/ Exotics

Exotic Review: Skyburner's Oath

The inscription, written in a Cabal dialect, reads: "Victory or death!"

Skyburner's Oath is an solar exotic scout rifle that can be obtained from exotic engrams. You can view the review in text format (continue below) or check out out the following video!

Item Screenshot

Skyburner's Oath

Perks and Traits

Slug Rifle - This weapon fires Solar slugs that get stronger when aiming down sights.
For the Empire - This weapon is Full Auto, does extra damage to Cabal, and penetrates Phalanx Shields.
Extended Barrel - Weighty barrel extension. Increases Range. Decreases Handling Speed.
Extended Mag - This weapon has a greatly increased magazine size, but reloads much slower. Greatly increases magazine size. Greatly decreases Reload Speed.
Short-Action Stock - This weapon is especially easy to grip. Greatly increases Handling Speed.


I tested this weapon together with Nameless Midnight, arguably the best scout rifle available at the moment.

  • The Slug Rifle perk does work. While aiming down the sights, it does roughly 28% more damage compared to not aiming down the sights.
  • Against Blightmaker (the elite that spawns from the Taken heroic public event), NM does about 16% more damage than Oath in bodyshots and 12% more damage in critical shots. (Blightmaker is non Cabal)
  • Against Infiltrator Valus (the elite that spawns from the Cabal heroic public event), NM does about 7% more damage than Oath in bodyshots and 4% more damage in critical shots.
  • Against Blightball (the big ball you have to destory to activate the heroic Taken public event), NM does about 9% less damage than Oath. Interesting.
  • Against Cabal Legionaire (red bar minions, non-elite), where NM does 7% less damage than Oath in critical shots (but still does a whopping 39% more in bodyshots).
  • I also compared how long it took each weapon to empty 16 bullets. NM emptied its clip faster than the Oath.
  • The Oath fires slower while aiming down the sights. Not sure if this is by design or a bug but it essentially negates the damage buff from the Slug Rifle perk since it will fire slower in ADS.


  • Decent damage (when aiming down sights)
  • Shoots through Phalanx shields
  • Full auto mode
  • Solar damage, a good candidate in the Energy weapon slot for Nightfalls with elemental damage buff


  • Poor damage (when not using ADS)
  • Slow fire rate when using ADS, compared to hipfire
  • Takes up an exotic slot
  • Still behind Nameless Midnight

Summary & Score

Skyburner's Oath is a solid weapon if you do not have Nameless Midnight and another exotic weapon to use.

It's a shame that an exotic weapon designed to specifically kill Cabal is outperformed by a non exotic weapon that is readily available to everyone, in both damage and fire rate. I feel Bungie need to take a closer look at Skyburner's Oath (or Nameless Midnight) and fine tune the weapon.

I give this weapon a C rating.


Some grunts are born to fight the war. Yes, they're loyal and true, and when the call comes "hot drop in five," well, they're always first in the queue. But I'm not one of them. I'm no hero, I'm in no hurry to die. I shot my own squad on Phobos, when death came to wear us like armor. I rode the Primus's ship that rammed the Hive dreadnaught. Second wave out the hatch. We won that fight. Victory or death. We're not dead, so we won.

Now this is the end, brothers, our final fight. Ghaul's here to finish it. Mars taught us how to fight Guardians. The Hive taught us how to eat their Light. Remember that we made it possible. The Red Legion ends it. But we held the line and we didn't die. That's victory. It says so on the gun.