The Coming War

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"The Awoken died for us. They gave their lives to save the system, to stop Oryx's fleet at the outer planets. We must honor their sacrifice. We must face the Taken King without fear. Queen Mara has given us a gift. We must not waste it."
— Eris Morn


Queen's Ransom


Cayde's Stash

The Coming War
Grimoire The Coming War.jpg


The Taken King




Fleetbase Korus, Phobos


Investigate Cabal Signal on Phobos

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The Coming War is the first story mission in The Taken King's initial storyline. After receiving a Cabal distress signal originating on Phobos, the Vanguard sends the Guardian to investigate. The Guardian soon discovers the first wave of a new, terrifying threat to the Solar System: the Taken.[1]


  • Infiltrate the Base
  • Investigate the Base
  • Survive the Attack
  • Escape the Base
  • Get to your Ship



A drawing of the Solar System fades in, briefly panning across a few planets, before drawing the Traveler and the signature graphing lines associated with it.

  • Ghost: I was born the moment the Traveler died. As everything collapsed around us. Before that day, there had never been a Ghost. There had never been a Guardian.

The Traveler's drawing enters the Milky Way.

  • Ghost: I don't know much about the Traveler. But I know it made me to bring you back. And I spent a really, really long time searching for you.

The Traveler's drawing reaches Earth, and positions itself above it.

  • Ghost: The Cosmodrome? Not the first place I looked.

A minimalist depiction of the Traveler releasing the Ghosts begins to draw itself. Many drawings of Ghosts are seen surrounding Earth, with the player's Ghost descending towards the center.

  • Ghost: As I saw the other Ghosts find their Guardians, and the centuries went by, I wondered if I'd ever find you. And then... I did.

The drawing of Earth fades out entirely and the camera transitions to Saturn, tilting from the top down. Eleven Hive warships can be seen in the planet's rings with the Dreadnaught looming among them.

  • Mara Sov: I remember everything about the day I was born.

Six Ketches in Reef colors can be seen approaching from beneath the rings. Hundreds of Galliots accompany the Awoken fleet.

  • Mara Sov: I still bear the scars.

The camera zooms in on Uldren Sov's Galliot until it cuts to the inside. It then cuts again to a group of Galliots rushing the Hive fleet.

  • Mara Sov: The Awoken are my family now. And I am their Queen.

An enormous battle begins, as the Hive and the Awoken fight amongst the rings of Saturn. The Galliots smash into orderly lines of Tombships, firing at the bigger Hive warships and causing massive damage to their armored bodies. The camera tilts and pans about as the Awoken play havoc among the Hive, Solar blasts flying from the enemy. Suddenly Uldren notices the Dreadnaught in the center, and prepares to fire with two others. The missiles launched fail to even scratch the hull. Uldren looks back in dismay as his wing retreats.

  • Mara Sov: We fought to keep our beautiful creation safe.

The camera cuts to a view of the Queen's ship, and then inside. Three Royal Awoken Guards are at computers while the Queen stands upon the central platform, looking through the viewport at the distant battle. Several Techeuns can be seen coming up behind her.

  • Mara Sov: And now this beast has come, claiming to be King.

The Queen looks away from the Dreadnaught and back at the Techeuns, and nods.

  • Mara Sov: Mara Sov bows to no one.

As the four of them stand in position Mara's eyes begin to glow a bright blue, and they flicker until she closes them. Several blue-white wisps of bright energy appear between the Techeuns' outstretched hands, while outside a much larger line of energy forms outside the Queen's ship in parallel with her own outstretched hands.

Seven spheres of brilliant blue light coalesce out of the line as a result of the Coven's channeling energy to the Queen; the line of energy dissipates and the Harbingers rush forward. They arc up into the asteroid ring and begin dragging with them hundreds of rocks ranging from dust mites to Tombship-sized boulders, along with several Tombships themselves, pulling them inexorably onward.

Mara Sov collapses from overexertion and the Witches catch her. The Harbingers continue their assault, easily tearing through multiple Hive ships on the way to their true target: the Dreadnaught. Upon slamming into the sides of the flagship, however, the Dreadnaught remains completely undamaged, repelling rocks and Tombships flung into it. The camera fades away as Hive ships drift towards the Dreadnaught.

