Destiny's Latest Exploit Lets You Kill Yourself For Exotics

Destiny's Latest Exploit Lets You Kill Yourself For Exotics

If you started playing Destiny today, you may have noticed an unusual number of your friends doing the same ancient low-level mission. Why would they do that?

The answer — of course this is the answer — is that the mission lets players take advantage of a new loophole and earn lots of powerful exotic items with a minimum of effort.

The weekend vendor Xur has returned for the first time since The Taken King expansion launched on tuesday. Xur usually sells a few exotic items and engrams in exchange for strange coins. This week, he started selling a new item: The Three of Coins.

Destiny's Latest Exploit Lets You Kill Yourself For Exotics

You can buy a pack of five for seven strange coins, and if you use one before fighting a named boss (an "ultra" in Destiny parlance), it will give you a solid chance of getting an exotic engram.

Naturally, players have already figured out a way to take advantage of the system. I first saw this technique thanks to redditor KinetiClutch — if you go to the "Scourge of Winter" mission on Venus, you can farm the boss for a ridiculous number of exotic engrams. I've tested it out and yup, it works.

Here's what you do:

  1. Buy a bunch of Three of Coins packages from Xur.

  2. Start the Scourge of Winter mission on its lowest difficulty. Equip Ice Breaker — if you have it — and a rocket launcher.
  3. Run to the opening area, then kill all the Kellsguard. When Ghost says you have to go find the Kell, keep moving.
  4. Run through the rest of the level and onto the Fallen ship — you'll be basically unkillable because the enemies are so low level. Don't stop to fight anyone, just run to the end.
  5. Before you go into the final room, pop a single Three of Coins.
  6. Walk into the room and immediately snipe the boss Draksis a few times to get his health to the point that a single rocket will kill him.
  7. Run straight up to him and shoot him point blank with a rocket. It will kill him and you, but he'll still drop an exotic engram.
  8. If he doesn't drop an engram, repeat. Use another Three of Coins, then suicide-bomb the boss. The Three of Coins stacks its exotic probability each time you use it, so you'll get an exotic engram in two or three tries.
  9. Keep going as you see fit. Enjoy your exotics, even if you feel slightly dirty about it.

I tested it out, and it works. Here's a video:

Really, this isn't even that much of an exploit — the Three of Coins is almost working as intended. It's likely that Bungie will patch it so that bosses only drop engrams if you survive the fight, but even if Draksis didn't drop an engram along with your death, you could just restart the level, run through it, and get to him in a few minutes a pop. It'd be less convenient, but not grossly so. They could also make it so that the Three of Coins only works for high-level bosses. We'll see.

Whether or not Bungie patches this exploit, the Three of Coins seems like it will make it far easier for Destiny players to get every exotic in the game. Given how annoying it used to be to wait (and wait, and wait) for that one stupid exotic item that the game refused to give you, that's a pleasant change.


    Grabbed Year Two 'Don't Touch Me' in one job. Thanks, Kotaku.

    I'm pretty certain, based on roughly 150 runs of this, that the exotics you can acquire are only a specific set. Hawkmoon, Monte Carlo, Telesto, The Jade Rabbit and a sniper rifle are the weapons. Alpha Lupi seems to be the only chest piece. No heavies.

    Used around 25 Three of Coins


    Obsidian Mind
    Starfire Protocol
    Light Beyond Nemesis
    Alchemist’s Raiment
    The Impossible Machines


    Zhalo Supercell
    The Last Word

    Last edited 20/09/15 5:35 pm

      Hawkmoon on Hunter. The impossible Machines and The Stag on Warlock. Used 5 coins on each (Approx 8 deaths, ran out of heavy ammo and trash mobs weren't dropping any)

      Might farm up some glimmer and buy a ton of heavy weapon ammo packs to try and get The Last Word... Even if Hawkmoon is quite the catch for a handcannon fan.

    Today I did this glitch and it worked so well. I got 7 exotics from 20 "3 Of Coins". I got pretty lucky. I got the Hawkmoon and the Last Word Hand Cannons and also other awesome exotic items. Add me on Xbox360. My name is DeclinedFan6240 and I am a level 40 hunter.

    Do you have to suicide-bomb the boss? I don't get what's up with that step?

      You don't have to but it ensures you reset the checkpoint before the mission ends, meaning you will respawn outside the door and be able to maximise attempts in the shortest period of time.

        That would have been nice to mention in the article, cause I too was wondering what's the deal with killing yourself

        Makes sense, thanks. I was wondering if it changed the way the three of coins worked or something

    Now, the true test of whether Bungie has learned anything about the criticisms leveled against them in the last year:

    Will they ignore this and quietly tweak it later, after they've patched the issues preventing XBone players from accessing TTK, collector's edition items not being available for those who purchased them, Veteran's Tour quest not being available for Year One players who qualify?

    Or will they do as they did last year and patch out things that benefit players BEFORE they patch major bugs?

      They really do feel like a D&D DM sitting there shouting at their players "YOU'RE NOT PLAYING IT RIGHT!!"

        Called it.
        Destiny Hot Fix - 09/24/2015 - - The one that released on the heels of Oryx.
        * Three of Coins now provides a smaller increase in Exotic Engram drop chance when rapidly killing Ultras

        Did they fix the bug I'm experiencing that's locking me out of a quest and rewards?

        Did they nerf something that was benefitting players?

      They totally will but I hope they just add a simple debuff (unable to use consumable again) to your character after an ultra kill. Like 2-3 mins?

