This page details both your playable character and the Guardians still in active service.
Beware of unmarked spoilers.
The Guardians of the Last City
Sometime in the distant past of Destiny, the arrival of the Traveler marked a rapid rise of technological expansion, and thus a new Golden Age began for the human race. Within decades, humans were able to colonize and populate many of the planets within the Solar System, and even go beyond. However, this would not last, for some unknown force managed to transform much of what was gained into ruin, and the human race had to return to the Last City on Earth or face extinction.
Hundreds of years after the cataclysm, the human race is equipped once more with the technological arsenal that the Traveler provides. A chosen few among the many left on the planet have been deemed Guardians (Hunters, Warlocks, and Titans), which are bestowed with magic-like powers to strengthen their forces. On Earth or across the solar system, the human race is once more ready to take back what is rightfully theirs.
- Ace Pilot: Considering that every Guardian has a Jumpship, this should be expected. This comes into the fore when your Guardian tries to infiltrate Oryx's dreadnought to take out the Wave Motion Gun.
- Action Girl: Female Guardians, naturally.
- Attack Its Weak Point: There's only one real weak point in any Guardian: their Ghost. If the Ghost is captured, destroyed, or has its Light stolen, the Guardian cannot be resurrected. Trying to take a Guardian's Ghost is considered justification for use of lethal force. Also, anything that directly targets the Guardian's own Light, such as Crota's Sword, can permanently kill a Guardian. The Cabal notes that unless the ghost is exposed, that Guardians are more or less unstoppable to Cabal and nothing short of an orbital bombardment is sufficient from destroying a Guardian and its ghost conventionally.
- Back from the Brink: At the end of he main campaign of Destiny 2. The Guardians were depowered and nearly wiped out, and many were killed without their Ghosts or the ability to resurrect. Two entire Titan orders were destroyed, and many other Guardians were slain in other battles, most notably on Titan. But despite these losses, the City managed to push back and retake their home and the Guardians restored their powers.
- Back from the Dead: This is the primary method by which you get recruited as a Guardian — a Ghost identifies a Light-compatible corpse somewhere in the human-held solar system, and then revives it as a new servant for the Traveler. Some Guardians appear to have got their Ghosts differently (Ikora Rey, for example, was apparently alive during the Golden Age, when no Ghosts existed, and yet shows none of the signs of the usual memory loss brought about by reanimation, or Shin Malphur, who inherited his Ghost and the Last Word from his mentor Jaren Ward), but that's how things normally go.
- Badass Biker: Their preferred method of covering ground quickly are their Sparrows, pulling crazy stunts on them even the heat of battle.
- Berserk Button: Do not, under ANY circumstances, try and attack a Guardian's Ghost. It will end poorly for you.
- Brought Down to Badass: Every Guardian went through this after being stripped of their powers following the sacking of the Last City by the Cabal Red Legion; they may not have space-magic or the ability to resurrect themselves after death anymore, but they're all still highly capable soldiers and warriors with potentially centuries of experience behind them. And any Guardians willing to make the pilgramige to the European Dead Zone will find that the shards of the Traveler that landed there are more than capable of re-powering them, making this a temporary state of being.
- Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Guardians are humanity's greatest warriors and last hope of survival. Cabal field reports also show that they enjoy dancing and doing stunts on their Sparrows after combat, and the Owl Sector reports mentions that the Guardians' "heads are cooked by the Light" and that they're often dancing for no reason in the Tower plaza. Cayde-6 also complains that Guardians are constantly standing on his table. Folds into What the Hell, Player?, as it is indicative of how people actually play the game.
- Came Back Strong: Whatever they were, it's unlikely they were as powerful as they are now.
- Cloud Cuckoo Lander: Guardians have a strange obsession with growing more powerful, gathering materials and tools, and growing via new experiences and rewards. Essentially, they behave like your typical MMO Player Character. In Forsaken, one lore tab discusses an Awoken Guardian who once lived in the Reef and was revived and then captured and brought back by Uldren.And Savin was most of all greedy not in the grasping manner of the petty, but in an enormous, all-consuming way, for he desired materials and experiences that would temper him into a better Guardian, and he was always experimenting with his strange powers in foolish ways that left him briefly dead, seeking "a new Super ability" or "some way to make my grenades faster." He grew tired of performing trivial tasks about the Reef, complaining that the dangerous repairs he made were endless and boring, and that he wanted to move on to new worlds. He leapt into space, repeatedly and without reason, as if his death were no more traumatic than a hop off a curb.
- Combat Medic: Any Guardian with an Exotic armor piece that enables fast revival (both for themselves and other Guardians) can be seen as this...however, this better fits a Defender Titan that isn't rolling "Weapons of Light".
- Cool Bike: The Sparrow counts. It's got no weapons, and it's not well-armored, but it is still capable of Car Fu. Some Guardians can use it to ram some helpless victim, or park it in the middle of a crowd to shoot it as an improvised explosive.
- Cool Ship: The Jumpship is probably what one would consider a heavy fighter.
- Death Is a Slap on the Wrist: Generally, Guardians don't have to worry about death other than for the time it takes for their Ghosts to resurrect them. As long as they have an intact and functional Ghost they'll be fine. The few moments where this is averted are generally Played for Drama, especially after the Cabal Red Legion cuts off access to the light during their attack on the City. According to Zavala, hundreds of Guardians died permanently trying to defend the City from the Cabal, and the loss of their Ghosts in the process made a huge blow to morale across the system.
- The Dreaded: The Guardians are feared among all of their enemies in the system, and for good reason. A single Guardian can fell dozens of foes, and a small team of them can slaughter entire armies and defeat the mightiest weapons and depopulate entire pantheons of gods wielding literal dark magical powers. They're so terrifying that the Guardians even frighten the emotionless Vex. Failsafe says that the Vex term for Guardians translates into "those who wield what we cannot predict."
- Double Jump: All three classes are able to perform this with the actual mechanism of doing so depending on the class.
- Due to the Dead: It wasn't made explicitly clear at first but the Iron Banner is a partly a memorial event to honor the Iron Lords who have died a long time ago. It's an occasion so serious that Lord Shaxx and Lord Saldin put aside their differences and work together to hold it. (Of course it helps that the Speaker and the City's leaders essentially ordered them to.)
- Fallen Hero: It's rare, but sometimes this happens to unfortunate Guardians. One such example would be Dredgen Yor, who fell to the Darkness and was also the bearer of Thorn, a cursed and Obviously Evil revolver. The other would be Kabr, the Legionless, who became obsessed with the Vex and was 'consumed' by the Vault of Glass. Early Guardians during the Dark Age, however, were as often brutal and selfish warlords as they were heroic protectors, until the Iron Lords put an end to that.
- Fighter, Mage, Thief: Downplayed by the amount of gunplay on all sides, but this is essentially the main classes, in order of Titan, Warlock, Hunter.
- Friendly Rivalry: Some of the item descriptions imply that the Hunters and Warlocks are this for each other. Also, the way Ikora and Cayde riff on each other implies this. It's never insulting, more just innocent ribbing.
- Cayde: Ikora, if you tell me this is another one of your practical jokes... well, it kills me to say it, but I'd be really impressed.
Ikora: Impressing you, Cayde, is the easiest thing I'll do all day.
- Functional Magic: Thanks to the influence of the Traveler, the Guardians are able to harness ethereal powers.
- Glass Cannon: Compared with their enemies, Guardians are very fragile, with even the mighty Titans being relatively easy to kill. This is balanced out by the fact that Guardians carry weapons and powers that do incredible amounts of damage per shot. This is especially noticeable if you sit back and watch enemy factions fight; a battle between the Vex and Fallen or the Cabal and Hive will be a long, drawn-out slugfest, with weapons that would kill a Guardian in seconds bouncing off enemy armor and shields... but when you step in, you'll often tear through both sides.
- Humanoid Abomination: To put it bluntly, Guardians are resurrected corpses imbued with alien energy by the servants of a dead or dying god, dying is such an annoyance to them that some of them disarm mines by stepping on them, or shoot themselves in the head For Science! and record their experiences, and they can channel bizarre energy at a moment's notice, warping gravity with a thought.
- Humans Are Cthulhu: Look at it from the perspective of the Cabal or Fallen — they're smaller than you, they use powerful weaponry that looks like tech you moved past a long time ago, their technology is inscrutable... and death often seems like a minor annoyance to them. They can break the laws of physics on a whim, and gravity seems to ignore them more often than not. The Fallen even explicitly call the Guardians "ghouls", and say that they're sent out "to murder our Primes, starve our ether, and leave our young to die gasping".
- Implacable Man: Guardians possess a Healing Factor, so they can shrug off punishment severe enough to undoubtably maim or kill normal human beings so long as they dont take too much in a short amount of time, and while its technically possible to kill a Guardian, their Ghost will ensure that it only sticks for half a minute at best or several seconds at worst. The only way to render Guardians vulnerable to Final Death is to kill their Ghost, which is easier said than done due to the sheer protectiveness their Guardian has over them, as well as the fact that Ghosts tend to hide during firefights to make themselves less of an easy target. In all, if you have a Guardian hunting you, the only way youll be able to survive is either getting lucky, or carpet-bombing the area theyre in until its entirely levelled.
- Latex Space Suit: All Guardians start out with variants of the same basic tight-fitting environmentally-sealed suit, with some class-specific accessories.note Later gear diverges, but all still maintain tight-fitting sealed undersuits beneath whatever else they have.
- Limit Break: All Guardians unlock their Super Abilities once their Subclass has reached level 4. What they do, vary on both your main class and subclass chosen.
- Loss of Identity: Guardians have very little memory of who they were before a Ghost resurrected them. They may recall bits and pieces, and Exo Guardians in particular have fragments of who they once were (with Ana Bray and Cayde-6 being the best at remembering who they were). There's an entire order of Guardians, the Thanatonauts, who try to recover memories of their past by killing themselves and having their Ghosts revive them, and in the process pulling bits of memory from who they once were.
- A lore fragment from Forsaken reveals that Eris Morn is naturally (or as close as anything Guardian-related comes to being natural) recovering her memories since her Ghost was destroyed. She claims that it happens to all former Guardians in such circumstances, which suggests that the Traveller might want its Chosen to be blank slates...
- Mage Marksman: All Guardians qualify, to varying degrees courtesy of the Traveller's influence. Warlocks are just most upfront about the "Mage" part.
- Magitek: Most Guardian equipment is fairly conventional, if advanced, technology. However, many of the more precious and rare examples are those which have built-in channels for the Guardian's own Light. As it is worn and fought in, the adaptive nature of the Light gradually improves it, building its legend and becoming powerful in ways that transcend the mundane.
- Mildly Military: The Guardians have a very loose command structure, at best. In fact, most of the Guardians' organization and activities are built around the idea that most of the Guardians are too independently minded to be effectively commanded and that many are driven by the need for loot, personal advancement, and facing greater challenges.
- The Vanguard is ostensibly the Guardians' leadership, but they don't actually do much in the way of commanding the Guardians unless there's a major battle ongoing, such as the Battle of Twilight Gap or the abortive assault on the Moon. Instead, the Vanguard and other Tower officials tend to find high-value targets and organize missions, then point any available Guardians in the immediate area at the target in question and let them deal with it. A lot of the time, Guardians are enticed to go after a particular target specifically because the Vanguard is offering a nice bounty on that enemy or information.
- In order to claim strategically valuable areas, Lord Shaxx figured out a clever way to ensure that there's always Guardians around to hold that ground: by having Crucible matches take place there. Several strategic sites, from Fallen bases to Cabal outposts to a foothold in the Black Garden itself are all protected by the Guardians who are constantly duking it out over those sites. Similarly, the Queen realized that the easiest way to get extra Guardian muscle in the Reef to help fight the House of Wolves was to simply open up the Prison of Elders as an arena, and Guardians poured in to fight for loot and glory.
- The use of the various currencies and faction reputations is pretty much explicitly said to be incentives to get Guardians to do whatever needs to be done. Vanguard marks, for example, are specifically awarded for doing missions and tasks that the Vanguard need doing, and are specifically there to ensure that the most useful Guardians get access to the best equipment. Other factions, as well as the Crucible and the Queen, reward Guardians for doing what they want with gear as well.
- The Speaker outright compares the Guardians to knights-errant in Osiris's Grimoire card. The Guardians ultimate duty is to protect humanity and fight the Darkness, but that statement is so open to interpretation that this allows them to proceed how they want. The Speaker does expect them to guide refugees they find out in the wild back to the City and focus on immediate threats to the City like the Fallen and the Hive, but as long as they take those priorities as foremost, the Speaker doesn't care how they achieve those goals.
- In the Destiny 2 trailer, after failing to get any of the Guardians fired up with his... lackluster speech, Cayde manages to get the Guardians cheering by promising them "A ton of loot!"
- Ghaul calls the Guardians out on their lack of discipline and how they only hold the Wall, accusing them of not being brave, but rather simply not having a fear of death, unlike the grimly stoic and highly-disciplined Cabal.
- The entire point behind the Crucible is to train the Guardians in deadly warfare with the most dangerous enemies that they can fight: each other. Since Guardians are unreliable at best, with only Titans being anything close to a conventional military, no one expects them to do things like training. Instead, Shaxx arranged Crucible matches as live-fire combat training and set them up as public spectacles with gear rewards and glory to ensure that Guardians will always be fighting to keep themselves sharp.
- My Species Doth Protest Too Much: While the majority of Guardians are warriors dedicated to the protection of the City through various means, there are numerous cases of renegade Guardians, such as Dredgen Yor and his Shadows, as well as a rumored colony of pacifist Guardians that Lady Efrideet lived among for a time. Many Warlocks spend more time researching than fighting, only rarely venturing into the field.
- One-Man Army: Oftentimes Guardians will find themselves battling hordes of enemies alone. Even if you play alone without ever joining up with other Guardians, your character will singlehandedly kill thousands of enemies over the course of the story campaign. To hammer it home, one late-game mission has you assaulting the Cabal at the heart of their military strength in the Exclusion Zone, complete with multiple ambushes by hordes of Cabal soldiers, and you can singlehandedly shoot your way through all of them.
- Exemplified in Strikes and Raids. In the former, a small team of Guardians go up against terribly powerful enemies and slaughter their way through small armies of their defenders. In the latter, a small force of at most six Guardians (and in extreme cases, one superbly well-armed and badass Guardian) go up against colossal opponents and massive bosses in the heart of their power. The Crota's End Raid has you charging into the home of, challenging, and slaying a god of the Hive who personally killed thousands of Guardians in a single battle. King's fall then has you take on the aforementioned god's father in his throne world and put a permanent end to him as well.
- Our Liches Are Different: To put it simply, a Guardian is made when a Ghost finds a corpse (normally skeletonized by that point) that is capable of holding the Traveler's Light, and then resurrects them to fight for the Last City. Their Ghosts are also their Soul Jar, and the only way to effectively kill a Guardian is to destroy their Ghost (no lean feat given how small a target they are and how viciously Guardians protect them) or to drain the Light from them (relics like Crota's Sword are capable of this). Destiny 2 shows that the Light isn't keeping the Guardians alive either, unlike classical depictions of liches, as Dominus Ghaul cutting off their access only crippled them by removing their powers and ability to resurrect.
- The Paladin: What most modern Guardians are, although only Titans look the part. The resurrected, Light-empowered people who were first resurrected by Ghosts immediately after the Collapse were a different matter, being a mix between noble heroes like the Iron Lords and tyrannical warlords and thugs abusing their powers.
