Destiny 2 Guide: Unlocking the Wish-Keeper Exotic Bow and Mastering the Starcrossed Mission
Destiny 2 Season of the Wish has introduced a coveted Exotic weapon for Guardians: the Wish-Keeper, an Exotic bow. Obtaining this weapon involves engaging with the Starcrossed mission, akin to the journey for Vexcalibur and Retrofit Zero, where guardians can craft different versions through replays.
Embarking on the Starcrossed Mission for the Wish-Keeper Exotic Bow
The mission isn't available straight away upon logging into Destiny 2. To access the Starcrossed mission, players must progress in the ongoing seasonal storyline, known as the Wishing All The Best questline, which entails completing objectives in The Coil and Riven's Lair.
After these prerequisites are met, guardians must undertake this week's mission, Apophasis, engaging in the narrative where the Vex targets Ahamkara eggs. Victory here leads players back to the HELM to converse with Crow, who informs them of the Vex retreating to the Black Garden with one of Riven's eggs. This revelation grants access to the Exotic mission through the Director from the HELM.
Navigating the Starcrossed Exotic Mission
The opening segment leads players through an area resembling a portion of the Garden of Salvation mission. Progression requires shooting large plant-like structures to create temporary platforms.
Discovering the First Secret Chest
During the passage of the initial cavernous area, explorers should keep an eye out for a distinct gap marked by an orange hue on a parted tree, serving as a focal point. To the left, a lower path by the area's boundary hides a bud to be shot, revealing a passage with an opening to a secret chest.
Continuing the journey and reaching the Black Garden, a grand Vex edifice becomes the primary destination.
The Black Garden's Barriers and Buffs
Throughout the Black Garden, blue mist barriers are present, only passable with the Sire's Obligation buff, attained by stepping into designated blue wells near the barrier. This beneficial buff will last around 45 seconds. However, embarking into an orange mist without protection triggers the Unwelcome debuff, damaging the player and limiting movement. To combat this, searching for orange wells is essential to gain the Dam's Gift buff, shielding the player from the orange mist's peril for a similarly brief period.
Overcoming Obdurate Phalanxes and Unraveling the Lock Mechanic
The central mechanic of the mission involves dispelling the protective barriers guarding an Obdurate Phalanx, a formidable Taken enemy, by securing the Sire's Obligation buff. Guardians must eliminate these phalanxes while buffed to remove the barriers marked by icons reminiscent of the Last Wish dungeon symbolism.
The Strategem of the Obdurate Phalanxes
As players delve deeper, the complexity of the task amplifies, demanding the removal of the phalanxes in a certain sequence. Before engaging, it's crucial to note the icon order on the barrier, which may vary with each playthrough. To ensure the progression, a meticulous takedown must occur based on the displayed sequence; any deviation or expiration of the Sire's Obligation buff will reset the lock and shuffle the icon order, requiring renewed efforts.
Successfully engaging the Obdurate Phalanxes according to the correct order opens the path forward. With cyclopean Vex and minor foes assaulting the player, prioritizing threats and refreshing buffs is essential for survival.
After navigating all obstacles and dispelling the final barriers, guardians claim the Dam's Gift buff and press on, free from the dread of the orange mist's Unwelcome clutches.
Overcoming Gatekeeper Wyverns and Deciphering the Transit Mechanism
In your quest within Destiny 2, a Vex gate presenting a barrier decked with three red diamonds will emerge, signifying the need to locate and activate three intricate locking mechanisms concealed within the upcoming maze-like territory.
Engaging Gatekeeper Wyverns to Access Key Mechanisms
Venturing ahead, an orange well will appear near a sprawling field of orange mist after the defeat of nearby adversaries. This well bestows a buff that allows for safe passage through the mist, though it's prudent to hold the position for a moment.
Instead of proceeding through the mist, direct your attention to a small opening to the left just before you reach the dais holding the well. This route leads above a chamber that houses the first lock mechanism under a Vex dome, surrounded by Vex machinery and a threatening Gatekeeper Wyvern. Neutralizing the Gatekeeper Wyvern dissipates the Vex barrier, making the lock mechanism accessible. Strategically engaging from this elevated position increases your survivability compared to approaching through an Unwelcome field below.
