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How to complete the Vox Obscura quest in Destiny 2

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The Vox Obscura Exotic quest is the final narrative beat to explore Empress Caiatl and her cabal in Destiny 2‘s Season of the Risen. It also comes with a new Exotic Grenade Launcher, Dead Messenger, as a reward upon completion. As players receive the quest at the start of the risen season – after Operation Elbrius at the HELM war table – the recommended level to deal with it is at the soft power cap of 1550. This may take a while up to players to reach this milestone, but Guardians 10 levels below can still beat Vox Obscura, especially if they bring a teammate or two to help them. Although Vox Obscura’s Psion Defectors can be defeated solo, a full squad will have a much easier time on this quest.

From destroying broadcast transmitters with a Drake to hunting down Psions in the dark underbelly of a Rebel Cabal base, here’s how to complete Vox Obscura and acquire the Dead Messenger Exotic Grenade Launcher.

Recommended Loadouts

Screenshot via Bungie

Much of your choice of weapons and subclasses in Vox Obscura will come down to personal preference, but using ranged weapons such as Linear Fusion Rifles and Sniper Rifles will make the mission much easier . You’ll encounter enemies such as Goliath Tanks and large Psions that are highly susceptible to critical hit damage dealt best by weapons like Threaded Needle, Eriana’s Vow, and Arbalest. Gjallarhorn and other rocket launchers are also very effective throughout each encounter.

The only required part of your arsenal is a weapon capable of stunning unstoppable champions. In Season of the Risen, Hand Cannons, Pulse Rifles, and Glaives all have seasonal mods capable of doing this, though your choices will vary depending on the seasonal meta.

While Devil’s Ruin, Bastion, and Leviathan’s Breath have the inbuilt ability to stun unstoppable champions, these weapons either lack good long-range abilities or just aren’t worth the Exotic spot.

If you’re below the recommended light level of 1550, bringing at least one Well of Radiance Warlock or Ward of Dawn Titan will make many of the tougher fights more manageable.

Penetration of the Psion base on Mars

Image via Bungie

The start of Vox Obscura will see you deployed to the recently returned Mars, and only a small Cabal patrol stands between you and your first objective marker. Go down the hill and hack the door to access the back wing of the base hangar. Resistance in these halls will be limited to a handful of Psions and Scorpius turrets, which shouldn’t be too much of a problem on your way to parking three interceptors. Grab one of the available interceptors and use its cannons to destroy the marked wall, creating a makeshift exit into the Barrens.

First meeting

Image via Bungie

Once you enter an interceptor, a 4:30 countdown to an orbital barrage will begin. If this timer reaches zero, your squad will fade and you will have to start over from the beginning of the mission.

Your first objective will be to clear an airstrip for Caiatl to deliver reinforcements to you, which involves taking out a nearby Goliath tank. Although the Interceptor is required to access the Barrens, it is recommended to tackle this objective on foot as the Interceptor is easily destroyed by the tank, Scorpius turrets and enemy controlled Interceptor at the outside. Using ranged weapons to eliminate enemies and destroy Goliath tank thrusters is safer and often faster. Players also need to take out an unstoppable champion that spawns in a small building next to the Goliath tank to proceed. Once the area is clear, Amanda Holliday will arrive to give you a Drake tank for the next stage of the encounter.

Your next waypoint will require a decent travel time, taking you from The Barrens to destroy broadcast transmitters in another area called Scablands. A Cabal troop will be deployed through Thresher once you receive the Drake, but killing them is not necessary. Players can pass them to save time, with the large sandbars around the path to the Scablands providing cover that helps keep the Drake healthy.

Screenshot via Bungie

The Scablands is a large arena with two Goliath tanks, three armored transmission towers and a large defense including Scorpius turrets, Psions and War Beasts. Eliminating the two Goliath tanks is your priority. The Drake tank is optimal for this task, but constant movement is required to avoid being hit by guided artillery strikes in the area.

Optionally, during this encounter, Psion Spotters can be killed to stop these artillery strikes, but only go there if it doesn’t reduce your remaining time too much. Once both Goliath tanks are dead, a platform at the back of the arena will allow you to transmate into new Drake tanks if yours is low on health.

Your attention will then turn to the three armored towers. To destroy the initial shield around them, you’ll need to detonate several generators under the three towers. Once the generators are destroyed, aim for a small weak spot in each tower marked by a secondary shield that glows bright blue. This shield can only be destroyed by the Drake Tank’s primary fire, and once it’s down, you can fire a second shot into the weak spot it was protecting to destroy the tower. Stopping all three broadcast transmitter towers will end the encounter and end the timer, regardless of how many enemies are left in the area.

Screenshot via Bungie

With the broadcast off, turn your gaze to the rebel Psion perpetrating the propaganda, located within the base itself. Destroy the waypoint-marked wall with an Interceptor or Drake cannon to make an entrance inside, where you’ll find a rally banner and your first Vox Obscura checkpoint.

Second meeting

Image via Bungie

A second countdown begins the moment you approach the rally flag, marking a 10-minute run to the control room deep within the fortified base. The first room of enemies has two main targets to fear: an unstoppable champion and a powerful arsonist called Ba’Aruk. Once these two enemies and the Minor Cabal next to them have fallen, you can advance deeper into the base where you will find open escape ports that provide access to the lower floors. Here, you’ll also be introduced to the central danger of this encounter, the floor vents that occasionally shoot blue flames upwards that deal heavy damage to anyone caught.

Screenshot via Bungie

On the lower floor, you must kill three Psion Codewardens to access the control room. These Codewardens are protected by nearby Psion Commanders, who you’ll find dangling in their own psionic shields. Psionic shields only protect them from outside fire, meaning you can use a melee attack to break Codewarden’s shields. Once each Codewarden has been dispatched, nearby Cabal terminals in their respective rooms will become available for hacking. Hack all three terminals and the door to the control room will open.

The door to the control room is protected by a line of Scorpius turrets, so be careful when exiting so your journey to the final boss isn’t short-lived.

Qabix, insurgent

Screenshot via Bungie

Vox Obscura’s final boss is a large Psion called Qabix, who uses a number of unique attacks during combat. One borrows a mechanic from the Deep Stone Crypt raid, suspending a player in a bubble of void energy. To free yourself, shoot the glowing light dots outside the bubble with any weapon that won’t blow you up in the process. Qabix will also be bolstered by squads of Psions and Scorpius turrets throughout the fight, and removing them from the equation is key to making the encounter less overwhelming and providing more windows to damage the boss.

Qabix has two immunity phases throughout the fight, each broken by the same method as the Psion Codewardens’ shields. Three hanging Psion Commanders will be located around the control room, and once each has been killed, Qabix can be damaged once more. Repeat this process twice and keep Qabix’s waves of reinforcements in check so the fight against the rebel Psion goes fast – after all, time is always running out. When Qabix falls, the 10 minute timer ends and you can head to the top of the control room to intercept the broadcast for Caiatl.

Screenshot via Bungie

Tucked away in a side room to the right of the control panel, an Emperor Calus opulence-themed chest awaits. Opening the chest inside will grant you Dead Messenger, as well as the ability to drop the Ivory Empress Exotic Sparrow and Season of the Risen weapons during Vox Obscura replays.

With broadcast equipment stopped and Dead Messenger acquired, you have completed the normal difficulty of the Vox Obscura Exotic quest.