- The Purge: Following their de-powering after getting cut off from the Traveler by the Cabal Red Legion, the Cabal made it a point to murder any Guardian they came across. Unlike typical Cabal strategy for killing Guardians via Orbital Bombardment, a few bullets will do since the Ghosts can't resurrect their Guardians without the light. After fleeing the City, you come across an encampment of dead Guardians without their Ghosts, showing how real the threat of death is now after taking your Resurrective Immortality for granted.
- Rage Quit: Without targeting their Ghosts or using exotic weaponry, the only real way to stop a Guardian is to frustrate them into giving up. Early in the Iron Lords' campaigns, they could only defeat the various warlords and their Light-blessed thugs in battle by digging into strong defensive positions and exchanging fire until the warlords finally just gave up and retreated.
- Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: Cayde-6 explicitly calls them this during the reveal trailer for Destiny 2.
- Cayde-6: Ok, so... you're all a buncha dirty misfits, but you're all that's left, so you'll have to do.
- Reality Warper: Comes with using such a paracasual power as Light, but a specific example is when Failsafe observes the Last Wish Raid team defeat Morgeth, stating that 37 different laws of physics were defied in that encounter alone.
- Redshirt Army: The majority of the Guardians aren't actually anywhere near as powerful as the player characters. In fact, some tend to fall to enemies that the player would easily defeat. Quest descriptions indicate that the player is exceptional and as strong — if not moreso — than many of the legendary Guardians of the past. Most of the less-powerful Guardians tend to do missions that are more limited, like patrolling the wilderness, maintaining patrol beacon networks, manning the Wall defenses, reconnoitering enemy positions, policing the City, or doing research, while the more powerful ones (i.e. player Guardians) conduct high-risk missions, strikes, and raids.
- Resurrective Immortality: Guardians seem to constantly come back from the dead, provided that their Ghost is still functioning. This point is driven home on the very first Moon Story Mission, where a Guardian is completely dead with his Ghost missing.
- The lore has other instances of Guardians permanently dying, often against the Hive and their Light-draining powers. Petra Venj's Grimoire card says that she was disgraced after she ordered an airstrike on a Fallen position that was being attacked by Guardians. The Guardians and their Ghosts were destroyed by her bombs, and the City was justifiably outraged.
- The Vex can kill Guardians permanently by trapping them in area where their link to the Traveler is cut off, like the Vault of Glass or the Black Garden. Once those Guardians are trapped, the Vex can either leave them there (in the case of Praedyth) or just keep throwing units at them until their Light is fully expended (in the case of Tevis Larson). Toland's journal backs this up, where he says that certain interdimensional places, like the Hive gods' sword-spaces and Oryx's Dreadnaught, will cut off the link to the Traveler, leaving Guardians as "dying suns."
- At one point during the City Age, there was a violent civil war between Guardians backing two different sides vying for control of the City. Once the faction that would form the current Consensus was victorious, the only thing they could do with the Guardians who backed the losers was exile them, since they couldn't kill them and didn't want to destroy the irreplaceable Ghosts.
- Screw Destiny: Explicit in the final stage of the Vault of Glass raid, where you're fighting a Vex war machine that comes from multiple timelines where the Vex have achieved total victory. Once you gain the massive buff that lets you do tremendous damage and gain near-instant cooldowns, you get a new message: "Guardians make their own fate."
- The Vex are believed to be trying to weaponize this aspect of the Guardians. Every timeline they've created always ends in the same result, where they are consumed by the Darkness, and they want to find a way out of this end. The Guardians' Light, and it's paracausal effects, gives them the ability to defy Vex predictive models and may grant them a way to escape their otherwise inevitable destruction or enslavement to the Darkness.note
- Skewed Priorities: While its their duty to defend the traveler and the last city, everyone knows that the surest way to get a guardians help is the promise of loot. Played for laughs in the "Rally the Troops" trailer where despite utterly failing to inspire anyone Cayde is able to motive them with the mere promise of loot.
- The Sleepless: Implied by the flavor text of an item from Destiny 2.
- Training from Hell: To Shaxx training Guardians is all about team or single combat with live ammunition and full use of super powers, there is no holding back in the crucible and unless it's a complete annihilation of the other team Shaxx will tell Guardians to show no mercy even to new Guardians. Justified in that Guardian numbers are slim as it is and that if new Guardians cannot survive and thrive in the crucible then they have no hope against the Darkness itself where there is actual stakes.
- Transhuman Treachery: Early Guardians weren't the heroic figures that they are today. Most of them were brutal warlords who were drunk on their own Light and power and their immortality. It wasn't until the Iron Lords came around and started either convincing or killing the warlords (via destroying their Ghosts) that the Guardians as we know them started to appear.
- Tron Lines: Any Guardian equipped with gear that has a Chroma will have them.
- Your Normal Is Our Taboo: It is generally a taboo subject among Guardians to search out information about one's past before their rebirth, both because this can cause issues with loyalties and to prevent Guardians who should be protecting the City from wasting time on a likely-fruitless search for their pasts, as most clues on their history would have been lost in the Collapse anyway. That doesn't stop the Thanatonauts from searching for clues in their pasts through suicide and resurrection, and some Guardians, such as Cayde-6 and Ana Bray, do still have connections to their pasts and try to remember what they can.
- See the Guardian Classes page.
"The Young Wolf"
The player Guardian, revived by their Ghost on the outskirts of the Cosmodrome in Old Russia. While they start as a new Guardian, they quickly find themselves thrust into the heart of the Last City's struggle for survival against the Darkness.
- The Assimilator: The Whisper of the Worm binds the Young Wolf to the Sword Logic after they finish pressing through a series of bizarre resurrective shenanigans brought on by Xol, making them this by definition. Gameplay-wise, though, considering how late in their career this happens, there's only one weapon that pays any respect to this new revelation, that being the Whisper of the Worm itself. In this case, the Young Wolf is assimilating the strength of the Taken inside the Grove of Ulan-Tan and feeding the Whisper of the Worm (which some believe is a vessel for an actual worm, running on bloodshed).
- Back from the Dead: You start the game being raised from the dead by your Ghost after being dead for who knows how long.
- Brought Down to Badass: In the second mission of Destiny 2, once Ghost manages to heal them, the Young Wolf is still able to kill dozens of Cabal War Beasts and a couple of Cabal soldiers, and then defeat several groups of Fallen scavengers. The fact that Ghost can continue to heal them as they take damage in combat (if they can stay out of enemy fire long enough) even though he can no longer resurrect them helps with this considerably.
- The Chosen One: In Destiny 2, the Young Wolf is the only Guardian who gets the vision that takes them to the European Dead Zone and the lost Traveler shard. It's implied that this is less because they were chosen beforehand, but because they're the most powerful Guardian in their time and thus the best bet the Traveler has to empower with a limited amount of Light that the shard possesses and defeat Ghaul. The Perfect Paradox's lore reveals that this is also the case for all of the first game, their coming prophesized by Saint-14 after he glimpsed the future through Vex tech.
- Deadpan Snarker: They seem to be this at times in story mode of Destiny 1.
- Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: The player character Guardians effectively end up taking down legendary opponents so powerful that they slew entire armies by themselves.
- The culmination to main story campaign has you destroy the heart of the Black Garden, something so incomprehensible that the Vex's reaction to it was to worship it.
- The base game's raid, "The Vault of Glass", has you taking down Atheon, the Axis Mind of the titular Vault who's in charge of developing a future where Vex supremacy is a rule of physics and can wipe out the enemy from existence.
- In The Dark Below, the raid "Crota's End" culminates in you killing Crota, who singlehandedly slew hundreds of Guardians in the last war for the Moon, is worshiped as a god by his spawn, and resides in a parallel dimension if your trip down the Hellmouth is any indication.
- The Taken King one-ups them all with "King's Fall" by having you take on Oryx, Crota's father and the literal God-King of the Hive. Crota's personal universe? Oryx made that.
- Rise of Iron features "Wrath of the Machine", where you face the worst of the Devil Splicer's creations, braving lethal amounts of SIVA corruption, and culminates with taking on Aksis, the machine god that is the mind behind SIVA's rampage.
- Initially the fight against Dominus Ghaul looked like this, since you're trying to kill a Cabal Dominus who is the only antagonistic being empowered by the Light you've ever faced and can use all three forms of the Light at once, but it winds up getting subverted. After killing Ghaul in the fight he resurrects himself as a massive being made of pure Light, mocking the Traveler as he declares himself a god. Then the Traveler wakes up, breaks the cage Ghaul put on it, and proves that sometimes it takes Cthulhu to punch out Cthulhu.
- Curse of Osiris ends with you taking on Panoptes, the Axis Mind that transformed Mercury and is in control of the Infinite Forest, with the Raid Lair pitting you against Argos, the single largest Hydra faced yet and the very core of Nessus.
- Warmind has you take out Nokris, another of Oryx's children, and Xol, one of the Worm Gods worshipped by the Hive, preventing a plot to eliminate the powerful Warmind Rasputin in the process. Sure, it turned out to be a fake Xol, but points for trying.
- In Forsaken, you face down not just the very last Ahamkara but a Taken Ahamkara as well as Queen Mara Sov's Taken Techeuns (Takeuns?), and all of the fights you will face in the Dreaming City are part of a "Groundhog Day" Loop orchestrated by whomever set up the events of the expansion. Evidence in the game itself as well as lore points to Savathûn, but there's no confirmation in-universe or from Bungie as to whether this is true.
- The Dreaded: All Guardians are this to the Fallen, but The Young Wolf is probably their greatest enemy, especially by the time Rise of Iron rolls around. The destruction of Sepiks Prime in particular made them the House of Devil's worst nightmare and public enemy #1.
- Evil Is Not a Toy: Two whole years after forging Outbreak Prime, we learn that it wasn't destroyed in the attack on the old Tower; in fact, it's still capable of producing new nanites. Twenty months of disuse doesn't play nice with the City at all, causing the Cryptarch vaults to enter quarantine from its evolution into Outbreak Perfected, and nearly restarting the SIVA Crisis after Eramis's Fallen learn about this and go to steal it. Had Mithrax not intervened, the Young Wolf's own creation might have started another war.
- The Ghost: Pardoning the pun, if the player doesn't import a save from Destiny 1 into 2 then they play as a different Guardian and the Young Wolf goes unmentioned though their exploits are spoken of.
- Heroic Mime: In Destiny 2, the player doesn't speak at all, with Ghost handling all of the dialogue with other characters. It gets lampshaded on Nessus, where the player's Guardian gets annoyed at Ghost for cutting them off when replying to Cayde-6. Finally subverted after the first mission of the Forsaken expansion, which has the Young Wolf, not their Ghost but the PC themselves, swearing vengeance on Uldren Sov, because now...
- It's Personal: After Uldren shoots Cayde after disabling his Ghost, it becomes clear that this is what motivates the player to begin hunting down the Scorn and Uldren.
- Last of His Kind: With the fall of the Forge on Mercury and death of the Sunbreakers, a Young Wolf Titan player may well be the last Sunbreaker in the system, unless other Titans in other orders also gained that power.
- Living Legend: In three years, they become the most famous Guardian in the Tower and the one responsible for ushering in the Age of Triumph.
- During the base game's questlines, while your Guardian is leveling up, your mentor will mention how exceptional you are compared to other Guardians, and Cayde will even say that some of the other Hunters don't believe you're real. Zavala explicitly says you're a legend that other Guardians are aspiring to match.
- Your legend is so great that you're specifically tapped by Zavala to investigate the Cabal fleetbase on Phobos. Cayde personally selects you to lead the assault on the Dreadnaught, and the Vanguard have your Guardian spearhead each stage of the Taken War, culminating in you destroying the Echoes of Oryx on Venus, Mars, and Earth. Later, Zavala has you serve as the first response when Saladin calls for aid to protect the Iron Temple.
- By the time of Destiny 2, your Guardian has become such a big deal that Holliday calls you "that Guardian (Zavala) won't shut up about." You're personally called up and pulled off the defense of the City to attack Dominus Ghaul's command ship. Passing by Lord Shaxx, he even calls you 'Saladin's Young Wolf.'
- Made of Iron: Even without Light, the Young Wolf survives getting dumped off the side of Ghaul's command ship, albeit being critically injured and taking two days to wake up again.
- Naïve Newcomer: Given so many other Guardians have been carrying on the fight beforehand, it's interesting to note your character came out of proverbial nowhere.
- No Name Given: Given the memory loss that normally occurs when a Guardian is first resurrected, your character has no name and never picks one.
- Only Known by Their Nickname: After being called "Guardian" for the entire base game and all the expansions, Rise of Iron finally gives the player character a title: they are dubbed "The Young Wolf" by Lord Saladin when they become the first new Iron Lord.
- Before the player character was resurrected, Saint-14 called them "Crota's End."
- O.O.C. Is Serious Business: Normally the Guardian is helpful and polite, and friendly if snarky to their Ghost. Come Forsaken, where you're so bloodthirsty in your rampage against the Scorn in vengeance for Cayde that your Ghost is starting to worry about you and wish you'd go back to your old self.
- Purely Aesthetic Gender: The gender, and even the race, of the Guardian has no effect on gameplay. All it does is change your appearance, voice, and dance animation.
- The Quiet One: The main character is barely a step up from a Heroic Mime, having a mere handful of spoken lines throughout the story. This is upgraded to Heroic Mime from The Dark Below and through to Destiny 2, where he or she doesn't even speak in cutscenes. A rare line by Ghost duing the "Cayde's Stash" mission in The Taken King expansion has him comment on how quiet the player is, and that they have a form of "neural symbiosis" that lets Ghost understand your thoughts.
- This is averted ever so slightly in Forsaken when they tell Zavala and Ikora that they've got dibs on killing Uldren Sov. If they looks on both of their faces is anything to go by then the Young Wolf speaking has them both realizing just how murderously serious they are.
- The Red Baron: "Hivebane", "The Young Wolf", "Hero of the Red War," Crota's End.
- Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Goes on one against the Scorn in retribution for them and Uldren Sov killing Cayde, slaughtering them so viciously that you start to make your Ghost very worried, and cause Villainous Breakdowns in the Scorn Barons as you relentlessly hunt them across the system.
- Eyes up, Guardian! It worked, you're alive! You don't know how long I've been looking for you. I'm a Ghost. Actually, now I'm your Ghost. And you... well, you've been dead a long time, so you're going to see a lot of things you won't understand.
The player character's Ghost, a robotic drone that resurrects them in the Cosmodrome in Russia and accompanies them throughout their journeys.
For general information on all Ghosts, see the Tower page.
- Butt-Monkey: He gets talked down by just anybody, gets physically abused a couple of times during Strikes, and is often locked out of the loop during a conversation. Oh, and he lives in your backpack.
- Cannot Spit It Out: The flavor text for The Thin Line notes that one of the many things he wants to say to you but cant work up the nerve to is I love you.
- Deadpan Snarker: In the earlier parts of the game Ghost is less snarky and more expository. By the later expansions, he's turned the snark all the way up and is engaging in full banter with other characters.Ghost: (To Variks) You want him alive? What happened to "Kill them baaaaaaaaack?"
- Demoted to Extra: In The House of Wolves and The Dark Below expansions, Ghost has has no lines to speak, mostly because of the change in voice actors leading up to The Taken King.
- Embarrassing Nickname: Unlike other Ghosts like Sagira, your Ghost is not very fond of being called "Little Light".Ghost: Can't we stay here with all of the murderous robots?
