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Destiny 2 Presage Mission Walkthrough — How to Get Exotic Scout Rifle Dead Man’s Tale

In this Presage quest walkthrough guide, we cover everything you need to do to earn the Season of the Chosen’s Exotic Scout Rifle: the Dead Man’s Tale. Below, you’ll find descriptions on how to complete each phase and videos for the trickier parts.

Season of the Chosen has been a whirlwind of entertaining events. But none have been as atmospheric and rewarding as the Presage Exotic quest in Destiny 2. This mission was introduced as part of “The Voice On the Other Side” questline, which allows you to unlock the Season of the Chosen Exotic Scout Rifle, Dead Man’s Tale. In many ways, it’s similar to the “Whisper of the Worm” and “Zero Hour” missions, but with a far more sinister tinge to the puzzles and encounters.

So if you’re just starting this mission or looking to find those elusive scannable to complete Seasonal Challenges, read on to check out our full guide and walkthrough.

How to Get Dead Man’s Tale in The Voice on the Other Side Mission

Season of the Chosen
Image: Bungie

“The Voice on the Other Side” Exotic mission is both fun and simple. There are no lengthy steps within a given mission that complicates your path to unlocking the Exotic. Instead, you need to discover an elusive distress signal and walk through the remaining three steps. Here’s everything you’ll need to do to unlock Dead Man’s Tale:

  1. Find the Intercepted Distress Signal within the Arms Dealer strike
  2. Meet with Zavala in the Tower
  3. Complete the Presage Exotic Quest
  4. Return to Zavala with your findings.

That’s it — just four steps to obtain the Dead Man’s Tale Exotic Scout Rifle. Sure, step three is a bit complicated, but we’ll be covering everything you’ll encounter during that quest in just a bit. First, let’s make sure that you can actually unlock the mission chain, to begin with.

How to Start The Voice on the Other Side Mission in Destiny 2

It can be a bit confusing to know where to start with “The Voice on the Other Side.” It tells you upfront that there is a hidden transmission within a Cabal fortress on the EDZ, somewhere within the Arms Dealer strike, but that’s about it. Luckily, it doesn’t require you to complete the entire strike or uncover some intricately hidden area.

First, drop into the Arms Dealer strike from the director screen. Instead of taking the corner to the left that takes you to a control panel, just keep going straight past the first group of enemies.

Keep going straight past the first group of enemies

This will take you outside past a group of turrets on a series of helipads. Take out all of the enemies in this area and then head to the pad on the far right.

Head to the pad on the far right

You should see a marker that leads you to a container. Inside, you’ll find a datapad that you can scan that allows you to identify the Intercepted Distress Signal. Then either finish the strike or return to the tower. Head to Zavala and execute a quick chat that unlocks the Presage mission on the outskirts of the Tangled Shore.

Unlocking the Presage Mission
Image: Bungie

Tips for the Presage Quest in Destiny 2

The “Presage” Exotic mission is an atmospheric puzzle-solving, platforming, and combat-intensive experience. It takes place within an abandoned Cabal ship that is now overgrown with some form of Darkness residue and haunted by the remaining Scorn that lurk on board.

On a standard run, there is no time limit, and the recommended power level is 1230. Just know that you’ll likely want to be closer to 1300 and have at least one other person with you to make running this mission less of a headache. The respawns for enemy encounters are not very forgiving, so the more you can stack the odds in your favor, the smoother this will go.

