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Get the Most out of the Free Gambit Trial With This Strategy Guide

Devastate your opponents in Gambit by learning these tricks and tips!

By Dennis Scimeca on August 31, 2018
Level 7

This weekend, for 24 hours, you can play one of the most innovative and challenging multiplayer modes yet in Destiny 2. Do you want to learn the rules and mop the floor with the competition, or be bested by opponents who did their homework before you did?

On Saturday, Sept. 1 beginning at 10am Pacific Time and ending on Sunday, Sept. 2 at 10am Pacific Time, all players of Destiny 2 will have free access to Gambit, the new competitive, hybrid game mode that combines PvE and PvP combat into one frenetic experience.

Victory in Gambit requires excellent team coordination and communication, so you want to get on the same page with all your fellow Guardians as soon as you can. Let us help with this list of tips and tricks to get the most out of your Gambit experience.


Here’s the basic rundown: Each Gambit team of four players begins the match on their own map, and these maps get invaded by enemies. When the enemies die, they drop motes of light. Those motes can be deposited into a bank in the middle of the map, and when enough motes are banked a Taken Primeval boss is summoned. The first team to kill their Primeval wins.

Each team can use also use the motes to summon Blocker enemies who invade the other team’s map and prevent them from banking motes. Each team can also send one of its players to invade their opponent’s map wreak havoc. The tricks are knowing when and what size Blockers to send, when to launch invasions, and who on your team should be invading. A team that takes too long to make these decisions may get slaughtered by a team that has its act together.


In the PvE component of the Gambit Trial you will face Fallen and Cabal combatants and gather the motes they drop when they are killed. A basic rule of thumb is - the more powerful the enemy, the more motes of light they will drop when you put them down.

The thing you need to learn is how many motes it takes to execute specific actions. If you deposit five motes in the bank you summon a Small Blocker – a Taken Phalanx - at the other team’s portal. Banking ten motes summons a Medium Blocker – a Taken Knight - while fifteen motes summons a Large Blocker – a Taken Ogre. These summoned enemies are called “Blockers” because they guard the other team’s bank and prevent them from banking motes until the Blockers are destroyed.

You have to bank the correct number of motes at once to summon the Blockers. If you bank 15 motes at once, you summon a Taken Ogre. If you bank 9 motes, and your teammate banks 4 motes, you both summon nothing because neither of you banked the correct number of motes at once to summon a Blocker. Keep in mind that your team can summon multiple Blockers at the same time. If you and a teammate each deposit 10 motes you’ve just summoned two Taken Knights to harass the other team.

You can hold a maximum of 15 motes and if you die you lose all the motes you are holding. Learning how to balance this risk/reward equation is one of the keys to winning at Gambit. Sending two Taken Ogres at once to harass the other team might be better than sending three Taken Knights, but do you want to risk losing 30 motes with a pair of deaths on your team? Or do you want to send the smaller Blockers and make sure those motes get banked?

To summon the Taken Primeval, the final boss you need to kill in order to win the match, your team has to cumulatively bank 75 motes. You don’t necessarily need to keep an eye on the score bar at the top of the screen to know when you’re ready to summon the Primeval, however. If your team is collectively holding enough motes to finish summoning the Primeval the host of the match, the Drifter, will make an announcement to that effect.


You can open your Ascendant Portal and invade the other team’s arena when your team has banked 25 motes, and again when you’ve banked 50 motes. These numbers are also cumulative. Once you’ve opened the portal twice, you won’t get to invade the other team’s arena again until the other team has summoned their Taken Primeval, at which point their Ascendant Portal remains open and you can send an invader across every 20 seconds or so.

Keep an eye on how many motes the other team has banked. The score bar at the top of the screen keeps track of how many motes each team has banked, and you know what the thresholds are for opening the portal. If you see that the other team has around 24 or 49 motes in the bank, prepare to be invaded soon.

Know in advance who is invading the other side. You know who your best Crucible players are. Make sure there’s no confusion about who is invading. The few seconds it takes your team to decide who’s going through the portal can be the few seconds it takes for the other team to invade first and kill all of you. Additionally, whoever is invading should reload their weapons, especially their power weapons, before going through the portal. You only have 30 seconds on the other side, make them count.


Once your team has summoned your Primeval, it’s all hands on deck to kill the Primeval and win the match while fending off invaders from the other team.

The amount of damage you do to the Primeval increases over time. The longer you fight the Primeval, the more your damage numbers get buffed. Keep this in mind when deciding when to use Power weapons against the Primeval. You’ll get a little more bang for your buck if you don’t use your Power weapons immediately when the Primeval is summoned.

If an enemy Guardian kills you, the Primeval gets healed. Do not let your guard down just because you’re in reach of victory once the Primeval has been summoned. Also keep this game rule in mind when deciding when to invade the other team’s arena once they have summoned their Primeval. Imagine the effect on their morale if they’ve almost got the Primeval dead and then someone from your team comes in and wipes them all out, healing their Primeval and ruining a bunch of their good work!


Here are some advanced tips to help you make the most of your 24-hour free Gambit trial this weekend in Destiny 2:

High Value Targets will spawn in the arena. They drop motes as they take damage and then drop a lot of motes when they’re killed. HVT’s won’t hang around forever, though. Keep an eye out for HVTs and put them down quickly before they despawn.

The grey section of the enemy score bar indicates motes they are carrying but haven’t banked yet. A well-timed invasion can spoil a whole bunch of the other team’s hard work.

You get an overshield when you invade the other team’s arena. It’s not a powerful enough overshield to soak up a ton of damage if you rush in headlong, but it might be enough protection to buy you a few extra seconds to get in just the right position before you strike.

That’s it, Guardians. If you know the rules, have a plan, and everyone’s on the same page your Gambit team will strike fear into the hearts of your enemies this weekend. Make the most of this opportunity to get ready for September 4 when Gambit goes live for everyone who owns the Forsaken expansion. Good luck and have fun!

For more information about Destiny 2, be sure to check out and follow @DestinyTheGame and @Bungie on Twitter.


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