Guardian: No... Little Light.
Ghost: Don't do that.
- Exposition Fairy: Floats by your side and offers commentary, often being the one to tell you something about the world around you and where you should go next.
- Extreme Doormat: Hes such a Nice Guy and likes you so much he cant even bring himself to criticize you or object to your decisions. Hes clearly intensely uncomfortable with your behavior during the Forsaken questline, but just cant work up the nerve to really say anything. The Drifter explicitly calls him out on this, wondering how he can be such a wuss compared to his Guardian.
- Fairy Companion: If Mechanical Lifeform Sufficiently Advanced Alien Pieces of God can be considered fairies.
- Final Death: He expresses a lot of worry about this, especially after the player's Light is cut off in Destiny 2.
- Grand Theft Me: Sagira, Ghost of the infamous Warlock Osiris, pulls this on your Ghost during your first excursion into the Infinite Forest.
- Hidden Depths: For all his sweethearted Motor Mouth tendencies, the flavor text for The Line makes it clear hes got a lot of emotional baggage pent up, especially after Cayde-6 dies and the Young Wolf goes on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge.
- Motor Mouth: The player's Ghost is relatively talkative compared with most other characters, with only Sagira being comparably chatty.
- Nice Guy: Your Ghost in particular is pretty friendly towards those who are on your side (even if he becomes frustrated with them sometimes) and expresses sadness for those who have suffered, such as Failsafe.
- Non-Action Guy: Ghosts arent combat-oriented anyways, but even by their standards he doesnt really like danger.
- Non-Human Sidekick: To the player Guardian.
- Our Angels Are Different: Functionally, he's a little robot space angel created to help humanity and carry out the divine will of a big robot space God.
- Pieces of God: He is one, as each Ghost is a fragment of the Traveler, formed and detached with the last of its strength, and each one carries a fragment of the Traveler's intelligence and power. Your Ghost admits that he doesn't know why he was made or what the Traveler itself even is, or how he knew you were "his" Guardian.
- Robot Buddy: His main role is to serve as your assistant, helping with data access, scanning objects, and unlocking doors. When the Ghost's shell is properly upgraded, it can use various support functions, such as seeking out resource nodes or increase the energy or glimmer you gain from defeating enemies.
- Soul Jar: He effectively serves as yours, until the Traveler's Light is cut off in Destiny 2, as he can resurrect you and heal you.
- Tempting Fate: Has a really bad habit of this:
- During the Devil's Lair strike, the Ghost is trying to hack a security laser. After getting through the first layer, Ghost notes that the system is wired to something, but before he can say it, the alarm goes off, alerting more Fallen.
- In the Summoning Pits strike, when the fireteam reaches Phogoth, Ghost notes that at least the Ogre is chained up. Moments after saying this, Phogoth rips his chains off and begins attacking directly. Ghost decides to shut up for the rest of the mission after that.
- After easily hacking some Cabal locks, Ghost tries hacking a console. When it asks for an access key, Ghost replies that DOS is more complicated. Immediately after saying this, Ghost accidentally triggers a failsafe. Which in Cabal terms is alert several heavily armed squads to your location.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech: At the beginning of the sixth cycle of the Dreaming City's curse, Ghost, growing weary of seeing our Guardian and the Awoken fight what amounts to a Hopeless War, vents his frustration at the then-unreachable Mara Sov, accusing her of withholding secrets and never answering questions while her people are suffering from the curse, then decrying her as a terrible ruler who's too wrapped up in her own affairs. Unfortunately for him, the Queen did listen to his rant, and returns the favour by violently lashing back at him during the sixth throne visit.
- Undying Loyalty: A trait that Ghost shares with the majority of other ghosts is that for better or worse he'll stick to his Guardian(you) no matter what, this ranges from exploring dangerous locales like the Moon or Venus to consorting with essentially enemy factions (Emperor Calus or at the time hostile Mara Sov).
- Deconstructed by the time of Forsaken, as its increasingly pointed out that hes so loyal to you he cant even bring himself to object to bad decisions or behavior; despite obviously being very uncomfortable with the Young Wolfs vicious revenge against the Scorn, he never so much as complains, nor makes any serious attempt to dissuade you from doing it.
- Vocal Dissonance: In the introduction to Destiny 2, Ghost's voice is unexpectedly deeper and stronger and not mechanically filtered as he talks about how he met the player Guardian. As the scene progresses, and he finds the Guardian, it shifts to his higher-pitched, mechanically-filtered voice.
The commanders of each Guardian class, the Vanguard report directly to the Speaker and coordinate Guardian operations.
Commander Zavala, Titan Vanguard
- Voiced by: Lance Reddick
An Awoken Titan who serves as Commander of the Vanguard and leader of the City's standing forces, he mentors Titans who come to him.
- Action Survivor: Unlike the Young Wolf, Zavala didn't appear to naturally take to weapons when he was first resurrected by his Ghost, and was apparently just a long-dead pilot in a crashed spacecraft. He fought and died countless times while roaming the world before he found the Traveler, fashioning his own weapons and eventually acquiring old, discarded Golden Age weaponry, gradually transitioning into the mighty commander of the Vanguard seen in the games.
- Asskicking Equals Authority: Zavala is an unquestioned master of both the Striker and Defender Titan classes. Before the City was even built, he was fighting the Fallen and unleashing devastating examples of the Fist of Havoc on the invaders. When the Cabal invade the City in Destiny 2, he throws up a Ward of Dawn that withstands a direct bombardment from the Cabal fleet which is smashing the Wall and the Tower all around them.
- Badass Baritone: Has one of the deepest voices in the game and you do not become Titan Vanguard without reason.
- Bald, Black Leader Guy: Technically, he has light blue skin due to being an Awoken, but he's a well respected Vanguard commander, bald and is voiced by Lance Reddick, so this is probably what the developers were going for. Since Awoken were once normal humans its also entirely possible that he was black originally before he became one.
- Bald of Awesome: Keeps his hair perpetually shaved and is voiced by Lance Reddick.
- Been There, Shaped History: Being Really 700 Years Old, he came to the City when it was just a conglomeration of tents, and he helped with the construction and expansion efforts of the City throughout the years.
- Brought Down to Badass: Even being drained of his Light, Zavala is still a deadly warrior. During the final battle in Destiny 2 to retake the City, he wrestles witha Cabal soldier twice his size, wrenches the gun in its hands around to shoot it in the head, and uses the same weapon — which is as long as he is tall — to shoot another Cabal.
- Celebrity Endorsement: Has a bunch of snacks endorsed under his name. Obviously something he doesn't want to have others know, as Cayde had to go find Ikora in order to unlock the entries for said snacks in the Vanguard database.note
- The Comically Serious: In general, Zavala's seriousness gets played for humor when compared to all the not-so-serious characters around him (Cayde, Ikora, your Ghost, etc.).
Zavala: (in response to a ball of Taken energy suddenly appearing and disappearing) What the hell was that?
- His reactions to Eris Morn are pretty hilarious.
Eris: Fingertips on the surface of my mind...!
Zavala: Yes... uh, thank you for your input, Eris.
- Commanding Coolness: A Titan with the bearing of a professional military officer and campaign ribbons on his armor who is in overall command of the City's standing forces.
- Cultured Badass: Is intimately familiar with poetry and philosophy, such as the works of Sun Tzu and Matsuo Bashō.
- Deadpan Snarker: During one Strike, your Ghost will wonder if he'd be more useful if he had all the armaments and robotic drones that Rasputin has. Zavala just says, "Yes."
- Despair Event Horizon: He very nearly crosses it when the Traveler is lost to the Cabal, even more so when the Hive show up to attack the Guardians' attempt to rally on Titan (he actually states that trying to regroup on Titan was a mistake), and again when Cayde-6 is killed by Uldren, to the point that he considers completely pulling back to the City in order to prevent any more dead Guardians.
- Due to the Dead: He ensures that every Titan who falls under his command is given a burial at the Wall.
- Four-Star Badass: As Vanguard Commander, he is in full command of the City's defenses.
- From Nobody to Nightmare: A heroic version. The Destiny 2 trailer shows his first days as a Guardian. From stumbling out of a crashed ship, fighting and being killed by Fallen repeatedly, to becoming a force to be reckoned with he's come a long way.
- Giver of Lame Names: When ordering a Strike on Nessus with the intent of stopping a Fallen assault on Failsafe's main reactor, Zavala names the operation "Piccolo". Your Ghost and Cayde-6 can't help but snark behind his back. When he thinks the operation has gone downhill due to being cut off from the chatter, Zavala starts a rescue operation called "Oboe"; sure, it keeps its theme with the previous op, but both are a terrible fit for dead serious missions. The Playstation 4 exclusive strike, "Lake of Shadows", reveals through alternate dialogue that Zavala goes along with whatever the strike name generator gives out.
- Heroic BSoD: Having been present when the City was just a large camp of survivors and even personally helping to build the Wall, he understandibly takes the City's fall in Destiny 2 extremely hard. Just to twist the knife further, his efforts to rally surviving Guardians on one of Saturn's moons ends in failure as the Hive overrun it, followed shortly by Fallen scavengers. Feeling guilty of so many losses, Zavala briefly lapses into questioning the Guardians' existence without Light. Fortunately, thanks to the Young Wolf's return spelling a glimmer of hope and Zavala's own determination, he quickly gets back on his feet and formulates a plan to strike back at Ghaul.
- Irony: A bit of Situational mixed with a bit of Cosmic. Zavala has a personal belief that Guardians should never look into their past lives, and that the only thing that matters is what they do as a Guardian, not what they've done before in a past life that they can't remember. The irony arises from the fact that he is an Awoken, and many Awoken Guardians find a kinship towards the Reef and are even referred to as 'Cousin' by the Reef's Awoken natives. Despite his race, Zavala does not believe in any personal connection to the race with which he shares lineage, and even refers to them as an entity and race distinct from himself, such as when the Vanguard is consulting Eris about how to combat Oryx's Dreadnaught, and Zavala chimes in, "Without ending up like The Awoken."
- Knight In Sour Armor: The Titan Subquest dialogue hints that his long years in charge of the Vanguard (and millions of lives) have worn him down to the no-nonsense commander we see today.Zavala: Before I stepped into my role with the Vanguard, I was... much more spirited. Those days seem far gone now. The dream of the City is all I have left. Every morning, I wake and turn to see that the Walls still stand, and I allow myself a smile.
- Mildly Military: Yes and no. He's nominally in command of a force that is, but he's the only Guardian seen so far that takes things seriously and sees fighting the various aliens the same way a military would.
- Moral Dilemma: Is forced to weigh his options at the beginning of Forsaken after Cayde dies, specifically, as much as he wants to go out and avenge his comrade, he also believes that pursuing Uldren will risk starting a war with the Reef. And at the time, the Guardians already have their hands full trying to keep the Prison of Elders contained. He ultimately refuses to authorize any kind of operation, but he decides to just step aside, let The Young Wolf go on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge, and let them sort the problem out on their own. It works out pretty well, and Zavala even admits that, were the circumstances different, he would've gladly killed Uldren himself.
- Nice to the Waiter: Even when the waiter is questionably sapient — Kadi 55-30, the Beleaguered Bureaucrat Tower postmaster, refers to him as a 'kind man'.
- Offered the Crown: Of a hypothetical crown; Executor Hideo's dialogue says that he'd make Zavala New Monarchy's candidate for king, but Zavala is uninterested, saying Earth had enough kings during the Dark Age after the Collapse.
- Older Than They Look: As a Destiny 2 trailer reveals, Zavala stumbled upon the nascent City when it was just a collection of tents.
- Only Sane Man: The Taken King marks him as this in his interactions with both Cayde and Eris, along with his exasperated sigh to "Fireteam The-Bad-Guys-Don't-Care-What-We-Call-Ourselves-Do-They?". It's become a common joke that he's exasperated with how hard it is to keep Guardians under control.
- Really 700 Years Old: He's been around since the City was just a tribal village, after wandering the wilderness for who knows how long.
- Real Men Wear Pink: One of the Tower announcements suggests he teaches a crochet course to other Titans. In one of Owl Sector's records on the Vanguard, both Ikora and Cayde mention Zavala being incredibly fond of poetry.
- Reasonable Authority Figure:
- As Vanguard commander, he oversees a lot of operations. However, he's quick to recognize the feats of the Guardians, handing out reward packages to players who level up their reputation with the Vanguard. And he also congratulates you after securing a landing zone on Oryx's Dreadnought despite it being done behind his back.
- He also is willing to give The Young Wolf a lot of leeway in their decisions after all the stuff they've done for the City. After the opening mission of Forsaken, Zavala won't authorize or provide any support for any kind of operation to bring down Uldren and the Barons in fear of starting a war against the Reef, but he also has no qualms with just letting The Young Wolf handle the problem on their own, even if he knows killing Uldren will have consequences regardless of how many bridges the prince has burned by that point. He admits that he'd prefer to try and convince them to not go, but he says it would just be just pointless and insulting to the both of them, as he knows The Young Wolf is dead-set on putting Uldren in the ground.
- Rousing Speech: Combined with a little "World of Cardboard" Speech; in Destiny 2's "Rally the Troops" trailer, he gathers the Guardians and makes a speech about how the City is lost despite the Guardians' best efforts against the Cabal, and makes it clear that they have to stand united against the enemy. His speech hilariously contrasts with Cayde's, getting instant cheers from the masses whereas Cayde has to add in "There will be a ton of loot!" to achieve a similar effect.
- Straight Man: Serves as this to Cayde-6 and, to a lesser extent, Ikora Rey.
- Warrior Poet: Fond of poetry, with his Grimoire card featuring a small excerpt from his battle notes referencing famed Japanese poet Matsuo Bashō.
Cayde-6, Hunter Vanguard
An Exo who loves the open frontier, the loss of the Vanguard Dare with his predecessor Andal Brask has resulted in him being stuck behind the Vanguard table in the Tower, where he coordinates the intelligence efforts of City agents in the field and outfits Hunters who visit him.
- The Ahnold: How he parodies the Cabal Shield Brothers' ultimatum during the Strike of the same name, taking on a brutish tone to "translate" the brothers' intent in English.Cayde-6: "Give us the Primus or we blow the ship."
- Amnesia Missed a Spot: Initially played straight, but subverted in Destiny 2. A lot of Cayde's important memories that would normally be lost to regular reboots, including his mysterious past, have survived all six of his reboots. However, the Was Once a Man portion of this is implied to be a shared memory across all Exos in the second game (the Aurora Snow III's mention of an icy planet is most likely Europa, where Cayde became an Exo.) He also admits in one of his journals that his attempts to write to his son, Ace, were an effort to try to remember anything about his past, since he can't recall anything about Ace save that documents he had on him when he was reborn as a Guardian said he had a biological son.
- An Arm and a Leg: Cayde's arm is blown off while working on a Vex transmat device during the final push to reclaim the Last City from Ghaul. At some point, his opposite leg is also blown off at the knee. Being an Exo, both are easily fixable and replaceable — a point Cayde morbidly jokes about.
- Badass Cape: His Hunter cloak is a replica of his friend Andal Brask's cloak. Wearing the cloak of a dead comrade is a pretty big deal among Hunters.
