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The Golden Legion are a Cabal detachment and legion that act as the direct force of the Cabal Praetorate. Their commander, Zor, the former leader of the Cabal Praetorate long before the reign of Calus, who sought to use the legion to conquer the entire universe in his name. But, when Calus purged the Praetorate, the legion would splinter and disband. Now, their leaders seek to rise to their former glory by banding together, in order to bring their Praetorian emissaries, statesmen and loyalists to their cause to reforge the Golden Legion back to its former glory.
In the aftermath of the Red War, the Golden Legion would continue to rise to its former glory with Zor at its head. With the dismantling of the Red Legion, its many deserters would flock to Zor's legion as a means to prove themselves as worthy legionnaires of the Golden Empire. Even with the arrival of Empress Caiatl and her Imperial Cabal, and Calus with his Shadow Legion, the Golden Legion would continue to endure the harsh treatment brought upon them by the return of the Black Fleet and the Witness.
Being one of the oldest living Cabal Legions, the Golden Legion had predated Calus's regime by many centuries. It had been formed by a Cabal legend by the name of Emperor Zoraeleus, one of Emperor Zor's ancestors, to be his personal army and the will of the Praetorate, thus the Cabal Empire.
While a majority of its history had been scrubbed from the Cabal's ancient history, it would be recorded within the legion's data stores. They had been mentioned to have conquered and/or destroyed thousands of planets under what they called the "Golden Fleet" and its munitions. Many of the worlds that were conquered were enslaved and many of those who disobeyed suffered a similar fate like those brought by the Red Legion centuries later.
Years preceding Calus' innaugertagion as Emperor, Zor would lay claim to the control of the Golden Legion. He would use it to enforce the will of the Praetorate upon the Cabal Empire and to inspire discipline and fear. He would eventually use them to construct the Leviathan as a means to careen the ossifying body of the Cabal Empress to ensure that the control of the Cabal Empire's military would forever lay within the Praetorate's hands.
Reign of the Emperor
Due to the corrupt will of the Cabal Praetorate and their Legion, the people staged an uprising in the form of Emperor Calus and his Loyalist regime. Much of the Golden Legion was forced to disband or went into hiding, in Zor's case who had managed to survive a manhunt and the death of the Cabal Council. Zor and his remaining emissaries would hide in the shadows, corrupting Calus's own court from the inside. Many of whom were reluctant to join Zor's cause to reform the Golden Legion as Calus's own greed had seemingly surpassed that of Zor's previous reign in the Cabal Praetorate.
Zor would also help the Consul in raising the youthful and albino-born Ghaul in order to become the war machine to start the chain of events that would lead to the end of Emperor Calus. Eventually his emissaries of revenge varied from Calus's own bodyguard Lictor Shayotet the Psion Freeborn Otzot, chief of festivities Aedile Moli Imoli, commander of all legions Umun'arath, the imperial tea seller Iska'al and Calus's own daughter Caiatl.
Rise of a Dominus
The Legion would begin to conspire against Calus through the Consul and Zor, turning many of those that were close to the Emperor against him. They would also tempt an albino orphan in order to become a vehicle to stage a coup against Calus in his court. They managed to lead a successful coup but were unable to kill Calus due to his popularity and instead exiled him and numerous Loyalists aboard the Leviathan prison ship on a course to the outer regions of the Empire.
Instead of reinstating the Cabal Praetorate to their original glory, the albino child Ghaul titled himself as Dominus of the Cabal Empire and proclaimed that there would be no emperors. This in fact infuriated the Cabal Praetorate and their leader, Zor, who attempted to battle him but Ghaul proved to be more strong willed than him and the Cabal Council. With Ghaul's new empire growing to become superior than that of Calus,' the Golden Legion and its traditions fell into obscurity, their fleets torn down to make way for a new line of frigates, built for quick and swift combat against the enemies of the empire.