The Gatekeeper Wyverns, fierce in their own right, can dismantle your defenses rapidly, making encounters especially arduous when faced alone. The utilization of an arsenal like Dragon's Breath rockets can inflict substantial damage on these formidable foes, and employing abilities from the Strand or Stasis classes to control the crowd and impede enemies can be advantageous.
Once the Wyvern threat is mitigated, a tunnel nearby serves as a pathway forward, leading you into more confrontations. A subsequent chamber filled with orange mist hosts another Wyvern. Nearby, a well grants the Dam's Gift buff, allowing you to traverse the mist unharmed. Ascend the staircase and seek a high ledge, affording another advantageous position to face the Wyvern. With caution, you can eliminate adversaries from this location and then utilize the Dam's Gift to interact with the switch safely. Stay vigilant, as foes may return, including the sharpshooting Quantum Hobgoblins.
Activating the second mechanism, an exit path through a barrier on your right opens up. It leads into a corridor without a floor, so navigating the walls while being wary of shifting bricks that aim to displace you is crucial. Eliminate any distanced threats, particularly snipers, before making further progress.
Arriving at the hallway's end, another orange well awaits, but it isn't a concern from this side. Leap across the chasm to reach a chamber with a round entrance and rotating door, providing an opportune shelter to handle enemies within and confront the third Wyvern. Once the final mechanism is engaged, the pervading Unwelcome mist will vanish.
Departing through the room's side hole returns you to the initial arena where the now-unsealed Vex portal awaits, still defended by formidable foes, including a Malignant Wyvern and a colossal Minotaur dubbed Ixion, Covetous Mind. With precision and cover, distance attacks like those from Dragon's Breath can effectively impart serious damage, simplifying your clearance of the area.
Advancing through the unlocked gate, a mild platforming challenge ensues, demanding navigation across vast gaps to diminutive ledges. Proceeding into an opening, engage with enemies along a path veering right through a Vex construct. At an uncrossable rift, follow the cliffside ledges to a Taken-filled cave. Dispatch these adversaries, then handle a small contingent of Vex to progress into yet another arena, the Roost.
Roost Encounter - Bypassing the Final Barrier
The Roost encounter amalgamates familiar mechanics into a novel challenge. With the emergence of Taken forces, including an Obdurate Phalanx tagged with an icon, players will find an orange well for acquiring the Dam's Gift. Immediate goals involve lifting yet another blue barrier marked with icons indicating a trio of Obdurate Phalanxes requiring neutralization in a sequence.
Additional Phalanxes lurk within caverns branching from this central spot, clearly marked by icons at cave openings, directing players to their target. Within this stage, both buffs, Dam's Gift and Sire's Obligation, are desired to form the Crowned by Dragons buff. This ultimate buff not only safeguards against the orange mist but also permits protagonists to counter the Obdurate Phalanxes.
Given that this enhancement diminishes over time, players must act diligently to retain it, refreshing at either well as necessary. This cyclical reclaiming of buffs amidst a battlefield strewn with continuously reappearing enemies is no simple feat, particularly for lone guardians. However, ample cover scattered throughout the arena affords a strategic approach of cautious advances interspersed with retreats for buff renewal.
After outlasting the three Phalanxes and their protective barriers, a final boss encounter awaits the steadfast guardian, bringing them one step closer to the Wish-Keeper Exotic bow.
Tackling Akardon, Pitiless Mind, and Earning the Wish-Keeper
Beyond the barrier, guardians encounter a descending path into a cavernous, circular arena, where they face Akardon, a formidable Vex Hydra. Preceding the confrontation, guardians will find the area saturated with orange Unwelcome mist and the boss marked with a blue luminescence characteristic of the Obdurate Phalanxes. Adjacent to the entrance, blue and orange wells provide the Crowned by Dragons buff for immediate utilization.
