Engram

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Example of an Engram. In this case, the golden color indicates it is Exotic.

"The unique datastatic structure of relic crystals inspired Doctor Willa Bray to develop the first engram matter-encryption techniques during the Golden Age."
Ghost[1]

Engrams are crystals[2] that are encoded with the patterns of armor, weaponry and other items. There are five basic types of Engrams: Encoded, Encrypted, Decoherent, Legendary, and Exotic.[3]

History[edit]

Engrams are a unique, "pure" state of matter,[4] the form solid matter takes when physically encrypted. First successfully generated by Willa Bray, Clovis Bray proceeded to head the field of engram research and application.

Engrams were often used to store information, such as manuscripts or research. They were known to degrade over time. Engrams dating from the Golden Age were normally mostly illegible.[5][6]

One of the most significant applications of engrams is for computing. By the end of the 21st century, computer engineers had reached the physical limits of transistor-based computing, unable to overcome quantum incoherence at the nanoscopic level. This halted research for some time. However, engram encryption allowed quantum incoherence to be bypassed: transistors encoded into engrams could store exponentially more information in a smaller space. The discovery of engrammic computation, one of Clovis Bray's last developments before the Collapse, led to a vast leap in human processing power.

Overview[edit]

Encoded Engrams are sold by the Cryptarch, and are coded with the patterns of known items, such as a particular section of armor or class of weaponry. Once purchased by the player, the engram is converted into a random example of that item by the Cryptarch.[3] While decoding an engram will generate a random item, it's still possible to know the type of item that will be discovered. Each Engram will indicate whether the item is armor, a primary weapon, a special weapon, a heavy weapon, or an item shaped like the Engram. The quality of the item is also identified, as Engrams use the same color coding as weapons and armor: White for Basic, green for Uncommon, blue for Rare, purple for Legendary, gold for Exotic.[7]

Encrypted engrams are defined in-game as having "unusual properties". These must also be taken to the Tower where the Cryptarch will convert them if (in certain cases) only after he has attained the necessary Rank. The Cryptarch is also known to have these rarer Engrams for sale from time to time, which are more common if his skill is higher.[8][3]

Engrams are also found as loot, and appear as colored crystals on the ground (white for Encoded, green for Encrypted, blue for Decoherent, purple for Legendary, yellow for Exotic). Enemies may drop them randomly, or they may be picked up from boss encounters or inside chests. Any engrams that the player hasn't picked up may show up in the Postmaster's office.

Finally, there are also occasions where Guardians may encounter Engram-like objects; Araskes, the Trickster notably disguised explosives as Exotic Engrams, and the Grasp of Avarice is filled with both unstable Exotic Engrams and what appear to be "discharged" or "inert" crystals that resemble Engrams in shape but have a dull purple-ish coloration.

Decoding Engrams[edit]

Engrams have a chance of being decoded into an item that is higher or the same quality as the Engram itself. That item will almost always correspond to the type of Engram it comes from; the exception to this is that sometimes a Rare Engram will decode into a Mote of Light or Strange Coin instead. Also, certain items will never be decoded from an engram and can only be acquired a certain way; this applies to any item acquired through a Raid, Exotic Bounty, the Iron Banner, Trials of Osiris, or as a reward for a Story mission.

There are nine Weapon Engrams, seven Armor Engrams, and three Class Engrams. Each is marked with a weapon or armor piece symbol to indicate what type of gear it is (Shotgun, Auto Rifle, Machine Gun, etcetera).

Umbral Engrams[edit]

Introduced during Season of Arrivals and returning in Season of the Chosen and every subsequent season for Destiny 2, Umbral Engrams are a less common variant of Legendary Engram which can be "focused" into dropping more specific kinds of loot, such as one of two short range weapons, seasonal armor with a specific high stat, and so on; this typically requires additional investment of seasonal resources and/or appropriate Triumph unlocks, which can also grant additional benefits such as a chance for decrypted weapons to have an additional selectable perk in their third and/or fourth columns.

Focusing occurs at the H.E.L.M., whilst unfocused Umbral Engrams can be decrypted as-is at Master Rahool in the Tower if no specific reward is desired.

With the launch of Lightfall and Season of Defiance, Umbral Engrams have been retired, with Vendor Engrams replacing their functionality for seasonal vendors.

