With the launch of Destiny 2’s Warmind expansion right around the corner, fans are curious about what to expect out of the new endgame activity coming with the expansion: Escalation Protocol. The new horde-mode activity takes place in the Mars patrol zone and grants end-game level loot. In a Reddit thread, Destiny 2 economy designer Daniel Auchenpaugh detailed how players will earn loot through Escalation Protocol, and what sort of gear they can expect to earn from the activity.
According to Auchenpaugh, not all of the gear from Escalation Protocol drops at end-game levels, only the armor pieces do. The weapons will drop up to the soft cap for the expansion, power level 340, but there is a good reason for this, as players can grind for weapons indefinitely, while the armor pieces are a limited drop.
Once per character, players will be able to acquire a key that is charged through Warmind activities that will unlock the chest that drops after the wave seven boss. The weapons for Escalation Protocol drop from the wave seven boss as well, but no key is required so players can get an infinite number of these weapons. The development team did not want fans to have an easy avenue to max power, especially since they are making the power grind slower with Warmind.
Escalation Protocol’s armor drops in a specific order, so players will not get repeats of the gear until they have acquired the entire set. The order is: class item, legs, arm, chest, helmet. The armor also features a peculiar puzzle for fans to figure out, tying into some cryptic tweets from the development team.
The chests will also have a small chance to drop Escalation Protocol exclusive vanity items, such as a sparrow, ghost, and ship. This is a welcome change from the early Destiny 2 model, where most vanity items were locked behind Eververse. Eververse will undergo a bit of a rework with Warmind, including a new feature called the Prismatic Matrix.
The bosses in Escalation Protocol rotate each week, and the rewards are tied to the specific boss you face. There are three unique weapons for the activity: a shotgun, a sniper rifle, and an SMG. Three of the five bosses will drop one of the three, while the other two will drop any of the three at random.
It’s nice to see a new avenue for players to earn end-game level gear outside of the new Raid Lair, and even more welcome is the introduction of new vanity items free from the ties to Eververse. Warmind seems to be a step in the right direction for Destiny 2, hopefully it will keep players engaged enough to hold them over until the big September expansion.
Destiny 2: Warmind releases May 8, 2018 for PC, PS4, and Xbox One.