Destiny 2 Heir Apparent Exotic Catalyst: How To Unlock And Complete The Guardian Games Quest

You can power up your Exotic machine gun with a new catalyst, but you have to earn it during Destiny 2's Guardian Games.


When the Guardian Games kicked off for the first time in Destiny 2 last year, it came with Heir Apparent, an Exotic machine gun that provides you with a protective shield when you fire it. Heir Apparent is available to earn again in the newly launched Guardian Games this year, but if you already have the gun, you can empower it with its new Exotic catalyst.

Triggering the quest to earn the Heir Apparent Exotic catalyst is pretty simple--it's completing it that's going to take some more effort. But in fact, if you're participating in the Guardian Games anyway, the steps don't seem too trying. The trick is the complete them while knocking out other requirements and helping your subclass advance in the Guardian Games ranks. You'll need to rack up machine gun kills, Guardian Games medals, and something called Competitive Spirit, in order to complete the quest. Here's everything you need to know to find the Heir Apparent Exotic catalyst quest and unlock it before the Guardian Games end on May 9.

If you haven't earned Heir Apparent yet, you'll need to complete its associated quest. Once you do that, you'll be eligible to trigger the catalyst quest.

How To Get The Heir Apparent Exotic Catalyst Quest

First and foremost, you're going to need to start earning medals. These are what score you points for your class in the Guardian Games, and while lower-level medals like Bronze and Silver can be earned by completing playlist activities such as Strikes, Crucible matches, and Gambit matches, you'll have to work harder for the better Gold and Platinum medals.

Advance through the opening Guardian Games quests by visiting Zavala and picking up a class item, then completing the quest "The Games Being" and getting the Medal Case from Eva Levante. After that, knock out your first Contender Card to get access to the full slate of Guardian Games bounties and Contender Cards. Completing Nightfall Strike Contender Cards and Trials of Osiris Contender Cards get you Platinum medals, while the rest of the cards for playlist Strikes, Crucible matches, and Gambit matches will earn you Gold medals.

According to Bungie, the Heir Apparent Exotic catalyst quest, "Competitive Catalyst," drops randomly when you turn in Gold or Platinum medals to the Guardian Games podium. In our experience, though, once you have Heir Apparent in your Collections, the catalyst quest drops extremely quickly--like with your very next Gold or Platinum deposit. If you've already got the gun, chances are good you'll get the catalyst quest almost immediately.

If it is dolled out randomly for you, though, you're going to want to start completing Contender Cards in order to trigger the quest. There's no telling how many it'll take to get the catalyst quest to appear, but the drop rate seems fairly high--we got the catalyst quest upon turning in our very first Gold medal.

How To Unlock The Heir Apparent Exotic Catalyst

Once you've got "Competitive Catalyst," you'll have some grinding to do. The quest requires you to participate in the Guardian Games and to start turning in medals to increase your team's score, then to rack up machine gun kills, among other requirements. Here's what you can expect.

Step 1: Earn 50 Guardian Games Points

Turn in medals at the Guardian Games podium in the Tower to unlock the Heir Apparent Exotic catalyst quest, and then to advance it.
Turn in medals at the Guardian Games podium in the Tower to unlock the Heir Apparent Exotic catalyst quest, and then to advance it.

The first portion of the quest has you just participating in the Guardian Games. To do that, you'll want to score points for your chosen subclass, which you can do by earning medals. Medals are rewarded for playlist activity completions, but the best way to get the highest-scoring medals is by completing Eva Levante's Contender Cards. Here's the rundown of how many points you'll earn for each medal:

  • Bronze: 1 Point
  • Silver: 2 Points
  • Gold: 5 Points
  • Platinum: 15 Points

You're notching a total of 50 points, so Platinum medals for completing Nightfalls and playing in the Trials of Osiris will get you there quickest. However, there are several Triumphs associated with the Guardian Games that award medals as well, so you might want to vary your play here a bit to take advantage of them to speed your progress. Points are awarded when you earn the medals, not when you turn them in, so you can knock out the activities quickly.

Step 2: Complete 3 Contender Cards

You can only get one Contender Card at a time, but in the second step, you can do whatever ones you most enjoy to advance.
You can only get one Contender Card at a time, but in the second step, you can do whatever ones you most enjoy to advance.

This step is basically just a continuation of the one you were just working on, but with the stakes lowered a bit. You'll need to knock out any three Contender Cards--and if you were trying to speed your progress through the first step, you'll be familiar with these already. The good news is that you can do quicker cards like Strikes or Crucible matches to knock out this requirement, but note that you can only hold one Contender Card at a time.

Step 3: Earn 90 Competitive Spirit

Use the Medal Case to quickly see what the Daily Focus playlist is.
Use the Medal Case to quickly see what the Daily Focus playlist is.

The third step sounds a bit more nebulous, but it might actually be the easiest and quickest step. You'll need to earn something called "Competitive Spirit," but it'll come very quickly if you follow the instructions on the quest step. Competitive Spirit drops when you rack up precision kills with a machine gun while also playing in the Daily Focus playlist. The Daily Focus switches between Strikes, Crucible matches, and Gambit matches each day--you can tell what's currently on top by checking the Medal Case in the Quests tab.

These precision kills go very quickly, with two Competitive Spirit items dropping for each headshot. It seems like each drop of Competitive Spirit counts for 2% of the total you need to rack up, so you're getting 4% with each kill, and that means you only need about 25 headshots to knock out the objective. This step unlocked for us mid-Strike, and we'd completed it before the Strike ended.

Step 4: Get Kills With Heir Apparent

Heir Apparent's Arc shield gets a significant boost from the Exotic catalyst.
Heir Apparent's Arc shield gets a significant boost from the Exotic catalyst.

Congratulations, you've completed the "Competitive Catalyst" quest. Now that you've got the Exotic catalyst, you have to unlock it. Your final step is just to use Heir Apparent and rack up kills, but you'll need to do so kind of a lot. According to datamines for the catalyst, it requires you to notch some 700 kills with it. A good way to handle that is just to pack it along as you continue through the Guardian Games, but if you want to knock out this step more quickly, head to the Moon and complete a few Altar of Sorrow activities. You may want to equip a Heavy Finisher mod to make sure you can keep ammo in your Heir Apparent, but a few rounds should give you plenty of enemies and make completing this step fairly simple.

What The Heir Apparent Catalyst Does

Heir Apparent's claim to fame is the big Arc shield it gives you when you spin up and fire the gun--much like some of the toucher Cabal enemies. The Heir Apparent catalyst amps up the shield, making it a lot more powerful. What's more, when the shield inevitably shatters as you take damage, the catalyst will reload part of Heir Apparent's magazine, so you can hopefully kill whatever's threatening you.

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