How to get Exotic Ciphers - Destiny 2

Learn where to get Exotic Ciphers so you can get some special Exotic gear in Destiny 2.

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Exotic Ciphers are another new currency in Destiny 2. These are single-use items that are used to acquire Exotic weapons you may have missed. The trouble starts with working out where to get Exotic Ciphers, as it would appear there aren’t a lot of sources that drop them. To make matters worse, you can only hold one at a time.

Get Exotic Ciphers

At the moment, you can only get an Exotic Cipher from the Season Pass at Rank 55. This places the Exotic Cipher at just over halfway through the pass. It’s going to take either a whole lot of farming or several weeks of casual playing in order to hit Rank 55 for that single cipher.

exotic cipher destiny 2
So far, the only guaranteed way to get an Exotic Cipher is from the Season Pass. Even players with the free version can get one.

As for what Exotic Ciphers are used for, as the description states, they can be traded to Xur or Master Rahool the Cryptarch for “a reward”. Mysterious wording aside, Master Rahool will exchange one Exotic Cipher for an Exotic item from previous seasons that was either tied to a now-unavailable Exotic quest or available as part of the Season Pass. Right now, this includes Leviathan’s Breath, Eriana’s Vow, Bastion, Symmetry, and Devil’s Ruin. In the future, expect Witherhoard to be in there, along with whatever hidden Exotics are in Season of Arrivals.

destiny 2 exotic cipher master rahool the cryptarch
An Exotic Cipher can be traded for a previous season's Exotic weapon.

In terms of what an Exotic Cipher is used for at Xur, it seems as if players are able to purchase a second Exotic engram. This is helpful for those looking to fill out their collection with any missed from the previous season.

Unfortunately, the Season Pass is the only confirmed place where you can get an Exotic Cipher. In saying this, I wouldn’t be surprised if they can also drop from high-end activities like dungeons, raids, or event Grandmaster Nightfall: The Ordeal. In the event the Season Pass is the only way to get Exotic Ciphers, you’ll need to think real hard about where you want to use it.


Getting Exotic Ciphers in Destiny 2 is a bit of a mystery at the moment, except for the one guaranteed in the Season Pass (it’s in the free line). Make sure you use it wisely, as you may only get one a season. No one has been able to confirm a secondary source. Be sure to check out the Destiny 2 guide for other helpful tips.

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