The camera cuts to the Queen, now revived, who steps forward to see what has happened, as if in disbelief; her eyes slowly begin to lose their glow. The camera cuts to the side of the Dreadnaught, the massive parabolic dish of the ship's cannon looming in the midground.

  • Mara Sov: You and I know how this ends.

Oryx, the Taken King stands on an exposed balcony of his ship. An immense sword sits by his side. He steps up to a small, circular platform, glowing green-white with an unknown energy.

  • Mara Sov: We've known since you've escaped from that... pit.

Oryx slowly raises his sword over his head, then slams it down into the podium, a shockwave spreading through the observation room followed by fog-like tendrils of an etheric pale blue-white. The parabolic dish begins to charge outside quickly; and fires. A massive spherical shockwave erupts outward in a massive radius, obliterating the clustered asteroids, Oryx's own fleet, and the Awoken armada—twelve Ketches—in an instant.

Mara Sov, witnessing her impending doom, stares on in sorrow before closing her eyes in resignation. The shockwave effortlessly destroys all of the lead Ketches. Several dozen Galliots desperately try to turn about and flee as Hive warships dissolve around them, but are caught too in the shockwave, and disintegrate. The camera cuts to the inside of Uldren's cockpit, his face a grimace of effort as he tries to regain control of his ship. As it shakes violently, he starts to scream—and the camera cuts to black, his scream echoing.

  • Mara Sov: The Awoken have played their part.

The camera fades into the aftermath—the battlefield has been reduced to a junkyard. Pieces of Hive and Awoken ships are everywhere. Only a single vessel still stands: the Dreadnaught. The camera zooms in on the King, standing on a balcony. He growls, and floats back inside.

  • Mara Sov: This... was all part of the plan.

The camera cuts to the massive hole blown in Saturn's rings by the Dreadnaught's superweapon. A moon of Saturn can be seen in the background.

  • Mara Sov: Guide them, my Hidden friend. It is all up to you now.


The Guardian's ship approaches Phobos—in the background is Deimos—and zooms along canyons and cliffs in an attempt to find Fleetbase Korus, the command center of the Skyburners.

  • Commander Zavala: Guardian, this is Commander Zavala. The Cabal base on Phobos is blasting a signal on all channels. If they're willing to break transmission silence, this could be a prelude to a full scale assault.

The ship starts to descend, finding a landing zone for the Guardian. As it flies across the surface, a Cabal Imperial Land Tank is seen, burning and half destroyed, with two more seemingly lying abandoned.

  • Ghost: We're setting down on Phobos now.
  • Zavala: I'll be monitoring your feed, Ghost. Good luck to you both.

The Guardian's ship drops them off at a cliffside in front of Korus.


The Guardian walks up the cliff. Several Legionary corpses can be seen. A Harvester rises up as the Guardian nears a cliffside, pans its searchlight over the Guardian, and flies off to join a fleet. Several more Harvesters and even a few Cabal warships can be seen disappearing into the night.

As the Guardian nears Fleetbase Korus a Legionary crawls out of a crevice, wailing in agony. It dies shortly after. Several Cabal soldiers are seen running out of the front of the base. A large explosion rocks the foundation, killing them all. Another Harvester lifts off. It leaves behind several more Cabal which wave after it in a desperate plea for help. They either continue searching for another ship, or spot the Guardian and attack.

  • Ghost: Zavala, the Cabal are evacuating with extreme prejudice. They're getting torn up down here.

The area near the launchpad is demolished and burning while another Harvester lies in ruins. Ghost scans this:

  • Ghost: The Cabal detonated this ship after it crashed. Standard procedure when they are under attack. I think the last directive received was an evacuation order. But the Cabal have no word for "evacuation". All ships and personnel were directed to focus attack on enemies beyond Martian orbit.

Another wailing Legionary crawls out of some debris, and dies. Toward the entrance of the base Ghost scans another dead Legionary's corpse.

  • Ghost: Skyburners regiment. Dead, obviously. There are no other Guardians down here. I wonder what put them down?

As the Guardian enters the doors blown open by the explosion, Eris' voice is heard on the comms:

  • Eris Morn: Something has drawn us here. I can feel it.
  • Zavala: Guardian, I have asked Eris Morn to monitor the channel.

