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Type Story Mission
Number 13
Location The Gulch, EDZ
Level 15
Recommended Power 160
Description Time for Zavala's grand entrance---finally attacking the Red Legion base in the EDZ head-on.
Enemy Types Cabal
Prerequisite Completion of Story Mission Fury. Get to Level 15.
Previous Fury
Next Unbroken
Payback banner red.png

Payback is a Story Mission of The Red War campaign. Upon the completion of the previous mission, Fury, this mission's flag appears once the player has visited The Farm and talked to Suraya Hawthorne.


This mission begins at the location of a beacon in The Gulch, just within the entrance of a tunnel network. Head down the tunnel until you cross into The Tunnels and reach a small Cabal chamber. Two Psions and a Phalanx will await you there and once you engage them, a couple of Legionaries will also arrive. As you go around some Cabal supplies, you will happen upon another Phalanx. Feel free to use your abilities in this seemingly tiny battle, since you will not be traveling on foot moving forward.

With these threats dealt with, proceed further into the base. Drop a Phalanx on the way and keep moving until Amanda Holliday drops a Drake tank for you. It's essential that you do not ignore this war machine, as you will surely need it in the next few parts of this mission.

Once inside the tank, begin laying waste to the Cabal. This is the part where you have a bit of fun, since the Cabal infantry can only scratch the Drake without causing any significant damage to its health. Shoot them, run them over, or ignore them. Do whatever suits you, but keep moving forward. If you need to resupply your Power Weapon, make sure to get out of the tank to collect Power ammo from any of the many Honored Legionaries and Honored Phalanxes you will be killing with the Drake tank over the course of the mission.

At some point, you will come across a Cabal Interceptor. A quick shot or two at the pilot should neutralize this threat, so you can keep going.

Soon you will reach a tank pad, where you can swap your Drake for a fresh one. If your current tank has taken any damage, just summon a new one and keep going. A bit further down the road, you will be introduced to the first threat to your vehicle - a Cabal Thresher. This ship will fire a barrage of missiles, but you can easily negate the attack by locking onto them with your own missiles (missile usage is bound to the Use function). Then, let the cannon loose on the ship. It should get destroyed by a handful of well-placed shots.

If you really want to, you can take out the Psions on the bridge behind the Thresher, but they are hardly a concern for your Drake. Shooting the yellow platforms on which they will often stand will blow them up, killing anything standing on them. In other parts of the mission, shooting the large "torpedo bundles" hanging from the ceiling will drop them onto the enemies beneath them, dealing massive explosive damage.

If by some chance your tank catches fire, get out of it and run back to the tank summoning platform to get a fresh one. You have an unlimited supply, so do not be afraid to abandon any heavily-damaged vehicle.

With the Thresher destroyed, move on to mow down a squad of Phalanxes. Then, you will encounter a second Thresher and an Interceptor. Take out the Interceptor pilot first while being mindful of Thresher missiles, then shoot the ship down. With that done, move on through some more insignificant infantry and get a fresh tank from the next pad.

Then, head up a slope to be met by another Thresher and some more ground units. Take them all out, then take a right and deal with the Interceptor that will arrive. At the next tank pad, clear your immediate surroundings and get out of the vehicle. Fight your way through a trio of square-shaped rooms. In the last one, there will be a terminal you can use to open a door for your tank. Once that is done, head back to your Drake (or spawn in a new one) and proceed through the now-open door.

In the next chamber, the fun ends and it's time to start being careful. You will be met by one of the Red Legion's own armored vehicles, a Red Legion Goliath (Goliath tanks are always classified as Ultra-toughness units). These have more armor than your Drake and they can really hurt you if you're not careful. Stay mobile to avoid its shots, use your missiles to counter its missiles, and make sure to blast it to bits before it does the same to you. You can largely ignore the infantry until the Goliath drops, but look out for the two Interceptors nearby.

If your tank catches fire, get out of it and run back towards the nearest tank summoning pad. Do not try to engage anything while on foot, or the Goliath will punish you severely.

With the enemy tank destroyed, move on to the next tank pad and summon a fresh vehicle. Then, proceed to a retracted bridge and clear everything you can get to with the tank's weapons. Then, proceed on foot up the ramp towards the bridge control room. Drop the two Phalanxes and the Psion that will try to flank you before you proceed. In the next room, you will be met by a pack of War Beasts and a new Cabal unit, the Colossus. Two shots from the Colossus can kill you, so make sure to avoid getting hit. If you have a Super available, feel free to use it to make this fight a breeze.

After clearing this room, run up to the bridge controls and interact with them. Then, go back to your Drake.

Drive across the bridge and deal with the infantry however you see fit. Take a couple of quick shots and the incoming Interceptor to take it out and keep moving to a cavern with two parallel bridges. On the other side, two more Red Legion Goliaths await you. Do not charge into them. Instead, seek cover on your side of the bridge and engage in a long-range battle. Try to take them on one at a time for an easier fight. Be mindful of the infantry and the Interceptors that might charge your position. Take cover from the tanks' fire and deal with the lesser foes whenever they get too close.

As you begin to cross one of the bridges, a Thresher will fly in. It is no match for your Drake, so take it out and finish traversing a bridge, then keep going. You might have to run over some infantry on the way, but soon you will reach the outside world and you will find yourself in the Sunken Isles region.

Once you get to the Sunken Isles, you will notice a pretty large ship guarded by an even larger shield. This is your way to the Almighty, so you need to disable the shield and get onboard. Start by targeting the shield generator on your right. This way, you will not alert the entire base and you will have fewer enemies to worry about.

Drive up to it and look for any significant enemies (there might be a couple of Interceptors and a single Honored Colossus). Take them out and ignore the cannon fodder, as you take a few shots at the exposed energy generator core. Then, backtrack a little bit and head for the second generator. You could also take the short route, right under the ship, but you will lose your height advantage and you can easily get surrounded by enemies.

Quickly dispatch of any Interceptors around the second generator and destroy it as well. As soon as you do, a final Red Legion Goliath and a few Interceptors will arrive. Deal with the lesser threat first, so you can freely maneuver around the Goliath. It's much slower than your Drake, so you can use that to your advantage and take long-range shots at it, while circling it. Or, you can pick a nice bit of cover and stick to it. Expose yourself, take a shot and immediately retreat behind cover to reload. Then, rinse and repeat until the Goliath is down.

Once you destroy the enemy tank, you need to make sure that the ship will not leave without you. Go back until you can see its exhausts. Then, aim at the blue glow in their center and let your cannon (and missiles) loose. This should ground it and end the mission unless there are enemy vehicles around you (if this is the case, wipe them out to complete this mission). You will be transported to the Sunken Isles landing zone upon mission completion.




  • One of Amanda Holliday's possible lines when she drops in the first Drake tank suggests that the Drake tank is a heavily modified version of a KM 632 vehicle from Utopia.

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