- Be Careful What You Wish For: A good deal of his incidental quotes in the first game are about him wanting to find a way out of his Vanguard duties in the Tower and get back into the field. Come Destiny 2, he got his wish in the worst way possible. The game even lampshades it when you have to bail him out of trouble."A crashed colony ship, an interspecies war... Cayde-6 got that adventure he wanted. Go save him from it."
- Berserk Button: Taniks the Scarred. Understandable as Taniks murdered Andal Brask, Cayde's best friend and the previous Hunter Vangaurd. In the lorebook Most Loyal, Variks off-handed mentions him and immediately regrets it.Don't you EVER mention the name Taniks around me, got it? Not unless you want to lose your last two real arms.
- Big "OMG!": Once the Ghost not only has to speak on behalf of the player again but continues to ask why he got stuck in the Vex portal system:Oh my cotton socks! Did you not hear what I just said?!
- Blatant Lies: Cayde's Lucky Pants do not have an illegally-modified holster. They're just really lucky.
- Call-Back: If you play a Nightstalker and use Shadowshot during the opening mission in Destiny 2: Forsaken, Cayde comments that, "You're making Tevis proud." This is a pretty heartfelt Call-Back to the mission in the original Destiny, where you unlock the Nightstalker subclass by tracking down Tevis and claiming his Dusk Bow when you find him dead.
- Cloud Cuckoo Lander: It's easy to regard him as this, but it's taken Up to Eleven when he goes on a Wiki Walk through the Vanguard databases, going from looking up his public image to wondering if the City was ever invaded by horse people to going down to fetch Ikora to unlock the data on various foodstuffs endorsed by Zavala.
- Crazy-Prepared: It obviously took a lot of time, effort and forethought for Cayde-6 to hide 10 secret caches deep in Hive territory on the moon Titan, each addressed to one of the people he deemed most likely to have killed him and therefore inherited his gear; included among these his fellow Vanguards and the Young Wolf. Under what circumstances would one of his friends and allies have killed him? Cayde doesn't speculate, but promises he doesn't hold a grudge.
- Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Unlike Zavala and Ikora, Cayde-6 almost seems like a complete idiot. He frequently gets himself into unnecessary trouble, and his lack of hesitation often gets mocked by others for his lack of intelligence. However, it's because of his unorthodox methods and tactics that he's the Vanguard representative of the Hunters.
- Dead Man Writing: During the Forsaken Exotic Quest to unlock the Ace of Spades as your own weapon, you go and find a bunch of Cayde's secret caches on Titan. Cayde left all of his personal belongings to whatever killed him, so in the caches you find voice recordings intended for different people who might've killed him, including Eris Morn, Petra Venj, Taniks the Scarred, Zavala, Ikora, and even yourself.
- Deadpan Snarker: He teases Warlock players about getting lost in the library of (their) minds on occasion and some of his patrol dialogue is a lighter version of this. In The Taken King he turns the snark up to eleven.
- Death by Irony: Uldren kills Cayde with his own Ace of Spades. The ace of spades card is also known as "the death card".
- Defiant to the End: Beaten down, surrounded by enemies, and facing his final death, Uldren asks if he has any last words. Cayde leans into the barrel of his own gun and gives the Prince one last sarcastic jab:
- Cayde-6: How's your sister?
- Desk Jockey: Much to his displeasure, but he fulfills it out of a strong sense of duty. Well, sort of — he likes to figure out ways to get out of it. At least one mission involves the Young Wolf and Devrim Kay "doing his chores" concerning setting up the patrol network in Destiny 2, and after one strike in that game he considers pawning off his paperwork on Hawthorne.
- Determinator: Cayde doesn't stop, yield, or slow down in the face of any opposition. When the other members of the Vanguard became uncertain or despairing after losing the City, Cayde instead immediately went out and started finding a way to hit back at Ghaul. Unfortunately, this is deconstructed as well, because Cayde's determination to carry out his plans means he often gets into trouble, such as messing with the Vex teleporter network without concern for the dangers and thus getting trapped in a teleportation loop.
- Dissonant Serenity: Remains very casual even while the Red Legion is reducing the Last City to ashes, to the point where he's seen taking pot-shots at nearby Cabal while maintaining a casual stroll.
- Distressed Dude: Gets trapped in a teleport loop while exploring Nessus, one of the full machine planets of the Vex. This is something not even the Cabal could succumb to, which Failsafe, the on-board AI of the ship Exodus Black, chides him for.
- Enemy Mine: One of the Grimoire cards dealing with the Fallen is Cayde reminiscing about when he and a female Baron from the House of Exiles fought together against a massive Hive swarm on the Moon. He ended up killing her when she threw her last shock pistol at his feet after he ran out of ammo and she attempted to stab him when he picked it up. The Baron was badly wounded by that point and few Hive were left, leaving Cayde to wonder exactly what her intentions really were.Cayde-6: To this day I wonder if she hated me, or wanted to make me kill her, or just felt she should spare me the choice. (Beat) I did kill a few Thrall with that pistol.
- Expy: As Nathan Fillion voices him, the majority of the playerbase has likened Cayde to Capt. Mal Reynolds in an Exo's body. Imperturbably smart-assed, undeniably skilled at his job, and despite illusions to the contrary, unapologetically Papa Wolf when his people or close friends are in danger or have permanently died.
- Fatal Flaw: Asher Mir believes Pride is this for him, and claims this is why he was killed in the beginning of Forsaken, as he might not have gotten killed had he not rushed to try and cut off Uldren and the Barons' escape from the Prison of Elders by himself.
- Friendly Sniper: Implied to be this before he had to leave the front line. Hunters are the sniper class, and Cayde is still very friendly despite going embittered and stir-crazy about his (self-imposed) confinement.
- The Friend Nobody Likes: While the rest of the Vanguard reaffirm their friendship with him, the majority of new friendly characters in Destiny 2 (Hawthorne, Devrim, Failsafe, probably Asher) are all varying flavors of annoyed with Cayde. This does not stop most of them from mourning him in some way when he is Killed Off for Real, and Ikora admits that he was the only person she knew she actually had a healthy relationship with — despite their bantering and jabs at each other, they were firm friends.
- Gone Horribly Wrong: His attempt at trying to engage in the practices of the Thanatonauts. He tries it once and immediately regrets it, because the memory that chose to come back was when he encountered the Darkness itself up close and personal. After a while, Cayde starts begging for his Ghost to revive him.
- Go Ye Heroes, Go and Die: His speech in the "Rally the Troops" trailer. In contrast to Zavala, he's self-important and uninspiring, only getting the other guardians to cheer by promising "a ton of loot."
- The Heart: For all of his snarking and goofy antics, Cayde is able to get almost anyone to rally behind his Determinator attitude, is a good friend to pretty much everyone in the Tower (Ikora even says working with him was the healthiest relationship she has ever had), and an invaluable ally among the Vanguard. His subsequent death puts everyone, even the normally irritable Asher Mir, into a somber mood.
- Hoist by His Own Petard: Prince Uldren shoots Cayde with the Ace of Spades, Cayde's own revolver.
- Idiot Ball: Cayde's normally pretty smart, but most of his sub-plot in Destiny 2 revolves around rescuing him from stasis in the Vex network after they catch him engaging in theft on Nessus. Fits the trope description since Failsafe implies that Cayde's little stunt was statistically dumber than most of the stuff the Cabal pull, and we all know what Cayde thinks of them.
- Indy Ploy: Most of Cayde's tactics involve first figuring out how to get somewhere that should be impossible to get to (i.e. getting a Guardian onto the Dreadnaught past its main weapon, or acquiring a teleporter that will put him close to Ghaul), and then figuring things out from there.
- It's All About Me: Played for Laughs in the "Rally The Troops" trailer:Cayde-6: So, everything is gone. Your stuff, my stuff. Most importantly: MY STUFF.
- Killed Off for Real: Killed by Prince Uldren in the teaser trailer for the Forsaken expansion. Word of God confirms that he isn't coming back.
- Knife Nut: He's a Hunter, so it's a given that he is one; doubly so considering he specializes as a Gunslinger, a class that is known to throw knives. While it's not clear if he created the Way of a Thousand Cuts path, this comes to the fore in his Last Stand, where instead of unleashing the Golden Gun upon the Scorn, he displays the first known use of the Blade Barrage super.
- Lore in the first game suggests that Cayde may have actually created the Bladedancer class, despite only using the Gunslinger class onscreen. He certainly created their cloaking tech, and is the only character seen to imbue alreadyextant weapons with Light during his super rather than forging the weapon out of Light entirely, a trait that Bladedancers are particularly noted for. As well, records from his early days speak of Arcstriders (not introduced ingame until the second game) rather than Bladedancers. And his equipment caches left behind in the wild are protected with Flux grenades, which only Arcbased Hunters have access to.
- Laser-Guided Karma: The Vex eventually catch him stealing from them on Nessus and trap him. When Failsafe compares him to the Red Legion, whose impact on the planet was far more destructive, she asserts that Cayde would have to be painfully stupid for this to happen.
- Leaning on the Fourth Wall: It's been suggested that the real meaning of the "Rally the Troops" teaser is that Zavala's speech is talking to the in-universe Guardians and players who pay close attention to the story, while Cayde's speech is talking to the playerbase itself, especially those who are very hungry for unique loot, and those who have Cayde as their favorite character (which is a lot, to say the least.)
- Loss of Identity: He doesn't remember much of his past, and uses a combination of journals and playing card codes to denote bits and pieces of his memories. Cayde only knew he had a son named Ace because he found a journal page on his body post-resurrection that mentioned him.
- Lovable Rogue: As befitting the mentor of the 'Han Solo' class, he's the Tower's resident troublemaker and class clown, with an irreverent attitude and a smartmouthed quip for every situation and a rather... direct approach to problem-solving.
- Lucky Seven: Averted. Cayde actually believed the number to be distinctly unlucky, even hinting that he may have had more resets than his "-6" suffix suggested but still kept the number because of his fear of the number 7. In a lore entry written towards a rebooted version of himself ("All-In"), he writes:
- Mission Control: For much of The Taken King's main story.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: Failsafe had successfully evaded detection from the numerous unfriendly forces on Nessus until Cayde found her and started fooling around with Vex technology. Her sarcastic side stats he blew her cover and its all his fault when the Fallen attempt to shut her down and scavenge her mainframe in one mission.
- No Hero to His Valet: Inverted. Your Ghost implies that Cayde's Ghost is the only one who doesn't get exasperated with him.Ghost: He's not so bad.
Ghost: I-uh-um... well, his Ghost loves him!
- Playing Card Motifs: He describes the fragmented bits of his memory as being like a deck of playing cards, which are re-shuffled every time he's rebooted. Cayde has developed a system for sorting through them, associating the symbols with different types of memories.
- He named his pistol "The Ace of Spades", and his son was named Ace.
- On a much darker note, the ace of spades is also known as "the death card". Uldren uses Cayde's Ace of Spades to put him down for good.
- Rousing Speech: Subverted. Cayde tries to give one in the "Rally the Troops" tailer, but between offhandedly insulting the Guardians, playing himself up, and caring more about his own gear than the Last City burning down around them, it falls completely flat. Then he tries to lift everyone's spirits by talking about all the loot they'll find. Naturally, since he's talking to Guardians, it works.
- Sad Clown: Cayde's sense of humor tends to mask some underlying pain and loss. He only became a member of the Vanguard because a close friend of his was killed, and his constant acting-out is because of his going stir-crazy from being cooped up in the Tower for so long. Furthermore, his journal indicates he experienced some immensely traumatic events, including what seems like a direct encounter with the Darkness itself, which only he can ever really remember. Another part of him that appears to have stuck with him is his wife and son from his human years. One can find a letter intended for his boy promising that he'll track both of them down. Considering he's a Guardian who's functionally immortal and an Exo that's been rebooted a fair number of times it's anyone's guess if he succeeded or for how long it lasted if he did...
- Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!: Realizing that they don't have time to come up with a battle plan or rally enough forces to break into Oryx's Dreadnought, Cayde sends the Player off to infiltrate the ship without any official authorization. Lo and behold, by the time Zavala and Ikora find out, the Player has already set up a beacon for a landing zone. After the Last City is sacked, Cayde refuses to wait around for a plan, instead running off to find a way to kill Ghaul directly. It doesn't really work out this time, though, and he gets trapped in a stasis field by the Vex for his trouble. And even if he had been successful, it still wouldn't have stopped the Almighty from destroying the sun.
- Skewed Priorities: What does Cayde do when the Last City is invaded by the Cabal? Go to a nearly destroyed bar to get a drink and chat with a Frame while the Guardians launch a counter-attack.Zavala: Cayde! Any day now!
Cayde: Sheesh, a guy gets one drink.
- Strolling Through the Chaos: At the end of the "Last Call" teaser, Cayde casually strolls out of the destroyed bar and calmly fires away at nearby Cabal.
- Take Up My Sword: Part of his last request to the Young Wolf as recorded in the audio log left for them in one of his stashes asks that they take take care of the Ace of Spades and to use it well.
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: He and Eris do not like each other at all. Cayde thinks she is creepy and does not trust her fully, while Eris finds Cayde annoying and that is before he ends up using her ship to get the Guardian onboard Oryx's dreadnaught, which ends up getting it destroyed.Cayde-6: Eris knows a thing or two. But she's crazy.
- Trademark Favorite Food: Spicy ramen, as he casually mentions during the "Last Call" teaser.
- Tranquil Fury: The Player Hunter's mission to find an MIA Tevis as part of the Nightstalker initiation leads to his corpse. Just like that, the normal joker he is takes its leave as he recounts his time with Tevis before giving you one simple order.Cayde-6: "Take 'em out, Guardian. Make them pay."
- Violence Really Is the Answer:
Eris Morn: "The Taken are not bound by terrestrial constraints!"Cayde-6: "I bet they'll be constrained by terrestrial bullets."
- In-universe, this is why the Cryptarch is now more generous with engrams — Cayde "asked him to decode" a sack of doorknobs.
- His solution to dealing with Taken infestations is to shoot them until they are all gone rather than find another way to cleanse them like your Ghost suggests. Best exemplified during the mission to bring down the power source for the Dreadnaught's main weapon:Cayde: Okay, hold on. Eris is going on about "breaking the necrotic..." Ahh, just shoot it!
- "Remember, at the end of the day, bullets are the answer to every question."
- Vitriolic Best Buds: Compares his relationship with Zavala as that of the Cabal Shield Brothers, only that the latter have less yelling to do away with.
- He also has this relationship with the Young Wolf, Cayde is the only one to express annoyance at the fact that their Ghost does all the talking for them, and the Young Wolf is not extempt from Cayde's jokes, that being said he also makes it quite clear to Zavala and Ikora that he considers the Young Wolf his favorite Guardian and when he dies, his death is the only thing that makes the Young Wolf speak, and break their stoic act, going on in a Roaring Rampage of Revenge
- Was Once a Man: Cayde was once a human soldier, with a wife and son named Ace, who worked for Clovis Bray. He volunteered for the Exo program on Europa in order to pay off his debt to the company. For some reason, he still remembers this despite having been rebooted six times *and* being resurrected as a Guardian, although it could also be the result of a shared memory Exos in general possess.
- Weapon of Choice: The Hand Cannon Ace of Spades, which he had replicated to serve as the Hunter-exclusive Exotic for The Taken King. He puts it to good use against the Red Legion in the "Last Call" teaser. He can be seen still wielding it during the attack on the Tower at the beginning of Destiny 2 and during the breakout at the Prison of Elders at the start of the Forsaken expansion.