Numerous enemies populate the arena alongside plenty of cover. Positioning on the peripheries offers substantial protection from incoming attacks. Additional wells to refresh the Crowned by Dragons buff are situated on each side near the starting position of the boss.
The initial task involves neutralizing the two Taken Phalanxes, known as Pitiless Attendants, stationed at either side of the room. These resilient foes prefer the room's rear, but several architectural features in proximity offer cover and strategic angles. Eliminating the Pitiless Attendants removes Akardon's revolving shield, opening up opportunities to direct efforts at the boss.
The challenge thereafter entails consistent enemy crowd management. Akardon periodically deploys small Vex constructs that attempt to ensnare guardians in spherical barriers, leaving them exposed to danger. Taken Goblins periodically materialize, capable of shielding the boss, necessitating immediate intervention. Vex Harpies tend to hover mid-air, delivering attacks if cover is disregarded.
Dragon's Breath's potency is highly advantageous in this battle, enabling considerable damage from a safe distance. The extremities of the room traditionally remain untouched by foes, so when I faced this boss alone, I sought refuge behind the wall on the right, systematically taking down the opposition and leaving the boss for the final act. Venturing out intermittently is essential for sustaining the Crowned by Dragons buff and ammunition resupply.
Subduing Akardon, guardians gain access to the round passageway it was safeguarding, leading to a chest nestled beside an Ahamkara skeleton. Discovering this chest graces guardians with the Wish-Keeper, an Exotic Strand bow.
The Wish-Keeper Exotic bow presents intriguing mechanics and potential synchronization with Strand builds, centered around applying the suspended effect. When aiming down sights, the bow functions normally, but precision strikes or dispatching enemies gradually charge it. At six charges, an aim-from-hip Snareweaver arrow can be loosed, which will suspend the target on impact and deploy a Strand energy grid. Any enemy crossing this grid will also get suspended, turning it into a trap amidst enemy groups.
Moreover, the Wish-Keeper gains increased draw speed when using it to suspend enemies or when attacking ones already suspended. This allows it to complement Strand abilities and boost damage output. Coupling this with Seasonal Artifact mods that enhance Solar and Strand interactions, the Wish-Keeper equips guardians with a robust arsenal of options.
Embarking on the Wish-Keeper's Exotic Catalyst Missions
To further augment the power of Wish-Keeper, four Exotic Catalysts are available. Enhancing the bow with Intrinsic upgrades bolsters Stability, Handling, and Range. Other strategic enhancements include Enduring Snare for prolonged traps, Multithreaded Snare for capturing more enemies, Vorpal Weapon for increased damage against formidable foes, and Hatchling, which conjures Threadlings after rapid takedowns or precision shots.
Unlocking these catalysts requires a return to Starcrossed on Legendary difficulty. Upon visiting Mara Sov in the HELM weekly, guardians can embark on quests to unravel secrets within the Black Garden to earn the catalysts.
Constellation: Tower - Catalyst Mission
For the first Catalyst quest, guardians venture to the Overland segment of the Legendary Starcrossed mission. There, a celestial anomaly in the Black Garden must be uncovered, and the Wish-Keeper bow becomes a requisite tool. Upon reaching the big Vex structure marked by rainbows, the search begins.
Positioning rightward leads to a ravine where a waterfall-crafted rock spire is discovered. Climbing this spire requires navigating rock and flower platforms, leading to a blossoming tree and a glowing anomaly that must be activated. With the anomaly triggered, players are tasked with aiming skyward, shooting shining stars with the Wish-Keeper to sketch a constellation. When complete, this celestial puzzle reveals a message from Riven.
Unearthing the Second Secret Chest
On the Legendary journey of Starcrossed, the path to a second secret chest is revealed. It hides behind a waterfall concealed within an orange mist-filled cave. Fortifying themselves with the Dam's Gift, guardians leap into the cave to find the prize, granting the first Snareweaver bow upgrade.
To secure the first Catalyst and reap its benefits, the mission must be completed on Legendary difficulty, with the final chest revealing the sought-after item. Upon acquisition, the Enclave on Mars serves as the destination for applying the Catalyst to Wish-Keeper, enhancing its capabilities.