This post contains spoilers relating to the House of Wolves expansion for Destiny. Read on with caution.

The House of Wolves expansion introduced new content for Bungie’s Destiny, including a new strike called The Shadow Thief. This new strike, located on the Moon, involves you shooting and beating the snot out of Fallen enemies. Here’s a brief description of the strike, taken directly from the selection icon on Destiny’s map:

“A ruthless Fallen mercenary commanding the Wolfship Kaliks-Syn has been spotted near the Moon. Board the Ketch and end the reign of Taniks, the Scarred.”

So, as a Guardian, you’re tasked with going to the Moon, fighting through Fallen Wolves and beating Taniks, the Scarred. Sounds like other strikes in the game at first glance – it is, actually – but this strike is a welcome new addition to those who have played Destiny’s other strikes numerous times.

The strike begins with Variks from the House of Judgement giving a short pep-talk as you fly over the Moon’s surface. Variks describes Taniks as a Fallen mercenary that “pledges to no House, flies no banner, and bows to no Kell.” However, after the House of Wolves escaped the Reef, Taniks joined up with them to cause mayhem and destruction. Taniks is given a Fallen Wolves Ketch, which is positioned over the Temple of Crota on the Moon – he’s there to, you know, cause havoc and chaos and stuff. So, you and the other Guardians in your fireteam are tasked with intercepting Taniks and killing him.

Taniks, the Scarred. Ugly looking thing, isn't he?

Taniks, the Scarred. Ugly looking thing, isn’t he?

A lot of the strike involves the usual fighting hordes of enemies before moving on to the next room, but there is something different: instead of Taniks only appearing in the final boss room, you see him in 3 other parts of the strike before that. Each time you meet him, you inflict a certain amount of damage until he decides to move on. And get this: he doesn’t regenerate the health that he lost like Omnigul does in her strike on Earth. I should also say that you encounter a Fallen Walker…in a small room…with lots of other Fallen Wolves. No sniping with a Black Hammer or Ice Breaker on this one – time to get up close and personal.

The rest of the strike is actually fairly uniform: you fight your way to the final boss room, where you shoot at Taniks and other Fallen Dregs, Vandals, Captains, and Shanks in the room. Taniks has the same movements and behaviors as the Archon Priest, but doesn’t seem to teleport as much. He does the same “power stomp” melee when you get close, and the only other major difference is that he uses the newly introduced Scorch Cannon instead of a Shrapnel Launcher. However, fighting Taniks requires a different strategy than the Archon Strike – the rushing style of aggression the Wolves employ favors tight spaces, and the final room looks like something out of the Prison of Elders – a.k.a, plenty of room, just filled with obstacles. So keep moving if you don’t like death.

One other interesting thing about this strike occurs after you kill Taniks: Fallen Dregs keep streaming out of their spawn doors. After Taniks dissolves, you can pick up his Scorch Cannon and use it as the end timer appears before you’re taken to the rewards screen. Spawning Fallen + Scorch Cannon = fun times!

I think this was an appropriate strike for the House of Wolves expansion, showing another example of the Wolves’ aggressive fighting style and Bungie’s excellent level design. Just like with The Dark Below, this strike comes with a new level 28 strike playlist, Vanguard Dragon – if you’ve got the new DLC, why not give it a go? The Shadow Thief strike is also this week’s Heroic and Nightfall strike, so you can try those on for size while you’re at it. Feel free to leave your thoughts and comments below. We’re always happy to read them!

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