Are you bored of the same old multiplayer modes? Do you think the grind to get into the 'exclusive weapons club' is not paying off? Then, my friend, the Menagerie is for you! Released in Destiny 2's Season of Opulence in 2019, Menagerie is a game mode that throws teams of players through a gauntlet of random challenges made to gain the favour of Emperor Calus and his chosen ones. The point is to farm the Menagerie for Runes to put into your Chalice of Opulence, to unlock new custom armour and weapons.
The Menagerie itself is a series of rooms with a mix of combat and puzzle mechanics that ends in one of three boss fights. The combination of rooms is randomized, and the boss you face is random as well.
How to Unlock The Menagerie
Start by speaking with the Calus robot Benedict 99-40 in The Tower; he’ll give you a quest called Imperial Summons. If he does not give you this quest, then you need to finish the New Light introductory quest. Don’t confuse this quest with the Legend of Acrius or Tribute Hall quests, which look remarkably similar.
When you pick up the quest, you will also receive a Broken Chalice that will appear in your Quests menu. As you progress through the quest, it will slowly repair itself until it is no longer broken. When you finally complete the unlock quest, the Broken Chalice will become the Chalice of Opulence. After you complete the quest for the first time, your other characters can simply get the Chalice from Benedict 99-40 without having to go through the quest.
Before You Step Into The Menagerie
The Menagerie on normal mode consists of a randomized series of encounters that begin at Power Level 700 and gradually increase to 740. If you haven’t met a room’s victory condition when the timer runs out, you’ll continue on to another activity until you fill the Menagerie meter and can proceed to the boss fight. It’s impossible to fail while you’re on Normal mode. Each day, there’s a new set of modifiers active in The Menagerie that change gameplay.
For encounters with Hive Swords, a combo of light-light-heavy attacks will do the most damage. Additionally, there are 5 Lore Collectibles hidden inside The Menagerie. The other pages of the book are spread around the Tribute Hall and the Crown of Sorrow Raid. The Menagerie has two general Triumphs:
- Complete each encounter with time left on the clock (Referred below under 'Rooms')
- Defeat each boss once (Referred below under 'Bosses')
Every Menagerie run will begin with this task; think of it like the torch lighting at the beginning of the Olympic Games. Enemies will continuously spawn in the room; kill them to summon the room’s bosses. When you kill a boss, it will drop orbs of light that can be used to ignite the room’s six lamps. Killing three bosses will give you enough orbs to complete the task and move on to the next room.
Triumph: Only light one lamp per player.
This room is a bit more complex. Your team has to step on marked plates to charge them; they charge faster when multiple players stand on them. Charging the plates will summon enemies signposted as Knights – killing them will fill your Menagerie meter. There are five plates in total: one in each cardinal direction and one in the centre. Two plates will pop up at a time, so make sure that your team is spread out across the room so that they can get to all of them. Careful, though, moving between the plates will prompt Thralls and Cursed Thralls to attack you, so make sure you deal with them as fast as possible.
This is one of the most complicated and frustrating areas in The Menagerie; it requires strategy as well as firepower. There are only three safe zones here, called Havens. If you are outside of them, you’ll start taking damage that can be lethal over time. Don’t relax just yet though – these safe zones are going to deplete over time. Your team must kill Wizards in order to get the energy orbs that they drop to power your Havens. While you’re struggling to maintain your safe zones, bosses will spawn throughout the room. The trick with this room is to make sure that your team pays equal attention to filling up the safe zones and killing bosses. Once you’ve killed two bosses, you can proceed to the next room.
Triumph: Keep all three Havens intact and kill the Ogre bosses.
In this room, your team has to hunt down and kill Vex Harpies; upon death, they’ll drop items called Vex Craniums. These items are the only things that can destroy crystals that are scattered around the room. They pack a punch, but they only have a few uses, so give them to your team’s best sharpshooter. There are three waves of Vex Harpies and each wave has its own boss. The key to success here is to kill the boss as soon as they spawn or they'll cause a ruckus.
This room runs in cycles; it starts with your team gathering charges from three green pillars scattered around the room. Each player can collect up to three charges at a time. Once they have them, they need to deposit them in receptacles that are marked with a grey square. Once your team has finished one round of this, a boss will spawn, and your team has to deal with it before they can repeat the process of collecting charges. Do this three times, and you can move on to your next room.
Unlike all the other Menagerie rooms, this one begins with the boss fight. Once you defeat it, your team will teleport to a room that, for all intents and purposes, is an Olympic sprinting track. You can probably figure out what your task is from here – run as fast as you can through all of the various green checkpoints until the race ends.
At least one member of your team must complete all of the laps in order for you to progress to the next room. For added terror, the Gauntlet inflicts various debuffs on the team as you make your way through the laps; this includes one that counts down towards your death until you pass a checkpoint. Also make sure that you’re avoiding obvious traps like pitfalls and fire jets; essentially, everything that isn’t a checkpoint is lethal. As icing on this cake, finishing each lap will give surviving players a power upgrade, but also spawns a boss that you must defeat before you can keep going.
Triumph: All six players complete a lap.
