It’s Festival of the Lost at the moment in Destiny 2, which means you are probably trying to gather as many Cipher Decoders as possible, to get as much loot as possible from the Haunted Forest. This week has been full of strats, feedback from the community about the drop rates and then two buffs from Bungie. In this video I’m going to show you the best method for farming Cipher Decoders, so you can get your hands on some of the best Festival of the Lost loot as quickly and efficiently as possible.
The main activity in Festival of the Lost is the Haunted Forest, which is approx 15 mins killing waves of increasingly difficult enemies and mini-bosses and then opening chests at the end of your run. There’s a single chest for a successful Haunted Forest completion and then there are other chests behind the main one, which you can open with Cipher Decoders.
Cipher Decoders can be found around the solar system from activities such as Strikes, Crucible etc. They are essential keys that allow you to open the extra chests, and get your hands on the Festival of the Lost loot – like the Braytech Werewolf and the Horror Story Auto Rifles. As well as these 450 autos you can get masks and other loot from the end chests.
There’s been a bunch of feedback from the community this week saying that the drop rate of Cipher Decoders was too stingy, in that they weren’t appearing very often. Guardians would run strikes and crucible matches and not see any drop for them at all. This was pretty annoying, preparation for going into the Haunted Forest with a good haul of Cipher Decoders took hours of preparation.
Bungie responded a couple of times this week. On Thursday Bungie tweeted out
“We’ve deployed a fix that will drastically increase Cipher Decoder drop rates from completing activities throughout the game. We’ll continue to monitor the situation to determine if further fixes are necessary.”
Often when Bungie introduces a new item or currency that leads to loot, the Destiny community gets to work to try and find ways to farm in the most efficient manner. It turned out this week there was a way through Spire of Stars raid to farm Cipher Decoders VERY efficiently. However, much like earlier in the season with the AFK farming for Umbral Engrams, that was put a stop to within a few hours with Bungie saying
“Additionally, we have fixed an exploit that allowed players to farm various currencies from the Spire of Stars raid.”
Even after the hotfix for the drop rate, the feedback kept coming in saying the community wanted MORE. We clearly have an insatiable appetite for Cipher Decoders. Bungie updated us yesterday by saying
“We’ve further adjusted drop rates for Cipher Decoders so that two drops per activity completion when applicable. We’ll continue to monitor feedback over the weekend. Please note, Ciphers do NOT drop from the following: enemy kills, Gambit, Forges, and non-playlist Strikes.”
However, there is a way to farm Cipher Decoders pretty easily, within the boundaries of the game. No glitches, no swapping checkpoints or anything like that, no exploits. Simply… Patrols. Especially, Moon Patrols and catching up with our old friend Toland.
The reason why this method is so good is that all you have to do is speak to Toland once, then go and find him at another location. He’ll tell you where to go with a marker on the map, so it’s very easy. These patrols take roughly 20-30 seconds to complete and you can repeat them over and over.
Using this method I’ve been getting anywhere between 20-30 per hour. With Bungie’s double drop rate, this method is the most efficient method I have come across for farming Cipher Decoders. I have heard some people do Heroic Story Missions and the Nightfall Ordeal. For me, they take way too long and the Moon Patrol method is fast and very easy and I can get prepared for a Haunted Forest run in 20-30 mins.
Here’s what I have been doing. Land at Sanctuary near Eris Morn and then head towards the Anchor of Light, Archers Line or Sorrow’s Harbour. Get your ghost out and you can see the available bounties. You can see the Toland Patrol looks similar to a ghost. If Toland isn’t there, you can either go to another area to try and find him or you can do the quick ‘kill enemies’ patrol where all you have to do to complete the patrol is fill up to 100% by killing anything. These bounties look like a diamond shape with four small triangles on the side.
The three Toland locations I have been farming are:
- Archers Line – Start at Sanctuary but this time go left. Once you have made to where the big steel structure starts, head up to the right. Watch out for the Hive with the Sword, and they always seem to be Vex Harpies hanging out there too. Toland should be sitting in a crater, then interact with him and watch out for the marker on the map where he’s telling you to go. If you can’t see the Toland Patrol, try doing the other diamond shaped Patrol first, that should be quick (1-2mins).
- Anchor of Light – Start at Sanctuary and then get on your sparrow and head to the right. Keep going around until you meet the Fallen, and Toland should be on a little mound just behind them. Talk to Toland and then head to where we send you and wait for him to stop talking. If you can’t see the Toland Patrol, try doing the other diamond shaped Patrol first, that should be quick (1-2mins).
- Sorrow’s Harbour – This time he’s right at the back so you’ll want to get on your sparrow and follow the path I take on-screen or check the location of the patrol by getting our your ghost. If he’s not there, try doing a quick patrol and then he should appear.
You may get lucky and simply have to find Toland when you arrive in each location. Once you have found Toland in each location, head into Orbit and then back onto the moon to repeat the process.
I was getting drops every third or fourth patrol and with the double drops and the patrols only taking a few minutes, this led to double-digit amounts of Cipher Decoders, making it much more satisfying going into the Haunted Forest and hunting for the Festival of the Lost loot.
I found this is the best method of farming for me. I didn’t try the Spire of Stars checkpoint glitch, although it did look awesome. There’s something about this method of farming that reminded me of running around in Destiny 1. We used to have to run around, do patrols and collect planetary materials for levelling up weapons – Spin Metal and Helium Filaments. We’ve spent hours running around the planets. I guess we have moved on from those days with seasonal activities, but there was something in this farming method which took me back to the days of Destiny 1.
Let me know how you get on with farming Cipher Decoders and let me know if you get a good roll of the Braytech Werewolf or the Horror Story Auto Rifle. Also, if you find a better or faster way – let us know down in the comments and share with the community!