Destiny 2's Journal of the Reef Cryptarch is an Exotic questline unlocked with the arrival of 2018's Festival of the Lost.

Like Nascent Dawn, it's a quest with multiple steps unfolding over several weeks, with new objectives appearing at the weekly reset. As of now, all three steps are available to access.

The final reward unlocks Thunderlord - a returning Exotic from the original game, and the first heavy machine gun in Destiny 2. You only have a limited amount of time to complete the quest - until the weekly reset on November 27th - after which it'll enter the Exotic loot pool.

So if you want an easy way to unlock Thunderlord, then completing the Journal of the Reef Cryptarch quest before then is recommended.

Every step of Destiny 2's Journal of the Reef Cryptarch summary

In brief, here's every step of Journal of the Reef Cryptarch:

  1. Visit Amanda Holliday in the Tower
  2. Find 10 Journal pages from decrypting Engrams or yellow bar Fallen enemies in the EDZ
  3. Complete Atrium, Terminus East and Window's Walk Lost Sectors in EDZ
  4. Complete the Whispered Falls Lost Sector in EDZ
  5. Complete the story mission posted in the EDZ
  6. Return to Amanda to collect the Thunderlord

It's a pretty straightforward set of steps - and can be easily completed in an evening before the November 27th deadline.

Destiny 2 Journal of the Reef Cryptarch Week 1 quest steps

First, visit Amanda Holliday in the Tower. She will give you the first quest step - find 10 Journal pages.

destiny_2_journal_reef_cryptarch_1
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This first step of the Journal of the Lost Reef Cryptarch is the easiest. You have two ways of getting these Journal pages, from decrypting Legendary (purple) or Exotic (gold) Engrams, or from killing specific enemies in the EDZ.

Engrams come from the course of normal play - simply play other activities and they will begin dropping - or you can purchase Legendary Engrams direct from the Tower Cryptarch for 25 Legendary Shards each.

destiny_2_journal_reef_cryptarch_3

Otherwise, you can find yellow bar enemies in the EDZ. If you can complete the Glimmer Extraction Public Event, there will be enough yellow bar enemies that you can complete this quest step in a single attempt.

Destiny 2 Journal of the Reef Cryptarch Week 2 quest steps

Week 2 of the quest should appear the next time you log in after the weekly reset, and has you complete a series of Lost Sectors in the EDZ.

These are Atrium, Terminus East and Window's Walk, all within the same region of the EDZ.

destiny_2_journal_reef_cryptarch_4

These might have Wanted bosses, so will take a little longer than you might remember from the first time you completed them in Destiny 2's first year - bring a Fireteam member or two if you want to speed these along.

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After that, you have a third, Whispered Falls, which is just a short Sparrow ride away. Don't forget to look out for the Cryptarch Easter Egg while you're there.

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With that done, you'll receive a message on the quest, saying 'New coordinates received'.


Festival of the Lost might be over, but we have a new quest - Journal of the Reef Cryptarch Thunderlord quest - to keep us busy. There's otherwise plenty of other reasons to check in each week - from the Ascendant Challenge and Blind Well and Oracle Engine Offering activities to the Last Wish raid - after you've done plenty of Destiny 2 levelling of course. There's also Exotics such as the Ace of Spades, the Chaperone and Malfeasance to unlock.


Destiny 2 Journal of the Reef Cryptarch Week 3 quest steps

Completing the Week 2 Lost Sector steps will see the quest update with the message 'New coordinates received'. For Week 3, this then changes to a message telling you to visit Amanda back in the Tower.

destiny_2_journal_reef_cryptarch_6

Upon visiting Amanda, you'll be told to revisit Whispered Falls. This will be signposted on your map as a story mission.

Visit the location, and use the transmat to teleport to a familiar location - one we won't spoil here. If you're interested, then watch the video below by Arekkz:

It's a fairly straightforward mission, and once it's complete, you need to return to the Tower and speak to Amanda, who will give you the Thunderlord.

Thunderlord is Destiny 2's first heavy machine gun, and a returning Destiny 1 Exotic. It has a few useful perks - Reign Havoc (generate lightning strikes with kills), Lightning Rounds (fires faster and more accurately the longer the trigger is held) and Feeding Frenzy (kills increase reload speed for a short time) - all useful for clearing out groups of enemies.

Remember, you only have until the weekly reset on November 27th to complete the quest. After that, the Thunderlord will no longer be available as part of the questline - but will be added to the Exotic loot pool, according to Bungie.

So if you want a guaranteed way to get the Thunderlord, you have until then to do so.

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Matthew Reynolds

Matthew Reynolds

Guides Editor

Matthew edits guides and other helpful things at Eurogamer.net. When not doing that, he's out and about playing Pokémon Go or continuing to amass his amiibo collection.

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