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"I don't have time to explain why I don't have time to explain."
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Titan Vanguard, Vanguard Commander


Titan (Defender)

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Hero of Twilight Gap
Hero of Six Fronts

"What we have built is only the beginning, a symbol of what we can achieve."
—Commander Zavala

Commander Zavala is an Awoken and the Vanguard for the Titan class. Commander Zavala sells Titan armor and emblems.[1]


Early life and Career as a Guardian[edit]

"The first time I met Zavala, I was really intimidated. He's kind of a lot to take in, you know? But then we got to talking about the City and the Walls and how we're all going to die and the nine hundred things that want to wipe us out. And I realized he's actually much scarier than most people give him credit for."
Amanda Holliday

Zavala was born sometime before the Collapse, and was revived by a Ghost into a Guardian. He traveled to the famous camp that would eventually become The Last City, helping to build the city alongside people such as a younger Speaker.

Zavala eventually became a student of Lord Saladin Forge, and fought in the Battle of the Twilight Gap.[2] Later, after parting ways with Lord Saladin, he was a competitor in the Crucible.[3]

Commander of the Vanguard[edit]

As Commander, multiple factions approached Zavala to try and gain his support. In particular, he was approached by New Monarchy via Executor Hideo, and was offered to be made king of the City if he had joined their faction, but he refused,[4] likely not wanting to reignite the Faction Wars. He also turned away Arach Jalaal when he pleaded with him for support.[5]

During a meeting of the Consensus, it was agreed that the Concordat and its leader Lysander would be exiled following their unsuccessful bid to overthrow the Speaker. Zavala agreed to handle the reassignment of the Guardians pledged to the faction, although he believed it would be difficult due to how loyal Lysander's followers were. The meeting then turned to a discussion of who should replace the Concordat on the Consensus, and Zavala supported the Future War Cult's inclusion, considering their focus on combat more useful to the Last City than dangerous.[6] When his predecessor as Vanguard Commander, Osiris, tried to broker a contract between the City and a mercenary group of Titans called the Sunbreakers, Zavala found the terms of the deal unacceptable and rejected it, causing the Sunbreakers to hate the Vanguard and Zavala. In return, Zavala erased nearly every mention of the Sunbreakers from the City's records.[7]

The Rising Darkness[edit]

House of Devils in the Cosmodrome[edit]

"The Fallen will continue to claw at the walls of our City unless we strike them down. Beneath the ruins of the Cosmodrome, in the shadow of an old colony ship, we've located the House of Devils' Lair and the High Servitor feeding them their strength. We must destroy this machine god and send their souls screaming back to hell."
—Commander Zavala[8]

Zavala greeted a newly risen Titan who had been revived by their Ghost in the Cosmodrome in Old Russia. After providing them with basic supplies and Glimmer, he noted that their weapon was an antique and sent them to get a new one from Banshee-44.[9] When the Guardian returned, Zavala informed them that their ship had been restored by Amanda Holliday, but that they needed a warp drive so they could explore the system. He ordered them to return to the Cosmodrome and find a replacement. The Guardian succeeded in their task, and killed Riksis, Devil Archon of the House of Devils. Zavala was impressed that such a new Guardian killed such a high-value target and decided to continue testing the Guardian by sending them back to the Cosmodrome to scout the Jovian and Terrestrial complexes to discover what the Fallen were doing there.[10] He also suspected that the loss of an Archon would cause the Devils to increase protection around their Prime Servitor, Sepiks Prime.[11]

