When Bungie announced the massive changes that have happened to Destiny 2, they let us know that no matter what your current power level was, everyone was going to be power level 750 moving forward.
It didn't matter if you were a noob, just starting in Destiny 2 free-to-play version — often called New Light — or a hardened veteran of many campaigns, your base level moving forward would be the same. However, all the best content in Destiny 2 doesn't really kick in until you reach the soft level cap of 900. We are here to help reach that level cap as soon as possible.
What are the level caps?
In Destiny 2, your power level (PL) — previously called light level — is the way to determine your ability to tackle certain foes. The higher your PL, the easier a lot of the enemies in the game become. Of course, the opposite is true too. If your PL is too low, your guns do less damage, and if you enter an event that your PL is insufficient for, you might not be able to hurt any of the enemies at all.
The "soft level cap" of 900 is the point at which the game gets much harder, and it's where you start to accomplish more challenging events that give you "powerful gear." Powerful gear drops at above 900 PL and can be collected by completing high-level tasks.
There are two other level caps — one at 950 and one at 960 — that you can reach, but to do that, you will need to complete Raids and other endgame content, as well as use the new Artifact to help you.
Leveling in free-to-play
Free-to-play has most of the same ways to level as the paid version of Destiny 2. The most significant difference is you won't have access to the Vex Offensive from the season of the undying, and the Nightmare hunts from Shadowkeep. Everything else you will be able to do without upgrading from the free software.
Vendor tokens (everyone)
If you have been playing Destiny 2 for a while now, you have likely built up a stack of vender tokens. Even if you haven't picked up Shadowkeep, these tokens are a sure-fire way to give you a considerable boost. As you cash them into whichever vendor wants them, you will receive a legendary drop that will always be higher than, or equal to, your current power level.
If you haven't got any of the vendor tokens, don't worry, you should still visit the vendors as you can grab their weekly bounties which will help you get the more powerful gear later on.
The menagerie is the last season's event and is entirely free for everyone to play. The great thing about it is the way loot drops. Using the chalice from the Emperor, you can choose what piece of equipment you want to spawn in the chest when you complete the event. This means you can fill in the gaps in your kit to help level you to 900.
You also can't lose the Menagerie. Ok, you might not get the very highest rewards if you don't complete it before the time runs out, but you will still get a significant amount of blue engrams along the way, and each one will boost your power level.
Vex Incursions (everyone)
Even though this is a part of the new season in Destiny 2, it is still available for everyone to do. Bungie has made the Moon public space available for everyone so you can do the public events as well as these new Vex incursions.
Just after any standard public event in Archer's Line, the Hellmouth, or the Anchor of Light, a massive electrical storm will appear, and Vex will spawn all around you. While you are fighting the gate lord, be careful. Try to get his health low then wait for him to generate his hydras. Once they appear, kill them first, then kill the gate lord.
You will have to do that two more times in different locations, but once you do, the giant overlord will appear. Kill this massive hydra, and it will spew forth engrams for you to pick up. This may be hard if you are a very low PL, so make sure there are people around you to help.
Vex offensive (paid only)
The Vex offensive is this season's main event and is a lot of fun. It's a horde mode where the Vex comes at you, getting progressively more dangerous as the waves spawn. Eventually, a giant Vex will appear, and you'll need to break down his shield to defeat him and claim your rewards.
Of course, even if you don't defeat it, there is ample opportunity for the oceans of vex that spawn to drop blue engrams. Every engram you pick up is likely to boost your level, and you should try to equip the best stuff as soon as possible — even between waves — so you can be more effective at killing the big boss.
Any more tips?
Leveling up tips is not an exact science. This is the way I found myself leveling up, and I managed to do it in just five days. After you hit 900 PL, things slow a little, but not by much. You can still complete a lot of amazing events to help get your powerful gear, and doing activities more than once will help too. A lot of the vendors ask you to repeat quests to get powerful equipment, and it's an easy way to get the engrams you need.
What about you, guardians? How do you manage to power your way up the ladder? Let us know your tips and tricks, and we may add them to our list.
Return to the dark
Nightmares are born
Shadowkeep is the start of a whole new chapter for the team at Bungie. Expect huge new bosses, new raids, new moves, and oh so many new weapons and armor.
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James built his first PC when he was 13 and has never looked back. He can be found on Windows Central, usually in the corner where all the 3D printers are, or huddled around the Xbox playing the latest games.