Now that Destiny 2‘s first raid is out, a lot of people are eager to jump in and start getting that coveted loot that Destiny raids offer. The question is though, how do you complete it. For those unaware, raids are endgame activities that put 6 guardians to the test with challenges that focus around puzzles and gun play. We here, have completed the raid and want to share what we learned and strategies on how to complete the raid so you too can get the spoils of an emperor. [Be sure to check out our review to see what we think of the raid as well as all the other activities you will encounter in Destiny 2.]
First, when you spawn in, you’ll be outside of the kingdom. All the enemies outside will not attack you. We killed ours just because that’s how we roll. There are a bunch of rooms with secrets outside here but we are going to focus on how to complete the encounters and save the hidden stuff for another guide. Make your way up to the top and go through the grand door into the castle. After some long hallways, you will find yourself in a large lobby of sorts with a total of 4 doors scattered all around the room. Each of these door will have a triangle with a symbol in the middle of it. The symbols are of a sun, a pair of swords (we will just call them swords for the rest of this guide), a war beast (dog), and a chalice. You will need to become very familiar with these symbols are they will be very important throughout the whole raid. Your first objective is to enter the pools. When you enter the lobby, the door on the left is the sun door. That door will have one of the other 3 symbols as a white floating projection on it. Split your team into 2 groups. One team is going to defend the door and the plate although you don’t have to stand on this plate. The other group is going to go find the door that matches the floating symbol. If your back is to the sun door, the chalice door is up the stairs to your left, the dog door is straight ahead, slightly left in the middle of the room, and the swords door is on the opposite side of the sun door on the lowest level. have your team of 3 door seekers go to the door of the floating symbol and kill the enemies there. A large standard bearer enemy will spawn from the door. Kill him to claim the standard that will appear on the plate of that door. Grab the standard and go back to the door that the other 3 members are defending. Plant the standard into the plate and a new symbol will appear. The door seeker team then goes to that next door and they will repeat the process until all three standards are planted. The defending team’s job gets harder once the standards start getting planted. Shortly after planting a standard, it will say in the kill feed “a counselor appears.” These are floating psion wizards that are shielding another enemy known as “Standard Reclaimer.” These reclaimers will move towards the standards you’ve planted and steal them making you start all over. They also have a shield that makes them immune because of the counselors. The counselors have a clear shield so you can’t shoot them. Have one defending team member run in the bubble and melee the counselor and it will die. This drops the shields of the reclaimers and allows you to kill them. Repeat this process until the door behinds you opens and you can run away to the first encounter.
Emperor Calus now invites you to relax and bath in the pools. Obviously, its not that relaxing but it isn’t really difficult either. Look around the bathhouse and you will see that there is dark liquid everywhere. This stuff will hurt you and even kill you. In the four corners of this area are four plates and each has an orb on it. There is also a 5th plate in the centre of the room that has one as well. The orbs on these plates grant “Psionic Protection.” It gives you a x50 bonus to start and this protection prevents you from taking damage on the in the pools but will decrease over time as you stand in it. Split your team into 2 groups of 3 again. We split our teams into left and right but you could also do front and back, it doesn’t matter. The fight begins once all 4 of the outer plates have someone standing on them. In that center room, once everyone is on a plate and the fight begins, you can see the chains quickly rise up and reveal 9 gold and purple weights in 3 groups of 3. The protection is needed for everyone to stand on plates. These plates are in the psionic pools and therefore cause you to begin losing your protection buff. Each plate has a chain in the middle of the area that goes into a pool. A large enemy known as a Bather will come out of these pools by the plates regularly and need to be quickly very quickly. The key here is to hold the 4 plates until the next phase but the problem is that your protection will go away before that begins. The 2 people that don’t have plates come into play here. The spare person on each side is going to rotate the others so they may run to the middle plate and pick up a new orb to refill their protection buff. For example; on one side when the fight starts, the extra person from each side to run to the front plate (the plates slightly more elevated than the others) to help kill the Bathers there since they spawn front first. That extra person will then take over the plate so the original plate holder can run to the middle room, grab the orb to refill their protection, and then run the plate of the 3rd member of their side to take their plate. That 3rd member then runs to the middle to refill their protection and then run back to the first plate to take over for the guy that was the extra so they can refill their protection and then relief the other plate. Each team of 3 is going to keep rotating like this, in a V shape, to keep refilling protection and holding the plates. Once done long enough, the chain locks in the 4 corners will lock in place, the music picks up, and everyone needs to run into the middle room. Once in the