Engram types[edit]

Destiny[edit]

Engram Type Color Item Quality Cryptarch Rep Availability
Encoded White Common +5 Random drops until level 15, purchase from Cryptarch.
Encrypted Green Uncommon +10 Random drops, purchase from Cryptarch; automatically decoded after level 15. As of the January 2017 update, Uncommon Engrams automatically decrypt into either Weapon Parts or Armor Materials if the player is above a level where they would otherwise be useful.
Decoherent Blue Rare +75 Random drops after Level 15, Story mission rewards, faction rank-up rewards; use to drop Glass Shards.
Legendary Purple Legendary +150 Random drops after Level 15, purchase from Cryptarch, faction rank-up rewards; can acquire Ascendant Energy or Ascendant Shards.
Sublime Purple Legendary +150 Random drops on PlayStation only; contain PlayStation-exclusive Armor pieces.
Exotic Yellow Exotic +300 Purchase from Xûr, Agent of the Nine for nineteen Strange Coins each to acquire Year 2 Exotic Armor.[9]
Legacy Yellow Exotic +300 Purchase from Xûr, Agent of the Nine for 31 Strange Coins each to acquire Year 1 Exotic Weapons.
Deceptive Green Exotic +300 A green-painted Exotic Engram given as a gift by Master Rahool during the Veteran's Tour Quest for players who qualified for the Founder's Fortune Pack; contains a random Year 1 Exotic Weapon.
Iron Purple Legendary N/A Purchase from Lord Saladin to acquire Year One or Year Two Iron Banner Armor.
Dusty Purple Legendary N/A Purchase from Lord Saladin for five Silver Dust to acquire a Year Three Iron Banner Armor piece.

Destiny 2[edit]

