Destiny 2: How to get the Sleeper Simulant Exotic Fusion Rifle

Back in the original Destiny, a well-hidden and rather lengthy questline allowed players to unlock a powerful Exotic tier weapon called the Sleeper Simulant, and fans who hopped into Destiny 2’s recently released Warmind DLC were happy to discover that the Sleeper Simulant Fusion Rifle is making an encore appearance. If you want to know how to add Destiny 2’s Sleeper Simulant to your personal Exotics collection, this guide will show you every step you need to follow.

Finish The Warmind Campaign

Before you can start working towards the Sleeper Simulant, you have to first finish the Warmind DLC’s new story campaign. Doing so shouldn’t take too long since the campaign only consists of a handful of missions, but clearing the campaign in its entirety is an essential first step. You’ll know you’ve finished the campaign when Zavala offers you a new Exotic armor piece.

Complete Ana’s Post-Campaign Missions

With the story campaign finished, Warmind’s new NPC quest giver Ana Bray will recruit you to complete a series of new missions. First, she’ll offer a mission called ‘Legacy Code,’ and after you’ve wrapped that up she’ll give you a second mission called ‘A Piece of the Past.’ Once you’ve’ completed both those missions Ana will award you with a unique-looking Legendary tier hand cannon called IKELOS_HC_V1.0.1 before hooking you up with two additional missions: ‘Violent Intel,’ and ‘Nascent Dawn.’

Unlike the first two missions, Violent Intel and Nascent Dawn aren’t structured linear experiences and are instead ongoing tasks that you can complete out in the open world. For Violent Intel, all you have to do is fill up a progress gauge by killing Hive and Cabal enemies with precision shots with the IKELOS equipped in the new Hellas Basin region on Mars.

Be sure to keep an eye out for any public events that are happening since they’re a great source for large enemy groups. When you’ve finished Violent Intel, Ana will give you a follow-up task called ‘Rasputin’s Culling’ (more on the Nascent Dawn quest later).   

For Rasputin’s Culling, you have to eliminate ‘powerful enemies,’ i.e. enemies that have a large yellow or orange health bar, with the IKELOS equipped. This step can be a bit of a pain if you don’t already know where to look for yellow bar enemies, but the good news is that you’re not confined to Mars.

Nessus is a good place to venture to for this step since a lot of the planet’s public events involve a yellow bar enemy, and if you can trigger the Heroic version of a Fallen glimmer extraction event (the EDZ has multiple Fallen glimmer extraction event sites), that’s another way to spawn a guaranteed yellow bar enemy. Also note that you don’t have to land the killing blow on the yellow bar enemy, but let off a few rounds with the IKELOS.

When you’ve finished Rasputin’s Culling, Ana will give you yet another task: ‘Warmind’s Glory.’ This task is much more straightforward than the first two, requiring you to simply finish five Heroic Strikes with the IKELOS equipped. Just make sure your Power Level is up to snuff since Heroic Strikes now have a minimum recommended Power Level of 350 (if your Power Level is anywhere north of 345, you should be ok, especially if you have some friends you can coordinate with).

Sleeper Nodes and Escalation Protocols

If you were hoping that you’d be done grinding by this point, well I’ve got some bad news for you. This is the last big hurdle to overcome before the Sleeper Simulant is yours, but when I say it’s a big hurdle, I really do mean it. This new task has two separate steps: activating Sleeper Nodes and clearing Escalation Protocol waves.

During your previous journeys throughout Warmind, you might have stumbled across floating diamond-looking objects that asked you for an override code when you approached. Those floating diamonds are called Sleeper Nodes and the time has come to start activating them. Remember the Nascent Dawn mission Ana gave you? Well if you haven’t completed it yet, now’s the time to do so.

For the Nascent Dawn mission, you have to first finish three Patrols on Mars and then do one of the two Hellas Basin Lost Sectors, all with the IKELOS equipped. For each activity you complete, you’ll receive an item called a Resonant Stem, and once all four tasks are finished you can combine the four stems into an Override Frequency.

Each Override Frequency has a matching Sleeper Node it can open, which means you can’t just use any Override Frequency with any Sleeper Node. If you examine an Override Frequency, it will offer clues as to where its corresponding node is, and once you’re in the right area you’ll hear music emanating from the node that will guide you to it.

There are 40 Sleeper Nodes in total, but you only need to find and open 15 of them for the Sleeper Simulant quest (just make sure you have IKELOS equipped when you open them). Once you complete the Nascent Dawn task, you’ll be able to find additional Resonant Stems by completing the following activities:

  • Patrols (grants one stem)
  • Lost Sectors (grants one stem)
  • Daily Challenges (grants one stem)
  • Escalation Protocol chests (grants one stem)
  • Heroic Public Events (grants two stems)

Since you need to find 15 Sleeper Nodes, that means you’ll have to scrounge up 60 Resonant Stems (counting the four you get through the Nascent Dawn quest) in total to craft all the Override Frequencies that you’ll need. For the Escalation Protocol step, you just have to finish three Escalation Protocol waves with the IKELOS equipped, but given how tough even the first wave of an Escalation Protocol is (the recommended Power Level is 370-380), it’s easier said than done. Fortunately, you don’t have to make it to wave three of a protocol, you just have to beat three waves. If you manage to clear the first wave three separate times, that will fulfill the quest requirements.

Will of the Thousands

With the Sleeper Nodes and Escalation Protocol waves wrapped up, there’s one final step to complete: you have to beat a special 360 Power Level version of the ‘Will of the Thousands’ Strike with, you guessed it, the IKELOS equipped. Since 360 Power Level makes the Strike even tougher than its Heroic version, clearing it will be a pretty tall order. However, if you’re already a high enough Power Level that you can handle Escalation Protocols, you shouldn’t have too much trouble as long as you have a pair of decent teammates fighting alongside you.

Once Will of the Thousands is cleared, you’ll be awarded with your very own Sleeper Simulant Exotic fusion rifle. In Destiny 2, Sleeper Simulant functions in a very similar manner as its original Destiny counterpart, with minimal recoil, a fast reload speed, excellent handling and stability, a ‘Moving Target’ perk that grants increased movement speed and target acquisition while aiming down the sight, and a laser projectile that can overpenatrate through enemies and refract off of hard surfaces.