When the Titan reported back, Zavala learned that the Hive were infesting the Cosmodrome and that the Warmind Rasputin was alive and active there as well, but the Fallen were hunting for him. He thanked the Guardian for their work and asked them to speak with Ikora to continue looking for Rasputin and protect him from the Fallen.[10] The Guardian's work with Ikora led to the reactivation of a terrestrial array in the Cosmodrome that Guardians aligned with Dead Orbit had failed to retake, although Rasputin took control of the array and used to connect with defense systems across the solar system. Zavala praised the Guardian for their success, and resolved to find someway to convince Rasputin to help the Vanguard in their wars.[12] He also gave them their next mission, which he believed would test their limits: to form a fireteam and destroy Sepiks Prime, the Servitor that was the House of Devils machine-god and directed all their actions in the Cosmodrome.[10] As the fireteam headed for the Devils' Lair, Zavala briefed the fireteam and stated that the Last City would never be safe unless the Fallen's leadership was eliminated. The team succeeded in their mission, and Zavala was pleased with Sepiks destruction, but stated that even though this would weaken the House of Devils, they would no doubt find other means to survive.[8] When the Guardian returned to Zavala, the Vanguard Commander mused that the dream of a safe City was fragile, but their efforts had brought it closer to reality. Zavala asked them to enjoy the start of their legend as a Guardian, but to also know that their hardest battles still lay in the future.[10]

The Taken War[edit]

Mending Relations with the Sunbreakers[edit]

"A Sunbreaker's fire has not been seen in the City for years. Their association with Osiris, the stupidity of our youth... it all seems so long ago."

With the threat that the Taken posed to the solar system, Zavala began to consolidate all Vanguard forces and sought to rebuild relations with groups that had left or been exiled from the City. Amongst these groups were the Sunbreakers, an order of Titans who utilized Solar Light and had close ties to Osiris. Having rejected a deal with them long ago, Zavala now regretted that decision, and upon learning that a legion of them had been spotted for the first time in years in the Ishtar Collective on Venus, he requested that The Guardian serve as his representative and meet with them. Monitoring the Guardian's progress, Zavala detected a Sunbreaker beacon that was intermixed with a Vex signal, and discovered it contained a message from Ouros ordering a retreat through a Vex gate and that the Sunbreakers had been there for a task related to Osiris. The Guardian subsequently learned that the Sunbreakers managed to open the gate and flee to their Forge on Mercury.[13]

As the Guardian headed to Mercury, Zavala admitted that he was responsible for the schism between the Vanguard and the Sunbreakers, and warned them that they hated Zavala. Tracing the Sunbreakers to The Burning Shrine, the Guardian impressed Ouros and was granted the power to utilized the Hammer of Sol, along with any other Guardian who proved worthy. The Guardian returned to Zavala, who lamented the exile of the Sunbreaker's and reflected on the mistakes of his youth. He was glad that their fire had now returned to the City and would once again keep it safe, strong, and warm.[7]

The Red War[edit]

"I'm en route. If we attack together, we can take back our home, or we die trying."

Zavala helped the Guardians fend off the Red Legion during their massive invasion, but when their cage cut all Guardians off from their Light, he was forced to flee Earth. He flew his ship to Titan, where he was joined by Sloane, and began calling all surviving Guardians to rally there. Too late, he learned that the moon was infested with Savathûn's Hive, leading to many deaths among the Light-less Guardians. That failure forced Zavala into a depression, wondering if without the light, are they even Guardians anymore. Fortunately, one Guardian managed to regain their Light and fight off the Hive on the Arcology power stations, giving the Vanguards forces a temporary base and Zavala hope once more. After sending the Guardian into the New Pacific Arcology to procure a CPU to decrypt high-level Cabal transmissions, Zavala learns about The Almighty, a massive Cabal warship constructed to destroy suns and it has been placed outside of the Solar System's sun. While most despaired on the hopelessness of the situation, Zavala's resolve remains strong, declaring that with what was left of the Vanguard's forces, they would launch an assault on the Almighty but before he does so, Zavala states he needs his old fireteam. He needs Ikora and Cayde.

Sending the Guardian to find the Hunter and Warlock Vanguard, they succeed in finding them while disrupting Cabal operations in the System. Zavala is reunited with his comrades on Earth at The Farm where they discuss a strategy to take down the Almighty, liberate the Last City and free the Traveler. He learns from Ikora that they cannot destroy the Almighty without causing a chain-reaction that would destroy the sun along with it. Nonetheless, Zavala suggest they get the Guardian on board to permanently disable the Warship while the Vanguards forces would sneak into the Last City to liberate their home and take down Ghaul. Cayde also provides a Vex teleporter that would allow them to reach the Dominus quickly. Hawthorne provides the means to sneak into the Last City and a plan to get the Guardian to the Almighty as well. The Guardian would steal the security pass and personal ship of Thumos, the Unbroken to reach the Almighty while Hawthorne aids the Vanguard.

