For those who do not wish to spend money on Destiny 2.
The Destiny 2 community isn’t very good at talking to free to play players, and there are many misconceptions around what is and isn’t paywalled. The current tutorial, A Guardian Rises, does not do a good job of showing what, exactly, you can do for free. Quite a lot of activities are paywalled. These are free to play:
- Free roam on the destinations. Cosmodrome, EDZ, Nessus, Tangled Shore, Dreaming City, Moon, Europa. Includes lost sectors, public events both heroic and regular, and patrols.
- Bounty access in the Cosmodrome, EDZ, Nessus, and Tangled Shore
- Vanguard Strikes (some nightfalls are paywalled)
- Crucible ( all except the endgame mode Trials of Osiris, which is paywalled)
- Ritual weapon quest, new one added each season (currently: Salvager’s Salvo, Null Composure, Adored, and Ascendancy)
- Dares of Eternity
- First mission of every paywalled campaign
- Vault of Glass raid
- Prophecy dungeon
- Holiday events
Prior to Shadowkeep, the maximum power level was paywalled. From now on, power level is no longer paywalled. A lot of the means of getting higher power gear are, but you can still get there without spending any money. For a complete list and explanation of how power level works, see this guide. – [blueberries.gg]
Monument to Lost Lights
Located in the tower, this kiosk contains items that used to come from quests, but whose quests have been removed for one reason or another. You have access to all the legendary items, which came from ritual weapon quests from strikes, crucible, and gambit in years past. You have access to the Red War exotics. For a complete list of which exotics are free to play, see the New Light sections in my exotic guide. – [steamcommunity.com]
You must complete the current season’s intro mission. Available free, you are automatically launched into it upon first login in a season if you have completed the tutorial. Right now, this is Cocoon. Completion will give you the quest Decrypting the Darkness, which allows you to focus umbral engrams. By default, umbral engrams have the same loot pool as the legendary engrams dropped by enemies in every location. Opening them from the side console in the umbral recaster allows you to narrow down the pool of potential drops. You can guarantee a weapon or an armor piece.
For some reason, the Season of the Splicer screen is cheaper to focus umbral engrams through, but it’s the same as all the others. All other umbral engram focusing options are paywalled.
Altars of Sorrow
A horde mode activity in Sorrow’s Harbor on the Moon. You can alternate two of the patrols that don’t require you to leave the area for some extra experience/materials. There are three bosses that rotate daily. Required for some Ada-1 bounties, and a good spot to get a lot of kills.
Upon successful completion, you can get some unique guns. Heretic from the ogre boss, Blasphemer from the vex boss, and Apostate from the fallen boss.
Located through the large cliffside doorway in the Dreaming City, this is a horde mode roughly comparable to Altars of Sorrow. However, it is less convenient to get to. It’s a better spot if you need a lot of ability kills, since certain enemies drop Harmony orbs that significantly increase your ability regeneration rate. Bosses and enemy types rotate on a three week cycle, from scorn to hive and finally to taken. There are three tiers, and upon successful completion of tier 3, tier 4 can be started.
Before the December 7, 2021 update, Blind Well only dropped a random Dreaming City legendary item on your first clear per week. Now, it can be farmed endlessly for Dreaming City legendary armor and guns. This is the Reverie Dawn armor set and the weapons Tigerspite, Waking Vigil, Vouchsafe, Retold Tale, Twilight Oath, Sleepless, and Abide the Return.
From Now Until February 22, 2022
The first mission of each season pass is available free. Most of the time, you can also do a free sample of the paid season activity as well. There are four per year, and then when the next Destiny 2 year starts, they all disappear to be replaced by new ones.
- Hunter and the Hunted on the Moon (Season of the Hunt)
- A Challenger Rises on Nessus (Season of the Chosen)
- The Lost Splicer on Europa (Season of the Splicer)
- Cocoon in the Dreaming City (Season of the Lost)
All except Season of the Hunt will give you normally paywalled loot. If you are meticulous about the order you do things in, you can wring a surprising amount of legendary gear out of these.
Oddly, you can purchase mods from the War Table after progressing far enough in the free sample of Season of the Chosen. The Splicer and Lost mods are paywalled. The only regular source for season pass mods is Ada-1, whose mods rotate daily.
Higher Difficulty Lost Sectors
Each day, two lost sectors are available in Legend and Master difficulty. You start these higher difficulties from a flag at the entrance to the lost sector. For it to appear, you must have opened the lost sector chest before, and be at the power level soft cap. However, the required power level to actually complete the lost sector is a bit higher, listed on the map marker.
If you go in solo and kill all the champions, these have a decent chance of dropping an exotic armor in a particular slot. However, you cannot get any of the lost sector exclusive armors.
For the currently active higher difficulty lost sectors, see Today In Destiny – [todayindestiny.com] . It is often a little off at the start of a season, so as a backup, here is a rotation spreadsheet. – [google.com]
You can only do nightfall versions of free to play strikes. All strikes are available in the random strike playlist, but only some can be launched free to play directly from the map or as a nightfall. To check, go to the planet map where the strike takes place and hover over the icon. It will say if it is paywalled.
1 to 3 people, lower difficulties have matchmaking. Grandmaster nightfalls are some of the most challenging content available. Nightfalls of the highest difficulty you can comfortably complete are great for farming enhancement prisms, ascendant shards, exotic armor, and certain guns that only drop from nightfalls.
1 to 3 people, no matchmaking. Dungeons are significantly more difficult solo than they are with even just one teammate. This dungeon can be farmed repeatedly for loot, but you can only get items that you have had drop before. You have a chance of new items your first completion per week per character class.
Vault of Glass raid
6 people, no matchmaking. Raids drop loot once per character class per week, but this raid has a console at the end where you can use Spoils of Conquest to purchase raid loot.
Advice in Short
Do whatever you can from each seasons’ paid content. Inconsistent amounts of are available free from each season pass. Sometimes you can get an impressive amount of paywalled loot. In the Quests tab, look to see which seasonal challenges you can complete. Some that say they require the pass can still be completed without it!
Reach rank 35 in the season pass, because after the season ends, that exotic goes behind a paywall!
At this time it is very difficult to get stasis damage without Beyond Light. Be sure to save the Fractethyst from the season pass.The only other free stasis weapon is Peacebond, an Iron Banner sidearm.
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