Believed to have arrived after the death of Ghaul, remnants of the Scout Legions of Zor's Empire infiltrated the ranks of the Cabal Skyburners. Valus Pae'gor being one of the more prominent commanders within their ranks as one of their Valuses along with a Psion Flayer by the name of Erkos. They relayed information from the Sol Scout Legions to the Cabal Praetorate of the construction of Cabal fortresses on Io, Nessus, Mercury, Mars and Phobos and their studies of the other races within the Solar System.
Pae'gor and his troops were ordered to infiltrate the Reef by hollowing out an asteroid by the designated name 3 Juno, eventually turning it into a mobile fortress and fleet manufacturing depot dubbed Lex Aternia. After the death of Primus Ta'aun during the Taken War, Pae'gor would become the new Primus for the Skyburners, taking command of its forces prior to the Red War.
War in Red
Two years after the Taken War, the Cabal's Red Legion arrived in the Solar System to respond to the distress call of the Skyburners which led to a successful surprise attack on the Last City. The Golden Legion forces accompanied Ghaul's fleet while Zor and his chosen managed to set up a base within one of the Last City's old temples. After the full occupation of the Last City, Zor and his accomplices conversed with each other and how they could manipulate Ghaul to their favor and bring the Praetorate to their former glory.
After the Red Legion's numerous defeats during the onset of the Red War, and the later deactivation of the Almighty, Zor himself boarded Ghaul’s command ship to inform the Consul about the recent events. Moments later, Zor noticed Ghaul walking out of his Throneroom without the Consul, and wanting to investigate, he found the corpse of his old friend and the Speaker lying on the floor of the room. Horrified, Zor commanded his troops to leave the Last City and their support fleet, equally demoralizing security and leaving an opening for the Guardians to breach into the Last City.
Days later, the Praetorate would get the news of the Dominus's death, most cheered over his death as it led and opening for them, all apart from their prodigy Val of the Red Legion, Ca'uor. He wanted the Red Legion to "pillage the spoils of the system" while the Praetorate wanted to reform the empire to their favor, and much like Ghaul before him, he overpowered their rule and ordered the Red Legion to invade Mercury and Mars for their resources. After the Ca'uor's Red Legion failed to secure Vex and Clovis Bray tech, Zor held a slight belief and new plan, later bequeathed an idea to Ca'uor to invade the Leviathan to claimed it for themselves.
While the attack led to an utter failure by the death of Ca'uor and the destruction of a majority of his fleet, Zor claimed that there was no one left to take control over the Empire, seeing himself as the last remaining candidate. Around the same time, the Legion would make make contact and reconnect with the disgraced Armsdealer, Bracus Darach, who was exiled due to one of his past failures to destroy a Hive fleet. While they ignored the fact that he was exiled, he was tasked with developing the Scorch Project, which acted as a combination of a Cabal Scorpius and their mighty Goliath Tanks.
The Black Armory/The Golden Empire
Months after the death of the Kell's Scourge, the Golden Legion began to steal the information and technology of the Black Armory from their remnants, they had managed to complete their Blight containment project with Bank Replicas. They would employ the former Flayer of Skyburners, Erkos, who would be reinstated into the Golden Legion as the head of their Blight tech research. Unbeknownst to the rest of the legion, Erkos' research would lead to an even greater danger than what they could foresee.
The legion would turn their eyes towards the Martian surface, the deserted plains of the Tangled Shore, and the ancient ruins of Io. On Mars they took up shop by erecting an enormous fortress called Warbase Ares and what was described by Archborn Qodan as, "It defies the very laws of nature itself." In the Tangled Shore they managed to sneak their way into Diaviks Mine in order to make a foothold and steal whatever they could find through the use of "Hoarder Legionaries." On Io they began a major excavation project in order to siphon the Blight infecting the planet from Terrabase Charon in order to fill their Replica Banks.
Following their construction of Ares, Erkos would become one of the Taken and eventually lead an assault on the Martian base. Although the Golden Legion repelled as many Taken as the could, they were quickly overwhelmed by Taken Ascendants and were forced to abandon Warbase Ares which allowed the Taken to tear into the surface of Mars once again. As it turned out, Zor kept a hold of an ancient Hive artifact from his Praetorian Era that allowed Erkos to infiltrate the base's central spire. Since the assault, the strange artifact began to whisper to Zor, driving out whatever sanity was within him out.