Engram Type Color Item Quality Availability
Encoded White Common Randomly dropped until about level 10, automatically decrypted. No longer available.
Encrypted Green Uncommon Randomly dropped after level 5 until about level 15, automatically decrypted. No longer available.
Decoherent Blue Rare Random drops after level 10 (automatically decrypted) and mission rewards (requires decryption). Always automatically decrypted as of the Shadowkeep expansion. No longer available after reaching the soft cap as of the Season of the Seraph.
Legendary Purple Legendary Random drops after reaching the soft cap. Automatically decrypted upon collection, but encrypted at postmaster. Always automatically decrypted as of the Shadowkeep expansion.
Exotic Yellow Exotic Random drops from defeating powerful combatants. Always automatically decrypted as of the Shadowkeep expansion until the Season of the Deep, after which can be decrypted or focused at Rahool for Exotic armor pieces from various expansion cycles. Precision focusing require Exotic Ciphers.
EDZ Purple Legendary Turn in EDZ Tokens and Dusklight Shards to Devrim Kay. No longer available as of the Season of the Seraph.
Arcology Purple Legendary Turn in Arcology Tokens and Alkane Dusts to Sloane. No longer available as of the Beyond Light expansion.
Nessus Purple Legendary Turn in Nessus Tokens and Microphasic Datalattices to Failsafe. No longer available as of the Season of the Seraph.
Io Purple Legendary Turn in Io Tokens and Phaseglass Needles to Asher Mir. No longer available as of the Beyond Light expansion
Lighthouse Purple Legendary Turn in Mercury Tokens and Simulation Seeds to Brother Vance. No longer available as of the Beyond Light expansion.
Cradle Purple Legendary Turn in Mars Tokens and Seraphite to Ana Bray. No longer available as of the Beyond Light expansion.
Crucible Purple Legendary Complete Crucible matches and challenges to earn Crucible Tokens for Lord Shaxx. No longer available as of the Season of the Chosen, instead replaced by Crucible Engrams.
Gunsmith Purple Legendary Turn in Gunsmith Materials and Weapon Telemetry to Arcite 99-40 or Banshee-44. No longer available as of The Witch Queen expansion.
Vanguard Research Purple Legendary Complete Meditations (Story mission replays) to earn Vanguard Research Tokens for Ikora Rey. No longer available.
Vanguard Tactician Purple Legendary Complete Strikes and challenges to earn Vanguard Tactician Tokens for Commander Zavala. No longer available as of the Season of the Lost, instead replaced by Vanguard Engrams.
Imperial Purple Legendary Complete the Leviathan Raid and its challenges to earn Emperor Calus Tokens for Benedict 99-40. No longer available as of the Beyond Light expansion.
Trials Purple Legendary Complete Trials of the Nine matches to earn Trials of the Nine Tokens for The Emissary. Retired with Trials of the Nine.
Iron Purple Legendary Complete Iron Banner matches to earn Iron Banner Tokens for Lord Saladin. No longer available as of the Season of the Haunted, instead replaced by Iron Banner Engrams.
Dead Orbit Purple Legendary Align with Dead Orbit during Faction Rallies to earn Dead Orbit Tokens for Arach Jalaal. Retired with Faction Rallies.
FWC Purple Legendary Align with Future War Cult during Faction Rallies to earn FWC Tokens for Lakshmi-2. Retired with Faction Rallies.
New Monarchy Purple Legendary Align with New Monarchy during Faction Rallies to earn New Monarchy Tokens for Executor Hideo. Retired with Faction Rallies.
Luminous Purple Legendary or Exotic Complete weekly milestones: Flashpoint, Call to Arms, Nightfall, Prestige Nightfall, and Clan XP Contribution. Only be available during Curse of Osiris, now retired.
Bright White Rare, Legendary or Exotic Received upon leveling up after reaching the level 20 cap, or purchased from Tess Everis. Requires decryption at Eververse. The Red War only.
Illuminated White Rare, Legendary or Exotic Received upon leveling up after reaching the level 25 cap, or purchased from Tess Everis. Requires decryption at Eververse. Curse of Osiris only.
Prototype White Rare, Legendary or Exotic Received upon leveling up after reaching the level 30 cap, or purchased from Tess Everis. Requires decryption at Eververse. Warmind only.
Steadfast White Rare, Legendary or Exotic Received upon leveling up after reaching the level 50 cap, or purchased from Tess Everis. Requires decryption at Eververse. Season of the Outlaw only.
Etched Black Rare, Legendary, or Exotic Received upon leveling up after reaching the level 50 cap, or purchased from Tess Everis. Requires decryption at Eververse. Season of the Forge only.
Notorious Green Rare, Legendary, or Exotic Received upon leveling up after reaching the level 50 cap, or purchased from Tess Everis. Requires decryption at Eververse. Season of the Drifter only.
Best of Year One Rainbow Rare, Legendary, or Exotic Received upon leveling up after reaching the level 50 cap, or purchased from Tess Everis. Requires decryption at Eververse. Season of Opulence only.
Nostalgic Blue, Pink, and Cyan Rare, Legendary, or Exotic Received for free upon logging in for the first time during the season, from the seasonal rewards track, or purchased from Tess Everis. Requires decryption at Eververse. Season of the Undying only.
Fond Memories Magenta, Red, and Yellow Rare, Legendary, or Exotic Received for free upon logging in for the first time during the season, from the seasonal rewards track, or purchased from Tess Everis. Requires decryption at Eververse. Season of Dawn only.
