Power score is a display of the player character's strength. This score is determined by the Power value of the character's equipped gear. As of New Light, each character begins the game at 750 Power.
Character Power is displayed on their Emblem and on the equipment screen. It is an aggregate of the Power value across all of the character's currently equipped gear, and determines the player character's damage output and defense.
Each activity has a certain recommended Power level, which determines how strong are the enemies the player encounters there. If the player character is significantly below the recommended Power, they are unable to deal any damage to the enemy and die after being hit once. If the player is significantly above the recommended Power, they deal more damage to enemies and can sustain more hits. Power advantages are disabled in some game modes.
The player receives gear of their character's average Power score from most sources. The average Power score is determined by the items with the highest Power value that the character can equip, including all equipment in the account: in inventory or equipped by any character, or in the Vault. Luminous Engrams contain gear slightly above the character's average Power score, but cannot exceed the Power softcap. Once the player character's actual Power score reaches the softcap, Pinnacle packages obtained from certain challenges and certain activities provide gear with a slightly higher Power value, which cannot exceed the hardcap.
The player can Infuse a piece of gear with gear of the same type but higher Power to transfer its Power value. Doing so consumes the item. For example, Infusing a Kinetic Auto Rifle with a Kinetic Shotgun of a higher Power value will destroy the Shotgun and give the Auto Rifle its Power value. Rare gear cannot be Infused higher than the Power softcap.
As of Shadowkeep, each character carries a Seasonal Artifact. When they gain XP, they level their Artifact and receive bonus Power. This bonus Power has no limits and can be leveled infinitely, but it is not counted to determine the Power value of the gear drops, and it cannot unlock challenges. When a Season ends, the Artifact is also removed, and the players receive a new one, which has to be leveled anew.
Max Base Power Level
|Curse of Osiris||330|
|Season of the Forge||650|
|Season of the Drifter||700|
|Season of Opulence||750|
|Season of the Undying||950 softcap/960 hardcap|
|Season of Dawn||960 softcap/970 hardcap|
|Season of the Worthy||1000 softcap/1010 hardcap|
|Season of Arrivals||1050 softcap/1060 hardcap|
Power Level Contribution Per Gear Slot