How to Beat Proving Grounds GM Nightfall (Season 17)

Destiny 2‘s Season of the Haunted comes with a new rotation of Grandmaster Nightfall Strikes, with the featured one for the week of July 5 through July 12 being Proving Grounds. Unlike past Seasons from pre-The Witch Queen era, Season of the Haunted will reprise the same system as Season of the Risen, where Grandmaster Nightfalls can be tackled as players wish, in any order, and at any given time. This makes attaining or gilding the Conqueror Seal much easier than in the past, as Destiny 2 players can launch any GM Nightfall from this Season’s rotation when they want, as long as they didn’t complete it yet.

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Best Destiny 2 Builds to Use in Proving Grounds GM Nightfall in Season 17

There are many great Destiny 2 weapons to use in GM Nightfalls in Season of the Haunted, but guns are only a small part of a given player’s loadout, which instead consists of several factors — such as subclass, Aspects, Fragments, abilities, and mods. This section will cover the best builds to use in Proving Grounds for Season of the Haunted.

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Destiny 2‘s Hunters have two major options in the Proving Grounds GM, with them being a Solar 3.0 build that revolves around damage with Blade Barrage and a Void 3.0 build that revolves around support and invisibility.


The Solar build can be crafted with either Star-Eater Scales for extra Super damage when picking up Orbs of Power, or it can go a slightly different route with Assassin’s Cowl for increased survivability and invisibility from melee final blows or finishers.

The Void 3.0 build should be made with Omnioculus, a fantastic Exotic that provides team-wide damage resistance while invisible and allows the user to chain Smoke Bombs to make allies invisible by refunding melee energy and providing an extra melee charge.

There is a variation to this build that uses Aeon Swift to grant Special and Heavy ammo to the team while using finishers on Elite enemies or mini-bosses, respectively.


This works great with the Echo of Obscurity Fragment, which makes the user invisible after using a finisher.

Destiny 2‘s Titans can offer great support with a Void 3.0 build or become virtually immortal with the new Solar 3.0 builds, both being very valuable in Proving Grounds.

As far as Void 3.0 builds for Titans go, they can choose from a handful of Exotics, such as the Helm of Saint-14 to blind enemies that enter Ward of Dawn and grant more Overshields, Ursa Furiosa to provide frequent support via Banner Shield, or Heart of Inmost Light for high uptime on all abilities.

As far as Solar 3.0 Titan builds go, the best Exotic to use is Loreley Splendor Helm, which provides on-demand Sunspots either when being critically wounded or using the Barricade ability, which also helps with Classy Restoration.


Another Exotic that pairs well with this build is Synthoceps, increasing melee damage with Throwing Hammers. Phoenix Cradle also works wonders with Solar 3.0 because it also provides Sol Invictus to teammates.

Destiny 2‘s Warlocks also have two major options, with the best all-around being a Stasis build with the Osmiomancy Exotic gloves and the Bleak Watcher Aspect, chaining freeze all over the battlefield and controlling both adds and Champions quite easily.

This build is fantastic to increase the team’s survivability, and it has multiple intrinsic synergies with its various Aspects and Fragments. Using two or even three copies of the Firepower mod helps with spamming grenades and having a high uptime on Bleak Watcher.


The other build is for Void 3.0 Warlocks, who can use Contraverse Hold for improved grenades that recharge faster, eventually throwing Vortex Grenades every few seconds and debuffing enemies via Echo of Undermining. This build is great for support and increased damage against priority targets like bosses and Champions.

Generally speaking, it’s a good idea to have two copies of the seasonal Armor of the Dying Star mod on a given chest armor. Proving Grounds will have Acute Solar Burn as a modifier, and the boss room can be especially dangerous because of the fiery meteors.

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How to Beat Proving Grounds GM Nightfall in Season 17 – Approaching the Land Tank

The first section of Destiny 2‘s Proving Grounds GM Nightfall requires players to make their way through a mix of Cabal and Vex enemies on Nessus, with the enemies becoming exclusively Cabal as players approach the tank.

For the initial section, it’s worth shooting enemies from afar as Cabal and Vex fight one another, slowly clearing a path to the entrance of the land tank. Players should be especially mindful of the Scorpius Turrets in the area and the first Unstoppable Champion that spawns there, as the two can rapidly defeat a whole team.


It’s best to have someone on the team move along the pipes on the left side and take out Scorpius Turrets before they activate, and have the remaining players deal with the Unstoppable Champion.

Below the pipes and a bit further ahead from the Unstoppable Champion is a Barrier Champion, which players can easily take down once they isolate it. Then, more Cabal will spawn via Drop Pods, including another Unstoppable Champion.

Three more Scorpius Turrets will be waiting in the arena where the first mini-boss spawns, and players should take them out before engaging the enemy Cabal, as defeating the Unstoppable Champion triggers the mini-boss encounter.

Alongside the mini-boss, one more Unstoppable Champion will spawn, and some additional Cabal enemies with it. Players should isolate the Unstoppable Champion first and then focus on the mini-boss once all adds are defeated.

The boss can be damaged safely from afar, but it will deploy a shield in the arena once half of its health bar is depleted, and more Cabal will spawn on the left side of the map, including an Unstoppable Champion. Again, it’s best to defeat them first.

Then, players should carefully approach the Colossus boss to enter its bubble and destroy the shield. Once inside the mini-boss’ bubble, Destiny 2 players should try to stick near the Colossus as they shoot the shield, as this causes the boss to not shoot missiles or stomp players.

Once the shield is down, players can reprise damaging the Colossus from afar, and finally, enter the tank.

