A Public Event is a type of encounter in Destiny in which several players in the same area can work together to achieve a common goal. Events may occur while on Patrol or within Strike missions.
Public Events are rated after completion based on the Guardians' performance; if time runs out before the objective is met, it is a Bronze-Tier rating. If time runs out but the Guardians manage to almost complete the objective, it is a Silver-Tier rating. If the objective is completed before the timer runs out, is a Gold-Tier rating. Guardians are rewarded with Glimmer, Motes of Light and experience instantly. Earlier in the game's history, it would reward Ascendant Shards or Ascendant Energy for Gold-Tier ratings. Guardians could pick up their rewards at the Postmaster if it was their first Gold-Tier rating of the day.
Destiny Public Event Types
- Defeat Extraction Crews—defeat three waves of enemies before time runs out to deactivate the Glimmer Drill.
- Defend the Warsat—have your Ghost scan the warsat; the more Guardians that stand near it, the faster it can download the data. Defend yourself from waves of enemy reinforcements.
- Defeat the Fallen Walker—destroy a Fallen Walker before time runs out.
- Eliminate the Target—a powerful enemy with a high health count and rapid shield regeneration (depending on whether or not it has a shield) will appear. Defeat them before they reach a checkpoint; this will require heavy firepower from several players.
- Prevent Vex Sacrifices—similar to Defend the Warsat, keep the Vex away from the object/area, allowing up to 10 sacrifices until failure. There is a countdown to defend the object/area. 
- Court of Oryx—a series of player-initiated boss battles exclusive to the Hall of Souls in the Dreadnaught.
- Archon's Forge—a series of player-initiated boss battles exclusive to the Plaguelands in Old Russia
Destiny Public Event Schedule
Note: Sometimes instead of a Public Event, the player will receive the message "The enemy is moving against each other", and a large group of two types of enemies will start fighting. Most of the enemies found in these events will be very powerful (i.e. Hallowed Knight, Reaver Captain). Fighting in this event does not reward the player with any bonus experience. This will happen in the Skywatch, The Barrens, and Ishtar Commons. Also, the player might receive the message "A roving band of Pikes is nearby." In this instance, several Dregs on Pikes will appear. This can happen at the Forgotten Shore as well as on the Moon.
Additional Note: When fighting Hive Wizards for the Kill an Enemy events the Wizard will sometimes "teleport" near the end of the event if the players manage to slow them down sufficiently for an extended period, usually resulting in failure of the event due to the time taken to re-engage the target.
Destiny 2 Public Event Types
In Destiny 2, Public Events appear more frequently than in Destiny and are also announced 5 minutes before they begin. Once an event is announced, an icon will appear on the map screen for the planet, which allows players to find and track the event. If a player arrives at the location before the start of the event they will find a glowing flag and have the option of rallying to it. Rallying to the Flag instantly recharges all of their abilities, including their Super, refills all ammunition and displays the time until the event starts. Successfully completing the event will reward participating players with Glimmer, a piece of equipment and a Token that can be turned into that planet's vendor to increase reputation. Failing an event still yields a Token and Glimmer but does not give equipment. Additionally, Public Events now have a Heroic version that is automatically unlocked once certain objectives are met during the event. The Heroic version increases the difficulty of the event but also increases the value of the rewards upon completion, such as a chance of receiving multiple pieces of equipment and/or a Legendary or Exotic Engram.
- Cabal Excavation—For this event, Guardians are tasked with halting a Red Legion mining operation by capturing a Cabal Mining Lander while defending it against waves of Cabal soldiers and mortar fire. Once the progress bar has reached 33%, a Thresher will begin to appear in the skies overhead. Destroying it will activate the Heroic version, where the Guardians must now kill the Excavator Valus leading the operation while contending with Elite Cabal and concentrated mortar fire. This event is found on Nessus, Io, and the EDZ.
- Injection Rig−During this event, Guardians must stop a Red Legion drilling crew from using an Injection Rig to uncover secrets in an area. Guardians must kill the three Infiltrator Psions. After killing an Infiltrator Psion, a large shield will appear over the Rig and it will begin venting heat for a few seconds. Any guardians inside the shield when this happens will take continuous damage for a few seconds. If all of the heat vents are destroyed, the Heroic version will trigger where they must now kill the Infiltrator Valus that appears. This event is found on Nessus, on Mars and in the EDZ.
- Glimmer Extraction—Here, Guardians must expel Fallen Extraction Crews that are attempting to extract caches of Glimmer from various sites around the area. At each site, Guardians must kill three Extractor Vandals and then an Extractor Captain. Destroying the mining machine (small white boxes with pistons near the drill) at each site will trigger the Heroic version where a pile of Glimmer must be defended from a Fallen onslaught led by a Wretch Captain. This event is found on Nessus, the Tangled Shore and in the EDZ.
- Spire Integration—Here, Guardians must prevent waves of Vex from fortifying their underground structures by keeping them away from an Integration Spire until the timer runs out. If Guardians manage to capture the three Sync Plates that appear around the area, they will trigger the Heroic version where an Integration Mind will appear alongside Elite Vex. This event can be found on Nessus and Io.
- Ether Resupply—For this event, Guardians are tasked with disrupting the flow of Ether by destroying the Prime Ether Servitor before it disappears. Periodically, Transport Servitors will appear and shield the Prime Ether Servitor from damage until they are either destroyed or absorbed. If Guardians manage to destroy all Transport Servitors before they are absorbed, the Heroic Version will be triggered where the Prime Ether Servitor goes berserk and gains improved damage resistance, a faster fire rate, and the ability to transport players high into the air. This event is found in the EDZ and on Nessus.
