How to get Defiant Keys in Destiny 2's Season of Defiance

Destiny 2 Defiant Keys - Mara Sov at the farm
(Image credit: Bungie)

Destiny 2's Defiant Keys are a new type of seasonal item that the appropriately named Season of Defiance introduces to the game. Unlike previous seasonal currencies that you could earn from doing just about anything, each Defiant Key is a specific consumable item that you can only get through certain means. 

Spending a key at the end of a Defiant Battleground activity gets you some seasonal rewards, and you can even improve what drops from the chest by upgrading the War Table in the HELM. This way you can get extra Defiant Engrams, War Table reputation, or just some more gear. Here's how to earn Defiant Keys in Destiny 2's new season.

How to get Defiant Keys 

Complete activities to earn Defiant Keys (Image credit: Bungie)

Forget about those Seraph Keycodes, Map Fragments, and Treasure Coordinates from the previous Destiny seasons: Defiant Keys are the new way you unlock extra rewards at the end of the seasonal playlist activity Defiant Battleground. As before, these chests give you seasonal gear—more importantly, they have a chance to give out a red border version of a seasonal weapon if you have a key, letting you extract a craftable pattern when you collect enough.

You have a chance to earn a Defiant Key by completing activities across the system, including:

  • Lightfall missions 
  • The Terminal Overload activity in Neomuna
  • Crucible matches
  • Gambit matches
  • Vanguard Ops playlist activities
  • Raids

You can also claim Defiant Keys from the War Table as a reward for gaining season reputation ranks—you get these by completing Defiant Battleground activities. There are also some keys up for grabs on the paid season pass as a reward for reaching certain ranks.

As ever, vendor upgrades offer you a way to earn more rewards as well as more Defiant Keys. Unlocking the Queensguard's Arsenal upgrade from the War Table provides a small chance to drop a Defiant Key whenever you focus seasonal weapons or armour—handy if you're doing one a week to get the craftable weapons.

If you're wondering when you unlock the War Table in the HELM, it's after you arrive on Neomuna, receive a message from Mara Sov, and then complete the Defiant Battleground: EDZ activity.

Sean Martin
Guides Writer

Sean's first PC games were Full Throttle and Total Annihilation and his taste has stayed much the same since. When not scouring games for secrets or bashing his head against puzzles, you'll find him revisiting old Total War campaigns, agonizing over his Destiny 2 fit, or still trying to finish the Horus Heresy. Sean has also written for EDGE, Eurogamer, PCGamesN, Wireframe, EGMNOW, and Inverse.