Your main method of progression will be to find switches, open electrical circuits, find hidden vent entrances, and run through toxic shield barriers while covered in spores. Most of the mission will feel fairly straightforward, but two to three sections may take a while. We’ll go over each step in greater detail in just a moment, but here are a few general tips to help you prepare:

  • Run your endgame builds. This is a challenging mission that can easily wipe you and your team if you’re using the wrong weapons and abilities. Opt for your endgame builds to make sure you play defensively. (Check out our HunterWarlock and Titan builds to help with that)
  • Choose your highest jump. Be sure to switch to your jump ability that provides the greatest amount of elevation. For Hunters especially, there are simply some jumps you will not be able to make with certain setups.
  • Avoid Screebs. You will constantly have Screebs rushing you when entering new areas. Be prepared to jump and try to have a rocket or grenade ready.
  • There’s always a door. Every switch and electrical circuit leads to a door. If there’s nothing in front of you, be sure to backtrack or look above to find your next route.
  • No checkpoints. Keep in mind that there are no checkpoints, so you’ll need to handle this in one go. It can take anywhere from twenty minutes to almost two hours, so plan accordingly.

Destiny 2 Presage Mission Full Walkthrough

As we said before, the path through the ship is pretty straightforward. There are alternate or false routes, so it’s up to you to figure out each scenario to keep yourself moving. If you ever get turned around, be sure to reference the video sections throughout this piece to help establish where you are. Without further ado, let’s uncover what exactly is going on in this ship.

Getting Inside

To start, you need to get inside the ship. This can be a time-sucking area if you spend any time trying to get through the main door. It cannot be unlocked, so instead, immediately turn to your left and jump towards a platform located on the side of the ship. Continue working your way across and up the handful of platforms, and take a shallow jump (to avoid hitting the hull) to make your way inside.

Make your way inside the ship

There will be a handful of breakable vent covers in this section that you can avoid. Just keep moving straight, break open the one blocking the hallway, and continue until you reach an open room with piping.

Just keep moving straight and break open the vent blocking the hallway

Look for another vent cover at the far end of the room on the left side and break it.

Then go across the room, jump up onto the platform above you and keep going until you drop in just behind the large door you started next to. You can then hit the switch to open it up and allow anyone on your Fireteam who stayed behind to walk right in.

Electrified Walls

Head away from the main door, where you’ll encounter the alien spores for the first time. Hit or shoot them (making sure everyone is close by) until the Egregore Link buff activates and then run through the opening into a room with a dead Cabal. Jump up onto the pipes on your left and look for another breakable vent cover. After navigating the short vent section and jumping upward between a few pipes, you’ll find a large open area with electric walls.

Defeat the first wave of Scorn and go across the room and flip the switch

Now, defeat your first wave of Scorn, head across the room, and flip a switch. Then head back to the area with the electrified walls, where you’ll find more spores. Activate them, jump across the gap, and head to the right. Keep moving until you reach another open gap, jump across and shoot the open electrical circuit to open a door beneath you.

Find the lever

You’ll face another wave of Scorn and find a lever to your right. Once pulled, head to the other end, jump up to the top level, and cross another gap. Pull that lever, jump back across and drop down to shoot another open electrical circuit. The next door has opened, so jump back up and head to that last area you jumped across. This time jump down to the platforms — don’t worry, it will spin for you before you reach it.

Trash Compactor

Enter the trash compactor and find the switch

Now you’ll enter the trash compactor — be sure to jump at the end as you slide down, or the impact will kill you. Run over to the switch at the end of the room and switch to your Heavy weapon to take out the two waves of Screeb that will appear.

After activating the switch, the walls will start closing in. Try to eliminate the Screeb as fast as possible and then start destroying grates on the floor. Four to five will have those electric circuits beneath them that you need to destroy in order to open a door in the floor. Be sure to take out the circuits on the sides of the room first before the walls make them inaccessible.

Take out all the circuits

If you’ve got them all, the walls will stop, and you can head through the door to your first major combat encounter. Take out this wave of enemies and head through a long series of dark rooms until you enter a hanger bay and have to take on another round of enemies. This will include two bullet spongey Scorn trolls, so be sure you have your Super and some heavy ammo ready.

Outside Again

Jump along the platforms lining the ship

Once you’ve defeated the Scorn, head back out into open space by jumping along the platforms lining the ship. This will lead to another hangar bay with a Cabal ship and a door at the top left that you’ll need to platform to get to. This will lead you into a research room with a dead Scorn on an operating table.