The Guardian continues inside. Most of the base is in ruins. Dead Skyburners line the corridors, the aftermath of an apparently one sided battle.

  • Eris: I hear... whispers in the dark.

As the Guardian navigates deeper inside the seemingly deserted base, a small white light floats in front of an open door. The Guardian approaches it, but it makes a loud screeching noise and flees down the hallway.

  • Zavala: What the hell was that?
  • Eris: Fingertips, on the surface of my mind.
  • Zavala: Yes... thank you for your input, Eris.

Upon turning the corner, an eerie sight falls upon the Guardian and Ghost: several voids of nothingness appear in parts of the base, seemingly appearing as black holes, or windows into empty space itself. Some even swallow up the bodies of dead Cabal. The Guardian sends the Ghost to investigate:

  • Ghost: This membrane is attempting to form a bridge between dimensions, but I think it requires a living host.

The Guardian reaches a staircase, wrapped around an elevator shaft. Suddenly an elevator car comes crashing down, and slams onto a ledge, getting stuck between the beams. A lone Legionary is inside, desperately scrambling to escape, jumpjets fully engaged. It scrambles onto a hole in the top only to be crushed by falling debris, which knocks the elevator car loose and sends the Legionary to its death. As the Guardian continues walking up the ramps, a Centurion is seen frantically trying to run from something, but a white tether is holding him in place. He is eventually sucked into nothingness, leaving his weapon on the floor. More ruptures appear, scattered throughout the area.

  • Eris: Whispers are louder, I will endure.

Another Centurion is seen running for his life futilely before he is snatched up as well. The Guardian continues forward.

  • Eris: They speak a word... a name.

The Guardian walks into a large, circular room. Suddenly, the room fills with fog, and takes shape.

  • Eris: (fearfully) He... is here!

The fog forms the shape of Oryx, staring directly at the Guardian.

  • Oryx: Light! Give your will to me!

A black orb, swarming with energy, appears before the image of Oryx, gradually swelling, until it explodes. Unfamiliar life forms rise from out of the orbs, physically taking the shape of Cabal and Psions, but horribly mutated, twitching, and with strange abilities. The Taken surround the Guardian, and a deformed Knight, Syrok, Word of Oryx, rises and attacks. The Guardian takes them all out.

  • Eris: You have seen His face. It was His hand that transformed the Cabal.
  • Zavala: This mission is scrubbed—Guardian, get to your ship and get out of there!

A door on the far side of the room opens, and the Guardian finds themselves face to face with a Taken Phalanx. They continue eliminating more Taken Phalanx and Knights, encountering Cabal and Taken fighting each other along the way with the Cabal clearly being outmatched. A hologram of the Dreadnaught on the floor grabs the Ghost's attention:

  • Ghost: This matches an image I collected from the World's Grave... a Dreadnaught. They don't exist in our system. I'll mark it for transmat to the Vanguard and hope we get a signal.

After the Guardian eliminates all the threats in the area, they find a monitor. Ghost scans it:

  • Ghost: There's a notification from three days ago. A "Primus Ta'aun" suspended all Phobus mining operations and recon pending investigation of a trans-Jovian threat.

The Guardian comes across another moniter, an energy reading machine. The Ghost scans the monitor:

  • Ghost: They sent teams to investigate anomalous energy fluctuations across the base... (whispers) None of the units reported back...

Heading further down a hallway, the Guardian finds another machine, with a hologram of Phobos on the screen. The Ghost checks it out:

  • Ghost: Cabal mining sites across Mars and Phobos have been hit. Losses to Blind Legion: 35% percent. Losses to Sand Eaters, 58%; Dust Giants, 39%. What is this?
  • Zavala: The base is a loss! We have reports of these "Taken" across the system! Go! Get out!

The Guardian hastily makes their way outside. A large battle is taking place. Ruptures tear the sky apart. A massive rupture opens in the distance, smashing a Cabal communication tower. Cabal anti aircraft turrets fire frantically into the sky. A Harvester crashes into a building near the Guardian and explodes. The Guardian's own ship flies overhead, turning near their position, and hovering to a ledge at a safe distance.

  • Ghost: Our ship's landing across the airfield—Hurry!

The Guardian runs across into the neighboring building, either eliminating Taken and Cabal or ignoring them. The Guardian emerges on the other side, near their ship. Taken and Cabal are fighting each other throughout.