Luminous Orange, Blue, and Purple Rare, Legendary, or Exotic Received for free upon logging in for the first time during the season or from the seasonal rewards track. Requires decryption at Eververse. Season of the Worthy only.
Mnemonic Pink and White Rare, Legendary, or Exotic Received for free upon logging in for the first time during the season or from the seasonal rewards track. Requires decryption at Eververse. Season of Arrivals only.
Eververse White Rare, Legendary, or Exotic Received from the seasonal rewards track or sometimes obtained after reaching past seasonal rank 100. Requires decryption at Eververse.
Ephemeral Purple Rare, Legendary or Exotic Can be purchased from Eververse or obtained upon leveling up past the level cap during the 2018 Festival of the Lost. Requires decryption at Eververse.
Fated (Isochronal) Yellow Exotic Guarantees a world drop Exotic item that has not been previously obtained. Account-based purchase once per week from Xûr for 97 Legendary Shards and an Exotic Cipher if it was collected from the season pass or the Xenology quest. If all world drop Exotics have been claimed, gives a random world drop Exotic instead.
Golden Age Yellow Exotic Gives the Sturm Hand Cannon, and must be brought to Tyra Karn at The Farm for decryption. No longer available as of the Beyond Light expansion.
Rasputin's Gift Black Legendary Gives the IKELOS HC v1.0.1. Can only be obtained once through the Mars world quest after completing the Warmind Campaign, and must be brought into Rasputin's chamber for decryption. No longer available as of the Beyond Light expansion.
Prime Engram Purple-Yellow Legendary Drops randomly from powerful combatants, or completing ritual activities. Always drops gear up to the powerful cap, after which drops to the character's highest Power Level. Looks like a standard Legendary Engram, but with golden glow in the center & particle effects.
Black Armory Engram Dark Purple Legendary Dropped from a completed Black Armory Forge Ignition. Somewhat elongated and modified compared to regular Engrams. Distinctive blue-white hex-spiral effects. No longer available as of the Beyond Light expansion.
Umbral Engram Black and Purple Legendary Dropped from enemies and activities during Season of Arrivals and reintroduced in Season of the Chosen. Requires decryption at the Umbral Decoder (until The Witch Queen expansion), Rahool, or focusing at various seasonal vendors in the H.E.L.M. for seasonal items, with a chance for seasonal weapons from Season of the Risen onwards to drop with Deepsight. Shows streams of Darkness upon dropping. No longer available as of the Lightfall expansion, instead replaced with Seasonal Engrams.
Vanguard Engram Blue with a Vanguard logo Legendary Dropped from reaching Vanguard reputation rank promotions and can be decrypted or focused at Commander Zavala for Vanguard and Nightfall items. Adept Nightfall items require Nightfall Ciphers for focusing.
Crucible Engram Red with a Crucible logo Legendary Dropped from reaching Crucible reputation rank promotions and can be decrypted or focused at Lord Shaxx for Crucible items.
Gambit Engram Green with a Gambit logo Legendary Dropped from reaching Gambit reputation rank promotions and can be decrypted or focused at the Drifter for Gambit items.
Trials Engram Gold with a Trials of Osiris logo Legendary Dropped from reaching Trials of Osiris reputation rank promotions and can be decrypted or focused at Saint-14 for Trials of Osiris items. Adept Trials of Osiris items require entry into the Lighthouse once before focusing can be unlocked for that item.
Iron Banner Engram Dark green with an Iron Lord logo Legendary Dropped from reaching Iron Banner reputation rank promotions and can be decrypted or focused at Saladin Forge while Iron Banner is active for the week for Iron Banner items.
Throne World Engram Purple Legendary Dropped after reaching reputation rank 30 with Fynch and can be decrypted for Throne World items, with a chance for Throne World weapons to drop with Deepsight.
Neomuna Engram Purple Legendary Dropped after reaching reputation rank 30 with Nimbus and be decrypted for Neomuna items, with a chance for Neomuna weapons to drop with Deepsight
Seasonal Engram Dark purple with a Season logo Legendary Dropped from completing ritual and seasonal activities and can be decrypted or focused at various seasonal vendors at the H.E.L.M. for seasonal items, with a chance for season weapons to drop with Deepsight.

Gallery[edit]

List of appearances[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Bungie (2015/9/15), Destiny: The Taken King Playstation 4, Activision Blizzard, Item Description, In Good Temper
  2. ^ Destiny the Game: Game Master July 2014 Destiny Cover Issue & PlayStation UK Magazine June 2014 Destiny Hands-on: Breakdown
  3. ^ a b c DattoDoesDestiny: Destiny Alpha Gameplay! Exploring: The Tower
  4. ^ Bungie (2015-5-19), Destiny: House of Wolves, PlayStation 4, Activision Blizzard, Grimoire: Master Ives, Cryptarch
  5. ^ Bungie (2017/9/8), Destiny 2: Playstation 4, Activision Blizzard, Hastilude
  6. ^ Bungie (2015/9/15), Destiny: The Taken King Playstation 4, Activision Blizzard, Grimoire: Fabian Strategy
  7. ^ Bungie (2014/6/12), Destiny: Alpha PlayStation 4, Activision Blizzard.
  8. ^ The Guardian: how the makers of Halo plan to change the future of shooters
  9. ^ Bungie (2014/9/9), Destiny PlayStation 4, Activision Blizzard.