Triumph: All six players complete every lap.
This room is blessedly simple compared to its brothers; it’s a simple slice and dice. Enemies in this room are Hive Knights and Thralls. Ideally, your team should focus on the Knights first, because when you kill them, they’ll drop their swords. Team members can then use these swords against other Knights to inflict more damage and kill them faster. Make sure that some of your team sticks with other types of weapons to deal with the Thralls and keep distractions away from the sword-wielding players. Once you kill enough enemies, a boss will spawn. Kill it to leave the room.
Hasapiko, the Minotaur
Hasapiko is the first final boss that was released for The Menagerie; he’s one of Emperor Calus’ underlings. He’s hidden behind a big shield, so you have to deplete that before you can damage him directly. To weaken the shield, players should focus on killing Harpies that spawn throughout the boss fight. When they die, they trigger an AOE of goop; anyone standing in this pool can hit Hasapiko’s shield and weaken it. Split the room into three sections and spread your team out among them for maximum coverage.
When he’s lost his shield, Hasapiko will start intermittently firing large laser beams that will kill you instantly if they hit you, so stay sharp while you drain his health bar.
Triumph: One player per Harpy Pool.
Arunak, the Ogre
This second boss is thematically similar to Hasapiko, and thus his boss mechanics are almost exactly the same. Arunak also hides behind a huge shield; this time, you need relics dropped by Cursed Thralls to damage it. Once the shield is depleted, you can damage Arunak directly to drain his health bar and defeat him. He will spawn Knights at certain health checkpoints throughout the fight, so stay alert and be prepared for those in between fighting Arunak himself. If you happen to own the Forsaken expansion, Arunak will drop the Scrap of Paper quest for you; this quest will lead you to the Exotic rocket launcher, Truth.
Triumph: Don’t kill the knights.
Pagouri, the Hydra
Pagouri is the most difficult of the three bosses; killing him will require the use of all the mechanics that your team practised while in The Hunted room. Pagouri is shielded by a force field that you must intercept with light. You generate this light by standing on one of the three marked plates in the room. Spread your team out amongst them for maximum efficiency. Of course, it’s not that easy – enemies will spawn throughout to try and stop your progress. You must keep killing the Minotaurs to ensure that the light keeps rising to boot Pagouri out from behind his shield. When you can damage him, focus your fire on Pagouri, but don’t forget to watch your back – Vex enemies will start spawning during this phase of the fight, and they are lethal if they reach you.
Triumph: Lure the boss to each plate only once.
Congratulations! You’ve finished The Menagerie! Farm this area for Runes and enjoy your awesome weapons!
The Heroic Menagerie
As with most missions in Destiny 2, The Menagerie also comes with Heroic Mode, which you can toggle to on the launch page. This mode is markedly different from The Menagerie on Normal mode. For starters, there is no matchmaking for teams. The set modifiers only change once a week, and there is always an Extinguish modifier in effect. The power level starts at 750 and will increase to 770.
Additionally, the encounters run in a set order, rather than being randomized like they are in Normal. If you don’t successfully complete the Menagerie by the time you run out of encounters to play, your team is ejected, and you must restart your run.
A variety of Triumphs are only available in Heroic mode; you must achieve some of these if you want to earn the Shadow title. Triumphs are as follows:
- Complete the Menagerie on Heroic mode with a Fireteam of three or fewer players
- Complete the Menagerie on Heroic Mode with time left on the clock
- Defeat each Menagerie boss with no Fireteam deaths
The Heroic mode has its fair share of the loot, too. A class-specific sword is guaranteed to drop on your first completion in Heroic mode and has a 25% drop chance on completions after that. Owners of the Exotic sniper rifle Izanagi’s Burden will also find that its Catalyst is a guaranteed drop when you complete the Menagerie on Heroic Mode for the first time.
How to Use Your Chalice of Opulence
Once you’ve repaired the Chalice of Opulence to its full glory, you can start using it in The Menagerie. You insert Runes into it to determine the item that you receive from the chest at the end of the Menagerie gauntlet. Runes are consumed upon use. To unlock more Runes, you have to upgrade your Chalice with a currency called Imperials. All of the Runes have an equal chance of dropping once you unlock them.
Different combinations of Runes will result in different items and can be acquired in three ways:
- Using the Runefinder consumable sold by the Calus robots, Benedict and Werner
- Completing weekly bounties also given to you by the Calus robots
- Opening weekly chests on the Nessus barge by spending glimmer
Imperials can be acquired in five ways:
- Using the Wealth of the Emperor consumable sold by the Calus robots (there are a limited number of these available per week)
- Completing Menagerie Triumphs
- Completing weekly bounties from the Calus robots
- Opening weekly chests on the Nessus barge by spending glimmer
- Strikes, crucible, and gambit match completions after purchasing the Power and Efficiency 2 upgrade; this is why its recommended to get this upgrade as early as possible
There are 11 total upgrades available for the Chalice; once you’ve purchased all of them, it becomes "Perfected" and has a gold border. All activities that would have previously dropped Imperials will now drop Runes once your Chalice is complete.