Destiny 2’s Warmind Reveal Displayed The Escalation Protocol, Exotic Weapon Changes And Ana Bray

Destiny 2’s upcoming adventure known simply as Warmind will see Guardians returning to a new area of a familiar planet. Hidden deep within the receding polar ice caps of Mars’ Hellas Basin lies the heart of invention and the birthplace of Rasputin, Clovis Bray. In a brand new campaign, players will begin to uncover the secrets behind Clovis Bray (the organisation responsible for Warminds and Exos), Rasputin and of course the greater evil behind it all.

Guardians will be sent to battle this evil in a brand new campaign, Strikes, Adventures a new Raid Lair known as Spire of Stars and of course a higher Power level, which seems to be capping out at around 385.

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As the ice cap recedes and uncovers his stronghold, Rasputin is truly awakening on Mars, but that also brings with it a new type of Frozen Hive. These Hive are even more ancient than the ones we have faced before and advance in the service of the Hive god Xol.

When Warmind drops on May 8th, we will need someone to guide us through the adventure who also happens to be the new vendor. Ana Bray, the legendary Hunter first introduced in the lore of Destiny 1 will be a tangible personality we will encounter and help her uncover the secrets of her family and the Clovis Bray organisation.

Escalation Protocol Start

Aside from the new campaign around Rasputin and Clovis Bray, Guardians will also spend a lot of time with the newest Public Event, known as Escalation Protocol, which is essentially a wave-based horde moment that increases in difficulty.

Escalation Protocol Tower

The Escalation Protocol Public Event can be started at any time in the Hellas Basin by any Guardian who has completed the Warmind campaign. That being said, in the true Public Event fashion, if it is already ongoing, you can definitely jump in and help out your fellow Guardians. Players will need to find special plates which will activate embedded towers that serve the purpose to draw Hive close to them. Rasputin is helping you to cull their numbers.

There are seven waves to Escalation Protocol each ending in a unique boss fight that will get harder as the waves go on. If you can manage to reach the final wave, you will be faced with one of five incredibly powerful bosses that rotate each week. So after five weeks of Escalation Protocol you will have faced each and every boss.

Hunter Rasputin Armour

Once you and your crack team of Guardians complete waves three and five, you will be awarded with a chest which will provide you with Public Event rewards you would be familiar with by now. Defeating the wave seven boss will understandably provide you with the best loot drops, which can include a brand new Rasputin themed armour set and unique weapons that have perks to assist you in Escalation Protocol.

Escalation Protocol Shotgun

There are three Rasputin-themed weapons that we know of, hopefully, these aren’t the only three. The shotgun has definite throw-back vibes to the Sleeper Simulant and has a perk which boosts damage after a melee strike. With how much emphasis Bungie placed on the difficulty of Escalation Protocol at the higher waves, any damage boost would be welcome.

Rasputin Sub-Machine Gun

There were a few glimpses of the Rasputin sub-machine gun in all its glory but at this time we don’t know what perks it holds or how it will help in the Public Event. The final weapon Bungie spoke about but didn’t show was the sniper rifle which will hold a perk known as Box Breathing, With this perk Guardians will be awarded a massive critical hit damage bonus the longer they aim down sights without firing.

There are also special event-only armaments that allow you to unleash true devastation on the Hive. There are special mechanics known as Shadow Rifts as Escalation Protocol advances which must be closed by Guardians quickly due to them drawing Hive away from Rasputin’s towers. As part of this process, a sword-bearing Knight will spawn, which will drop a sword when eliminated. Guardians can then pick up these swords and drop some serious damage on the Hive.

Valkyrie

Along with this are special drops known as Armory Codes that can be earned throughout Escalation Protocol as well as all over the Hellas Basin. These codes allow the purchase of a very powerful spear-rocket launcher. Dubbed the Valkyrie, this rocket launcher, which can also be used as a melee weapon, will only remain tangible for a short time, disappearing after a set time limit even if you still have ammo. The Valkyrie is truly destructive and should be used tactically to make the biggest difference. The Armory Codes seem to be input at the base of Rasputin’s tower and the Valkyrie appears in your hands.

Based on community feedback Escalation Protocol has been made a lot harder to provide the truest challenge. So don’t expect to clear it without a sweat your first go, you’ll definitely need to put in some work.

Warmind will also mark Season 3 of the Crucible which brings with it Private Matches, Crucible Ranks and a whole spree of Exotic weapon changes. Let’s take a cursory look at what is coming.

Crucible will finally have goals to strive for outside of simply winning with the arrival of Crucible Ranks. Valor Rank will be for Guardians who frequent Quickplay and rotating playlists for their Crucible pleasure while Glory will be the domain of the Competitive playlist. Valor will reward you with experience for completing matches and providing bonus experience for any wins you accumulate. Glory, on the other hand, will provide experience for winning and take away experience for losing. Glory definitely adds more of a competitive vibe to the playlist. Both of the rank systems will provide bonuses for win streaks but if you leave a match midway Destiny 2 will count it as a loss. Hopefully, this will cut down on Crucible leavers.

Redrix's Claymore..jpg

In terms of rewards, Guardians will be able to earn special weapons and other loot as they reach certain ranks or complete challenges or both. The overarching weapon this Season for players to strive for is known as Redrix’s Claymore which is tied to the Fabled challenge. This Crucible exclusive Pulse Rifle is going to be one of the hardest weapons to earn in Destiny 2 and when I say earn I really mean earn. Redrix’s Claymore is tied to your Glory rank, and will undoubtedly require a massive amount of wins to complete the challenge.

It will definitely be worth it as it comes with Outlaw, which happens to be getting a buff that resets the effect when you score another headset as well as Desperado. Desperado, as you can see above, synergistically works with Outlaw and increases your rate of fire every time you reload with Outlaw active. For an accurate shooter, this can mean a neverending spree of fast-firing and fast-reloading.

Graviton Lance

A pretty major part of the Crucible has been Exotic weapons, which in Destiny 2 have felt a little less-than-Exotic. The end of the Warmind stream featured talk about some of the upcoming Exotic changes which have been outlined below;

  • Riskrunner: Increased Arc damage resistance in PVE and PVP (50% resistance).
  • Fighting Lion: No longer will the Fighting Lion be a gorgeous figure piece but a disappointing weapon. On May 8th, the Fighting Lion will be given increased ammo and an increase to damage from the explosion as opposed to the impact of the projectile.
  • Graviton Lance: reduced TTK, reduced the burst to two rounds with the bonus damage being applied on the second round.
  • Skyburner’s Oath: Hip-firing adds gravity to the projectiles so they are more lobbed than shot and the rounds have been provided tracking.
  • Hard Light: Been granted the ability to switch damage types by holding down the reload button. The ricocheting rounds will now do double damage if they hit a target after rebounding once.
  • Crimson: Provided it with more ammo and sped up time between bursts to bring it in line with other top tier hand cannons.
  • Sturm: You only need two shots to kill an enemy Guardian – one overloaded bullet from scoring a kill with Drang and one normal one.

There are high expectations for Destiny 2’s Warmind expansion, and so far Bungie seems to be meeting it. We will only be able to tell once Guardians everywhere get their hands on it and delve into the Rasputin charged story we have all been waiting for. Undoubtedly we will get more glimpse into Warmind before its release on May 8th so stay tuned.