The Guardian succeed in disabling the Almighty which allows Zavala to initiate their attack to liberate the Last City. Despite having no Light to aid them, Zavala and the Vanguard's forces succeed in taking out Cabal troops and checkpoints but was almost killed by a Red Legion soldier. Thankfully, he was saved by Hawthorne, who thanks her and calls her a Guardian. As the Guardian returns to join the fight, Zavala and his team hold off the Red Legion as they get to their position while Cayde sets up the teleporter. The Guardian reached them, wounded but alive, and use the teleporter to infiltrate Ghaul's command ship, the Immortal, near the Cage. There the Guardian faces off and defeats Ghaul, ending the life of the Dominus. In the chaos, the Traveler awakens after centuries of slumber and restores the Light, driving the Red Legion from the Last City.

A New Golden Age[edit]

"None of us will take the Speaker's place. And all of us will. We must find our own consensus now."
—Zavala, after being questioned by Executor Hideo about replacing the Speaker as leader of the Consensus[15]

With the City reclaimed and the Traveler awake, Zavala congratulates the Guardian while proclaiming this the start of new Golden Age for all humanity. As the fighting calmed down, Zavala and the Vanguard set up a new base near the ruins of the Tower while reinstating the Strike protocols to battle the enemies of the City once again.

With the Speaker's death, Zavala became the acting head of the Consensus. At the first meeting of the Consensus held after the battle, Executor Hideo protested that only a Speaker could call them to order, and Lakshmi-2 asked what the bylaws said about choosing a new one. Zavala informed them that there was no process for choosing a new Speaker, and Ikora suggested that they would have to create one. Until then, Zavala stated that they would move forward without a Speaker, with all the members of the Consensus having to work together without a formal leader to keep the City running and safe.[15]

After learning that Guardian Ariadne Gris had painted a dragon onto her Sparrow, the Dinas Emrys, the Consensus summoned her before them. Zavala demanded to know if she had been in contact with an Ahamkara, which she denied and insisted that she did it because dragons are cool. As the other members of the Consensus questioned Ariadne, Zavala asked for Ikora's opinion on the matter. Ikora admitted she was not paying attention, and joked that Ariadne obviously had not been in contact with an Ahamkara because she did not win in the Sparrow Racing League often. Zavala ended the inquiry by declaring that the Consensus' official stance on the matter was that the dragon symbol was cool.[16]

At a subsequent meeting of the Consensus, Zavala asked the Titan Callisto Yin to join them, and thanked her for saving the Firebreak Order's sacred Fire Victorious, lit by the legendary Titan Wei Ning, from Firebreak Plaza during the fall of the City. Hideo informed them that repairs to the Plaza were nearly done and the Fire Victorious could be returned in a relighting ceremony soon, but Yin informed the Consensus that the Fire Victorious would not be returning to the City in the same fashion as before. Each member of the Firebreak Order would now carry some of the fire with them in the shell of their Ghosts in order to spread Wei Ning's eternal flame to each battlefield they fought on.[17]

Rasputin's Return[edit]

Sometime later, Zavala became aware when Ana Bray once again defied orders in favor of searching more about her past and on the possibility of making Rasputin an ally. The Vanguard Commander intercepts the wayward Hunter and the Guardian on Mars when they neared the Warmind's core, expressing disappointment in the Guardian for getting involved and anger at Ana for leaving the City when Ghaul launched his attack. Zavala believes that Rasputin is nothing but a broken weapon, too dangerous to be left alone but too unpredictable to use. He reasons that all previous attempts to make contact with the ancient Warmind was met with silence or hostility and as such, Rasputin cannot be trusted. Ana Bray however, remains convinced she can communicate with Rasputin and that he will listen to her. However, their discussion is interrupted by tremors to which Zavala explains that the Warmind wasn't the only thing awakened by the Warsat impacts. A hidden Hive army, the Grasp of Nokris, has emerged to lay claim to Mars and destroy Rasputin in the name of the Worm God Xol, Will of the Thousands and its herald, Nokris, a heretic to the generic Hive and the disowned son of Oryx.

