Clan Elysium win Destiny 2: The Witch Queen Vow of the Disciple raid race
The race for world's first for the Vow of the Disciple raid came to a close Saturday with Clan Elysium becoming the first team to beat Rhulk
The race for world's first for the Vow of the Disciple raid came to a close Saturday with Clan Elysium becoming the first team to beat Rhulk | Screenshot via Twitch/Destiny 2

Clan Elysium win Destiny 2: The Witch Queen Vow of the Disciple raid race

Disconnection errors cast a pall over the proceedings, but the final encounter of Vow of the Disciple was worth the wait and frustration
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After nearly seven hours of competition, Clan Elysium have won the Destiny 2: The Witch Queen’s Vow of the Disciple raid race and earned the first-ever completion of the new raid on Saturday.

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It was the second straight world’s first raid completion for Elysium, which did the same with the re-release of Vault of Glass in May 2021. Elysium’s clear at seven hours and 14 minutes in the raid beat the next-closest clear of Vow of the Disciple by just three minutes and 15 seconds.

Clan Elysium win Destiny 2: The Witch Queen Vow of the Disciple raid race

The race for world’s first in the Vow of the Disciple raid began at 1 p.m. ET on Saturday with several hiccups. Day 1 participants in Vow of the Disciple struggled with disconnection errors throughout the day, especially in the first encounter of the raid. A few hours in, though, teams had gotten past the first couple of encounters and made their way to the final boss: Rhulk, Disciple of the Witness.

Streamer ExBlack and his squad from Ascend, who were the world’s first team to complete Garden of Salvation in 2019, were the first on-stream team to reach the encounter and do significant damage to Rhulk. A handful of other top streamer teams made their way to Rhulk at around 6 p.m. ET and started piecing together the battle despite the early complications.

The final encounter was a massive departure from previous Destiny 2 raids. The mobility, attack variety and targeting choices of Rhulk are unlike any other raid boss in the series history, and teams struggled to build significant progress as a result. The boss threw out dash attacks to take down Guardians in one hit with the contest modifier, blasted players with deadly area-of-effect beams and threw in Shadow Thrall as an annoying side.

“Watching this, I don’t know how anyone is going to do it,” said Ben “Professor Broman” Bowman, a world’s first winner during the King’s Fall raid who hosted multi-stream coverage of the Vow of the Disciple raid race.

But the teams pressed on, with ExBlack’s squad bringing the boss to about 25% of its health before wiping on a third DPS phase at just after 7 p.m. ET. The teams swapped around some gear and took another shot and again got Rhulk to around 30%. Meanwhile, Destiny 2 crested 325,000 concurrent viewers on Twitch, with nearly 120,000 of them tuning in to Stefan “Datto” Jonke as he and his team tried to crack the code.

Redeem, who dealt with several disconnect issues early in the day, were also in the hunt, as were members of Clan Elysium, the team to get the most recent world’s first clear when Vault of Glass was released for Destiny 2. As 8 p.m. neared, ExBlack’s crew had still made the most progress on a single run.

“This guy is dying in the next 20 minutes,” he said after a rough run ended in a wipe with 80% of Rhulk’s health left.

ExBlack was right, but the race was about to get much closer.

Meanwhile, Datto’s team and Clan Elysium brought Rhulk under 35%, but Datto’s squad lost a DPS phase and wiped. Elysium, meanwhile, became the first team to get Rhulk to its final stand, but also wiped. ExBlack and Placeholders tilted Rhulk to the final stand a few minutes later, but wiped with just a few slivers of health left on his bar.

Elysium didn’t give anyone else a shot at breaking that final stand. Streamer Saltagreppo, after seeing Rhulk go down, finally unmuted his mic to celebrate.

“Back to f***king back,” one fireteam member shouted. “And two hours of that was being f***ing Anteater-ed.”

Datto’s roster finished off Rhulk just minutes later, marking the second time his group has finished a few minutes off a world’s first.

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Sean Morrison
Sean Morrison is the former Editor-in-Chief of Upcomer, a former editor for ESPN’s esports section and is an adjunct professor at Indiana University’s Media School. Catch him on Warzone, Destiny 2 or Elder Scrolls Online, or just follow him on Twitter.