Ikora Rey, Warlock Vanguard
- Voiced by: Gina Torres
A one-time lone wandering Guardian, Ikora returned from the wild with her knowledge heavily tempered by practical experience and her temperament extremely even. Her esteem among several different Warlock schools made her the logical choice to represent them among the Vanguard.
- Aloof Ally: Formerly: after her early career as a Guardian was filled with arguments with more experienced Warlocks due to her outspoken nature, Ikora repeatedly volunteered for long-term reconnaissance missions across the inner planets and would spend most of her time in the wilderness to avoid her comrades. When she eventually returned to the Tower, she found herself one of the most respected Warlocks due to her long experience in the field.
- The Archmage: The highest representative of all the Warlock schools and serving as their mouthpiece and will on the Vanguard, the upper command of the City's defensive forces.
- Badass Bookworm: When she was a young Guardian, Ikora made a name for herself not only for her intense debates on numerous topics, but also in the Crucible for her skill in battle. Her reputation as a deadly scholar was secured by the long periods of time she spent on her own in the wilderness seeking foes and knowledge. Cayde even hints that she handed Shaxx his ass a few times in the crucible.
- Bald Women: Technically, it's just a very close-cropped haircut, but the visual effect is the same, making her look appropriately alien and mystical for her job.
- Beware the Quiet Ones: Normally the most even-tempered of the Vanguard. But the Cabal's attack on the City, culminating with the abduction of the Speaker, pushes her too far.Ikora: Red Legion, you will take no more from us, and you will find no mercy in me!! [Proceeds to jump into the air, Nova Bomb a Cabal gunship's starboard thruster and ride it down as it crashes into the City]
- Deadpan Snarker: Not nearly to the same extent as Cayde, but she gets a few good lines off, with Zavala mostly serving as their Straight Man.
- The Dreaded: In the Crucible. Nobody could beat her. No one. Not even Lord Shaxx.
- Immortals Fear Death: After losing her light, she finds herself in this trope and lamenting the inaction it leads her to.Ikora: This is my fault! I could have stopped this. [...] I am more than just my Light! I could have tried! I should have tried. But...after all these years dying, being reborn, dying again...the Traveler has left me with one life, and I am afraid to lose it.
- Not So Stoic: When you reunite with her after the fall of the City in Destiny 2, she confides in how, for all of her wisdom, the loss of the Traveler's Light has left her confused and terrified, and that, for the first time in centuries, she is now afraid of actually dying. After the main storyline of Forsaken, she also confesses that she considered her relationship with Cayde to be the only healthy relationship she had, for various reasons.
- Older Than They Look: She had a shotgun during the Golden Age, so she must be much older than she looks, probably in her hundreds.
- Power of the Void: Her 'primary' subclass of choice is Voidwalker, and she might be the most adept Voidwalker since Toland the Shattered.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: When Eris comes to the Tower warning of Crota's return, Ikora is the only one who initially takes her seriously and works to convince the other Vanguards. She also unofficially supports the Young Wolf in Forsaken after Cayde's death when Zavala is afraid of starting a war with the Reef. She understands Zavala's position, but can't in good conscience let Uldren get away with what he's done.
- Retired Badass: No longer goes on missions due to her position in the Vanguard, but when she was in the field she was a highly skilled Guardian who survived on her own for months or years at a time. Cayde also mentions that she was quite the Guardian during Crucible matches back then. One exotic in Destiny 2 expands upon this. She did beat Shaxx, yes. But what wasn't mentioned is that she's the only Guardian to ever do so.Cayde-6: Guardian, you remind of, well, Ikora in her Crucible days.Ikora: That was a lifetime ago.Cayde-6: I'm sure Shaxx hasn't forgotten. He still has trouble sitting.
- Shock and Awe: The "Rally The Troops" trailer from Destiny 2 shows her using Thunderstrike on a Cabal Phalanx during the fall of the City. This might not be canon (A lot of moments in Destiny trailers are of dubious canonity, because they end up contradicting things in-game), because she's always referred to and seen in-game as a Voidwalker.
- The Spymaster: In addition to leading the Warlocks in deciphering lore, Ikora also oversees the Hidden, a group of Guardians tasked with penetrating enemy strongholds for intelligence gathering.
- Weapon of Choice: Invective, one of the Exotic Shotguns in the game.
Guardians still known to be active by the Tower. While most Guardians report to the Vanguard, some have banded together in groups outside the Tower's jurisdiction, while others walk a solitary path.
Lord Shaxx, Crucible Handler
- Voiced by: Lennie James
A veteran of the battle of the Twilight Gap, Shaxx's experiences there convinced him that the City was too unprepared to repel a direct attack should the Traveler's protection falter. Thus, he created the Crucible, a series of tournaments and battles that pit Guardians against one another in combat that they may be sharpened by the experience.
- Big "YES!": Should you shut an enemy Guardian's Super with your own Super in Destiny 2, Shaxx will drop all other commentaries and scream "YYEESS" on top of his lungs.
- Blood Knight: While this is true of most Titans, it's especially true for Shaxx given that he's the one that organizes fights, and can get a little too into the violence. His love for organizing Crucible Matches extends to him turning almost every strategic location he sees into a battle arena, up to and including the Black Garden.
- Boisterous Bruiser: He loves a good fight and gets really excited during Crucible matches.
- Combat Commentator: Comments on the Guardians' matches as the continue. Doing good? He'll commend your bravery. Failing miserably? He'll demand that you fight back at once. Winning? He'll indulge in the carnage...
- Cultured Badass: He is familiar with the works of Shakespeare to the point that he can recite the entirety of The Tempest by heart.
- Drill Sergeant Nasty: Lord Shaxx takes it upon himself to train new Guardians in the crucible. Every firefight is a lesson to be learned to him. Whenever Guardians thrive, he tells them to push themselves even harder, rarely congratulating players, and when a Guardian loses, he takes that loss as his own as well. Considering what's at risk, he's trying to ensure that new Guardians will be prepared for the battles to come, where a permanent true death is a very real and scary possibility.
- The Faceless: Due to being Never Bareheaded and always wearing a full helmet.
- Fashionable Asymmetry: One of the horns on his helmet has been broken off somehow.
- Genius Bruiser: Lore tidbits reveal that one upon a time Mara Sov once used Riven to summon Shaxx into her bedroom while he was in the middle of a conversation. She handed him a copy of Shakespeare's The Tempest and told him to get reading. His response was to tell her that no one tells him what to do, incinerated the book with Striker lightning, declared that he can recite The Tempest by heart, and did so on the spot.
- Hero of Another Story: During the Battle of the Twilight Gap, Shaxx led a counterattack against the Fallen that drove them back from the Wall of the City.
- Heroes Prefer Swords: He's fascinated with the Hive's swords, and eventually decides Guardians need swords too. A quest in The Taken King has him help you forge one for yourself, and another has you reforge it into an even stronger blade. Destiny 2 shows him actually wielding Raze-Lighter during the siege of the Last City.
- I Am the Noun: One of his idle dialogues has him, the Crucible's founder, come out with this gem, further reinforced by Arcite 99-40's own idle chatter:Shaxx: "You want the Crucible? I am the Crucible."
Arcite-99-40: "You want the Crucible? Shaxx is the Crucible."
- Ignored Expert: The Razelighter grimoire card; revealed that Shaxx attempted to stop the Consensus from retaking the moon. At least until they understood the sword logic that the Hive abide by. Of what we know of that mission; thousands of guardians permanently died to Crota's sword alone.
- In Love with Your Carnage: If your team is winning, he'll throw some rather interesting dialogue your way.Shaxx: Hahaha! The Crucible is no place for mercy!
Shaxx: You're crushing them, Guardian! Send them home crying!
Shaxx: I can't believe what I'm seeing! Phenomenal!
Shaxx: (Upon a 10-kill streak) ''FIIIIGHT FOREVER, GUARDIAN!!!! HAHA!!
- Large Ham: In and out of the Crucible, Shaxx is a man of passion. He alternatively gets really excited if you do well in the Crucible, or will be somewhat less emphatic (but still emphatic) if you lose, urging the player to try again and redeem themselves. Even when he recounts tales of his past, he'll use a bombastic approach to it.
- Major Injury Underreaction: A grimiore entry has Zavala and Eris commenting on Shaxx sitting with and mourning a dying Ahamkara. The Ahamkara then explodes, blinding Zavala and Eris and leaving Shaxx, still sitting, in the newly-formed crater covered in green fire. All he does is to shush Zavala and Eris.
- No Indoor Voice: In Destiny 2, his idle dialogue can be heard from several feet away, even if you try to muffle it by going into your inventory screen.Shaxx: WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU CAN'T CONCENTRATE WHEN I'M YELLING? RELAX!
- Noodle Incident: His helmet used to have both horns. But we never find out how he lost one. A Destiny 2 trailer reveals when Zavala first came to the City (which is a long, long time ago), Shaxx had both of them. By the time the How We Got Here cuts to a Fallen invasion of the City, he's lost the one.Shaxx: "I'm not gonna tell you how I lost the horn. You couldn't handle it."
Shaxx: "I would tell you how I lost the horn, but it doesn't live up to slaying Oryx!"
- Not So Stoic: Shaxx speaks in a subdued tone of harshness or bloodthirst, but it's not rare for him to let it slip.Shaxx: (Upon killing a player in the middle of igniting your rift) "Oh my! They almost ignited your rift!"
- Properly Paranoid: Shaxx reaction to the tech mites showing up as part of the Owl Sector Alternate Reality Game is to demand it be removed. Seeing as the logs detailing human experiments are showing disturbing results, the implications say he has a reason to be upset.
- Really 700 Years Old: Just like Zavala, Shaxx was around at the beginning of the City.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: His blood knight tendencies aside, after a match Shaxx behaves in a very fatherly sort of way praising a Guardian when they win in the Crucible or encouraging them to get back on their feet and not give up when they lose. He's also the one who makes the final call on changes made to the Crucible's systems despite Zavala's attempts to regulate it as well. For example when the SUROS Regime was running amok in the first game and it was finally nerfed? The event is referenced on the MIDA Multi-Tool in Destiny 2 where Shaxx makes it clear to Zavala that he absolutely will not revert the change to the SUROS firmware settings in the Crucible saying they were "preposterously inflated". And he won't take the Red Death engrams away either.
- Refuge in Audacity: Shaxx makes it a policy to find the most secure and important locations of the City's enemies and turn them into Crucible arenas. It doesn't matter if it's a Cabal base, a Fallen hideout, a Vex facility, the heart of the Black Garden, or Oryx's own personal chambers. The more an enemy treasures it, the more likely Shaxx is to take it for the Crucible, much to everyone's shock. After the World Eater raid saw it's world first clear in Destiny 2 Shaxx immediately arrived to make a Crucible arena out of it, represented by Bungie having the map go live after the kill was made. Though, Calus probably doesn't mind since he he's got a front-row seat to the carnage.
- This is taken further when aside from the standard Mercury arena, he also claimed two arenas in the Infinite Forest — specifically, the simulation of past Mercury, and the Bad Future, even though it's basically unnecessary since Osiris runs the place now ever since Panoptes got destroyed. This guy is not subtle about giving the Vex the middle finger.
- Screw the Money, I Have Rules!: A couple of foundry representatives tried to bribe him to set up fixed Crucible matches. At their arranged clandestine meet, he told them exactly where they could shove their money, then turned around and blackmailed them into sponsoring Guardians as they fight by threatening to expose their efforts and ruin their foundry's reputation.
- Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!: When Saladin called for a strategic retreat after feeling the City was about to fall into Fallen hands during the battle fo Twilight Gap, Shaxx and his fireteam, having none of it, instead advance towards the Wall and make their stand there. They end up victorious and gain fame for it, but a rift formed between Shaxx and Saladin following the battle.
- Screw the Rules, I Make Them!: Why are there so many Red Death pulse rifles and Crimson hand cannons if the Vanguard wants both eradicated? Because Shaxx said so, while chewing out Zavala for trying to scrutinize the MIDA rifles and un-nerf the SUROS Regime, even. In the same rant to Zavala, Shaxx also says that Zavala has no say in anything related to MIDA, and created that regulation on the fly after Lakshmi decided that it turns out MIDA is from an alternate universe.
- Suddenly SHOUTING!: See Large Ham. If the player gets enough kills in a row, it results in a bombastic "SEVENTH COLUMN!!". Then there's earning a 10-kill streak, resulting him in just outright screaming in complete joy: "FIIIIGHT FOREVER, GUARDIAN!!!!"
- We Used to Be Friends: He was once close allies with Lord Saladin, but ever since the Battle of the Twilight Gap their relationship has been frosty at best for currently unknown reasons. The Sunbreaker version of "The Shard" mission is narrated by Shaxx and sheds some light on this. Zavala and Saladin ordered a retreat declaring the battle a loss. Shaxx and 5 other Titans decided to take up defending the Six Fronts against orders.
Lord Saladin Forge, Iron Banner Rep
- Voiced by: Keith Ferguson
A Titan who was Vanguard Commander during the Battle of the Twilight Gap, Saladin Forge is the last of the Iron Lords, a legendary fireteam from the early days of the City. Once the mentor Commander Zavala, his successor in the Vanguard, and Lord Shaxx, Saladin is now the handler of the Iron Banner, a Crucible event held to honor his fallen comrades. He originally appeared during the Iron Banner limited time event, before becoming a permanent fixture in Felwinter Peak after the release of Rise of Iron.
- Affectionate Nickname: During the opening missions of Rise of Iron Saladin uses the standard Guardian moniker when talking about the player; but as you finish more missions for him he begins to call you Young Wolf. This is a sign that he has decided to induct you into the Iron Lords.
- An Axe to Grind: He wields a massive, flaming battleaxe in flashbacks. It's one of the pickable weapons in Rise of Iron, and one that makes your Swords pale in terms of damage output.
- Badass Boast: A third of his dialogue is remorse over the deaths of the Iron Lords. The other two thirds are statements about how he'll take down anything that comes at the City, or encouragements to the Guardians to prove how badass they are."So many seek to destroy us. The Devil Splicers. The Taken. Let them come. They face Saladin Forge renewed."
"Your Light is a Dragon, Guardian. Feed it."
"What next? The Cabal on Mars? The Vex across time? I'll crush them all."
- Badass Cape: Gets to wear one in Rise of Iron. Why does he get to buck tradition and wear a cape while being a Titan? Bungie regards him as the most Badass character in the game. And that's an accomplishment.
- Badass Grandpa: The Iron Lords were among the first generation of Guardians.
- Black Dude Dies First: Inverted. The Rise of Iron trailer confirms his race as such, and he's the last surviving member of the original Iron Lords. Well, until Efrideet returns, anyway.
- Bling of War: Much of the armor offered by the Iron Banner is plated with silver and gold (or at least has metamaterial shaders mimicking such) engraved with a Animal Motifs of Savage Wolves. Saladin himself models some of the Titan gear they can offer.
- Break the Haughty: During his time with the original Iron Lords; Saladin genuinely believed themselves to be invincible as long as they had the Traveler's Light. However he didn't realize that immortality is not the same thing as invulnerability; a lesson he learned the hard way when the Iron Lords died a true death when fighting against SIVA.
- Broken Ace: Being among the first generation of Guardians to have been born, he is very much the best of the best. Yet behind that image of invincibility is a man ridden with the guilt of being unable to save his comrades from sacrificing themselves for their mistakes.
- Combat Commentator: Becomes one for Destiny 2's Iron Banner events, replacing Shaxx.