Some time following the Lunar Incursion, the Golden Legion founded the Psion High Council, but had inevitably unearthed a second. What was once known to the Red Legion as the Architects who had infiltrated the Vex's Infinite Forest and found Osiris's Sundial in order to use the Undying Mind's death loop to change the outcome of the Red War.
However instead of joining the Legion, the Architects begrudgingly denied any alliance as they would not follow a Cabal as their leader instead of a High Psion. Archborn Qodan was intrigued with their quest for a Psion controlled empire and their usage of the Sundial. Curious with their progress, Qodan himself managed to infiltrate their ranks, along with a crew of his own assigned Time Wardens, in order to study and learn from the Sundial itself to understand the machinations of the Vex Infinite Forest.
Weeks would pass as the progress of the Psion Triumvirate would slow and the numbers of controlled simulations shrunk, Qodan managed to forge a device known as the Janus Key, that allows access to nearly any form of technology and open up Vex gates that would grant him intergalactic travel in a mere moment. However, he unexpectedly found a simulation of a dark future ruled by the Cabal but no Psions or Cabal in sight, only their legacy. Qodan would of course show Zor the dark future, intrigued, he ordered Qodan to understand what had caused the probability to exist, in which the Archborn kindly accepted.
Upon the defeat of the Architects and elimination of their various controlled simulations, the surviving sister, Amtec and the former Valus of the Golden Legion, Hor'uruk managed to claim control over the Almighty. In a bid of revenge, they ordered the destruction of the navigation and propulsion systems of the Almighty and send it plummeting towards the Last City. As an argument broke out through communications between Zor and Hor'uruk, the former Valus would be dubbed a traitor to the empire.
A few weeks had passed since the plan had been enacted, soon Phaelus the son of Zor and his support fleet had arrived in the Solar System and quickly ascended into his proper place as Zor's heir. Phaelus would act as an emissary to Caiatl, the true heir to the Cabal Empire. Displeased, Zor would condemn Caiatl from tampering with his plans to reclaim the Empire under his new Praetorian regime, beginning the first major skirmish within the Golden Legion's ranks.
Before the Almighty reached the perimeters of the Last City, the Golden Legion troops stationed on Earth managed to obtain energy generated by the Seraph Towers and fragments of the technology in order to produce a Seraph powered bodysuit to make Seraph Centurions. Upon the failed kamikaze plan to destroy the Last City, leaving the Almighty in cinders and ash, the Golden Legion went straight to work with scavenging whatever tech remained of it. They would use this opportunity to grow from this mistake by dismantling what remained of the Almighty and taking its spare parts to Lex Aternia.
The Golden Legion would also start their first major offensive against the Vex located within a Citadel on Nessus. The Spire presumably held ancient world destroying tech manufactured by the Vex. This alerted Primus Tlor who along with his ship and detachment to invade the Spire which in turn would provoke the Vex and Guardians alike. The Guardians would infiltrate the bowels of the Nessus Citadel and ascend to its summit, ending Tlor and his commandants along the way, and use his ship to destroy the Spire, ensuring that the Cabal wouldn't attempt to steal the dangerous tech located within again.
A Dark Future
With the return of the Black Fleet in Sol, the Legion would be brought into further disarray. Extraction teams were sent to Io in order to claim power from the Pyramid Scales as they began to corrupt the various planets that their corresponding Pyramids were stationed on. In the process of obtaining power from the Scales, they would begin to follow the temptations to go to Europa and understand the power the Black Fleet had promised. Prior to the disappearance of the various planets, Golden Legion forces would eventually pull out of Mercury, Mars and Io all together.
Call to Europa
During the events of Beyond Light, the Golden Legion would send their forces to Europa to find the dark power that was promised to them and to locate the Deep Stone Crypt hidden on the Jovian moon. In his studies on Europa, Archbon Qodan managed to identify the newfound power and eventually become the first Stasis wielding Psion Flayer within the Cabal Empire.