    Mostly works. Sometimes a green engram drops instead of an exotic :/
    Nonetheless, some good stuff. But also 3x Obsidian Mind, Ahmkara claws and wing helm which is less than handy.

      Something definitely wrong with the rng and duplicates atm, I think bungie will fix that and ninja-nerf thus one...

        I had three helmet engrams which gave me 2 Obsidian in a row then the helm I was wearing.
        But rnjesus has always hated me.

    I must have bad luck or something, I used 15 coins and I only got one exotic, and it was with the last coin... I could have bought more exotic from xur with the amount I spent on coins... am I maybe doing something wrong??

    Doing it on the Eye of a Gate Lord mission is a lot easier as it's a quick kill and you can go to orbit before the mission end timer shows up so you don't have to worry about killing yourself.

      Interesting that that still works.

      I remember that one of the bounties used to be to kill that Archon on Earth, and if you bailed to orbit before the countdown finished, if you got the same bounty the next day you could go back to that mission and that checkpoint... but they patched that out. I assume to prevent people from doing exactly that.

      I thought they'd patched it out for ALL bosses, but if Eye of a Gate Lord still works, I guess not! As I mentioned before, though, we'll see how long that lasts and if they get to patching out 'exploits' before they patch actual bugs.

    Don't forget to equip boots that allow you to hold more heavy ammo - even old raid boots work well. The slowest part of this exploit is waiting for your heavy ammo synth cooldown if you can only hold 4 rockets.

    Only had 10 coins and I got 1 exotic. That isn't too bad a percentage drop and I think is working as intended.

    The biggest problem is some guys had hundreds of strange coins and could spend hours glitching the gatelord and playing the percentages. 100 3 of coins, could certainly net you a dozen or so exotics. I am sure it will be patched in the next hot fix.

      Yep, people have bought hundreds of coins and spent all weekend farming exotics. Then they'll complain next week when Xur isn't selling anything new.

    I am level 29. Started playing again without the TTK expansion after a long time out of the game. Still not sure what the hell is going on.

      Can I suggest having a look at some Planet Destiny videos on YT or another guy called Datto (DattoDoesDestiny). They really helped me with trying to understand how to do things with a minimum of fuss!

        Thanks for the heads up. Will do! Planning on TKK anyway.

    Dammit, wish I knew about this on the weekend, I would have picked some of those packages up! Hopefully they don't patch it by this weekend lol

    Can confirm this works rather well. Decided to (ab)use it before the inevitable hotfix. Used around 30 Three of Coins and received:

    - Obsidian Mind
    - Crest of Alpha Lupi (Hunter)
    - Crest of Alpha Lupi (Titan)
    - Sealed Ahamkara Grasps
    - Claws of Ahamkara
    - Don't Touch Me

    - Zhalo Supercell (woo!)
    - 2x Telesto
    - Invective
    - Fourth Horseman

    On a related note, Zhalo Supercell is now probably my favourite primary in the game. Trash clearing and supers for days.

      Damn, I just watched a video for that Supercell, and you could see the Super bar going up constantly!

        It's so ridiculously good. It's like Bad Juju, except every bullet you fire is lightning. Also it chains to other enemies. Also double kills instantly reload the magazine.

        If you know the Thrall Bridge in the Sunless Cell strike, you can genuinely just keep firing that entire time without reloading.

        Pro-tip: if you have a Hunter Nightstalker, this gun pairs amazingly well with the Bloodbound perk. Literally pooping orbs everywhere.

    I did it a couple of times, got Hereafter and called it. Tempting as it is, Don't want to spoil TTK.

      Exactly my feelings. Most of my friends think I'm a sucker for not exploiting the hell out of this, but there's just something about cheap & easy exotics that doesn't sit right with me. I wan't to earn my exotics or have RNGesus show me some love. I did buy heaps of the coins, but so far have used them as intended.

      Thing is with this exploit, it really isn't that bad in comparison to some other video game hacks...I mean, You're just using the games mechanics against it. I mean, technically if you suicide kill a boss, engrams should disappear, three of coins remains active and you reset to checkpoint. Well, that's how I'd build my game to work.

    Or only on the heroic strike playlist.

    I don't think they'll even bother patching this since the exploit is such a false economy. Anyone using this exploit is just wasting their time.

    The drop rate of exotics is fixed, roughly 20% per coin (not sure how they stack), but for every 5 coins you will probably get one exotic drop if you kill 5 Ultras.

    Thing is, Ultras are everywhere anyway. If you spend 20 minutes on Draksis using 5 coins to get one exotic, that's all you'll get. But if you spent 20 minutes doing 2 Strikes, you'd only use 2 coins, but you'd get a haul of blues. Spend 40 minutes doing 5 strikes you'd get a very high chance for an exotic, plus a big haul of blues, plus legendaries. Spend 40 minutes in a public zone killing spawnable ultras or in the Court of Oryx public event and you'd have the same chance at an exotic plus you'd be getting through missions that give you marks, and bounties and quests etc.

    The goal in Taken King, unlike the Year 1 content, is not to acquire a game changing piece of gear, but to incrementally improve every single piece of your gear to improve your overall survivability. None of the new exotics are particularly game changing anyway.

    I have a suspicion Bungie will leave this exploit in as a kind of trap for new players. If 2 players, at level 40, and 200 light both bought 50 coins from xur, one went to Draksis and one went to the strike play list, and they reconvened in an hour, one would be at 220 light, one would be at 280 and ready to do the nightfall and then the raid.

    So this guy goes trawling forums looking for exploits and then 'tests' them for Kotaku readers? What a top bloke.

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