- Dare to Be Badass: The entire point of the Iron Banner is to get Guardians to try harder, fight better, and outdo themselves, and Saladin gives plenty of inspiration to that effect when approached.
- Day in the Limelight: The Rise of Iron expansion focuses on Lord Saladin and the history of the Iron Lords.
- The Dragon Slayer: During the Great Hunt, Guardians tended to make a last wish before killing an Ahamkara. Saladin wished to fight a dragon and caused a massive wyrm to be created. Why did he do that? Because he thought being a knight wasn't good enough and wanted to be a dragon slayer.
- The Faceless: Prior to Rise of Iron, he was Never Bareheaded. He drops the helmet once SIVA rears its head again.
- Fast Ball Special: Lady Efrideet once threw him at a Fallen Walker so he could destroy it with Fists of Havoc, saving the settlement it was threatening. He doesn't like to mention the story, though. In Destiny 2, Shaxx claims that this happened from twenty miles (thirty two kilometers) up, too. Though given 20 miles is in the stratosphere, it's debatable if this is accurate.
- Four-Star Badass: Back when he was Vanguard Commander during the Battle of the Twilight Gap.
- Frontline General: While the leader of the Iron Lords he is still willing to do Vanguard grunt work; asking if any Vanguard fireteams need his help when he has free time.
- Incendiary Exponent: The titular Iron Banner is literally an big round iron banner that also happens to be on fire.
- It's Personal: With Rasputin, who unleashed SIVA on the Iron Lords when they tried to claim it, killing them in the process. Any time Saladin mentions Rasputin, his voice gets noticeably harsher. Datamined dialogue from Destiny 2 has Saladin claiming that if he were still part of the Vanguard, he'd probably be sending Guardians to try and eliminate Rasputin.
- The Last of His Kind: The sole remaining Iron Lord. At the end of the main story for Rise of Iron you formally join him as an Iron Lord averting this trope.
- Macho Masochism: A big believer that one needs to endure suffering to understand triumph. This could have something to do with the Iron Lords' demise at the hands of SIVA.Saladin: "We were touched by the Light. I... I didn't even know someone with the Traveler's gift could die... until they did."
- Meaningful Name: He's named after the leader of the Saracens during the Crusades.
- The Mentor: He's the mentor of Commander Zavala and Lord Shaxx. While he's still on good terms with Zavala, his relationship with Shaxx has been frosty since the Twilight Gap.
- Noble Wolves: Has three of them following him in the Rise of Iron trailer. Again, because Bungie says he's that Badass.
- Not So Above It All: Lord Saladin's Combat Commentator dialogue in Destiny 2's Iron Banner shows... a surprising amount of humorous dialogue from him.
- Old Master: Though how old he is exactly is hard to determine given he does not show his face and the fact that he is a guardian complicates the issue, but he was old enough to have trained Zavala and Shaxx and is still spry enough to comfortably wear his heavy armor. Then again, Guardians don't seem to physically age...
- O.O.C. Is Serious Business: Ikora comments on him storming by as glowing tech mites began infecting Guardians (as part of the Owl Sector), demanding to know what the mites are. The first thing she notes is that he is really on edge. Considering that SIVA which is what he's afraid of can infect Guardians this fear is not unfounded.
- Perma-Stubble: Sports this when his face is revealed in the Rise of Iron trailer.
- Platonic Life-Partners: He and Jolder were the closest of the Iron Lords, which makes her sacrifice that much more painful for him. Throughout Rise of Iron's story, Lord Saladin is fixated on her memory. He is finally able to find peace when you destroy SIVA's replication chamber, as well as return Jolder's helmet to him.
- Samurai: The armor you get from him in Destiny 2's Iron Banner has this motif, though it's more pronounced in the Season 4 update.
- Tragic Keepsake: Saladin's weapon aside from his axe is the Jolder's Hammer a replica of Jolder's original machine gun. After you defeat the Remnants of the Iron Lords; and destroy the SIVA replicator. The player gives Saladin Jolder's helmet which is placed in the Iron Temple; where he remarks that one day he will see them again.
- Voiced by: Cissy Jones
A veteran Titan and the field commander overseeing operations on Saturn's moon, Titan. She acts as Zavala's vice-commander when the latter attempts to rally Guardians on the moon's surface.
- A Mother to Her Men: During the Strike "Savathûn's Song", she tasks you with the rescue of a fireteam that got stranded by the Hive, but also orders you to make it back alive.
- Badass Boast: From Sloane, in the lore for the auto rifle, Duty Bound: "Due respect, Commander? I was there when the Hive found us on Earth. I was there when we stopped them on Titan. And I'll be there when we wipe them out."
- Not So Above It All: She more or less agrees with Zavala's disapproval of how you went after Uldren. Although she's significantly more understanding, she reiterates to you how such things can be risky. That being said...Sloane: *looks around* ... Just tell me you got him.
- Number Two: To Zavala, as her job as Deputy-Commander for the Titan Vanguard makes her his primary advisor and field commander. In the aftermath of the Last City's fall, her arrival causes Zavala to relax for the first time.
- Old Soldier: She briefly mentions that she participated in every battlefield in the Solar system; Mars, Venus, the Hive Dreadnaught, you name it. She also muses that she had been fighting the Hive far longer than she cared to admit. Considering that Guardians were effectively immortal until Ghaul's attack on the City, this may hint that Sloane is a really old soldier.
- Shoulders of Doom: If you thought Zavala's were impressive... Sloane's shoulder pads could make a Space Marine feel a little inadequate. Bonus points for the purity seals on said shoulder pads, too.
The Third Empyreal Magistrate of the Sunbreakers, and the Titan who guides you towards the path of the Sunbreaker.
- Dare to Be Badass: As you acquire the Sunbreaker's ability for the first time, she asks you this:"Can you bring Light to where only the Darkness survives?"
- The Exile: She and the other Sunbreakers do not live in the Last City due to a dispute they had with Zavala after he angrily rejected the terms of a deal Osiris tried to broker between their mercenary company and the Vanguard.
- Last Stand: In Destiny 2, she and the remaining Sunbreakers defend Mercury to the death when the Red Legion invades and brings in their sun-destroying weapon, the Almighty. Without their Light, the Sunbreakers all die in the battle.
- Living Legend: Your Ghost points out word for word that she a legend and one of the most powerful Titans alive, and even complies to her with a respectful "Yes, ma'am".
- The Voice: You do not meet her directly on Mercury, but instead her voice compels you to activate the forge and harness the power of the Sunbreaker.
A Titan who commands Holborn's Host, an elite unit of Guardians who fought at the Twilight Gap and are responsible for searching Mars for any sign of a surviving Warmind.
- All There in the Manual: All information about Holborn comes from Grimoire cards and item texts.
- Cool Old Guy: Judging by his dialogue in the "Ghost Fragment: Titan" card and being described as "genial" in the text for Holborn's Host Mark, Holborn is a laid back and friendly Guardian who leads one of the best units of the Vanguard.
- The Ghost: Grimoire cards suggest he is still alive and investigating Mars with his unit, but he has yet to actually appear.
- The Leader: Of Holborn's Host.
- Long-Lived: Even for immortal Guardians he is considered old.
A Titan who is best friends with fellow Sparrow Racing League member Marcus Ren.
- Always Second Best: To Marcus in the SRL, to the point he considered selling his racing Sparrow and going back to patrols full-time. However, a surprise win against Marcus restored his faith in his racing skills.
- Big Damn Heroes: Tackles a Centurion chocking the life out of Marcus during the Fall of the Last City and then carry's his friend to safety after beating the Centurion to death.
- Brought Down to Badass: Losing access to the Light during the Red War still left Bast a hulking Titan able to win a fistfight with a Cabal Centurian.
Eris Morn, Crota's Bane
- Voiced by: Morla Gorrondona
An Awoken Hunter, and member of Ikora Rey's network of spies and informants known as The Hidden, who became trapped in the Hellmouth for many years after her fireteam attempted to assassinate Crota and was wiped out. The trauma of watching her friends die and being forced to survive within the Hive catacombs has left deep and lasting scars upon her mind and body. Ironically, this experience has made her one of the foremost experts on the Hive.
- Aloof Ally: Not entirely by choice: the time she spent hiding among the Hive has led to many of her fellow Guardians shunning her, for fear of her being corrupted by the Darkness. Still, there's the matter of her plotting with the Queen of the Reef and her brother in complete secrecy, even if it's to secure allies against the Hive. Not to mention, she knows Osiris is alive and is in contact with him, but seems to have conveniently chosen to not alert the Vanguard to this.
- And I Must Scream: She had to survive alone in the darkest depths of the Hellmouth for years, not only surrounded by Hive at every turn but also having lost her eyes. As was just said, she remained down their for years before she got out of there, and since it's never really specified when she made the wish that gave her Acolyte eyes, we don't know how much longer she remained down there... which also means that it's fully possible that it took her years to escape even with her newfound eyes.
- And Then What?: In the House of Wolves, Crota is confirmed to be dead, leaving Eris having achieved her purpose. However, what will she do now that the Monster of Luna is gone? The answer is simple: kill Oryx. And once Oryx is finally ended, she realizes that she cannot protect the City by hiding within its walls and sets out into the vast darkness beyond to fight the next enemy.
- Blind Seer: She lost her eyes while in the Hellmouth, replacing them with Hive cybernetics. She wears a blindfold over them, but the Sickly Green Glow of the Extra Eyes shines through it. True to the trope, she perceives things that others cannot.
- Cassandra Truth: Most assume that the only reason she raves on and on about Crota coming back is because her time on the moon snapped her mind completely, but she knows better, and has called in experienced Guardians like you to help her prove it and save humanity. While she may not be getting through to the Speaker, Commander Zavala, and Cayde-6, Ikora Rey believes that the threat of Crota's return is genuine, frequently seeking Eris's advice on the Hive.
- Comically Serious: Naturally, when sharing scenes with Cayde. She has made no secret that she wants to end his snarking and jokes by smashing his head in.
- Complexity Addiction: The Guardians would probably find her explanations of the Hive more useful if she didn't seem to insist on giving it through confusing rants that can often be simplified into "shoot this" or "go there".
- Creepy Good: She has the looks and mannerisms of a human-shaped Hive Wizard, and it's obvious that her time in the Hellmouth has taken an enormous toll on her mind and body, but she's still a devoted ally to the Traveler and the Vanguard.
- Determinator: Lived for years in the subterranean tunnels of the Moon after the raid gone wrong, surviving by "using the shadows as the Hive do". Not days, nor weeks, nor months — years.
- Devil in Plain Sight: Just look at her. Most Guardians put up with her due to her extensive knowledge of the Hive, but Cayde-6 openly states his mistrust of her. She's a double-agent for Osiris and Queen Mara Sov.
- Eerie Pale-Skinned Brunette: Appears to be a result of both not getting much sunlight in the Hellmouth, and of her obvious ill-health.
- Extra Eyes: She appears to have replaced her original eyes with a set of Hive cybernetics, giving her the iconic three glowing lights under her bandages. This was due to a wish on an Ahamkara bone she was carrying, which traded her eyesight for knowledge of the Hive that allowed her to escape their tunnels.
- Eye Scream: Given the three glowing Hive eyes under her bandage, plus the black substance leaking from there, Eris probably lost her eyes in the Hellmouth. She is also very fixated on getting the eyes of the Forsaken. The eyes were actually taken by an Ahamkara as part of a bargain to escape the Hive.
- Gibbering Genius: A lot of what she has to say is genuinely useful, but she seems incapable of putting her thoughts into a sentence that doesn't border on impossible-to-understand nonsense. When your Guardian needs to disable the cannon on Oryx's dreadnought, Eris tries to give some absurd and confusing explanation involving "necrotic bonds" only for Cayde to tell you to just shoot it, which turns out to be exactly what you need to do.
- He Who Fights Monsters: Zig-zagged. The Tower's premier anti-Hive agent looks a great deal like a human disciple of their Religion of Evil herself, but she seems to be firmly on the side of the Traveler and Guardians. However, her voice actor describes her as having an "odd reverence" for them and she's scheming with both the Reef royalty and Osiris behind the backs of the Vanguard, so she may be bordering this trope.
- It's Personal: Crota "took everything" from her. She wants revenge.
- Kill the God: Her greatest desire is to kill the Hive gods. With Crota dead, she moved on to the biggest and baddest of the Hive pantheon: Oryx. And when he fell, she surreptiously took a piece of his sword for her own. What she plans to do with it is yet to be revealed. Given what we know of the Dreaming City and the Queen of the Awoken, with whom she is in league, it seems likely that we might discover more of her and Mara's plan in Forsaken.
- Large Ham: It appears that self-restraint and volume control were amongst the many, many things the Hellmouth took from her.
- Meaningful Name: Eris is the Greek goddess of strife and discord. "Morn" sounds a lot like "mourn", which is fitting considering her teammates, but it's also part of "morning", when light returns from darkness.
- The Mole: She's secretly sending reports on the Tower to Osiris, and a "Queen", later revealed to be Mara Sov, Queen of the Awoken..
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: Hey, Eris, your need to take revenge on Crota? It may not have been a good idea, as it got the attention of someone even worse. And he didn't come alone. Eris tasks you with gathering the materials necessary to create the Touch Of Malice, an Exotic Scout Rifle perfect for killing Oryx with. The Grimoire indicates she was actually manipulated into creating a Soul Jar for Oryx, one that would shape its wielder into his successor.
- Non-Standard Character Design: With her robes, untraditional hood, and general mysticism one could be forgiven for thinking she's a Warlock instead of a Hunter.
- Only Sane Woman: Granted, "sane" is a bit of a stretch given what's become of her, but in a world of wisecracking Ghosts and dancing Guardians, she's the only one who understands the gravity of the situation and just how dangerous The Darkness is. At least, if you ask her.
- The Power of Hate: Openly admits that it's most of what still keeps her going.
- Revenge Before Reason: She sends your Guardian into Crota's personal realm to kill him permanently for the sake of her revenge, despite the fact she should've probably known that this would attract Oryx's attention, given her in-depth knowledge of the Hive.
- Shell-Shocked Veteran: She spent months crawling out of the Hellmouth without a Ghost after seeing her closest friends slaughtered. It shows.
- Shock and Awe: Specified in the lore tabs of the Great Hunt set from the Dreaming City raid that she was a Bladedancer before her incident in the Hellmouth. She hasn't been seen wielding Light since.
- Sickly Green Glow: Her Light produces this, underlining how badly her time in the Hellmouth has warped her.
- Sole Survivor: She and five others descended into the Hellmouth. Only she came back out.
- Tears of Blood: Or something black and tarry-looking, anyways.
- You Are What You Hate: Despite her hate for the Hive, she seems to have adopted some of their traits and powers, likely out of necessity and survival.
Anastasia "Ana" Bray
- Voiced by: Jamie Chung
A former member of the Bray family in her previous life — the founders of the Golden Age Clovis Bray corporatio — now a Hunter. When she became Risen, she had her personal effects on her, including an ID Card for Clovis Brey with the name 'Anastasia Bray' on it, and a picture of herself. Ana Bray was a major player at the Battle for Twilight Gap, where her Golden Gun was said to leave wells of light where her shots landed. She used the Battle to fake her own death and go into hiding, so she could research her previous life and find out more about Rasputin on Mars without Vanguard authority looming over her.
- Badass Gay: She is known as one of the most powerful Gunslingers in history, and during her time secretly researching Rasputin, she fell in love with a woman named Camrin Dumuzi.