Find the dead Scorn on the operating table

Pull the switch in this room to open up more spores. Activate the buff and then run through the doors on the fire right. You’ll face another wave of Screebs and then need to activate a switch in the middle of the room. This will open up a door with an open circuit at the far end of the room that you’ll want to shoot from the position you’re currently in.

Deactivate the electric fence

This in turn will deactivate the electric fence above you and allow you to jump up. Pull the switch to your right, head into the adjacent room, and pull the next switch to drop back down. A door with spores is now open, so activate the buff and then run toward the unexplored section of the room, jump up, and head through the door.

Flip a switch and take out the Cabal turret

After another quick fight, you’ll need to flip a switch and take out a Cabal turret to expose another electric current. You’ll find some more spores that will then allow you to drop through the floor at the far side of the room.

Drop through the floor at the far side of the room

Another Maze

Navigate the maze

This part can be disorienting and deadly, so be prepared to take out a Screeb behind every vent cover you break. To make this simple, break through the four covers in the room you’re currently in until you find the area with more spores. Then break the vent covers opposite this room until you reach the end of the hallway and have to turn left — this will give you a clear shot through. Activate the spores, run through the opening you made until you reach a switch.

Take the shortcut back to the main research room

This opens a shortcut back to the main research room and opens another door on your left. Activate the spores once again and head on through to face another small wave of enemies. Pull a lever at the far end, destroy the electric circuit it reveals and then head into the platforming room.

Head into the platforming room

So Many Platforms

The best thing to do here is to clear the area out and then use the spores. Jump across until you reach a closed door. Turn around and look for an open electric circuit to shoot, then clear out the remaining enemies and turret positioned at the end of the room.

Shoot the open electric circuit

Head back to the spore at the start and activate it, making sure you get inside that previously closed door in the middle of the room.

Activate the spore and go to the previously closed door

Activate the spore here and head to the exit.

The Locus of Communion Boss

There are two floors in this room that you’ll be working between. First, clear out the enemies on your current floor and look for three switches to shut off the boiler below you.

Find the 3 switches to shut off the boiler

Two will be located at the far ends of the room, and one will be in a heated room in the center. Just be sure you’ve activated the other two switches and have full health before taking on the middle switch.

Split up and drop down on opposite sides to fight the boss

Once the boiler is deactivated, have you and your partners split up and drop down on opposite sides. Keep the boss moving between you until you’ve done enough damage to reactivate the boiler, then head back up and do it all over again (two more times total). Just keep in mind that later rounds of this will allow enemies to spawn above you, so take them out before you get into trouble.

Once you’ve defeated the boss, leave the room, and you’ll find the remains of the Guardian who had been working with Callus. Steal his Exotic Scout Rifle and head back to The Tower to speak with Zavala.

You did it. Congratulations on acquiring a shiny new Dead Man’s Tale Scout Rifle!

How to Get the Dead Man’s Tale Catalyst

Unlocking the Catalyst is actually quite simple. The quest to do so, “At Your Fingertips,” will be available from Zavala right after you complete “Presage” for the first time. Now all you have to do is complete “Presage” on Master difficulty — no pressure.

Presage Mission Master Difficulty

In all seriousness, this is both simple and incredibly challenging. You should at least be light level 1320 (or have a well-coordinated Fireteam within a few levels), be running your endgame builds, and know the ship route and puzzle solutions well enough to finish in under twenty-five minutes. It’s difficult but doable, and we recommend playing the standard Presage a few more times before trying to take it on.

Plenty of Secrets

Outside of the Exotic scout rifle and Catalyst, there are plenty of secret scannable items and compartments to unlock as you continue to complete “Presage” runs. These will not only let you uncover new lore entries but some junk armor pieces as well (but hey, it’s all about the exploration, right?). 

To help your Fireteam get access to the Dead Man’s Tale and its Catalyst, be sure to share this article on your favorite social channels. For the latest on Destiny 2, be sure to subscribe to our newsletter to stay in the know.


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