You've just finished every mission in Destiny and hit level 20. You are feeling accomplished, right? That's good, but hitting level 20 in Destiny means you are just getting warmed up. In order to tackle increasingly difficult end-game content, including the newly unlocked level 26 "Vault of Glass" raid, you are going to need some better gear. End-game Destiny is all about obtaining gear with the "light" attribute. Gain enough, and you'll go up an additional level, allowing you to access even harder versions of the game's "Strike" missions, which, in turn, allow you to get even better gear.
But how exactly do you do that? Look no further, Guardian. With this guide at your side, you will become legend in no time. Keep in mind that while you can equip any number of legendary items, you can only have one piece of exotic armor and one exotic weapon equipped at a time.
Marks are a special type of currency obtained from doing PVE or PVP content. Doing "Strikes" and heroic daily missions will snag you Vanguard marks, used to buy legendary PVE gear. Competing in Destiny's PVP mode, "The Crucible," will grant you Crucible marks, used to buy legendary PVP armor and weapons. This is the slowest, but also the most consistent way to get Legendary gear. If you don't want the standard Vanguard or Crucible gear, there are also three other factions players can purchase gear from: Dead Orbit, New Monarchy and Future War Cult.
Sadly, just stocking up on your mark of choice isn't enough. You must also farm reputation through doing bounties, patrols or PVP in order to obtain a specific rank within a given faction to gain access to the gear. Across all factions, armor can be purchased at reputation rank two, while weapons require reputation rank three. Grinding for reputation and marks might not sound like too much fun, and it really isn't. Keep in mind, though, that while you do Strikes and Crucible matches you will be randomly receiving loot along the way, so you are still progressing while you shoot for some of the better items that will allow you to tackle Destiny's Vault of Glass raid. As long as you put in the play time, the legendaries will soon be coming your way.
Exotic Weapon Bounties
Though how exactly these are obtained is unclear, by completing bounties (possibly triggered by turning in multiple bounties at a time) players seem to have a small chance of receiving a bounty for an exotic weapon. Exotic weapons and gear are a step above legendary gear in that they feature a much higher number of upgrade possibilities. They also look extremely cool, making them highly sought after. If you are so lucky as to receive an exotic weapon bounty, be careful which one you choose. Each bounty is tied to a specific type of exotic weapon, so if you aren't a fan of using hand cannons or pulse rifles, you will obviously not want to grab an exotic version of a gun type you don't like.
The "Shattered Memory Fragment" bounty lets you obtain an exotic fusion rifle, "A Dubious Task" will reward an exotic shotgun, "Toland's Legacy" grants you an exotic pulse rifle, "A Voice in the Wilderness" rewards an exotic heavy machine gun, a "Light in the Dark" rewards an exotic hand cannon and "An Unknown Patron" grants an exotic scout rifle. Regardless which exotic bounty you choose, you will have to jump through multiple hoops in order to finally claim your prized weapon, but rest assured, it will be well worth the effort.
Another sure-fire way to obtain a piece of exotic gear is through the Xur, a mysterious vendor who only appears in the Tower on the weekends. He sells exotic armor and weapons in exchange for a type of currency called Strange Coins. These coins are fairly random, but completing the weekly heroic missions will get you three a week guaranteed.
Motes of Light
Motes of Light are like Strange Coins in that they are largely obtained through random drops. Unlike Strange Coins, Motes of Light can also be obtained through gaining a certain number of experience points after level 20, so be sure to keep completing bounties and missions to steadily obtain them. Motes of Light are used for two things: purchasing class specific cosmetic gear from the Speaker or spending them with Xur in exchange for an exotic engram. Though the exotic engram isn't a sure bet for receiving a piece of legendary or exotic gear, it does yield a fairly solid chance of rewarding you with something good after it is decrypted, making it a smart way to spend all those Motes of Light.
This might not be the most exciting way to get better gear for your Guardian, but it is one of the most efficient. Go to a low level zone, like Earth or the Moon, find an area with a large number of enemies, wipe them all out, pick up any gear they drop and then drive away. Rinse and repeat to your heart's content. You can also do some patrol missions and bounties to maximize your time while you are at it.
This only works because the drop rate for loot in Destiny is consistent across enemies of all levels, meaning that killing a level four Fallen gives you an equal chance of finding a legendary piece of gear as killing a level 22 Cabal on Mars. By going to a low level zone you can wipe out huge groups of enemies with little effort, making this the fastest way to (hopefully) get some improved gear.
You can read our complete Destiny news roundup here.
Also, check out our collection of the best Destiny how-to guides from around the Internet.