Destiny 2: How to Beat the Leviathan Raid

Overcome the toughest challenge.
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Part 1: Opening the Gates

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How to Beat the Leviathan Raid in Destiny 2

When you first arrive on the Leviathan in Destiny 2, a towering palace looms before you. In front of it stands a greeting party of Cabal guards. Ignore the guards and proceed up the ramp to the side, steadily making your way into the actual palace. None of the outside guards will attack you as long as you don’t do anything to them.

Once you’re in the Castellum, a sort of hub area in the raid, you will look for a symbol on the floor with three key slots. Above one of the slots will be a floating image of either a Sun, Beast, Crossed Axes (you can call them swords, they look like axes to me), or a Chalice. That symbol will match another floor symbol elsewhere in the room. Before seeking it out, leave four members of your team to guard the key area, then two of you need to go and seek out the key.

When you locate the next symbol, defeat the adds nearby until a large enemy called the Standard Bearer appears. Kill him and then one of you can pick up the key (it’s called a Relic when you approach it). Take it back to the other spot that’s being guarded by the rest of your team and put it in, which will make a new floating symbol appear. Repeat the above steps.

After the first key is retrieved, those guarding the keys will have to deal with new enemy types: Counselors and Standard Liberators. The Liberators are powerful melee enemies that will take a key back, prolonging this section. Counselors are shielded Psions that will make Liberators immune and summon projections (which will wipe the team if not taken out fast enough). The Counselors go down with just one melee hit, though you must enter their shield to kill them. Keep an eye on the bottom of your screen (above your super bar) and when you see a note on the Counselor hunt them down immediately, then kill any liberators.

Once you get the three keys, you’re free to proceed. Note that you must repeat this process each time you complete one of the following challenges, or if you decide to leave the raid and come back. So make sure to get your strategy down so each successive run is much easier. 

Part 2: Stop the Bathing Ritual

How to Beat the Leviathan Raid in Destiny 2

The first challenge players will have to face after finally clearing the gates of Destiny 2’s Leviathan raid is stopping a bathing ritual. We’re not sure why we need to stop someone’s bath, but if that’s what Emperor Calus wants, that’s what he’s going to get.

Now this challenge requires some tight teamwork, as you must all lock in some moving chains and you’re on an invisible timer of sorts. Take too long and the waters will become corrupted, instantly wiping the entire team and forcing you to start this section over. You’ll notice that there is one glowing platform with an orb in the middle of the room, as well as two on either side of the room. The one in the middle constantly respawns its orb (which is important to remember). You’ll also notice that in the middle room there are three chains with these purple and gold cages. Those are Censers, and they are your main target for the Bathing Ritual.

Now that we have all the important parts of the room in order, it’s time to start. A good strategy is to make two teams of three, one for the left side of the room, one for the right. You’ll have one member of each team in center, one in the front of their side, and one in the back. To trigger the instance, all orbs must be claimed. Now, what you want to do is have the person in the front of each side call out when they have 20 stacks left of the buff granted by the orbs. At that point, the people in the middle will grab the middle orb then swap with the front person. That person will then swap with the back person. And it will keep rotating in that order. Each player on each team will constantly be moving clockwise from Center>Front>Back, and it repeats until the task is done.

The reason you’re swapping constantly is that standing on the platforms on the side  lowers chains, that lower the Censers in the middle room.  If you stay off of the platforms for too long, they raise back up, and if you take too long you die. So you must have someone always on the platforms dealing with adds as they swarm in. Once all the chains lock on both sides everyone needs to go to the middle.

In the middle room, pick four players to stay center so they can grab the orb and do damage to the Censers (whose cages are now gone). The other two players need to keep the room clear of any enemies so that those in the middle don’t die. Near the end of this phase, a Psion will appear. Kill it (must enter its bubble to do so) and any projections it may have spawned. Once done, repeat the same steps until all Censers are destroyed. 

Part 3: Survive the Hunt and Kill the Royal Beasts

How to Beat the Leviathan Raid in Destiny 2

After getting through Destiny 2’s bathing ritual (which wasn’t as clean as the name implied) it’s time to go on a hunt… only you’re playing as the prey for a large portion of it. Calus has set out his Royal Beasts and you must kill them. The thing is, you can’t just go and attack them. For starters, they have a ton of health. On top of that, they get alerted once they see you or get touched even once and start howling, which wipes your team in 30 seconds. The only way to get this done is through tight teamwork, and quite a bit of stealth. Oh and special Prism Weapons that only shoot sunlight.

When you enter the Pleasure Gardens (where this challenge takes place) clear out all of the basic enemies. They won’t put up much of a fight and will help charge some supers and maybe restock your heavy ammo. When they’re all dead, two Prism Weapons will spawn near the golden statue at the far end of the room. Pick two players to take control of these. Once grabbed, a door will open on the floor, and the other four players need to jump down and grab the orbs that are in there. Now’s where the real challenge begins.

The players up top with the Prism Weapons must locate glowing purple flowers on their side. They must then guide the players holding the orbs to their flower without them being spotted by the Royal Beasts. One will spawn on both the left and right side of the room. The reason you want to keep everyone moving together is that you get a damage multiplier called Empowering Spores by destroying the flower while orbs are right next to it. The more orbs, the higher the multiplier. With four orbs, it’s 12x per flower. You want to try your best to get at least three flowers before triggering combat (four is optimal). Also note that each time a flower is destroyed, a Cabal enemy appears. Only the people with the Prism Weapons should kill them as they’re completely silent. Just stand in a shaft of light and fire.