middle room you will see now the weights are locked in place in 2 of the corners and one in the middle on the opposite side. The plate in the middle will be glowing. This plate gives you a buff only when standing on it called ‘Force of Will.” You need to damage the weights to break them to finish this encounter. You can only damage the weights if you are standing on the center plate giving you the buff. There will be Bathers coming out of the pools that the chains are in throughout this phase, as well as other ads from the other doorways. I’d recommend using 1, or even 2 people to clear ads during this damage phase to prevent death to those in the middle. Stormcallers, Sunbreakers, and Arcstriders are great at this. For those in the middle doing damage though, remember that you are standing in a pool and losing protection this whole time and can die to it. Also, even if you had protection, if you die to enemies or whatever else, you will lose your protection and will need to refill it to avoid taking damage in the pools again. Once the damage phase is over, a counselor will appear on that center plate. Run inside the bubble and punch it to kill it. Also the counselor may spawn a floating projection psion which need to be shot down as well but it’s an easy kill. Once the counselor and projections are dealt with, everyone returns back to their plates to do it again. This continues until the fight is finished. It took our team 2 damage cycles. Shotguns and fusion rifles, especially the Merciless, are really good here. Once completed, collect your rewards and head back out the doorway you came.
You are now back in the lobby that you started in. Now you will be defending the dog door in the middle of the room. The mechanics here are the same. Have a team of seekers for the doors and a team of defenders to hold the enemies off at the door. Once all the standards are places, make your way down to the Pleasure Garden. Don’t let the name fool you… it won’t be pleasant.
Upon entering the garden you will see beams of light glowing down on pillars of rocks. Ignore them for now. Go around the bottom area and clear out all the beast handlers and their horrible pets. All the handlers are major enemies but they are easy to kill which is great because power ammo here is a huge plus. Once all the enemies are dead, 2 objective markers will spawn on top of the bunker on the opposite side of the room. Assign 2 players that are good at jumping from platform to platform to these crystals but do not pick them up yet. On top of the bunker, you will see there is a door on the floor and this be for the other 4 players. Those 4 players will want to stay together as a team but the 2 prism holders should split the room in half (left and right). Once the prism holders pick up the prisms, the door opens for the other 4 to drop in but the garden will now have 6 raid boss caliber war beasts walking around hunting you. The 4 players in the safe room should each grab a spore. The prism holders should jump from pillar to pillar, staying on their own side look for large, bright purple flowers. Each side has 4 flowers and they are random but tend to follow a pattern depending on which one is blooming first. Each side has a flower on the wall along the sides of the safe room, one on sides (although looking out, the side one on the left is more in the corner of the side wall and the safe room wall), one in the middle of each side’s section (left side is in some trees and right side is in between 2 large rocks), and one on each side of the main entrance you used to come into the garden. Once the prism holders call out which flowers are blooming, they should also then keep an eye out for the dogs that are hunting. The dogs walk in set paths and leave temporary footprints for the players on the ground to see but it’s really important for the prism holders to be the eyes in the sky helping out. Once all the spore holders sneak to the flower, the prism holder for that side should shoot the flower using the prism. This causes the flower to burst and giving the spore holders nearby a buff called “Empowering Spores.” This should stack by 12 each time you do it if the whole group of 4 was together for when the flower was shot by the prism. The 4 spore holders should then try to make their way safely to the next flower.
The prism holders though now have an extra job. Every time a flower is shot, ads will spawn. You can’t use guns here or you will be found and the spore carriers can’t attack. Whatever side of the garden the flower was, in one of the elevated doors along the wall, a sniper legionary will spawn, on the other side, a beast handler will run and try to jump down to sprint after the 4 spore holders. The prism holders need to let each other know when they are going to shoot a flower so they can look at their walls’ doors and kill the 2 ads that come out before they get sniped or the handler gets to the spore carriers. They are quick kills with the prism but it’s best to kill them before they fire a shot off or get to the ground. It’s easy to do if you are paying attention. If the handler gets on the ground running, you can still kill him with the prism but be careful to not do it close to one of the beasts as it will give away your position and hinder your end goal. Now that the ads are dealt with and the spore team is moving to the next flower, you will continue finding and popping flowers until one of 2 things happens but both cause the same situation to occur. First is that you are seen by the beasts. Once found, they will run to 6 of the 8 flower locations (they are set locations and don’t change) and begin howling. The second thing is that popping the flowers and stacking the Empowering Spores part is timed and the beasts will grow restless and just start the howling event without seeing you (good luck getting it that far). This part when they are howling is essentially the damage phase of the fight.