Inauguration of Caiatl
With the arrival of Caiatl on the horizon, Phaelus gave the order to support the citizen fleet upon its arrival into the Solar Systems and would devote all of his end of Golden Legion's resources to Caiatl in restructuring the Cabal Empire. The Golden Legion would however face several issues, they found that various emissaries of the Red Legion and Cabal deserters were wanting to join Caiatl's War Council. Phaelus was however against the recruitment of traitors after learning how the each of the four imperial emissaries, Commander Dracus, Basilius, Val Ma'rag and Ixel turned against their high command to seek their own goals. Caiatl would remind Phaelus that the Golden Legion were no different as they had turned against Zor's original plans for the Golden Legion and had merged it with Caiatl's forces.
Following the armistice between the Cabal and Humanity, a Psion rebellion would arise under the command of Yirix. They would stage a failed assassination attempt against Commander Zavala and in return, Caiatl ordered the elite forces of the Golden Legion to hunt down any traitors who were in league with Yirix and her rebellion. Unbeknownst to the newly founded Imperial Cabal, Zor and the Golden Legion were in league with the Psions and assisted them with obtaining the Traveler Cage technology used on Zavala's Ghost, Targe.
Breach of Protocol
Several months following the armistice against Humanity, forces of the Golden Legion began to waver control over their fortresses across Sol as they had been forced to evacuate from Earth due to the acts within the armistice that the Cabal were not allowed to step foot on Earth again. However, out of the midst, rumors began to spread that Emperor Zor had enacted the Zorelean Stratagem, an ancient protocol which would allow the Cabal Praetorate to take control of the Empire from the currently leading hierarch of the Cabal.
During the events of the Lucent War, Zor had inspired Valus Dralgur, the Exiled, to abandon the Imperial Cabal and to raid the Europan Pyramid. However Dralgur's efforts, along with an Imperial Deserter under his command, failed to plunder the Pyramid as they along with their forces were slaughtered by the Guardian.
The Legion's actions against the Black Fleet wouldn't come without consequences by the end of the Lucent War as the Psion Enclave would break away from their ranks to join Calus in his ascension as a Disciple of the Witness. Zor would become infuriated to the point of placing great bounties on the Enclave and their conspiracy to work with Calus.
The bounties placed on the conspiracy would be unnoticed by the time of the Witness's arrival to inner Sol. While humanity continued the fight against the Witness and the Shadow Legion across Earth and Neptune, the Golden Legion would find a temporary alliance with humanity to fend off the Shadow Cabal and to stop them from claiming Golden Legion territory in the EDZ.
The alliance would crumble by the end of the Invasion of Earth in which the Golden Legion continued their war against humanity and to keep their territory to themselves.
The Golden War
The Golden Legion would seemingly disappear throughout the year following the Invasion of Earth, only to reappear after the ritual to banish Xivu Arath from her Throne World, with great force. The Golden Fleet, headed by their flagship, the Aetas Imperium, would lay siege to the Reef. This was seen as an extreme action by the likes of the Imperial Cabal, however they held greater intentions other than to claim the Reef.
The Legion would construct many barricades outside of the Dreaming City's borders to keep their new rivals, the Weavers of Sorrow, from escaping the Dreaming City and to destroy them by collapsing the Awoken's haven. The Guardian, seeking to make the Last Wish to the Ahamkara Riven, would get word of the Legion's plan to collapse the Dreaming City, thus, starting the events of the Golden War.
The Guardian would infiltrate the Legion's bunkers and kill the invading Cabal by destroying their barricades and killing their various commanders. Zor would openly speak to his Legion and warn the Guardians that destroying the Dreaming City was he only option to defeat the Weavers and end the torment they have brought through Corruption. His words would fall onto deaf ears as the Guardian's last infiltration would lead to the Aetas Imperium to crash into the Reef and temporarily putting it out of commission. Zor and his legion would be forced out of the Reef in an act of defiance against the Guardians, claiming that they will meet again, but with his blade embedded into the Guardian's Ghost.
