlines.
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This is myelin games and I hope you enjoy this latest Destiny Lore episode.
Let’s start with some infamous Golden Gun hunters. Of course, Cayde-6 is a skilled Gunslinger, however I have already covered Cayde-6 in a previous video, so I wont cover him again. Ana Bray and Shin Malphur are two other notable Gunslingers. Ana Bray, the daughter of Clovis Bray fought at the battle of Twilight Gap and some how her storyline is entwined with Praedyth and likely the Exo Stranger.
In the exotic quest line for No Time to Explain, Lord Shaxx says this,
“You want another story about the Twlight Gap? Ana Bray, the Hunter. We all dug deep that day. We all touched the Light in ways we never thought we could. Or should.
Ana, though. When she fired the Gun, where her Golden blasts hit home, she left behind the pools of light. Like splashes of sunlight that burned and burned.” —Lord Shaxx
As part of this quest, we actually visit Twilight Gap within a PvE setting and see these pools of light that Ana Bray left behind, the mission ends with finding her bracelet. Upon handing this to leader of the Future War Cult, Lakshmi-2, she says this,
“Let me see what you… a bracelet. With the symbol of House Bray? Ana Bray’s personal sigil, Guardian, the inner circle will be grateful that you have returned this artifact to the Tower. The data you retrieved from the Eye of Atheon, meanwhile, has pinpointed another ripple.
This one is at the heart of the Black Garden. It is time you returned to Mars. The ripple in the Garden apparently flows from a construct called “the Groundskeeper.” Find it, destroy it. And return to my side.
“And now… what? A ring, with the symbol of the Warlock Pujari? Death, again. Like Ana Bray, a guardian fallen to the second death. Lost to us. We shall study these objects Guardian. Learn why they have been pulled through time.
I believe your work is over. For now. Praedyth’s files have unspooled. Their data undone like uncoiled strands of hair. And what has fallen free?
A weapon, transmitted from some time and some place, and specifically for you. Someone has taken notice of our actions, Guardian. Someday, we may be able to ask them to explain what all this means.”
As you can see, Ana Bray is very interesting character and for some reason her bracelet and actions have been pulled through time. Her actions are linked to the quest line for No Time to Explain, which is linked to Praedyth and the Exo Stranger. Not to mention her father is Clovis Bray, making Ana Bray a very notable Gunslinger.
The second infamous Gunslinger I want to speak about is Shin Malphur. Shin Malphur is quite possibly the earliest documentation of a Gunslinger. Shin Malphur was a young boy from Palamon, a settlement that lied outside of the Last City, Shin became the apprentice of Jaren Ward, and after Jaren Ward was killed by Dredgen Yor, it is implied that Shin Malphur inherited Jaren Ward’s ghost, this is told to us in the Ghost Fragment: The Last Word 3 card. In the Ghost Fragment: The Last Word 4 grimoire card Shin Malphur faces off against Dredgen Yor, the wielder of Thorn, the card reads,
“Reflex and purpose merged with anger, clarity and an overwhelming need for just that… an end.
In step with my motion, the fire within burst into focus – through my shoulder, down my arm – as my finger closed on the trigger of my third father’s cannon.
Two shots. Two bullets engulfed in an angry glow.
The other fell.
I walked to his corpse. He never raised his cursed Thorn – the jagged gun with the festering sickness.
I looked down at the dead man who had caused so much death.
My shooter still embraced by the dancing flames of my Light.
A sadness came over me.
I thought back to my earliest days. Of Palamon. Of Jaren.
Leveling my cannon at the dead man’s helm, I paid one final tribute to my mentor, my savior, my father and my friend…
“Yours… Not mine.”
…as I closed my grip, allowing Jaren’s cannon, now my own, to have the last, loud word.
As you can see from this card, it does not seem like Shin Malphur was ever taught how to empower his weapon with solar energy, the card seems very reflexive, emotional, instinctual and it is for this reason that it also sounds like Shin may have been one of the first to pioneer the Golden Gun technique. What further supports this, is the gun model in game, when you wield the Golden Gun in game it is the same as the Last Word, Jaren Ward’s hand canon that was passed on to Shin. So when Hunters wield a flaming Last Word in game, this may be a subtitle acknowledgement to the pioneer of the Golden Gun technique, Shin Malphur.
Whilst the Golden Gun technique may have been quite reflexive and instinctual for Shin Malphur, the grimoire cards also hint at more practical reasons for it’s creation. Unlike, the Nightstalker which is a relatively rare class for Hunters, Gunslingers are quite common. The Path of the Gunslinger quest reads,
There are plenty of Gunslingers doing the Tower’s work across the system, but only a rare few reach your level of mastery. That’s some dam impressive work, Guardian.
The reason why I think they were so common, was because it allowed Guardians to maximise their resources following the collapse, imagine during this time where ammo and weapons were in short supply, a Golden Gun not only addresses the concern with resources by making your bullets infinitely more effective, but also allows a guardian to engage enemies from range. This idea that the Golden Gun was born out of necessity for resources is reinforced by the Gunslinger’s Cloak which reads,
In the dark days before the Last City, all a Hunter had was the Light and a steady aim.
So far, we have spoken a bit about infamous Gunslingers and the early appearance of the Golden Gun in city’s history, so now lets talk about the personality traits of Gunslingers. Without question, Gunslingers are generally incredibly competitive. Their love for competition is reflected in their presence in the crucible and almost preference to defeat Guardians over enemies of the City. Ikora Rey, Zavala and Shaxx all appear to have had to deal with Gunslingers in the Crucible. The crucible quest line for the Gunslinger, Just a Handful of Bullets reads,
Good work. Did you use some Tripmines? Zavala loves those.
