With the raid fast approaching, players want to increase their light and see if they have what it takes to defeat the Leviathan. This can be done a number of ways, but thanks to a number of changes to the system, the old tactics don’t work the same way. With certain things offering a massive advantage and other things being a waste of time, it’s important to know how to progress before doing the important things. To aid with this, here is how you get to 280+ light, which should be more than enough for the raid.
- Some gear, such as exotics, come with legendary mods. Legendary mods give five light, increasing the overall total, but don’t get infused into gear. This is important to note, as they’re a great way to level, especially if you don’t have access to legendary mods to put on pieces or want to infuse something up. For instance, putting a 270 piece with a legendary mod into a 264 piece, will just give you 265 light. Likewise, even if a piece is 270 with a mod, you could put in a 268 and get 273.
- Engrams drop at a fixed light level. If you get an exotic at 10 light, it will be something like 15 light regardless of whether you’re 10 light or 100 light, so just open it.
- Rare and legendary engrams hit a soft cap of 265 light. After this point they’ll no longer drop at your current level, but will slowly increase over time. This will allow you to infuse up gear, especially if you used mods, so it can be useful.
- Infusion does not work across classes or weapon types. So a scout can be infused into a scout in the kinetic or energy category, but it can’t be used on a pulse. This is important if one side does better than the other and you just want to increase things.
- Drops are based off your highest possible light, not what your actual light is. If you can get to 290, but you’re only 240, you’ll still get the same drops you’d get if you were 290.
- Vender items, such as engrams or quest rewards increase in light as you do, provided you don’t accept them. So if you get offered an exotic at 199, don’t pick it up and when you return at like 300, it will also be around 300. This is really helpful for power leveling.
- Join any semi-active clan. If nothing else, it will be free engrams.
Level 1 to 20
Prior to finishing the story, the only way to ruin progress is to finish the Crucible or strike quests, so just avoid those and have fun. If you do end up doing those quests, simply avoid accepting the reward.
The Race to 265
Upon finishing the story the goal is to get 265 light. This can be done many different ways, but I strongly suggest finishing all the adventures, collectibles (marked on the map) and dead sectors as a way to constantly have something new to do, before looking for treasure chests and farming public events.
Now, you can do Crucible or strikes instead of public events, but in terms of time and effort, public events are much better. It also helps to have a boost, though it isn’t required or so amazing you should spend real money on them. Just helpful to have if you’re planning on doing it for a while.
The ideal way to play is to do the public event, look for nearby chests and collectibles, Nightstalker Hunter or the chest perk helps a lot with this, followed by doing the event, ideally on heroic difficulty and defeating any high-value targets that might pass. After the event, check the drops for better loot, followed by going to the next event or the vender if you have around 25 tokens. This will give you a legendary engram, which should have some nice gear.
Getting to 280
Even though the technical wall is 265 light, it’s possible to hit 270 by simply using 265 light gear to bring up modded gear or apply legendary mods to gear at 265 light. This is the absolute ideal, but if you don’t have the mods and/or saved modded gear, 265+ is a great time to go about doing the remaining things.
Once you’re at the 265+ point, there are two ways to progress, which are powerful engrams or exotics. Before worrying about the powerful engrams, see above for an example of what they look like, exotic quests give a powerful sidearm, SMG, scout rifle and hand cannon. If you use any of these weapons, avoid doing the blue quests on the map or at least finishing the whole quest line and accept the weapon, until you have nothing else to do. This will ensure the weapon you get will be at the highest possible level, allowing you to either use it or increase the weapon you do enjoy.
If not, I’d suggest doing the blue quests to unlock the exotic quests and slowly chip away at them. One requires an exotic engram, an item that takes time, where as another requires the nightfall, so it’s best to do that when you do the nightfall. As for the rest, just collect powerful engrams, infuse things up, grab another one and repeat until you run out.
Breaking past 280
At this point you’ll likely have little to nothing left, so there are two things you might need to do. The first is get a kinetic weapon mod. This can only be done by using an exotic kinetic weapon or making legendary mods, dismantling them and then using that for a random weapon one. Sadly, kinetic doesn’t come in rare, so that is the only reliable way to get one.
The other is infusing up gear. At this point gear should be dropping above your level with mods, so you can constantly increase pieces one light at a time. This is horribly slow, a massive resource drain and not that great, but it works if you’re desperate to increase.