Working together with the Guardian and Ana, Zavala comes up with a plan to lure Xol into a trap using something the Worm God cannot resist, a shard of the Traveler. The Guardian succeeds in acquiring a shard laced with Light and brings it Mars. Ana meanwhile, continues to discuss her case in getting Rasputin to aid them, as she believes without the Warmind's power, Xol would be too powerful for the Guardian. Zavala remained unconvinced, believing that the Guardian would be able to handle it, as they have faced insurmountable odds before. However, as the Guardians reached the junction point of the caves beneath Mars where the Hive have made their fortress, they encounter Xol's herald, Nokris. The Guardians defeat the herald after a fierce battle but are nearly killed by the Worm God after it arrives to take the shard. With no other option and Xol nearing the Warmind core, Zavala goes with Ana's plan in using the Valkyrie Warmind weapon to kill the Worm God before it destroys Rasputin.

Traversing through the facility to forge a powerful Valkyrie weapon, the Guardian battles with Xol outside the core and after a harrowing battle, they succeed in killing the Worm God. With the battle over, Zavala joins with Ana and the Guardian in entering the center of the core to speak with Rasputin directly. To his immense discomfort, the Warmind proclaims that it will define the realities of its own existence by stretching its reach across and beyond the system, ensuring that no threat will go unseen and that it will defend humanity but on its own terms. Ana Bray, however, reassures him that everything remains under control. From then on, while Zavala remains distrustful of Rasputin, he allows Ana and the Guardian to work with it to combat the warring factions in the system, principally what remains of Xol's forces on Mars.

Personality and Traits[edit]

Resolute, experienced, strong and charismatic, Zavala is a perfect exemplar of the Titan class of Guardian and a gifted leader that leads the Vanguard with the utmost determination. Zavala's first priority is the protection of the Last City and takes that charge seriously. No matter what force that seeks the destruction of the Last City, Zavala would face that enemy head-on. His one true goal is to defeat the Last City's enemies and reclaim the Solar System. Zavala has complete faith in the Guardians purpose in defending those in need. For this reason, he doesn't approve of those who doubt the Guardians abilities while espousing the dangers of the Last City's enemies, such as Eris Morn. Despite this, Zavala finds the value and skills in everyone and will defer to their advice when needed.

While Zavala is a capable, strategic leader, he can appear rigid and orthodox to others, especially Cayde-6, whose care-free attitude annoys Zavala to no end. While he would prefer people to follow orders and the chain-of-command, he will admit when a unorthodox strategy works. Though he can at times clash with Cayde, he nonetheless considers Cayde both a teammate and a friend. In contrast, he gets along well with Ikora Rey, though he has little patience for Warlock curiosity.

The only time Zavala ever doubted himself and the Guardians as a whole was when the Last City fell to the Red Legion at the beginning of the Red War. As it was his duty to protect the Last City, Zavala felt he failed at everything he was meant to protect. Though he originally sought to counterattack, after losing Lightless Guardians to the Hive in a foolhardy attempt on Titan, did Zavala's spirit nearly break. He was even questioning if without the Light, was he even a Guardian anymore. It was only The Guardians efforts and learning of their restored Light did Zavala regain hope. Even after learning about the Almighty and its threat, Zavala's resolve remained strong, determined to defeat those who threaten the very existence of everything he knows. Zavala's overall confidence is restored after the liberation of the Last City and the awakening of the Traveler.


Destiny 2[edit]

Commander Zavala serves as the Vanguard Tactician upon completion of the Red War campaign. Vanguard Tactician tokens earned from strikes can be turned into Zavala to receive Vanguard Tactician Engrams, which can reward Vanguard weapons and armour.

