"Hive! Bring a sword." -The Drifter
Gambit is overseen by the Drifter, who provides commentary and organizes matches. At the start of the match, The Drifter flips a coin to determine which enemies will spawn. Fallen, Scorn, Hive, Vex, and Cabal can be used in various rounds. When killed, enemies drop motes that are cashed into the team's central bank. Majors can occasionally spawn and will drop more motes when killed.
When a team turns in 5 motes, they spawn a small blocker enemy for the enemy team. When 10 motes are turned in, a medium block enemy is sent to the enemy team. When 15 motes are turned in, a large blocker enemy is sent to the enemy team. When a team deposits 25 motes, they can send one team member over to the other team's arena. The invading player takes on the form of a red specter and is buffed with increased stats.
Once a team reaches 100 motes, they can summon a Primeval boss that must be killed to win the match. Teams can still invade each other while in the Primeval fight. If a team member dies from a guardian kill during this fight, the Primeval heals damage.
Gambit includes a ranking system called Infamy, which is very similar to the Crucible's Valor and Glory ranks. Infamy points are earned by completing bounties for the Drifter and completing Gambit matches; wins provide more points than losses. After reaching maximum Infamy rank, the rank can be reset to earn unique rewards.
- Emerald Coast, European Dead Zone, Earth
- Legion's Folly, Arcadian Valley, Nessus
- Kell's Grave, Tangled Shore, The Reef
- Cathedral of Scars, Dreaming City, The Reef
Each Gambit match can be divided into two primary phases: Mote Collecting and Destroying the Summoned Primeval. During the Mote Collecting stage, players must focus on destroying enemies as quickly as possible. Focus on finding a weapon loadout that provides quick time to kill on mobs. Most skilled teams will limit the amount of times they return to the bank to cash in their motes and will attempt to reach the max of 15 motes before cashing them in all at once, summoning Large Taken Blockers in great numbers. During this stage, do not become distracted by incoming Taken blockers until your team ready to cash the motes in. Losing time taking out these enemies without collecting motes can delay your team to the next phase.
When dealing with invaders, be sure to communicate to your team the location of the invader and what weapon they might be using. Focus on the invading threat immediately. When your team invades, be sure to select team members who are skilled in PVP skirmishes to maximize your potential to kill the enemy team members.
During the Primeval stage, focus on destroying the other Elite enemies around the Primeval to eliminate obstacles and allow players to destroy the enemy as quickly as possible. Utilize your heavy ammo on the target once you've cleared away other mobs and elites.