Once the damage phase begins the prism carriers and spore carriers lose the relics they had. The prism holders should jump down into the garden. The entire garden will have the Empowering Spore buff. This buff increase your damage exponentially to the dogs. Other ads such as war beasts will start jumping into the garden but are little concern because the damage phase is timed as well. The 6 beasts are trying to wipe your team. Although there is no visible timer, you’ll have roughly 20 seconds to do as much damage to the dogs as possible and get back to the safe room through the top entrance to prevent death. We completed this by each person taking a dog for themselves. Of the 8 flower locations, the only two that the dogs do not run to are the one in the left corner closest to the safe room as well as the one between the two large rocks. Every other flower will have a beast run to it. each person has a dog, melts it as much as possible, and then needs to drop back into the safe room through the roof before it shuts to avoid dying. Logic dictates though that if you can just kill the beasts on the first run to just do it. The problem here is if some of the dogs die, it immensely lowers the amount of time you have to stack the Empowering Spores buff. It doesn’t ruin the fight but forces you to change strategies. One the first damage phase we had a stack of x24 (2 flowers before getting caught). Once found, we laid into the dogs as much as possible with some of us getting them to half health already. One the second time we again had x24 Empowering Spores. This time, our higher power level players actually killed their beasts. In the second damage phase, we killed 4 of the 6 dogs. Now when gathering the Empowering Spores buff for the 3rd time with only 2 dogs roaming, the spore team could move quicker and more freely but we only had mere seconds of time to collect as much as we could. The nice part to this was the 4 people who already killed their dogs, planned to go to the 2 remaining dog to help dps those ones. We finished the fight on the 3 damage phase. You only have access to the safe room 3 times which means 4 total damage cycles. Once the dogs are dead, go back on top of the safe room and collect your loot. Make your way back to the main lobby.
Your next door is the lowest level door which is the swords door. You know what to do here so get the door open and make your way onto the Gauntlet.
Welcome to the worst game show ever. The Gauntlet is literally a game Calus is putting you through that will test agility as well as coordination. The room is a circular room with an outer area that appears to be barred off but has walls that consist of 3×3 circles. There are 4 plates in the room across from 3 flashing arrows. Each of these plates, as well as the wall above the arrows, have again those same symbols of swords, chalice, dog, and sun. Your team again should be split into 2 groups of 3, each group having at least 1 person who is really good at running, jumping, and sliding. The fight begins once all 4 elevated plates have been stood on and lower. Ads will start rushing in from doors around the outside and run to where the arrows are. They are really easy enemies so hold them off. You will hear an alarm after a minute or two. Each of the 4 symbol areas will now have a large cabal enemy to kill. they aren’t the toughest but not a push over. Quickly kill them and prepare for the main part of this test. You’ll notice that the chalice and dog areas under the arrows have some sort of teleporter at them. Once these large cabal enemies are dead, your 2 teams should meet up at these two points, one at the dog and one at the chalice. a Psionic Charge will spawn and you need to have your best runners pick them up. As soon as they do, they will be teleported to the outside of the room. Your two remaining teammates will be able to see you. The 2 that get teleported will hearing beeps that are literally counting down like the start of a race, which is exactly what this is. Once the barrier drops, your runners will see that large wall with the 9 holes in it. The remaining teams on the outside need to jump on the plate to the wall that the runner they are responsible for is approaching (which starting will be one runner approaching the dog and the other going to the chalice wall to start). When they jump on that plate, one of the 9 rings will light up red. The runner will need to call out which horizontal row that the red ring is in to the other 2 members on that plate. The runners should also see one of those 4 symbols on the wall above the holes which is also good to call out to help identify who is talking if you are with a team that doesn’t play together often and you don’t know everyone’s voice (ex: dog top, sun middle).