- Badass Bookworm: Ana is extremely intelligent, and in her former life was a scientist connected to the Warmind project. After being reborn as a Guardian, she proved so powerful that during the Battle of Twilight Gap she left permanent pools of Light wherever she fired her Golden Gun.
- Cyborg: Through implants using Braytech.
- Electronic Eyes: Giving her a personalized heads-up display even with her helmet off (which, of course, is the norm for Destiny NPCs). When active, they produce glowing red circular circuit patterns in her irises.
- The Exile: A self-imposed example. In true Hunter fashion, Ana Bray left the City after the Battle of Twilight Gap and refused to return, even avoiding contact with other Guardians. The main reason for this was because she sought out the truth about her life before she was resurrected, which is a taboo subject among Guardians.
- Faking the Dead: In order to go along with her self-imposed exile, Ana faked her death at the Battle of Twilight Gap. It wasn't until decades later when Zavala discovered that she was still alive.Ana Bray: At Twilight Gap that Fallen gave me the opening I needed...to let the world believe Guardian Ana Bray was dead...So that Doctor Anastasia Bray could finally do what needed to be done.
- Identity Amnesia: Much like other Guardians, Ana had no idea who she was when she was revived. Unlike other Guardians, she actively sought out her past, helped by the fact that she had an ID badge on her when she was resurrected.
- Keeper of Forbidden Knowledge: Ana started out as a seeker of forbidden knowledge—namely her past and everything to do with Rasputin—but by the time she discovered Rasputin on Mars she became the de facto keeper of both the Warmind and its knowledge.
- Sue Donym: Uses "Stasya Pak" as an alias while in the City when everybody thought she was dead. Stasya, as in Anastasia.
- Voiced by: Uncredited *
An Exo Hunter who is one of the Vanguard's most trusted scouts, Shiro-4 was once a member of a notorious Fireteam alongside Andal Brask and Cayde-6, and serves as a major Hunter connection to the Vanguard. Shiro-4 specializes in the Fallen, combating their threat across Earth, Luna, and Venus. He is sent by the Vanguard to assist Lord Saladin at Felwinter's Peak in combating the Devil Splicers and SIVA.
- Foil: To his former mentor, Cayde-6. Both are Exo Hunters and stalked in the same Fireteam, but unlike Cayde, Shiro is no-nonsense and wastes little time joking around outside of occassional sarcasm. He also relies heavily on intel, while Cayde's known for his precise intuition.
- In the Hood: As is typical for hunters he wears a cloak with his hood up. His cloak is made from the torn banners of several Fallen houses.
- Mission Control: Oversees the campaign against the Devil Splicers alongside Saladin. He also assigns all of the patrol missions in the Plaguelands.
- Shock and Awe: He sports a chestpiece that bears striking similarity to the Lucky Raspberry, indicating that he's either an Arcstrider or Bladedancer.
- Weapon of Choice: The Trespasser, a sidearm which appears as an Exotic in Rise of Iron.
One of the few Nightstalkers left in present time, and an old acquaintance of Cayde-6. After learning about the Black Garden, Tevis begins seeking a way into it.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Described as such by Cayde.
- Knight In Sour Armor: He has given up on the Traveller, but still fights the forces of the Darkness and decides to investigate the Black Garden.
- Last Stand: Cut off from his Ghost and stranded in the Black Garden, Tevis knows he has no chance at resurrection and is faced by a massive horde of Vex. The Guardian finds dozens of dead Vex around his body, with his Nightstalker Bow still filled with the last of his Light.
- We Hardly Knew Ye: After briefly speaking with him over the radio, the Guardian finds him dead by the time you reach his location.
- Voiced by: Riva Di Paola
The youngest of the Iron Lords, Efrideet is a Hunter and the only other surviving member of the fireteam alongside Lord Saladin. After spending years studying with a group of other Guardians new ways in which to utilize Light, she returns to assist her former comrade in holding the Iron Banner Tournaments.
- Action Girl: As a first generation Guardian, Efrideet has accomplished incredible feats of physical strength, enough to incite awe from Shaxx whenever the latter reminisces about the old stories of Twilight Gap.
- Badass Pacifist: While the exact kind isn't specified, she is stated to have traveled to the outer system and spent many years with a group of these.
- Establishing Character Moment: What does she do in her first appearance? Joke about how there isn't a statue for her while standing confidently before Saladin.
- Muscles Are Meaningless: Don't let her slender figure and status as a Hunter, a class that's not known for brute force, fool you; her Grimoire entry mentions she once threw Saladin into a Fallen Walker like a javelin.
- Neutral No Longer: As detailed in the Season 2 Cosmo Shell: During the Red War, Efrideet takes up a sniper's nest in the Last City, killing 216 Cabal with 199 bullets, and was present when the Vanguard retook the City and the Traveler reawakened.
- Older Than They Look: You don't see her face, but her voice and behavior wouldn't suggest her being among the first generation of Guardians.
- One Hit Poly Kill: She sniped 216 Cabal with only 199 bullets, so some of them had to be this trope.
- Shell-Shocked Veteran: According to Bungie, "she's seen some shit".
- Uncertain Doom: She had no artifact listed, and Bungie implied that she may not be dead. Her survival was confirmed with her appearance in Rise of Iron, with Saladin noting that he had always hoped she would still be alive centuries after they parted ways.
- Weapon of Choice: Efrideet's Spear, the Iron Banner Sniper Rifle in Year One.
- Voiced by: Crispin Freeman
A "renegade" Hunter who was never raised from the dead by a Ghost, but instead inherited the Ghost of his mentor Jaren Ward. A former resident of Palamon, he was the one to eventually put an end to the infamous Dredgen Yor. Nowadays, he's dedicated himself to hunting down the Shadows of Yor.
- The Ace: Hands down one of the greatest and most powerful Gunslingers of all time. He can't be outdrawn in a duel, all of the Shadows are terrified of crossing him, and as seen with Callum, his Golden Gun is potent enough to leave a shadow outline of the man's body, something that nuclear weapons are capable of doing. For emphasis, the Golden Gun that most Gunslingers pull out of the sky? They're shaped after the image of his Golden Gun, which is just The Last Word charged with Solar Light, as opposed to a revolver pulled from the sky, like most Hunters do.
- Actually, I Am Him: The Season of the Drifter reveals that he founded the Shadows of Yor, with Zyre Orsa and Dredgen Vale being false identities to conceal his true nature. He remains as virtuous as he was before, however, since this is all part of a gamble to amass a group of Guardians able to wield both the Light and the Darkness to humanity's benefit, as well as hunting down those who would fall into the temptations of the Darkness.
- Badass Normal: Even before inheriting Jaren's ghost, Shin was already quite skilled and even joined his mentor in attempting to hunt down Dredgen Yor.
- Conveniently an Orphan: Several times. His biological parents were killed by Fallen, his adoptive father died when Dredgen Yor razed Palamon to the ground, and then Jaren was murdered by Yor.
- The Dreaded: If there's one person the Shadows of Yor fear above all else, it's the Man with the Golden Gun.
- Ironic Echo: "Yours, not mine." Jaren Ward's Post-Mortem One-Liner to the Magistrate of Palamon in reference to his Weapon of Choice, now echoed by the man facing down Jaren's killer while wielding the same weapon.
- Knight Templar: He admits that, especially in his younger days, he only saw things in black or white, swiftly dealing out justice to those who fell to corruption and temptation and never thinking about the consequences of his actions. He writes to the Young Wolf that not only have they made him realize that his core belief is all wrong, he now sees in them, for the first time ever, a bit of gray.
- The Mentor: He sends letters to the Young Wolf in order to help them learn to control their anger and offering insight on how they can better themselves to be the hero that others view them as.
- Mysterious Protector: Has taken this role for us, The Young Wolf. During our work with the Drifter finding Enkaar, a Hive weaponmaster trying to create a new Weapon of Sorrow, Shin was aiding us from the shadows, and his offering of The Last Word, a weapon imbued and extremely in-tune with the Light, is what allowed us to chase the weaponmaster and outgun him without our Light being corrupted, as Weapons of Sorrow tend to have that effect.
- Pragmatic Hero / Shut Up, Hannibal!: Rather than sit and listen to Dredgen Yor's final evil speech, he whipped out the Golden Gun and shot him dead mid-sentence.
- Red Baron: Is known as "The Man with the Golden Gun."
- The Reveal: The 'For Every Rose, a Thorn' lore card reveals that Shin Malphur has an alter ego in the form of Zyre Orsa, AKA Dredgen Vale. See Xanatos Gambit below.
- Secret Test of Character: A lot of his dialogue within the past two expansions implies that he's putting the Young Wolf through an indirect version of this, witnessing their behavior from the sidelines and judging whether or not their intentions are true. True to the nature of the trope, he only reveals that he founded the Shadows of Yor and is Dredgen Vale after determining that they have earned the right to know.
- Take Up My Sword: He wields The Last Word, which previously belonged to the Guardian Jaren Ward, who was both friend and father figure to the young Shin. When Dredgen Yor killed Jaren, Shin inherited both the weapon and his Ghost.
- He in turn leaves The Last Word to the Young Wolf, trusting and believing in them to continue to be a force of good. It's worth noting that this isn't permanent or limiting on Malphur himself; such is his Light that, if he needs it, he can summon The Last Word back to his side, but because The Last Word is so powerful in the Light, him allowing us to summon it while chasing Enkaar is one of the only things that could have kept us from being corrupted by the Darkness.
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: With the Drifter, which he reiterates to Shaxx several times in his observations that he doesn't trust him at all. Despite the numerous risks, he still sees it as necessary if it means that Gambit manages to pay off in drawing the Shadows of Yor back out of hiding.
- Vigilante Man: If he ever spots a Guardian playing around with Dark powers, he'll do everything in his power to take them down; not capture, but outright execution. He takes it upon himself to chase down and kill the Shadows of Yor, even if some of the suspected Dredgens are a far cry from the threat posed by their founder, Dredgen Yor. The Drifter, who's one of the most morally grey characters in the story thanks to his wealth of experience and personal history, dislikes this absolute way of thinking, and even Aunor, who has no qualm leveling city blocks if it means getting rid of rogue Guardians who she can no longer negotiate with, would rather detain and try to rehabilitate the would-be Dredgens.
- Weapon of Choice: The Last Word, a Tex Mechanica Hand Cannon imbued with Shin's Light. The cannon is so in-tune with the Light, that it's form is one of the three that most Gunslingers summon when using the Golden Gun note . Shin also notes to the Young Wolf that only Gunslingers can unlock The Last Word's full potential.Shin: Few can light its fire, but any reborn of the Light can call its name.
- What the Hell, Hero?: Prior to the Red War, he gave Ikora an earful about how the Vanguard weren't taking the Shadows of Yor seriously enough as an emerging threat.
- His letters to the Young Wolf are a downplayed example, where he not only asks them to consider the consequences of their more recent actions, but to also think about what they can do to have better control and to continue to be a hero.
- Xanatos Gambit: His identity and position as Dredgen Vale. He reinvigorated a movement that drew out Guardians that would follow Yor's teachings to a T instead of seeking balance. By building an organization with the intent of wielding Light and Darkness together, he draws any potential new Yors to the forefront so that he can gun them down. His encounter with Callum Sol, AKA Dredgen Cull, was a plan by them both to eliminate a bunch of these Darkness-worshiping Guardians in one swoop, with Cull being a Sacrificial Lamb.
A highly skilled Hunter and Sparrow pilot, Marcus is one of the stars of the Sparrow Racing League. His Ghost, Didi, is a rather spry individual who has done some... interesting accomplishments over the past years.
- Ace Custom: Didi uses the Fast Lane shell, a translucent-red shell with prongs that was the first to use the Speed Demonnote perk. Marcus also designed the Mimesis Drive, a red Sparrow that similarly applies the same Red Ones Go Faster principle.
- Badass Driver: One of the most accomplished Sparrow racers in the world and considered to be nigh-unbeatable.
- He's also a skilled enough Hunter that Cayde speculates that Marcus is probably the only Hunter (aside from a Hunter!Young Wolf) capable of actually killing the aforementioned Hunter Vanguard permanently. And as it happens, that position is now unfilled as of Forsaken...
- The Ghost: Has yet to show up in-game, but appears quite frequently in the lore.
- Giftedly Bad: Didi is an absolutely atrocious playwright.
- Red Ones Go Faster: Both Marcus and Didi are a fan of this trope; while Didi's shell is an Ace Custom with a translucent red color, Marcus was apparently once seen unable to be convinced by Enoch Bast that painting a certain Sparrow red (likely the Mimesis Drive) wouldn't actually increase the speed of the vehicle.
- Self-Insert Fic: Didi is the author of a play recounting the Young Wolf's history during the Taken War, start to finish... except she's the Young Wolf, and Marcus is Ghost. Needless to say, Zavala finds it a humongous insult to yourself, your Ghost is horrified, Tyra Karn's Ghost realizes that Didi sucks at writing, and Shaxx is left wondering why the dialogue is so sexually charged.
- Voiced by: R. Hamilton Wright (Destiny), Oded Fehr (Destiny 2)
A renowned Warlock and former Vanguard Commander who became an expert on both the Hive and the Vex, with the ultimate goal of understanding the Darkness itself. His quest for knowledge led to a cult of personality developing around him, with many other Guardians choosing to follow his ideals rather than the ideals of the Tower. This ideological division led to his exile and ultimate disappearance. He is still remembered by the Disciples of Osiris, who seek Guardians to compete in the Trials of Osiris.
His role in the game and his relation with Ikora will be expanded upon in the first DLC for Destiny 2 titled Curse of Osiris
- Accidental Truth: When contacted by the Awoken about what they should do with the worsening Taken curse and incursion of Xivu Arath's soldiers in the Dreaming City, he mentions that only the Vex should be capable of such subterfuge. However, there are no Vex in the city. There are also no Vex in the city. Quria, who is a Vex, is holding the place in a time loop from the outside to (presumably) allow Savathûn's troops infinite time to get what they need. Osiris's reply also gives more credibility to Medusa, who claims that Quria is not defecting from the Taken as it keeps insisting.
- Actor Allusion: He is not the first Egyptian-themed character played by Oded Fehr.
- Admiring the Abomination: He and Sagira once stumbled upon a copy of the Hive's Book of Sorrows and read it. Sagira is understandably creeped out; Osiris, on the other hand, found it enlightening.
- Ancient Egypt: Besides his name being the same as the Egyptian God of the Dead, this is a definite theme with the armor available in the Trials of Osiris, with the Warlock hood being modeled on Anubis, the Titan helm being modeled on Horus and the Hunter helmet on Ra.
- Angrish: When fiddling with the contraption that presumably opens his rifts in time and failing to do so, he spouts a volley of incomprehensible gibberish in a tone that implies he's frustrated.
- Badass Grandpa: He's very old, even by Guardian standards. But an old fart, he is most certainly not, and Ghost outright calls him the most powerful Guardian to ever live.
- Bald of Awesome: Hides it under his hood, but he is bald. Still the most powerful Guardian alive.
- Even the Subtitler Is Stumped: His flurry of frustrated, incoherent babbling in the opening cinematic is translated as "Cursing in an alien language."
- The Exile: He was exiled for "coming too close to understanding the Vex". A lot of the Trials of Osiris gear has a "Noun of the Exile" Theme Naming. Apparently, the Disciples of Osiris are still a little pissed off with the Speaker over it.
