Here is a breakdown of which mods are available in which slot and which elemental affinity.

Mods to take:

Reload mods

The Lion has two phases before another round can be fired: Reload Delay + Reload Animation. Reload Delay can be mitigated by Manual Reloads, i.e. reloading as soon as you fire, not after the round explodes. We will test both the reload animation alone as well as the shot to shot time, which would include both Reload Delay and Reload Animation.

Reload Animation This test only judges the time from the start of reload animation to return to neutral position.

Perks Time Reduction
None 3:04 (base)
Ophidians, no mods 2:49 -8%
1x Large Arms 2:37 -15%
1x GL Loader 2:32 -17%
1x Enhanced 2:29 -19%
2x Large Arm 2:27 -20%
2x GL loader 2:27 -20%
2x Enhanced 2:26 -21%

Fire to Fire

Refer to the Reloading section of The Gun for detail on Manual Reloading.

Perks Time Reduction
Hand-off reload 3:25 (base)
Manual reload 2:04 -40%
2x Enhanced 1:46 -48%

Note: These times are shorter than the above, because it’s using reload cuts, i.e. smashing the firing button to fire as soon as possible, rather than waiting for the full animation reload.

Ammo Mods (Scavenger & Reserve)

Two things determine how ammo will work for your lion:

  • If your kinetic weapon is primary or special ammo.
    • Ammo drops are split between weapon slots that share the same ammo type. So running a kinetic primary weapon will halve your ammo for your Lion.
  • If the ammo brick is a random spawn or generated by your Fighting Lion Kill.
    • Lion kill ammo bricks will completely refill your entire inventory, no matter the size. Random bricks will refill 30%, 15% if you’re using double primaries.
Mod Ammo Brick Kill Brick
None 4 / 8 13 / 26
1x GL Reserves 4 / 9 14 / 28
2x GL Reserves 4 / 9 15 / 30
Mod Spawn Max
None 10* 26
1x GL Reserves 10* 28
2x GL Reserves 10* 30

(* somewhat random, I’ve spawned with 10,11 or 12)

How Scavenger Mods interact with Reserve Mods:

Mod none 1x Reserves 2x Reserves
none 8 8 8
1x Scavenger 8 9 9
2x Scavenger 8 9 9


  • Heavy Ammo bricks and Heavy Ammo Crucible Spawns do not give Lion ammo.
  • If you are empty in Crucible, you have to wait for an enemy to give you a primary brick. There is no automatic granting of ammo like in PvE.

Dire Artillery

Dire Artillery

(Source: Obelisks in Season of the Dawn, Vendor rank ups afterward.)

Grants additional Super energy on Energy or Power Grenade Launcher final blows.

This perk is correctly worded. It’s by slot (Kinetic/Energy), not by ammo type (Primary/Special). Confirmed to work with Fighting Lion, but not Mountaintop.

Also, it stacks.


Tested with a Tier 1 combatant in the Tribute Hall. The enemy kill was at 50%.

Eyeballing it here, but 2.5% with 1 mod, 5% with 2x mods.

It works in Crucible too: super mods

Other choices:

  • Unflinching mods for your Kinetic Weapon (but not GL unflinching)
    • You only need to be on your target for an instant with Fighting Lion out. But then you’ll need to swap to your kinetic to clean it up. This means you’ll be swapping and potentially ADSing in the middle of your fight. Unflinching mods for your kinetic are invaluable since you won’t have the advantage of opening the fight with your kinetic.
  • Traction
    • Fighting Lion is a mobility based weapon, so having the +10 mobility and increased turn speed is a real asset.

Mods to avoid in PvP:

  • Ammo Finder
    • Fighting Lion’s exotic perk provides Primary ammo on kill, so this is unnecessary.
    • In PvE, it’s a good choice because it procs A LOT, because the game thinks you’re using a special ammo weapon, which has less up time.
  • Excessive GL launcher reload perks
  • Concussive Dampener does NOT work in Crucible
  • Dexterity mods
    • Fighting Lion already has a 100 in Handling, so it doesn’t need the help. As far as kinetics, remember Fighting Lion’s Masterwork perk, Chimera. This masterwork effectively gives your kinetic Quickdraw. Dexterity mods still help, since it’s not true “Quickdraw”, but it has diminishing returns.
    • For more on Dexterity Perks, Freehand Mod and Quickdraw, refer to this post on r/CruciblePlayBook


    Top 3:

    1. Mobility
      • You will always be hipfiring, so mobility is a huge asset.
      • You need to be able to peak shoot and disengage quickly. Mobility is king.
      • Mobility also helps hunters with (reload) Dodge cooldown, so it’s win-win.
    2. Recovery
      • Do not neglect Recovery. Helpful for peak shooting and disengaging both.
      • Also, on Warlock, reduces your Rift cooldown.
    3. Strength or Discipline, depending on your subclass & playstyle
      • I’m a neutral game player. I like Melees or Grenades to help with kills outside of Supers. Additionally, Melee & Strength mods are only 3 energy while Intelligence (Super) mods are 5 energy and restrict your armor mods choices unnecessarily.