Later in the quest line Zavala would go on to say,
“I’ve learned to check every corner in a battle with Gunslingers. They enjoy leaving undesirable gifts.” —Commander Zavala.
I assume the undesirable gifts are tripmines. Ikora Rey also talks about her hesitancy when facing Gunslingers, she says,
“There’s nothing more conspicuous than a Gunslinger alone and out in the open. Sometimes their gaze gives away a lurking Tripmine, sometimes not. A Warlock can never be too careful.” —Ikora Rey
Not too mention the new Lord Shaxx cards that were released with the Age Of Triumph, where Lord Shaxx lost a bet to Cayde, the cards read,
“I beat you fair,” Cayde said. “Don’t ever—“
He raised his hand high to wag a finger under Shaxx’s nose.
“—try to outrace my Golden Guns.”
“Come on, buddy. The bet’s fulfilled. You don’t have to pout. Just remember not to challenge a Hunter with Golden Guns.”
There is also a Hunter known as Ain Suhu-assa who reinforces how Hunters love the competition of the Crucible.
The nightmask Cloak reads,
“They say the Crucible is preparation for the frontier. I see it the other way around.” – Ain Suhu-ässä
And Cast in Blood reads,
“The naysayers in Consensus don’t understand that we LIKE to fight each other.” – Ain Suhu-ässä
I do not think anyone would argue that Gunslingers typically like the competition of the Crucible, and similarly I don’t think anyone would disagree that many Gunslingers have an elitist attitude. Before you get upset, don’t shoot the messenger, I am just describing the Lore, the Path of the Gunslinger reads,
“I’ll say it because Cayde never will. Gunslingers are elitists. Nothing but the best is good enough for their hands. And firepower isn’t enough.
They demand elegance, as if there’s anything elegant about a gun. If they had their way, Golden Guns would be standard issue. What a universe that would be.” —Lord Shaxx
I am not calling you an elitist, Shaxx is, well and Ikora Rey calls you arrogant or desperate, she says,
“Are they leading or following up with the throwing knife? That’s one way to tell an arrogant Gunslinger from a desperate one.” —Ikora Rey
Calm down Gunslingers, I am sure Cayde will redeem your humble qualities… wait.. no he doesn’t, he says,
“Listen, I just want you to make an appearance in the Crucible, rough up the rookies in a little bit. Nothing drastic. Just remind em Gunslingers are the best at what we do.”
Ok, so we know Gunslingers like competition and we know they may share a similar attitude, so now lets move onto the mechanics of the Golden Gun, do Gunslingers empower their actual hand canons with solar energy and their bullets with solar energy, or do they materialize an actual Golden Gun. Well the answer is not as obvious as you think, and there is some evidence for both being true.
The idea that Gunslingers empower their weapons with solar energy has been more recently seen in the Destiny 2 gameplay trailer, specifically with Cayde-6 empowering Ace of Spades to use it as a Golden Gun. The story of Shin Malphur wielding the Last word, also reinforces how he transfers the light to the weapon. The light is not only transferred to the Gun but also to the bullets, this is strongly suggested in the Ghost Fragment Last Word 4 grimoire card, when Shin activates Golden Gun and it says,
“Two shots. Two bullets engulfed in an angry glow. The other fell.”
The idea that you have actually have to have bullets to use the Golden Gun is also reinforced by the actual name of the Crucible quest line for Gunslingers, Just a Handful of Bullets, the quest line also says,
“Every bullet in the Golden Gun is a statement a change in conversation, a shift in the paradigm. By the time I’m out of bullets, I’m out of opponents too.”
If this is the case, then could you not empower any weapon and make any weapon a Golden Gun? I think from a lore point of view you could argue that we have seen enough evidence of Hunters empowering weapons with solar energy that technically you could make a Golden Autorifle. However, there might be something else required before a gun can be empowered, it may require some modification. In the crucible quest line it implies that Hunters may modify their weapons using the Light, the quest reads,
“Only a Hunter would think to use their Light for gunsmithing. But I have to admit, it’s effective.” —Lord Shaxx
Maybe Hunters use the light to modify their weapon allowing it to be used as a Golden Gun. Alternatively, maybe this reference to gunsmithing is actually materializing a gun from nothing, from the light. Although there is a lot of evidence to suggest that Hunters just empower their weapons, there is also some evidence that suggests we construct the actual golden gun from light. The path of the Gunslinger reads,
“You’re really getting the hang of this Hunter thing, aren’t you? You’ve got the ability to construct a gun out of Light – you just have to realize it. I’m sure Cayde has some words of wisdom to share – Ghost
And the Ghost Fragment: Hunter describes a Hunter that completely runs out of bullets yet materializes a Golden Gun with ammo, it reads,
The stone smokes around her where the arc fire lashes it and the shrapnel guns throw up leaves of obsidian like glass butterflies. She shoots her bandoliers dry and a team of Vandals in glassy stealth leap up to rush her with knives
but she raises her hand and burns them down with the golden gun, laughing, crying out Draksis
And of course, not to mention, that in-game, as a hunter, even without The Last Word in your inventory or any ammo available, you can still activate a Golden Gun.
Is this just a game mechanic, or is this a true sign of a master Gunslinger, those who can materialize a golden gun from the Light, and their source of inspiration, well of course, the showdown between light and dark, malphur and yor, the original hand cannon to be engulfed in an angry glow, the Last Word.
That concludes this latest destiny lore episode, if you would like to support the channel leave the word “elitist”, to symbolize our crucible loving, hand cannon wielding Hunter friends. This is myelin games and as usual it has been a pleasure, peace.
But seriously, I am not saying that Hunters are arrogant, the lore is saying you are arrogant, don’t blame me.