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How to Beat Proving Grounds GM Nightfall in Season 17 – Vehicle Bay

The next big encounter in the Proving Grounds GM Nightfall is the so-called Vehicle Bay, where players will face three shielded Cabal Interceptors, multiple Cabal enemies, Champions, and finally, two tanks.

To access the area, players will have to drop down and immediately find a safe spot from enemy fire. However, it’s useful to defeat as many enemies from above as possible before descending into the room. Cabal Interceptors are the priority targets here.

A big Cabal Colossus named Val Kladior will stand in the middle of the room and aggressively shoot missiles until defeated, which can be done from afar, behind the shields.

It’s preferable to kill the Psions on the upper sides of the room before focusing on Val Kladior. Two Barrier Champions usually start to move slowly toward the players once the mini-boss is defeated, and they should be prioritized to avoid unnecessary deaths.

It’s worth finding a safe spot when the Barrier Champions are defeated, as more Cabal will spawn, including several War Beasts, which should be dealt with before closing in.

Players should then sweep through regular Cabal enemies, defeat the remaining Cabal Interceptor, and a named Psion called Optus Taxaat. At that point, two more Psions and Champions will spawn in the area, one per side each. Regular Cabal and two Goliath Tanks will also spawn.

It’s best to defeat the Psions first, then either the tanks or the Champions, possibly focusing on the former while keeping the latter stunned to avoid incoming fire.

The Goliath Tanks are not too hard to defeat, as players can shoot their weak spots on the four engines at the sides of the vehicle. Then, Destiny 2 players can finally deal with the two Barrier Champions and clear the room.


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How to Beat Proving Grounds GM Nightfall in Season 17 – The Tank’s Engines

After descending further into the Halphas Electus, Destiny 2 players will soon face several Cabal enemies and an Unstoppable Champion, which should be defeated from afar, safely.

They will then encounter Psions on the other side of the tank’s wheel, and they will have to defeat them before grabbing the Arc Charge to disrupt the tank’s energy flow. A major Cabal Phalanx called Val Cempas will stand near the Arc Charge, and the best way to defeat it is to use Anti-Barrier weapons while aiming for the head.

Once they pick the Arc Charge, players should immediately drop it and instead focus on the enemies that spawn behind the door that connects the wheel to the middle of the tank, where multiple Gladiators, Scorpius Turrets, and regular Cabal will appear.

Near where players need to deposit the Arc Charge, a Barrier Champion will spawn, and players should take it out as soon as possible, avoiding the missiles. It’s worth noting that Colossi’s and Barrier Champions’ missiles will apply the Slowed debuff and remove the Restoration buff if present. Players should then grab and deposit the first Arc Charge.


Once that is done, the door that leads to the other wheel opens, and players will again face several Scorpius Turrets, Psions, and a Barrier Champion. These enemies should all be dealt with from either the entrance to the wheel room or the room where the Arc Charges are deposited to stay safe.

A major Psion named Optus Vocca will also be on the other side of the room, and players have to defeat it to unlock the Arc Charge.

Again, the Charge should be ignored to deal with the enemies that will spawn in the other room. Much like before, Destiny 2 players will again need to deal with a Barrier Champion, Gladiators, and multiple Cabal enemies.

The enemies are fewer than before, and the encounter should be relatively smooth. Once enemies are dead, players can grab the Charge and deposit it to access the next room.

Here, multiple War Beasts will start running toward the players, and both a Barrier and an Unstoppable Champion will spawn. Players should stun one of the two and burst the other down, then defeat the remaining one. There will also be multiple yellow-bar Cabal, including Phalanxes, that will need to be killed to proceed to the boss.

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How to Beat Proving Grounds GM Nightfall in Season 17 – Boss Room

Players will then use the elevator to the boss room, where they will need to interact with a pillar to begin the Rite of Proving. It’s helpful to know that players don’t need to wait if they need their Super back, as activating the pillar will restore full Super energy.

Once players do that, the boss will spawn from the flaming arena, and it will immediately fire meteors at the players, which have tracking, but they can be shot and destroyed.

There are a few places where players can shield themselves from damage in the arena, and one of them is the blazing corridor below the flaming arena. Even if the corridor activates and players start taking damage, using a Healing Rift or activating Classy Restoration will completely negate the damage, allowing players to dispose of adds safely.

Then, the boss should be damaged from afar until its first phase ends, which occurs when players deplete its first health bar.


At that point, the boss will go to the center of the map and create a bubble shield that works the same way as the one at the beginning of the Grandmaster Nightfall, with the difference being that the boss will stomp and attack players even if they are close to it.

Before tackling the shield, however, players must defeat two Unstoppable Champions that spawn from the left and right sides of the map. Once the Champions are defeated, players should enter the bubble and fire rapid shots at the shied, finding cover immediately after.

This process should be repeated until the device explodes and the bubble dissipates, leaving the boss vulnerable once more.

Adds will spawn, and Destiny 2 players should defeat them before engaging the boss. Again, the objective is to survive while chipping away at the boss’ health bar. Depleting the second health bar will trigger the bubble shield again, and this time the boss will go on top of the flaming arena.

Like before, two Unstoppable Champions will spawn, one per side of the map. Players should prioritize them before taking out the shield, which should be done following the same method as before, this time jumping down to safety to the blazing corridor.

Once the shield is down, the boss will become vulnerable again, and adds will spawn, which should be taken out as soon as possible. Players will then have one last health bar to deplete, and the boss will be defeated. This will complete the Proving Grounds Grandmaster Nightfall, awarding Destiny 2 players with loot and a Triumph associated with the Conqueror Seal.

Destiny 2 is available now for PC, PS4, PS5, Stadia, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S.

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