Faction Armour[edit]

Faction Weapons[edit]


  • "The Scout's reporting from Mumbai."
  • "There is a difference between victory and invincibility."
  • "Tell me, about their light."
  • "What's wrong with these people?"
  • "Didn't we have enough Kings after the Collapse? Have we forgotten our history?"
  • "Still, the walls stand."
  • "Despite it all, here we are."
  • "What do they think of us? Do they think of us?"
  • "One victory is not enough. Regard your soldiers as your children, and they will follow you into the dark."
  • "Deploy the Fifth. The North West wall is weak."
  • "The Traveler weakens while we remain idle."
  • "What sort of game does Shaxx think he's playing?"
  • "Every second we waste in idleness is a second lost to Darkness."
  • "If we wait we die! But if we attack together we can take back our home, our light, our hope! Or we die trying"


  • He is voiced by Lance Reddick.[18]
  • He seems to be familiar with the works of the ancient Chinese war general Sun Tzu, as he is heard paraphrasing The Art of War.[19]
  • His armor is the Jovian Guard, a PlayStation exclusive Armor set, although the symbols are different denoting his status as the Titan Vanguard.
  • Zavala is a Mexican surname.
  • Zavala has a hidden soft spot for knitting and crocheting, and got visibly excited when he was presented with a homemade sweater courtesy of Eva Levante.
  • The Destiny 2 gameplay trailer revealed Zavala as a Defender Titan, utilizing the Ward of Dawn against enemy attacks even from overwhelming force such as missile barrages from Red Legion Warships. Earlier, during the Battle of Six Fronts, Zavala wielded Striker abilities against the Fallen.
  • In the first mission of Destiny 2, Homecoming, when you're helping Zavala defend the Tower Plaza, it is possible for Zavala to die by having his Defender shield give out early against the missles fired by Dominus Ghaul's ship although he can be revived by the player or he'll respawn after three seconds.


List of appearances[edit]


  1. ^ Bungie (2014-6-12), Destiny: Alpha PlayStation 4, Activision Blizzard.
  2. ^ Bungie (2014-9-9), Destiny PlayStation 4, Activision Blizzard, Grimoire: Iron Banner Rep
  3. ^ Bungie (2014-6-12), Destiny: Alpha PlayStation 4, Activision Blizzard, Lord Shaxx: Quotes
  4. ^ Bungie (2014-6-12), Destiny: Alpha PlayStation 4, Activision Blizzard, Executor Hideo: Quotes
  5. ^ Bungie (2014-6-12), Destiny: Alpha PlayStation 4, Activision Blizzard, Arach Jalaal: Quotes
  6. ^ Bungie (2014/9/9), Destiny: Playstation 4, Activision Blizzar, Grimoire: Ghost Fragment: The City Age
  7. ^ a b c Bungie (2015/10/25), Destiny: The Taken King, Activision Blizzard: Bound by Fire
  8. ^ a b Bungie (2014/9/9), Destiny: Playstation 4, Activision Blizzard, The Devils' Lair (strike)
  9. ^ Bungie (2014/9/9), Destiny: Playstation 4, Activision Blizzard, A Titan Rises
  10. ^ a b c d Bungie (2014/9/9), Destiny: Playstation 4, Activision Blizzard, Nothing Left But The Fall
  11. ^ Bungie (2014/9/9), Destiny: Playstation 4, Activision Blizzard, Grimoire: Restoration
  12. ^ Bungie (2014/9/9), Destiny: Playstation 4, Activision Blizzard, Grimoire: The Last Array
  13. ^ Bungie (2015/10/25), Destiny: The Taken King, Activision Blizzard: A March of Fire
  14. ^ Youtube - Destiny 2 - Meet Commander Zavala
  15. ^ a b Bungie (2017/5/12), Destiny 2: Curse of Osiris, Playstation 4, Activision Blizzard, Item Description, Peace by Consensus
  16. ^ Bungie (2017/8/9), Destiny 2, Playstation 4, Activision Blizzard, Item Description, Dinas Emrys
  17. ^ Bungie (2017/5/12), Destiny 2: Curse of Osiris, Playstation 4, Activision Blizzard, Item Description, Fire Victorious Shell
  18. ^ IMDB - Destiny (2014)
  19. ^ "One victory is not enough. Regard your soldiers as your children, and they will follow you into the dark."