Even with their forces defeated, Golden Legion forces would manage to infiltrate the Dreaming City in an act to plunder its many secrets and reliquaries for themselves.
Dune Raider's Call
Sometime after the defeat of the Witness in the Pale Heart, members of the Golden Legion would manage to find themselves on the moon of Uranus, Titania. Their forces would compete in the Initiation Ring, fighting against the Dune Raiders. Whether or not they were attempting to desert or to prove themselves to Zor by pillaging the Lost Sector is left unknown.
Golden Legion troops can be primarily identified by their signature white, beige and gold color scheme, with some troops having more gold, white, or dark silver highlights depending upon their rank. They wear similar full body armor suits of Scout Legions that came before them, likely due to their control over the Cabal Skyburners, while high-ranking officials wear a mix between Scout Legion and Red Legion armor. The command structure and tactics of the Golden Legion are similar in aspect to the Red Legion, with Primuses, Valuses and Vals commanding the legion, and using deadlier weapons, advanced technology, and battle techniques compared to previous legions.
The Praetor Guard is an elite unit of the Golden Legion. They function similarly to the Blood Guard of the Red Legion and Shadow Guard of the later seen Shadow Legion, where they often serve as commanders of operations and can also be found serving as bodyguards to high-ranking Cabal officers. They can be identified by their heavy, dark silver armor, which often features prominent horsehair-like crests. The Praetor Guard has members filling the roles of Legionnaires, Incendiors, and Centurions, and are frequently seen serving as an Honor Guard and around Golden Legion Hardpoints or points of interest. It is stated that the Praetor Guard act as personal enforcers of Emperor Zor. A possible subdivision of the Praetor Guard exist, that being the Praetorian Guard, elite Gladiator guardsmen that are commonly seen protecting members of the Golden Legion High Command.
- High Command
- Emperor Zor — (Imperial Emperor of the Golden Legion)
- Archborn Qodan — (Imperial scientist of the Golden Legion)
- Advisor Anlac — (Advisor of the Golden Legion)
- Advisor Rûn — (Advisor of the Golden Legion)
- Councilor Bial — (Psion Councilor of the Golden Legion)
- Councilor Shar — (Psion Councilor of the Golden Legion)
- Councilor Tov — (Psion Councilor of the Golden Legion)
- Councilor Vadar — (Psion Councilor of the Golden Legion)
- Zor's War Council
- Primus Prime Ar'cruun — (Primus of the Golden Legion and its subsidiaries)
- Primus Pae'gor — (Primus of the Skyburners Fracture)
- Primus Tlor — (Primus of the Nessus Fracture) (DECEASED)
- Imperial Valus Noratl — (Valus of the Europan Fracture)
- Valus Shiloh — (Valus of the Nessus Fracture)
- Khavaz, Praetorian Guard — (Praetorian Guard)
- Nua'aurn, Praetorian Guard — (Praetorian Guard)
- Vua'aun, Praetorian Guard — (Praetorian Guard)
- The Golden Legion is one of if not the largest legion to ever enter into Sol.
- This may be due to the fact that fractions of the Red Legion were a part of the Golden Legion.
- The Legion is by far the oldest to ever be encountered by the Guardians, predating Calus's Loyalists and the Red Legion.
- The Golden Legion would be the first Cabal Legion in Destiny 2 to have Psions and Centurions with sealed helmets.
- This trend would eventually be carried on with Calus' Shadow Legion.
List of appearances
- Destiny 2 (First appearance)
- Curse of Osiris
- Season of the Forge
- Season of the Drifter (Mentioned only)
- Season of Opulence (Mentioned only)
- Season of Dawn (Mentioned only)
- Season of the Worthy
- Season of Arrivals
- Beyond Light (Mentioned only)
- Season of the Chosen
- Season of the Risen (Mentioned only)
- Season of the Haunted
- Season of Defiance
- Season of the Wish