Then the runner calls out to the plate holders which row has the ring that is lit, the 2 plate holders need to shoot the 2 arrows that the runner DID NOT call. For example: if the runner going towards the dog barrier calls out “dog middle”, the 2 plate holders on the dog plate need to shoot the top and bottom arrows on the wall. The ones shooting the arrows need to remember 2 key things. You have to be on a plate to activate arrows and to shoot at the same time. When the first bullet hits an arrow, it’s only a matter of seconds until time is up. If you don’t put enough bullets into them, it will fail you and just turn red. Shoot until it lights up green. Something our team did was designate the ones shooting the arrows as “higher” and “lower”. One person would always take to higher of the 2 arrows and the other would take the lower of the 2. For example: if the runner calls out the top row, the higher designated person would shoot the middle arrow since it is the higher of the 2 arrows that needs to be shot. It takes more than a couple bullets to deactivate the barrier so don’t just fire once. If it changes red, the barrier will go away but the runner will lose a key part of their objective. That objective is to extend the time they have until the Psionic Charge detonates. If the plate holders shoot the correct arrows, the one red ring the runner saw will have an orb in it that extends the duration they can hold the charge. If you miss one, it can be okay but you will need to move fast to get the next one or else you will die. Now since the runner is running on the outside, the plate holders need to move with him. The one thing hindering that is once the plate holders bring down a barrier, correctly or incorrectly, a Counselor will appear in a bubble under the arrows they just shot at. These Counselors will wipe your team and they do it quickly. What works best is have one plate holder assigned to kill the counselors. Once the arrows have been shot and the barrier is done, the plate holder assigned to counselors runs forward towards the arrows and waits for it to spawn in. Once it does, punch it, and run to the next plate. The other plate holder should just run to the plate but wait for the other plate holder since you’ll want to shoot the arrows together as the time window to activate is short as mentioned earlier. Once each runner has made it through all 4 barriers and each team of plate holders has killed all 4 of their Counselors, the runners will approach the finish line (literally a finish line with fireworks). They will then be teleported back into the middle area with the rest of their team and will need to carry the charges to the center elevator room the rode up and slam the charge into the middle platform. Once it is slammed, you will see a blue flame emerge from the 9 horns on the platform. From there, you will now scatter back to your lanes and hold off ads and do this 2 more times for a total of 3 times. However, on the next 2 attempts, there is some slight variation on the challenge. The concept will still be the same. Collect the orb, run the race, shoot arrows, and punch Counselors. The difference is that on the 2nd round, the outer race area will have large holes in the floor as well as narrows pathways to run across making the runner have to pay more attention to the ground beneath them. The 3rd round will still have the complex race track for the runners as well as the pillars that the plate holders will be standing on while trying to shoot the arrows move to try to throw off their aim. Now that you have done this 3 times you should have a minimum of 3 charges slammed (only 1 per round) or a maximum of 6 (both runners survived their races each round with the charges). The success of the first 3 rounds is what determines how easy the last phase is. When the runners are done with the 3rd round, everyone should run to the middle room where the charges get slammed. You will get an indication saying that the Psionic Charges have overloaded. Multiple charges will appear around the center room and everyone needs to grab one. Everyone will be teleported to the outside race track for a final run. Remember that there were 9 horns to be lit in the middle room and however many are left is how many people need to make it out alive with their bomb. If you did it perfectly in the first 3 round, only 3 people need to make it through. If you have the bare minimum of 3 total, everyone has to make it through to finish the encounter. Before the race barrier drops for everyone to run, you will see now that all the barriers are open but 4 of the holes will have orbs that extend your timer and prevent detonation instead of just the one. You will need to balance across your team and call out on the fly who is picking up an orb and which one. Those who do skip picking up an orb on one wall must be fast enough and get one at the next barrier or else they will detonate. There are some small parts where the floor opens up while your team is running but it isn’t a major concern. Once you reach the finish line, run to the middle room, dunk the charges you have left and if you completed enough to make 9, you finish the encounter. If you don’t, you will wipe and have to start all over. However since you have completed it, go one back to the lobby via taking the elevator back down.
