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Destiny Strike Scoring mode explained, how to get Rainbow Medals and Gold Tier Medals in Vanguard Elite

How to get points and the elusive Rainbow Medal in The Dawning's biggest new addition.

The Destiny Vanguard Elite mode - otherwise known as Strike Scoring - is a new addition as part of the The Dawning event in late 2016, alongside the return of SRL 2016 and much more.

Vanguard Elite scores each fireteam as they take on the SIVA Crisis Strike playlists and Nightfall, rewarding players points for killing enemies, earning streaks, using Supers and more.

If you're interested in other activities from The Dawning, including SRL 2016, how you can unlock a Year 3 Icebreaker and find the Lysander's Cry hidden sparrow.

Strike Scoring medals explained, and how to improve you score for Gold Tier Medals in Vanguard Elite

In all SIVA Crisis, SIVA Crisis Heroic and weekly Nightfall playlists, scoring has been enabled, awarding plays points and medals for how they play.

In short, the more enemies you kill, the higher you score. Unlike Prison of the Elders, the way you kill individual enemies doesn't matter too much - precision shots don't make much difference - but the way you kill them in succession is the main contributing factor to medals, as well as the enemy type - the bigger and harder they are, the more rewarding they become.

As such, you'll want to play with Streaks and Sprees in mind - more on how to do this effectively in the elusive 'Rainbow Medals' explainer below - but there are many different types of medals you can receive, such as (but not limited to) the following:

Streaks, Sprees and Rampages - Earn 3, 6 and 9 enemy kills close after one another with a one particular weapon type.

Fireteam Streak - Get a stream of rapid enemy kills as a group to earn 300 points.

Super Medals - Each Super has its own medal type, but in short, taking out as many enemies as possible (the Hot Shot medal for using the Hunter's Golden Gun rewards 600 points) and generating Orbs (the medal Cycle of Light is worth 200 points) is something to focus on. The Hunter's Tether is particularly useful, with the Entrapment medal (kill 5 Tethered enemies) netting a bonus 100 points, and keeps enemies trapped together for an easy streak.

Concentrated Fire - This is from getting assists, but since you want to take out enemies as soon as possible individually, is not worth aiming for (despite the Bounties that may lure you in).

Takedown - Getting melee kills will earn you this medal. Explosive - Kill enemies with grenades, and multiple enemies for an Explosive Streak medal.

End of match medals - These include Bronze, Silver and Gold Tiers by hitting scores, Indestructible and Flawless if yourself or the entire team completes the Strike without dying, as well as the following Brutal Efficiency and Time Bonus.

Brutal Efficiency - Killing 150 enemies in a single Strike as a team will reward you this one. This is Strike-dependant and depends on how team mates pull their weight, but since you'll be wanting to kill everything you come across, it's not a bad medal to aim for.

While getting a gold medal sounds intimating, especially if you're playing with randoms, they're actually more easier than you think if you take the time to clear the vast majority of enemies along the way. Volume is the key here.

You'll get told when you hit the bronze and silver requirements along the way, hinting at your progress, if you need to slow down and take on some more groups, plus you get a 5000 or so point bonus when you defeat the final boss.

Finally, make sure you get your fill of Bounties before you embark on Strikes; there are five that appear on the server reset from the daily Bounty board, as well as three every week from Zavala, including a Nightfall Bounty for the Icebreaker.

Other general tips on how to improve:

  • The par for the gold medal changes according to the Strike you're running, but in short, if you kill most enemies along the way, it should be easily achievable.
  • If you're high enough level to go for either SIVA Crisis playlist, we'd recommend the Heroic version. You can use the burns to your advantage to clear enemies out faster, plus there are usually more enemies available to source points from.
  • Whoever gets the last hit on an enemy takes the kill. While all points go into the same pool, this is important to note if you're personally aiming for a streak or spree, so don't try and steal your team member's kills if you can avoid it!
  • Particular targets - such as the Taken orbs and SIVA nodes - don't give out points for destroying them.
  • Certain Strikes have areas with endless respawning enemies. If you're struggling to get medals, especially for the Competitive Spirit book, then learning where these are can be useful.
  • When you have a par time - such as with the Nightfall Strike - finishing quicker will reward you with a 'Time Bonus' medal that increases in value with the more time you have remaining.

Want more Destiny: Rise of Iron guides, tips and tricks? Then read our Wrath of the Machine walkthrough and guides, complete list of all Dormant SIVA Cluster locations, tips on how to reach Destiny's max Light level, how to complete the Exotic Gjallarhorn Quest, Khvostov 7G-OX Quest and Thorn Quest and new modes Vanguard Elite Strike Scoring and SRL.

How to get Rainbow Medals in Destiny's 'Strike Scoring' Vanguard Elite mode

Perhaps the more confusing sounding medal - and the requirement of a Competitive Spirit book milestone and many Bounties - is earning Rainbow Medals (worth 400 points on top of the points earned with other streak medal bonuses).

To earn a Rainbow Medal, you need to get Primary, Special and a Heavy Streak back-to-back. The 'rapidly' part in this description is a little misleading, as it's the individual streaks themselves that require rapid kills.

You can kill three enemies in reasonably quick succession with a Primary, you can then take as long as you need to get the following Special streak, and then the same again with the Heavy streak. It's only the order that's important, so the key is remembering what stage you've just done and what to do next. Deaths don't appear to reset your progress for a Rainbow Medal, either.

In short, you have time to look at streak opportunities for each stage - such as a small group of lower-tier enemies to pick off one after another - before changing weapon type and aiming to get three or more kills. Once you get the third streak-type, you'll get a Rainbow medal.

If you're struggling in particular, then we recommend working with a fireteam and calling out a group of enemies for you to source a streak from. As with anything in Destiny, communication helps; it's frustrating when you're two kills down only for a team member to take out the third, so this might make it easier.

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Matthew Reynolds


Matthew Reynolds edited guides and other helpful things at Eurogamer from 2010 - 2023. When he wasn't doing that, he was out and about playing Pokémon Go or continuing to amass his amiibo collection.