With Beyond Light, Destiny 2 is a lot more straightforward than it was just a week ago, in part due to all the content that just left the game and the existing loot that was just sunset. Still, there are some things that are easy to miss as you settle into exploring Jupiter’s second moon and learn how to harness the Darkness.
The tips in this post are pretty basic so far, but they’re a good roadmap to get you started, especially if you’re a lapsed Destiny 2 player who hasn’t summoned their Sparrow in a while. I’ll be updating the below list in the days and weeks ahead as I spend more time with Beyond Light.
First things first: Beyond Light has completely changed how Ghosts work, and whatever loadout you had before has been nuked. They now have mods instead of perks and can be upgraded just like any other piece of gear from 1 to 10 using materials like legendary shards and enhancement prisms.
You should upgrade whatever Ghost you currently have and want to use as much as possible, hopefully at least to five so you can equip the Guiding Light mod, which increases the XP you earn by 10%. If you’ve got the extra space, I also recommend the Prodigious Glimmer Booster for 35% more Glimmer, which will come in handy when you’re buying extra bounties.
This has been a cardinal rule of Destiny since Taken King changed how the game’s leveling system works, but in case you’re new or may have forgotten: new, more powerful gear is going to be dropping constantly. That means there’s no reason to infuse an older piece of gear you like up your current power level until at least the soft cap (real diehards may even wait until closer to the hard cap of 1250).
As Destiny streamer Aztecross pointed out in a video on YouTube last night, you can hit the soft cap in roughly one hour by running the Widow’s Walk in the Troastland section of the EDZ over and over again. That’s because the boss always seems to drop a legendary and will respawn the second you completely exit. I’ve tested it myself and it works, at least until Bungie patches it.
Update - 11:00 p.m. ET, 11/12/20: Well that was short-lived. Bungie patched the Widow Walk last night to fix the exploit. However, there are still some other solid ways to quickly grind to the soft cap, including looting all of the golden chests on Europa and the Cosmodrome (they show up on the map as those little hash symbols with the dot inside). Crucible matches have also been a pretty solid source of drops, with three blues after each match.
Otherwise your best bet is to head to the Hellmouth on the Moon and shoot kill Trove Guardians and Nightmare Ogres. Here’s a video from Destiny YouTuber Schendzie showing you how.
Just follow the story missions if you want to play and enjoy Beyond Light like a normal human being.
Variks is your guide on Europa. Every time you finish one of the steps in his quest he’ll gift you a new legendary weapon that will give you a major boost to your power level. Europa is a bit weird though, and objective markers don’t always show up on the horizon when you’re out exploring the world. If you’re ever unsure where to go, check the map for a big blue alien symbol and mark it as your next waypoint.
Seriously, Europa is beautiful! Have a look around, snap some screenshots, and don’t be afraid to explore some deadends. The rest of Beyond Light will be waiting for you when you’re done (and strolling through a brand new Destiny location is a lot more fun when you’re underpowered and still getting your bearings).
Your quest to wield the Darkness element known as Stasis will have you communing with Splinter of Darkness throughout Europa. The first time you do this, the Exo Stranger will show up and encourage you to take your splinter to the Ziggurat in the middle of nowhere and commune with the Darkness. Once you’re done nothing will happen though, and the rest of the fragments will still be locked.
It’ll seem like the game is waiting for you to figure out how to unlock the rest of them, but you’re actually done. Go back to the map and check for the next objective. This may seem obvious, but Destiny 2 hasn’t been great recently at prompting you when one mission step has finished and a new one has begun. The last thing I want is for you to be messing around with an alien Ziggurat for half an hour, alone and confused, instead of out having fun on the rest of Europa.
A bunch of planets just got vaulted in Destiny 2, but its world is still pretty big, with lots of destinations and activities waiting to distract you. Before getting some Crucible matches in or running the revised strike playlist, I strongly recommend you get far enough in Beyond Light’s story to beat Phylaks. After you do, you’ll unlock Variks’ repeatable bounties, which you can buy to gain XP faster, which in turn will make progress on the seasonal artifact (raises your power and unlocks seasonal mods) and season pass (unlocks bonus rewards every so many levels) go more quickly.
Starting from scratch in the Destiny power grind means even normal enemies hit pretty hard, and if you try to mainline story missions you can quickly get in over your head. That’s especially the case if you’re trying to take Phylaks on early and alone. Fortunately there are a couple things that make that more feasible. She’ll almost never rush you, giving you space to sit behind cover and slowly tick down her health bar from afar. And while her minions will swarm you, keeping a sword or shotgun ammo on hand to quickly dispatch them when they do should keep you alive. Make sure to save your super and grenades for clearing these mobs also. Class abilities (healing rifts and barriers) help too. Phylaks won’t move to the next phase of the fight until you take down a third of her health, leaving you plenty of time to do so with just a pulse or scout rifle.
There are two new kiosks in the tower, and neither is immediately obvious. The first is called the Quest Archive, and it lets you pick up some old missions you may have missed, including the game’s new introductory quest called First Light. It’s tucked in right beside the postmaster.
The second is called Monument to Lost Lights and lets you purchase old Exotics whose quests have been vaulted, as well as legacy legendary weapons that have since been sunset but are still viable in activities like Crucible where power doesn’t matter. That kiosk is between both of the Vault terminals in front of the Gunsmith.
The Cosmodrome, an old Russina graveyard for golden age space programs, is one of Destiny’s best patrol area,s and it’s now been added to Destiny 2. In terms of both world building and relaxed grinding, it’s a lot of fun to mess around in and get a feel for where players first fell in love with Bungie’s loot shooter. You can either do so by playing the game’s new beginning mission from the archive kiosk in the Tower or directly flying in and getting some new bounties and an exotic quest from the patrol area’s new vendor, Shaw Han.