- The Extremist Has A Point: After his exile various events he predicted came true, causing the Speaker to seriously regret exiling him.
- Go Mad from the Revelation: Implied to be why he was exiled, though it doesn't appear to have been to the extent of Toland's madness. His Grimoire Card indicates he was starting to ask a lot of uncomfortable questions about the relationship between Guardians and Ghosts and the Traveler, and that his madness may have stemmed from coming too close to the truth.
- Insufferable Genius: Ikora says he never understood that being a Warlock meant more than being the smartest person in the room.
- It's All About Me: To quote Sagira:Sagira: Osiris has adapted some of the technology of the Forest to his own purposes. We're going to run into his Reflections. They're copies—of himself. Made so he can explore multiple pathways at once. And yes, I am aware that it makes Osiris seem like an egomaniac. But don't worry. He is.
- My Greatest Failure: Sagira assures it isn't his fault, but Osiris blames himself specifically for Saint-14's death in the Infinite Forest.
- Nay-Theist: The Fall of Osiris reveals that he blames the Traveler for humanity's current state, citing that all the alien races trying to kill off humanity came here to kill or capture it. The fact that others started to agree with him is what led to his eventual falling out with The Speaker.
- Never Found the Body: The Speaker has sent out dozens of Ghosts looking for any sign of Osiris. The Ghosts come back saying alternately that he's dead, that he's managed to penetrate the Vex conflux network, etc. No one has any idea if he's alive. A Grimoire card shows that not only is he alive, but Eris is in contact with him. An Adventure in Destiny 2 reveals that he has indeed infiltrated the Vex conflux network. The player character's Ghost immediately notes that the Vanguard has to be told. Curse Of Osiris reveal that he's spent the decades exploring a massive Vex machine inside Mercury called the Infinite Forest that can simulate alternate realities, trying to learn about it, the Vex, and the information it reveals about the universe at large.
- Non-Standard Character Design: Osiris splits some of the difference between Warlock and Hunter fashions, having a cloth hood and a lot of cloth floating off of his robes like a Hunter cloak.
- Playing with Fire: He is a Dawnblade Warlock, as he shows off during the Curse of Osiris reveal trailer.
- A Pupil of Mine, Until He Turned to Evil: How the Speaker used to view him. The Disciples maintain that it's the other way around. The Speaker is beginning to worry that they may be right. Although given that he's working with Eris Morn and Mara Sov to manipulate the Guardians into taking the fight to the Hive, maybe the Speaker was on to something.
- Stop Worshipping Me: He always had a dim view of the cult that formed around him, but the Fall of Osiris comic shows that he decided that entertaining his "followers" was a massive waste of time, and that he is a scientist, not a prophet. His followers... Don't see it that way, and basically trying to advertise his teachings is one of the things that eventually lead to the Speaker exiling him. Unfortunately, said cult lives on, and its members are, well, crazed fanboys who are more like priests than scientists. Even Ikora calls them out on it.
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: His Grimoire card implies that he was the one who inspired Kabr's disastrous expedition into the Vault of Glass, and may have inspired others to do the same. This was before the Speaker and the Vanguard knew what the Vex were working on in there.
- Time Master: In the opening cinematic for Curse of Osiris, the first thing he does is casually freeze time during a battle between a fireteam and the Vex before strolling into the Infinite Forest.
- Weapon of Choice: He appears to have a preference for Scout Rifles, and wears what appears to be a modified or custom version of the Sunbracers Exotic Gauntlets.
- Wild Card: In the Curse of Osiris trailer, Ikora flat out states that seeking Osiris' assistance will be their greatest gamble because of his dangerous past and unpredictable goals.
- Voiced by: Page Leong
An Awoken Warlock who served the Iron Lords as an archivist. Following the death of most of the Iron Lords, Tyra went on to help found the Cryptarch order while focusing on her own historical research and study. With SIVA reemerging, Tyra answered Lord Salidin's call to return to Felwinter Peak and assist him in rebuilding the Iron Lords. During the Red War she relocated to the Farm and assisted the Guardian's efforts to rebuild following the attack on the Last City.
- Face Death with Dignity: She makes an offhand comment that the Shard of the Traveler casts a serene beauty over the forest, and that if she must finally meet her end, she would be satisfied at the Farm.
- Facial Markings: Wears white facial paint.
- Have We Met?: She asks this of the player character the first time you meet her in Destiny 2. In her words, losing her Light has left her "disoriented," and she apologizes for not recognizing you if you did meet her back in Rise of Iron.
- Jumped at the Call: When she heard of Saladin reviving the Iron Lords and the return of SIVA, Tyra dropped everything and joined him at Felwinter Peak to combat the threat.
- Long-Lived: Like Saladin she had been around since the immediate aftermath of the Collapse, making her one of the oldest Guardians on record.
- Mystical White Hair: She is a scholarly Warlock and has white hair that is not due to her age.
Asher Mir, Fragmented Researcher
- Voiced by: Darryl Kurylo
A Warlock who was attacked by Brakion, the Genesis Mind on Io. After Brakion mechanized his arm and Ghost, the resulting corruption drove him into a coma.
At the onset of the Red War, Mir unexpectedly wakes up from his coma and heads to Io to fight for the Guardians, beginning to research the remnants of the Taken in the process, and eventually seeks revenge for what Brakion did to him and his fireteam.
- Alien Blood: He tells Eris Morn in one of his transmissions that he cut his finger and found himself bleeding Vex radiolaria fluid.
- Artificial Limbs: His right arm is a Vex construct that was forcibly converted by the Mind Brakion in the Pyramidion conversion facility.
- Ascended Extra: One of the main characters at Io in Destiny 2. In the first game, he was a minor character in the Grimoire.
- Berserk Button: Staring at his arm or talking about it makes him go from irate to utterly incensed, which only makes sense, considering how that arm was forced on him.
- Fictional Disability: His partial conversion by Brakion has had number of side effects, including Vex radiolaran fluid seeping into his blood and rendering his right arm useless as its constantly curled up against his side. The loss of his Ghost also keeps him under the threat of a permanent end should he be killed even after the Traveler freed itself from the Cabal's cage, and he's well aware that his condition is killing him.
- Insufferable Genius: Utterly full of his own intelligence, to the point that he doesn't even consider the possibility that he might be confused by something.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Even though he can tire out Ikora Rey with his attitude, he's friendly to Eris and to the people around him, and he eventually admits to the Young Wolf that without their assistance he would be hopelessly behind in his research. However, when it comes to Zavala, the Dumb Muscle tendencies of Titans have made him develop a burning hatred for him ever since the plan to destroy the Almighty was revealed. He also emphasises with the circumstances of Cayde's death in Forsaken, noting that Asher himself paid a price for his curiosity and self-interest in the Pyramidion. When he notes that the player Guardian has their sights set on vengeance, he also warns them to keep in mind that every action has an equal an opposite reaction, and that the Guardian should be prepared to pay the inevitable price for their Roaring Rampage of Revenge, as their actions will have consequences, a sentiment echoed by Zavala later on.
- Mad Scientist: Conducts a range of rather morally-questionable research projects, and at one point while researching the Taken he prefaces the plan by quickly saying that he is most certainly not doing anything morally questionable or dangerous in any way.
- Malicious Misnaming: Because he really dislikes Zavala, Asher has taken to calling him "Vuvuzela".
- Meaningful Name: His nickname is the Gensym Scribe. Gensym Lisp is a programming language where "gensym" is shorthand for "generate symbol," implying that he took on the name during his medical crisis.
- Odd Friendship: All the friends he has or has had (Eris Morn and the two hunters he went into the Pyramidion with) have been Hunters, the class with a shtick of being the opposite and rivals of stuffy academic warlocks like Asher.
- Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Apparently, he thinks Dead Orbit has the right idea.
- Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness: Has a tendency to throw out incredibly complicated terms that confuse nearly everyone he's talking to. Ikora even gets exasperated and suggests he should hire a translator.Asher: You should now be entering a Hilbert space, if the Taken have not misaligned the Pyramidions base geometric intuitions.
Your Ghost: Gesundheit.
Asher: I did not sneeze, you fool. It is an infinite dimensional functional space, the Vex often- oh, why am I wasting my breath!
- Sole Survivor: Everyone that went with Asher to fight Brakion died fighting the giant Hobgoblin.
- Stockholm Syndrome: As much as he hates the Vex for what they did to him, he admits that he also finds a strange sense of "affection" for them.Do you ever feel any affection for the creatures that changed you? I confess this weakness myself. In the shadow of the Pyramidion, I have sometimes felt a kind of craven admiration for the illimitable superior beings that suffuse my body. I can feel them move through my veins with purpose, magnetized to the intent of the Minds that have come to machinoform Echo Mesa. I have a sense of their desires. They have changed since I fell. And so, I amif nothing elsea new variable in whatever grand equation compels them.
- Unwilling Roboticisation: His arm and Ghost were mechanized by Brakion.
- Your Days Are Numbered: The Vex technology in his arm is slowly eating away at the rest of his body. With his Ghost already transformed and Vex radiolaria already inside his blood, Asher knows that it will eventually kill him unless he can find a way to reverse it.
A member of one of Sloane's investigation teams in the New Pacific Arcology and a Praxic Warlock of the same order as the late Eriana-3. Following the disappearance of multiple fireteams in the Arcology, she soon becomes a rescue target during the strike "Savathûn's Song". Also the co-creator of the Exotic sniper rifle Zen Meteor.
- Ascended Extra: She was briefly mentioned in the Zen Meteor's description in the first Destiny.
- Famous Last Words: Due to how the Strike is played out, she can either say "Send my regards to Sloane." or "Embrace the Praxic Fire."
- Heroic Sacrifice: She deliberately lets herself be harvested by the Hive in order to lure the giant Shrieker known as Savathûn's Song, allowing your fireteam to eliminate it while it's vulnerable.
- Honor Before Reason: Being from an order of Warlocks that value bravery and self-sacrifice, Taeko shrugs off your fireteam's rescue attempt and tells you she's coming to rescue you instead, and doesn't like it when Ghost tells her to lie low while you're trying to reach her.
- Sole Survivor: During the strike, she is on the run from the Hive after having witnessed her fireteam being picked off successively, with her best friend having their light ripped out and funneled into a crystal of Void Light.
- Tragic One-Shot Character: With her entire fireteam dead and no means to escape, she decides to forfeit her life and give you a chance to stop the Hive's cruel machinations.
An Awoken Warlock who is also the Honorary Uncle of Tess Everis, Fenchurch has taken to exploring the solar system after being forbidden from the Tower for a "jest" that angered Commander Zavala, and provides his "niece" Tess with many of her wares.
- Gender-Blender Name: Fenchurch as a first name was first used by Douglas Adams for a woman in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
- Gentleman Adventurer: Describes himself as a "Gentlemanly Guardian".
- Honorary Uncle: When he was raised from the dead by his Ghost, he was holding a silver coin with Tess Everis' energy signature, so a young Tess assumed that she was his uncle. Like other Guardians Fenchurch has no memory of his previous life, so he decided to adopt the Everis name.
- Master of Disguise: He once masqueraded a Fallen Captain. No, really.
- Noodle Incident: How he got exiled from the Tower. Fenchurch asks Tess that Zavala be reminded that it was "merely a jest".
A Warlock who is a Zealous member of the Praxic Fire, and secretly a member of Ikora's Hidden. It's her that you side with if you choose to side with the Vanguard in the Season 6 Allegience Quest.
- Arbitrary Skepticism: suspects the Young Wolf of being involved in Cayde's Death in spite of the total lack of evidence to suggest that.
- Hypocrite: The Drifter considers her one, saying that she's just as violent and destructive as she claims he and his followers are. She also essentially goes behind the Vanguard's and The Consenses's backs to launch a possibly illegal investigation into The Drifter in spite of being explicitly ordered by the Vanguard to leave him alone, all while claiming that she trusts and respects Ikora.
- Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!: Or, what she thinks is right anyway. In spite of being reminded by the Vanguard that The Drifter is welcome in the City as a Guardian and a being willing to fight to defend the city, and that he hasn't broken any laws or gotten anyone killed (that they know of), she decides to recruit the Young Wolf to go behind their backs and investigate The Drifter.
Shadows of YorA band of Guardians who seek to follow the path of Dredgen Yor by wielding replicas of Thorn, but without becoming corrupted by the Darkness that turned the once heroic Titan into the infamous monster.
Dredgen Vale / Zyre Orsa
A Hunter who founded the Shadows alongside his friend Teben Grey to study and emulate Dredgen Yor.
- Blood Knight: Other Guardians note that in Supremacy matches in the Crucible, Vale is not even bothering to pick up the crests of the Guardians he defeats and is solely focused on killing.
- Dark Is Not Evil: What he hopes the Shadows of Yor will be. However, signs of corruption are already appearing among them. Which is exactly what he wants, so he can stamp out the corruption.
- The Reveal: The 'For Every Rose, a Thorn' lore card reveals that Dredgen Vale is actually Shin Malphur in disguise.
- Weapon of Choice: One of the Thorn copies, which he claims to have cleansed of corruption and "tamed".
Dredgen Bane / Teben Grey
The other founder of the Shadows of Yor.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: He hopes that using Thorn will result in the Shadows of Yor giving an edge to the Guardians, but is well aware that they may end up becoming monsters.
Dredgen Cull / Callum Sol
A former Shadow of Yor that was hunted down by Shin Malphur. He is an important figure in building and unlocking Malfeasance, a weapon said to be the ultimate embodiment of the Shadows' goals.
- Deader Than Dead: Killing his own Ghost already insured that he wasn't coming back, but Shin reminds everyone just what happens to a body when it's hit by the Golden Gun.
- Eye Scream: He subjects his own Ghost to this by stabbing her with a dagger made from a Thorn spike.
- Famous Last Words: "You'll never kill us all."
- Ironic Death: His plight was most likely brought about from dark corruption. The only physical trace left of him is an item that becomes Malfeasance, which appears to not be corrupted.
- It's Personal: Callum stole something from the Drifter, which wasn't destroyed after Shin burned him into the rock that eventually fell into the area of The Corrupted strike. It is an important key item in building Malfeasance, a weapon thought to be the ultimate harmony of Light and Darkness.
- Not So Different: Tries to pull this on Shin, claiming that they both sometimes do the wrong thing for the right reasons.
- Sacrificial Lamb: He and Shin Malphur were in cahoots. Dredgen Cull's actions specifically drew out a bunch of Darkness worshiping Guardians who needed to be slain, and Malphur was able to kill them at one of Cull's gatherings. To maintain the illusion, Malphur had to kill Callum as well, something Callum knew about and was perfectly at peace with.
Mithrax's FireteamTwo Guardians, a Warlock and a Hunter, that Mithrax the Forsaken forms a fireteam with after the events of "Enemy of My Enemy".
- No Name Given: In the lore entries that feature them, they are simply referred to as "The Hunter" and "The Warlock".
- Present Company Excluded: The Hunter expresses skepticism when hearing about the Wolves' alliance with the Reef, wondering how anyone could trust those that once tried to kill them, then invokes this to Mithrax; the big guy takes it in stride.
- True Companions: The Hunter would much rather go into the Zero Hour mission as Mithrax's backup, not entirely trusting of the Young Wolf and wary of the plan in general. The Warlock, while also worried, understands that from Mithrax's point of view, it has to be him if he's going to prove himself to the city.
- See the Historical Guardians page.