- Taken Blight—During this event Guardians must repel a Taken incursion by killing Taken to sting Blights that appear around the area. Stepping in and out of the smaller blights will give Guardians the "Blight Receding" buff which allows them to damage the massive blight. Destroying the massive blight will cause a Blightmaker to appear and trigger the Heroic version, who must be killed to complete the event. This event is found on Io, the EDZ and in the Dreaming City.
- Vex Crossroads—In this event, Vex are being transferred between the past and future via warp gates. Destroy Vex units to draw out two Keepers of Ages Unseen, each of which will drop two Arc Charges. A warp gate requires a single Arc Charge to be shut down, but the Arc Charges will dissipate if not planted quickly enough. After shutting down the first four warp gates in the event's starting area, two more warp gates on islands on opposite sides will need to be shut down in the same manner. When this is accomplished, a Vex Gate Lord will appear back in the starting area and must be destroyed, which will drop two loot chests. The trigger for the Heroic version is that when fighting on one of the islands, shoot the crystal behind the island that appears after shutting down the warp gate. Climb up to the top of the island and stand in the sync plate. This only needs to be done once. This event is only found on Mercury.
- Weapons Exchange—For this event Guardians must disrupt a Fallen weapons exchange by killing the Resilient Captain and Arsenal Walker guarding the weapon caches. Shooting out the legs of the Walker will cause it to drop Arc Charges which can be used to unlock the weapon caches. Unlocking all three weapon caches will trigger the Heroic version where a second Arsenal Walker will drop in along with elite Fallen. Destroying both Walkers completes the event. This event is found in the EDZ and on Titan.
- Witches' Ritual—In this event Guardians must capture two Hex Circles and defeat the Ritual Wizards leading the event to prevent them from opening a Hive Portal. Destroying the two shielded crystals on either side of the portal (the shields can be lowered by continuing to hold the Hex Circles) will trigger the Heroic version that differs slightly based on location. If done on Titan either a Darkblade-like Abyssal Champion or a Omnigul-lookalike Abyssal Sorcerer will emerge from the portal along with an endless onslaught of Thralls and Cursed Thralls. The Abyssal Champion acts the same as Alak-Hul but is less powerful, while the Abyssal Sorcerer is a Wizard with the additional abilities to teleport and to rapid-fire multiple fast-moving Solar Axion Darts with a high degree of tracking. If done on Mars, either an Orge called Ul-Heru, Envoy of Savathûn or a Wizard called Exhara, Ambassador of Savathûn will emerge accompanied by Thralls, Cursed Thralls, Adherents and even Vanquishers. Ul-Heru has no additional abilities for an Orge, while Exhara acts the same as the Abyssal Sorcerer. Killing the given target will complete the event. This event is found in on Titan and Mars.
- Defend the Warsat—In this event, Guardians have to scan and defend a crashed Warsat from waves of Hive attackers. After one or two waves, three Shriekers spawn above Valkyrie plates around the Warsat with unbreakable shields around them. Guardians have to take down six Wizards, two at a time. After these two have been defeated, the players can destroy one Shrieker. The opening Shrieker will also hint against where the next Valkyrie will spawn. When all Shriekers are destroyed, an Elite Ogre spawns near the location. When the Ogre is down, the event is completed. This event is only available on Mars.
- Neutralize the Cryo-Pod Defenders—In this event, Guardians must prevent waves of enemies from releasing their leader from a crashed cryo-pod from the Prison of Elders. After the enemies are defeated, the pod will crack open and release an enemy boss from within, where the Guardians must kill the boss to win the event. The heroic version is triggered by throwing enough orbs at the boss to make it freeze, allowing the participating Guardians to transfer it back to the Prison of Elders. The orbs are generated by shooting the vents on the side of the Cryo-Pod once it emits a freezing gas. This event is only available on the Tangled Shore.
- Ether Ritual—In this event, Guardians must stop the Scorn from completing an ether extraction from a dead Servitor. A Chieftain must be defeated in each of the three oncoming waves, one at a time. Once all three Chieftains have been defeated, an Abomination will spawn. Defeat it to complete the event. The heroic version is triggered by shooting down all the ether clouds that come from the smaller Servitors before they reach the central large Servitor in between each Chieftain-led waves. Instead of the Abomination, Guardians will face a reanimated version of Elykris, the Machinist. This event is available on the Tangled Shore and the Dreaming City.
- The Rift Generator—For this event, Guardians must defend a Generator Core against waves of enemy combatants, preventing them from completely rupturing its integrity at all costs. At the end of the event, Guardians must defeat a Fanatic's Chosen and a Demented Abomination. This event can be found within the Dreaming City. The heroic version will take players into the Ascendant realm version of the Dreaming City.
- Escalation Protocol—In this event Guardians defend towers against waves of progressively harder enemies. After seven waves, Guardians must face a Hive boss in order to complete the encounter. There are five possible bosses, each rotating on a weekly basis. This event is only found on Mars.
- Blind Well—In this event, 3-6 Guardians charge a large device known as a Well through defeating waves of increasingly powerful Scorn, Hive and Taken combatants, just like Escalation Protocol. Taken poison gas will blockade and force players into different areas as the event progresses. At the end of each tier, a boss will appear and must be defeated by the fireteam to proceed. This event is only found on The Dreaming City.
Destroying a Fallen Walker on Venus.
List of appearances
- YouTube: Destiny E3 2013 Demo
- Destiny the Game: Game Master July 2014 Destiny Cover Issue & PlayStation UK Magazine June 2014 Destiny Hands-on: Breakdown
- Bungie (2014-7-17), Destiny: Beta PlayStation 4, Activision Blizzard.
- Bungie (2014-9-9), Destiny: Xbox 360, Activision Blizzard
- Reddit: Public Event Schedule