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Marvel’s Avengers guide: How to get the Ring of the Nibelung Exotic Major Artifact

You’ll need to play a lot of the Avenger’s Initiative to pick up this all-purpose Exotic Major Artifact

Image: Crystal Dynamics/Square Enix via Polygon
Ryan Gilliam (he/him) has worked at Polygon for nearly seven years. He primarily spends his time writing guides for massively popular games like Diablo 4 & Destiny 2.

Marvel’s Avengers has four Exotic Major Artifacts that we know of, each with their own set of perks, properties, and ability. Two of the Exotic Major Artifacts come from the Avengers Initiative, the game’s multiplayer. The first you’ll pick up is the Ring of the Nibelung, but you’ll need to complete a ton of quests before you get there.

In this Marvel’s Avengers guide, we’ll show you how to unlock the Ring of the Nibelung Exotic Major Artifact and explain what it does.

Ring of the Nibelung

Image: Crystal Dynamics/Square Enix via Polygon

To pick up the Ring of the Nibelung, you need to complete the Iconic Avengers mission chain. This takes a lot of work, and our Avengers Initiative tips will help you get there quicker.

Let’s pretend for a second that you didn’t read our advice before you got here. That’s OK, too. Each hero has their own Iconic Mission chain. Some heroes, like Iron Man and Ms. Marvel, just have mundane objectives to complete, like activating their abilities a certain number of times in combat. Other heroes have in-game missions on top of that mundane stuff.

For most heroes, you’ll start with a story mission that has that hero’s icon on the map. You don’t have to play these Iconic missions as the hero, so don’t worry if your Captain America is too low level.

When you finish that first step, the hero will get that mundane quest step we talked about. You actually need to play as the specific heroes to complete this, but you can do almost all the objectives in a single HARM Room if you’re trying — it’s stuff like grapple to in-air enemies as Black Widow, so just read the objectives and complete them.

Captain America and Ms. Marvel both also require you to earn some Faction Rep to progress their steps. Focus on these heroes first, since daily assignments are limited, and they’re the best way to get quick reputation. It’s frustrating if you get stuck on this step and you have to wait until tomorrow.

If you’ve already complete some Iconic missions before you get Iconic Avengers, the step will auto-complete
Image: Crystal Dynamics/Square Enix via Polygon

For most heroes, you’ll finish that mundane second step and move on to the third and final step, which usually involves another in-game mission. When you finish that, you’ll earn some hero-specific gear and a new costume. You need to complete all six Iconic mission chains to complete the Iconic Avengers quest.

But there’s a catch. You won’t actually earn the Iconic Avengers quest and gain the ability to unlock the Ring of the Nibelung until you complete most of the main Avengers Initiative quest: Reigning Supreme. This very long quest chain is basically a tutorial for all things Avengers Initiative. Complete the missions it tells you to complete in the order it tells you to complete them (if you click on the quest chain, the game will even give you a green marker above relevant missions on the War Table). When you reach Step 7 of Reigning Supreme, you’ll unlock the Iconic Avengers mission.

Luckily, it counts your progress, so if you’ve already completed all the Iconic missions — and you gain access to all of them immediately when you reach the Avenger’s Initiative — you’ll instantly complete the Iconic Avengers Chain. When you finish the mission, you’ll get the Ring of the Nibelung.

Ring of the Nibelung details

The Ring of the Nibelung is all about generating orbs for yourself and your party members. It has three perks once you level it up to +3:

  • Bountiful — increases amount restored by all orbs
  • Surplus — chance defeating enemies will produce a random orb of any type
  • Cornucopia — press the shoulder buttons/Major Artifact keys to generate a random bounty of Regen Packs, Heroic Orbs, or Intrinsic Orbs.

The Ring of the Nibelung is a great all-purpose Exotic Major Artifact, but it’s especially good on support-centric characters like Ms. Marvel and Captain America.

What is an Exotic Artifact?

Exotic Major Artifacts are unique items in Marvel’s Avengers. Unlike typical gear pieces, when you get an Exotic Major Artifact, it immediately lands in the inventory of all your characters. It goes in its own slot, and operates unlike any other gear piece when you upgrade it. You can only equip one at a time.

Instead of coming with a Power Level, Major Artifacts add bonus Power to your character by a flat amount. It starts out as Power +1, and you can upgrade it to Power +10. This doesn’t affect your Power level average, and instead just adds Power based entirely on your level.

The Major Artifact starts with a single perk unlocked at +1. You’ll unlock a second perk at +2, and an activatable ability at +3. To upgrade an Exotic Major Artifact, you need a special resource: Polychoron. You can collect Polchorons by completing daily missions.

Upgrades are also exclusive to each character, so your +10 Tactigon on Thor will start at +1 Tactigon on Iron Man. All four Exotics are unique, and each offer bonuses for different kinds of playstyles.