Now that Destiny 2: Forsaken has arrived, Guardians everywhere are getting hot under the collar for Masterwork Cores. But what are they, and how do you get your hands on them? These orange-hued shards are used to give your weapons and armour a sweet bonus, like improved range or the generation of orbs upon kills (they can be used to re-roll a pre-existing Masterwork, too). The downside? They’re difficult to find, so listen up – here’s how to get hold of Destiny 2 Masterwork Cores. If you've got a ton of Legendary Shards to spare, pay particular attention to the Mercury planetary resource method using The Spider. It'll give you the best results.
There are only a couple of methods open to you; one is to buy them from the Spider at the Tangled Shore, while another is from breaking down Legendary items – more specifically, Masterwork Legendary items. Visiting the Spider isn’t the best method unless you’re desperate, though; his stock is costly and the price doubles with each purchase, although there is a daily reset. Option two is a less expensive bet, even if it does take a lot longer (emphasis on ‘a lot’). This is because Masterwork Legendary weapons don’t appear all that often – there’s only a chance of them dropping, not a guarantee.That means you’ll want to collect as many Legendary weapons and armour as possible to stack the odds in your favour. How do you manage that? For starters, your best bet is completing Daily or Weekly Crucible and Strike challenges. These provide guaranteed Legendary gear upon completion, and there’s always the chance that’ll you’ll get a Masterwork Legendary in doing so.
That means you’ll want to collect as many Legendary weapons and armour as possible to stack the odds in your favour. How do you manage that? For starters, your best bet is completing Daily or Weekly Crucible and Strike challenges. These provide guaranteed Legendary gear upon completion, and there’s always the chance that’ll you’ll get a Masterwork Legendary in doing so.
There’s also a chance you’ll discover Finest Matterweave after a (very) lucky dismantle. As per the item description, using this means that ‘Boss kills have a chance to drop a Masterwork Core’. If you’re seeking out and dismantling Legendary gear anyway, this can be an effective means of cutting out the middle-man and getting your mitts on Cores. Basically, doing all of the above gives you a much greater chance of getting a Legendary Masterwork or Finest Matterweave by breaking down unwanted Legendary items.
Happily, doing the Daily or Weekly challenge has an added bonus; finishing Crucible matches or Vanguard strikes will give you tokens, and these can be redeemed with Lord Shaxx and Zavala for faction reputation. Levelling up faction reputation will provide yet more Legendary equipment you can break down. This is quite a lucrative pastime when it comes to getting Legendary items, especially where the fast-paced Crucible is concerned. If this is the option you choose, make sure you pick up bounties to complete along the way. These will in turn drop tokens when completed, and that results in faster reputation-gains.
Alternatively, you can trade in any planetary resources you might have with an area’s vendor. For instance, bring Microphasic Datalattices to Failsafe on Nessus to increase your reputation with her. Fill the Reputation meter and you’ll level up with your chosen faction. As before, that’ll then furnish you with Legendary equipment you can dismantle. If you’ve got more resources than you know what to do with, this is a good way to increase the odds of getting a Masterwork Core.
The Spider vendor in the Tangled Shore also comes in handy here, because if you're flush with Legendary Shards, you use it to buy planetary resources from him. For best results, wait until he's selling Simulation Seeds, the resource from Mercury. The reason for this is that if you take them to trade with Brother Vance on Mercury, he seems to dish out a higher than usual number of Masterworks which you can then break down for Cores. As an additional bonus, the shaders that you'll also receive from him will also break down into Legendary Shards, making the cost of conversion cheaper overall (as you'll also get Weapon Parts and Legendary Shards back from all the gear you break down.
It's a tedious process, but using this method you can generate substantial numbers of Cores, while only losing around 80% of the Shards.
The same is true of any vendor, in fact. Give weapon parts to Gunsmith Banshee-44 for faction rewards upon levelling up your reputation with him, or complete Clan activities/Clan bounties for Hawthorne.
It’ll probably take a while to receive a Legendary Masterwork or Matterweave, of course, but doing the above will stack the odds in your favour. Happy hunting!