Once back to the lobby, go to the chalice door and open it in the same fashion as before with all the other doors.
You are now getting ready to face Calus. Upon entering the Throne you will see Calus relaxing with a chalice in his hand. Break up into 2 teams of 3. There is no really easy way to determine how to break the teams up but the best I can recommend is one team be good for clearing ads with roaming supers and the other team be good at aiming. You will also see when entering the room that between your team and Calus are the 4 plates with the symbols you’ve seen through the whole raid so far. You can shoot the chalice out of his hand to begin the fight. At the beginning, ads will come rushing out. To begin the next real phase of the fight you must kill all major orange health bar enemies. Counselors will also spawn in on the plates which you can just run into the bubble and melee kill as before. Calus will shoot lasers at you while you are clearing the room but when done, will teleport your whole team into another realm with his big head as a shadow at the far end (from now on known as Shadow Calus). You will see a small foggy barrier as well as 3 orbs on the other side of it. The team that can clear ads should jump the barrier quickly and grab those orbs. They will then teleport back to the throne room while the others need to walk to the foggy barrier. Shadow Calus will begin sucking in the surrounding which pulls you against the barrier. Psions and projections will spawn in. Deal with them first ASAP. If a Psion knocks you in the air, Shadow Calus will suck you up and kill you. The projections will kill you as well instantly. Now back to the throne room for a moment. The team in the throne room will need to clear out ads but when the 4 Counselors spawn in on the plates, leave them alone. Have 1 person on each side of the throne room, outside of the plates to which you can use the plates for cover from throne room Calus. The team of 3 with Shadow Calus will need to take notice to the symbol on his head. Each of the 3 team members with Shadow Calus will see a different symbol. These symbols are the same symbols that match the plates in the throne room as well as the rest of the raid. The three members with Shadow Calus need to call out the symbols they see to the team in the throne room. Whichever symbol the team with Shadow Calus did not call out, the team in the throne room needs to kill the Counselor on that plate. If the team with Shadow Calus calls out dog, swords, and chalice; the team in the throne room need to jump in the bubble and melee the Counselor on the sun plate. Doing this correctly raises the next safety barrier for the Shadow team to progress. You will have to do this 3 times. From there 2 things happen, one for each team. First, the Shadow Calus stops trying to suck you up and starts vomiting flying skulls at the Shadow team. Killing these skulls stacks up the Force of Will buff from earlier that will allow you to do much more damage to Calus. Small Titan walls for instant reload as well as Warlock aura’s are great for the extra damage and firepower. You will want to stack as much Force of Will as possible. An average amount is 50-60 but try for 70-75.
While the Shadow team are cracking skulls (literally), the team in the throne room will notice Calus opening his arms and a new shield on his health bar. The throne room team needs to unload everything they can into Calus to remove that shield to prevent him from wiping out the entire team. Once the skulls are killed and Calus is staggered, the team will be reunited in the throne room. Have the whole team jump on one of the plates together and unload into Calus. It’s best to determine the order of plates you are going to use for damage before you start the fight. Jump on the first plate and start unloading on him. Warlock empowering riffs are great here. After a few seconds of damage, Calus will raise his right arm, when you see that motion, run to the next plate as he is about to set off an explosion to the plate you are on. After doing damage on the second plate, look for the same motion and move onto the third plate. Continue this until you’ve used all 4 plates. After all 4 plates have been used, the cycle is complete and you will start the process all over beginning with clearing the ads out of the room, killing the Counselors, and then everyone getting teleported. After taking away about a third of his health, you will see his chest open up with red light. This reveals that this is not Calus but it is instead a cloned machine. His critical spot will now be his chest and not his head. At this point also, he will no longer wave his right arm, but instead reach for his gun to shoot the plate you are on so you will need to watch for that clue for when to move to the next plate. Again after about another third, you’ll see more parts of him come off and he will then reach across himself to indicate when he is going to damage the plate your team is on and when to move. you will continue this process until Calus’ health is completely gone. Once his health is gone, he will attempt his mechanic he uses to wipe the team where he opens his arms. Destroy that final shield to kill him for good. Once he’s dead, the floor opens up and you can then grab your last treasure chest.
Have you completed the Leviathan Raid? Got any questions? Let us know in the comments below!