The Taken King is dead. Yet still his armies writhe and claw at our worlds. Even as you led the assault on the dreadnaught, a powerful Taken warbeast fled for the safety of the Shrine of Oryx.
The would-be Prince Malok works to perfect a dark sorcery. But the Reef and the Tower are in disagreement about Malok’s fate. Variks would see Malok locked in the Prison of Elders, whereas Eris Morn believes the flimsy prison could not contain his power, and therefore orders his destruction.
What is Variks up to, why did he want to imprison Malok rather than kill him? Does the creation of the Taken Armor and weapons have something to do with Variks’s hidden agenda?
Welcome back Guardians, today’s Destiny lore episode will explore some new lore from the April Update, specifically relating to the new Taken Armour and how it was created, which involves, Variks, Petra Venj, the Techeuns and the Prison of Elders. This is myelin games and I hope you enjoy this latest Destiny Lore episode.
Firstly, let me explain the short plot line of this April update. You receive the quest, “Pretender to the Throne”, which has you board the Dreadnaught to search for a rising Taken power that seeks to claim the Taken Throne. This is revealed to be Malok.
However, Variks does not order the destruction of this rising threat, but rather his capture so that he may be brought to the Prison of Elders. Your ghost, questions this logic by saying,
“You want him alive? Whatever happened to kill them back”.
Aboard the Dreadnaught, Malok escapes capture and flees to the Shrine of Oryx. We discover his location by finding Echoes of Malok and providing them to Eris Morn. Eris claims Variks to be a fool, if he thinks the prison can hold Malok and Eris orders us to destroy the would-be Prince. The Blighted Chalice Strike mission then provides the opportunity to kill Malok.
Upon destroying Malok and returning to the Reef to speak with Variks, Variks says,
“So Malok is dead. Unfortunate. Wanted Malok in Prison of Elders. Would have learned much judging him. No matter. There are other Taken.”
We are then rewarded with the Taken Sword, The Dreadfang. The Dreadfang has some very interesting flavor text which I will cover in a different video, however my initial thoughts is that the Dreadfang text is narrated by Savathun, Oryx’s sister and mother to Malok.
“Kingly brother, I thank you for the gift of your failure. The sword logic demands a pinnacle.”
We will dive down that rabbit hole in another video.
So, why is Variks, storing Taken in the Prison of the Elders. Before discussing this I think it is important to understand some backstory lore about the Prison of Elders. We do not know whether the Queen of the Awoken created the Prison of Elders herself, or if it was something that was already present when she took control over the House of Wolves. But the idea of a battle arena was taken from Fallen traditions and the Fallen used a battle arena to resolve grudges and status fights. Any vengeful Fallen who lost the status fights were locked away to prevent uprisings and unrest amongst the Fallen. This is detailed in the Prison of Elders Grimoire card.
Once the Queen took control of the House of Wolves, she gave the Prison of Elders a different purpose. In the Prison of Elders, The Reef grimoire card, Cayde-6 believes the Queen uses the Prison as a way of developing military tactics and gaining intel on her enemies. Cayde-6 believes this is why we were invited to the Prison in the first place, so that the Queen could study how the different races fight, including us, Guardians.
In addition, the Queen commonly refers to the captives in the Prison of Elders as her prizes or trophies. This may be an attempt for the Awoken to showcase their strength, might and cunningness, intimidating their enemies. Another advantage of the Prison of Elders is the Queen trades can trade her trophies as favors with other powerful sources. For example, Skolas was sent to the Nine as a gift and apology for the Crows entering the Nine’s territory.
The new grimoire cards released with the April Update provides further information to how the Prison of Elders is used, specifically to how it is used to experiment on the captives. Sylok, The Defiled grimoire card details one such experimentation, called a mindscan. Sylok is even reduced to no more than just a number, subject 667.
In this card, two unidentified beings are probing Sylok’s mind under the orders of Petra Venj, it reads,
“This will never work. We should either bring in a witch or put him out of his misery.”
“Petra said she needs this data. Don’t ask me why.”
In typically Taken Hive fashion, Sylok mocks the mind probes and says “You’re being too gentle… you’ll learn nothing this way! The two conducting the experiment increase it’s intensity and probe more sensitive areas of Sylok’s mind, areas responsible for pain and trauma, thinking that through torture it will give them the data they need.
Obviously the “researchers” did not understand that the Hive feed off pain and torment and when they probe this aspect of his mind, Sylok relishes in the pain, saying, “gggglorious pain” and the experiment begins to spiral out of control, with the researchers yelling,
“It’s too much! Its overloading! Shut if off!”
Sylok even appears to take control for a moment in time and says,
“The greater the anguish, the greater the reward… I know you. See your thoughts. I will use the pain. Reach in… Give me the pain. Take away all but agony. Through it, I transcend. Just once more.. more…”
20 minutes then pass and appears that the they “researchers” have regained control and the card finishes with the experiment being repeated again. On a side note, one of the most interesting things about this card, is Sylok yells “BLLLESSSSSEEEDDD is the N-Nastareth!!” Unfortunately, I do not know what Nastareth is and cannot find any information on this.
It is now obvious that the Prison of Elders is being used to experiment on the Taken but what are they trying to discover… another new grimoire card reveals that they are trying transfer the power of the Taken for their own use. This grimoire card is, Report: Taken Power.
It details a report from the Crows and explains how the Techeuns are required to transfer the power of the Taken. It reads,
“After some initial trials with Prison specimens, we can report the program is now ready for full-scale production. Reports .80 through .86 cover the trials involving the Techeuns. The power they wield in the transferal process ensures a 100% success rate, and we are now confident only one Techuen will need to be present for the transfer.”
It goes on to say,
“Transferred Taken power has a throughput rate of [redacted] which is obviously lower than we want. Transfer still results in incredibly potent arms and armour, so for the moment this “noise” is acceptable. Future improvements to the process will attempt to up the throughput rate.”
As hinted at, the Taken armour can have an affect on guardians, what is described as noise, high frequency sound, they are Taken screams, screams that can shatter plastic and burst blood vessels if not baffled.
Whilst Petra Venj, the Techeuns and Variks seek to continually stock the Prison with Taken subjects to manufacture Taken armour and weapons, their teamwork has not been seamless. The card also hints that since the departure of the Queen, the relationship between Petra Venj and the Techeuns has deteriorated and assassination attempts have even been attempted on Petra Venj.
We have defeated Oryx the Taken King and now our closest allies within the Reef appear to be forming their own Taken army. We unknowingly become test subjects to the Awoken when we don the Desolate Taken Armour.
As if to disguise their deceit or to just add insult to injury, the Reef has sold their experimental armour to the Eververse Trading Company, who now sell the spoils of experimental torture for a fee. Despite the absence of the Queen, the Awoken in the Reef are becoming a force to feared, fueled by Techeun experiments and the silver of Guardians.
Thank you for watching this latest destiny lore episode, if you would like to support the channel, leave the words, Lord of War. For some reason, I could not stop imagining, Variks, as Nicholas Cage from the movie Lord of War. Creating and selling weapons to fuel a war just to sell more weapons.
As usual it has been a pleasure, this is myelin games.. Peace???