Once you have a high enough multiplier, attack one of the dogs. The two players up down need to jump down to get the Empowering Spores, and then you can all spread out and deal as much damage to the dogs as possible. Try to just bring them all low rather than kill them. As killing them quickens their enrage timer. You have roughly 30 seconds during the damage phase, so when you’re reaching about 20 (keep a mental count) head to safety. That room where the other players got the four orbs is actually a safe room. It has three uses, which means you only have four chances to kill the beasts or else it’s a wipe and you have to repeat this section of the Leviathan raid. Just repeat the above steps, though, and you’ll get by with ease. 

Part 4: Get Past the Gauntlet

How to Beat the Leviathan Raid in Destiny 2

The Gauntlet is almost like a game show in Destiny 2’s Leviathan raid. Players will need to earn the favor of Emperor Calus which apparently means racing around tracks and completing an obstacle course game show-style. It’s very easy to figure out, but the execution is where many teams will fumble on this one.

First, take note of the room. There are four pedestals, each with one of the symbols that have appeared throughout the entire raid (Sun, Beast, Crossed Axes, Chalice), with lit up triangles across from each. Across From Beast and Chalice are also two other platforms for the remaining two players. The players who take those platforms will be your runners, so choose your fastest runners and let them take that role (we used a Hunter and a Titan since our Warlocks were geared towards tanking). To trigger the instance, hit all four pedestals. A ton of adds will appear in each section, just wipe them out. Afterwards, some more adds and an Imperial Centurion will appear in each section, take him out quickly as he deals a ton of damage. When they’re all dead, a Psionic Charge will appear in front of those two special runner platforms. The runners need to grab them to be teleported into the track.

Once on the track, there are obstacles that the players outside need to clear. While running, the runners will see walls with nine holes. They must call out the row that has a ring that is a different color from the rest (top middle or bottom) as well as the symbol above the holes. The people outside need to quickly hit the two not called. So if they say middle, shoot top and bottom, if they say top, shoot middle and bottom, etc. To make this easy pair up. Beast and Sun should help each other by hitting one target each. Choose who will always take the higher one and who will always take the lower one.  Chalice and Crossed Axes did the same. Make sure that nobody but the runners are talking so everyone can quickly get their targets. Also, each time your section is passed, a Psion in a bubble will appear. Kill it quickly or else it will spawn projections that wipe the team. As long as you cleared adds prior to the running, this part is really easy.

After a full lap around the track, the runners will be free and must slam the charges in the center of the room. You must do this three times. It’s possible to miss a charge or two, but it will just make the end of this challenge a lot more difficult. Always try to get both done.

Once three runs are complete, everyone needs to run to the center room and grab an Orb. Now you’ll all be inside on the track and must make a complete lap. Note that there are only four recharges at every section, so players will have to take turns skipping to make sure that nobody explodes. If you didn’t fail on any of the previous runs, then you only need three players to make it through to the end, but you still can’t afford to have anyone die quickly. If someone dies, the team wipes if there’s no revive within 30 seconds. It takes more than 30 seconds to get through the entire track, so if you die in the first half, your team is pretty much screwed.

Enough people need to make it through and slam their orbs to complete the Gauntlet. Now it’s time for the Leviathan raid’s final challenge, the Destiny 2 raid boss. 

Final Step: Defeat Emperor Calus

How to Beat the Leviathan Raid in Destiny 2

You may have noticed that there haven’t been any real boss fights in the Leviathan raid up to this point. Sure you had the Royal Beasts, but they were part of a hunt, and not really like any of the bosses Destiny 2 had already thrown at us. But don’t worry, there’s a very real boss fight waiting for you at the end, and it will require coordination and a heck of a lot of fire power.

Upon entering the Throne Room, Emperor Calus is there sipping from his chalice. He is your final challenge. To kick off the fight, shoot the cup out of his hand and start killing all of the enemies he spawns in. When they’re gone the entire fireteam will be transported to another dimension where you’ll see a giant, purple version of Calus’ head. Three orbs will spawn in this room that three of your team members need to grab to head out to the boss room. The other three are just going to have to hold out in the other dimension and wait.

Outside, there will be more adds as well as four Psions spawning on pedestals with symbols above their heads. Do not kill the Psions. Just clear out the adds and wait. The players on the inside of the other dimension will each see a different symbol on the forehead of the floating head. They need to call them out. You’ll notice that these match the symbols above the Psions. Only kill the Psion that is not called out. This will allow the players in the other dimension to move closer to the floating head, while players outside kill more adds and stop Calus from doing a team wipe move. He will spawn a light above his head and start to charge it, just keep shooting him until he stops.

Repeat the above steps until the inside team is close to the head, at which point it will start shooting out Void Skulls. Those players need to survive the onslaught until three more orbs appear that allow them to exit into the boss room for the damage phase.

The entire team needs to jump onto a pedestal together (they’re in a sort of semicircle around the room) and start doing damage to the boss, preferably going for his head. When he points his red beam at the pedestal you’re all on, move to the next pedestal and continue. Use Power weapons, grenades, and supers if you got them just to get as much damage on him as possible. After enough damage, Calus will expose a robotic belly, which is another critical hit point you can and should use.

Once the damage phase is done, just repeat the previous steps to get to another damage phase. After you get Calus down to very low health he will vanish, ending the damage phase. But, like with Oryx and Aksis, he will reappear for one last ditch effort to kill you all. Everyone has to just use their strongest weapons, grenades, supers, whatever they have, to kill him once and for all. Congratulations, you just completed the Leviathan raid in Destiny 2.

For more on Destiny 2, be sure to check out our wiki.


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Image of Ishmael Romero
Ishmael Romero
Just a wandering character from Brooklyn, NY. A fan of horrible Spider-Man games, anime, and corny jokes.