Destiny 2: Altars Of Summoning Playbook

Season 22 in Destiny 2 has launched. Appropriately named “Season of The Witch,” Guardians are tasked with two matchmade activities that relate to each other. However, one of them, the Altars of Summoning, seems to be causing extraneous suffering for many players. If you want to be a proper Acolyte to The Many-Mouthed Hunger that is Eris Morn, you need to learn how not to bite off more than you can chew. This guide aims to help you devour your enemies and bring forth your tithes as you play your way through Destiny 2’s latest season.

Best play your cards right. Eris Morn is now super scary.

The Offerings

In playing the other Season 22 activity, Savathun’s Spire, you’re going to gain a number of tokens listed in your inventory as “Offerings.” These will come in three varieties: Feeble, Robust, and Powerful. Feeble Offerings are the most plentiful, while Powerful Offerings are considerably less prevalent. This is important to keep in mind for later. The Offerings and the Altars of Summoning bear a passing resemblance to the Blind Well activity in the Dreaming City, but they’re not capped in the same way. Plus, the Altars are not a “horde mode” activity the same way the Blind Well is. Your fireteam is all there is for the duration. There’s no backup. So, make the best use of it.

When you go into the Altars, your first step is to invoke the ritual circle. There are a number of spots to stand in, each with a Hive rune over them, but three of them will be marked with a different rune than all the others. Each member takes one of the three different rune spots, invokes the ritual, and (if you do it right), you’re rewarded with full Supers and ammo for Heavy and Special weapons. From there, you’ll get a guide carat pointing you to one of the three different altar sites.

The agony of choice…

The Sacrifice

Each altar site has four pedestals (you probably saw them originally in the first weekly mission of the season). Three of them will bring up icons showing one, two, or three Hive swords. These correspond to the three different types of Offering tokens. Walk up to one, hold down the prompt button until it’s completed, then drop into the arena and invoke the Hive magic to start the activity.

The activity features a named boss that you have to defeat in a certain amount of time. Each boss will have different mechanics associated with them. The three Vex Mind bosses will require you to protect mini-spires (similar to the Spire Integration public events), while Hive bosses can require you to carry Tribute tokens to Deathsinger totems in order to disable overshields for the next damage phase. If you fail to drop the boss within the time limit, you’ll make a little progress on the Tithe bar. Success, however, will bring greater progress. Once you’ve filled the bar completely, Eris Morn will appear and “drain” the bar, consuming your tithes and bringing up a reward chest. From there, it’s back to the ritual circle to lather, rinse, and repeat until you’ve gotten all possible rewards for the week.

One last thing about the Offerings. Part of the overarching system in this season is the “Hive Tarot” you unlock as part of your activities. In Savathun’s Spire, when you have five Major Arcana cards unlocked, a random card will be drawn (providing you haven’t turned it off in the Athenaeum at the H.E.L.M.) to modify encounters. In Altars of Summoning, a card is drawn for each tier of offering, so one Major Arcana for Feeble Offerings, two for Robust, and three for Powerful. These can change up your battles in a number of unique ways, so be prepared!

At the Altars of Summoning, every day is the Day of The Dead, and those skulls aren’t made of sugar.

The Sword Logic

Now, there may be some players who are burning up their Powerful Offerings at every turn and accepting a loss with the comfort that there’s at least some progress. However, each Offering tier increases the challenge commensurately, making enemies tougher, throwing more mobs into the breach, etc. Feeble Offerings aren’t much more difficult than a Public Event might be. Robust Offerings are probably on par with a dungeon encounter or a Legend difficulty Nightfall strike. Powerful Offerings seem to be the general equivalent of a Grandmaster Nightfall, and, given that everybody’s got a new Seasonal artifact, almost nobody’s Light level is high enough to handle that on Week 1.

If you want to be a good teammate for random players, take a minute before the encounter to check the Light levels of your companions. If they’re significantly lower than yours, don’t use the Powerful Offering right away. Start small. A Feeble Offering or two might not be challenging, but they’ll definitely give you a good idea about how well your teammates can operate. Rapidly clearing lower-level challenges will ultimately fill your Tithe bar faster than constantly losing high-end challenges. Plus, it will improve your fireteam’s morale! Nobody likes to get their ass kicked in all the time, and you’re likely to be abandoned if you keep throwing up the Powerful Offerings at every turn.

Also consider the token economy. As mentioned before, Feeble Offerings are going to be incredibly common, but Powerful Offerings far less so. Split among three players, and depending on the vagaries of RNG during Savathun’s Spire, you’ll likely run out of Powerful Offerings long before Feeble Offerings. Pace yourself. Altars of Summoning is a marathon, not a sprint.

“Aiat nom nom nom!”

Destiny 2’s “Season of The Witch” promises to be a long and grim struggle. There’s likely going to be more secrets revealed as the weeks progress, and there’s a lot of loot to be earned. Take your time, pace out your offerings,  and the Altars of Summoning will be a lot more enjoyable for everybody involved.

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