  • Ghost: We're almost there!

The Guardian fights their way through and eventually makes it to their ship.


The Guardian runs toward their ship, and warps in. The ship immediately turns around and takes off.

  • GHOST: Zavala, we made it to our ship, and are heading home.

The ship spins as it flees Phobos. The lopsided moon is backdropped by the bulk of Mars. The camera fades to black.

Mission ends.


The camera fades in and pans down to the Aerodrome, where the Guardian previously escaped. The area is completely silent, and now overrun with Taken. Dead Cabal blanket the field. A perspective view shows the members of the Taken—former Centurions, Knights, Psions, and Acolytes—all twitching uncontrollably, against their will. Large black wings hove into view. An Echo of Oryx floats over the disfigured victims, surveying the scene. All of them kneel to the floor in reverence. The Echo sneers down at the newly Taken life forms. A Taken Psion demonstrates its ability by splitting into two copies of itself, still kneeling. A Taken Centurion lowers its head. Satisfied, the Echo disappears with a screech.

The camera cuts to Oryx himself, standing on a balcony outside the Dreadnaught. With his hands resting on his sword, he takes a deep breath. Ecthar, Sword of Oryx walks up behind him and places the tip of his sword on the ground.

  • Echtar: Their leaders belong to you... ...the rest await extermination.
  • Oryx: No... Gather them. I will take them all.

The camera cuts to a sweeping view of the Dreadnaught from a distance.

  • Ikora Rey: My contacts near Saturn say the weapon fired only once.

The scene transitions to a hologram of the ship, now surrounded by the Vanguard. The interior of the Hall of Guardians is nearly dark, save for the orange light of the hologram, placed on Cayde-6's map of the Solar System.

  • Zavala: It's not like the Queen to attack a superior force...
  • Ikora: How could she have known? ...How can anyone? We need a Warlock inside the Dreadnaught.
  • Cayde-6: (derisively) Here we go...
  • Zavala: Our first priority must be to protect this City! Our Guardian got a good look on Phobos. Whatever it was, it turned Cabal against Cabal, wiped out their base in minutes. How long would we last?
  • Ikora: Until we understand what we're dealing with—

A green blur whips through the room and lands squarely on the Dreadnaught hologram, interrupting its projection. The object is revealed to be Eris Morn's orb. The Vanguard stop arguing and face her.

  • ERIS: They are Taken.

Eris walks—or prowls—toward the trio, and Cayde points at her orb.

  • Cayde-6: Eris... get your rock. Off my map.

Eris continues toward the Vanguard, ignoring Cayde-6.

  • Eris: It hasn't spoken since Crota fell.

She reaches her hand out toward the orb, which flickers at her actions.

  • Eris: It speaks now, because Oryx has arrived... come to fill the final covenant of his son.

Ikora looks at Eris, confused.

  • Ikora: But... why fight the Cabal?
  • Eris: Not fighting... Taking. Controlling their will--

The room glows orange again, and Eris turns to find Cayde-6 nonchalantly lifting the orb off the hologram and glaring at her. She sneers angrily at him. Cayde-6 simply ignores her and plays with her orb like a ball.

  • Zavala: So we focus on his army... kill these Taken until he's all that's left?
  • Eris: Whatever you kill... Oryx will replace.
  • Ikora: The Dreadnaught, then. How do we get past that weapon?
  • Zavala: Without ending up like the Awoken?

Cayde-6 stops rolling the orb around in his hands, and looks towards the rest of the Vanguard, as if just now paying attention.

  • Cayde-6: I gotta go, uh.... see about a ship.

He throws the orb towards Eris, who catches it psychically in her hand. As he walks away, Zavala turns towards him angrily.

  • Zavala: Cayde! Our discussion is not yet concluded!
  • Cayde-6: (causally) Oh, I know. That's why I'm leaving.

The other members of the Vanguard look on. Eris holds her orb close to her, staring at the mysterious piece inside. Cut to black.



  • Legionary
  • Phalanx


  • Taken Psion
  • Taken Legionary
  • Taken Phalanx
  • Taken Centurion
  • Taken Knight
    • Syrok, Word of Oryx




  1. ^ Bungie (2015-2-24), Destiny: Activision Blizzard