Rolling out the big guns for the franchise's 30th anniversary.
Bungie ran their official Destiny 2 gameplay premiere stream and dropped a whole bunch of new info on the upcoming fall release. Not only has the title been officially confirmed for PC, in a partnership with Blizzard, it will be sold exclusively on Battle.net.
This new Destiny installment looks to have a bigger emphasis on story, and considering that the first game had almost no story until it was three expansions in, this is a really refreshing change of pace. The trailers shown at the event revealed a bigger emphasis on characters, cinematics and ingame set piece moments. Just from what little we’ve seen, the narrative certainly looks like a step up from its predecessor.
You continue playing as your guardian, an immortal avatar for the player to shoot things and go to where waypoints are. The game starts in the Tower, the hub area from the first game, as it’s being laid siege to by a sect of the Cabal known as The Red Legion. They shackle up The Traveler in order to steal its Light, causing all of the guardians to lose all their powers. With the tower destroyed, guardians lose their vaults as well, which is their excuse of not letting you carry over any of the armor or weapons that you grinded hundreds of hours to get. They could at least let me keep the thriller and hotline bling dances that I paid my hard earned money for.
Destiny 2 will include some brand new gameplay features. Each of the main three classes will have new subclasses. Warlocks get new supportish looking class called the Dawnblade that has a neat fire sword. Titans get a Sentinel that has a shield functionally similar to Captain America’s. Hunters get a class called the Arcstrider which looks exactly like the Bladedancer but it has a staff instead of a knife. There are also some new weapons like the grenade launcher and gatling gun shown in the gameplay footage.
There will be new quest types in Destiny 2 including a new type of side quests called Adventures, given to the player by NPCs that hang out in the game world. There are also new dungeon diving world missions called Lost Sectors that look like the kind of missions you’d find during patrols. All missions will be available to the player during any activity without going through several long loading screens to get to mission select, which is a huge quality of life improvement. Local missions will be available through an ingame map, that will also show you when and where timed events are happening.
The PVP Crucible mode has some new changes, most notably being that every single mode is now a 4v4 gametype. Players will now have hud elements to provide more information about their teammates, such as their health or when their super moves are ready. There’s also one new game mode confirmed called Countdown which will be an attack / defend gametype.
The most exciting feature to me sounds like the improved clan system. Clans existed in the original Destiny, but were only available through the Bungie website. They are not only integrated ingame in Destiny 2, but also serve a huge role in matchmaking. Players in clans will also receive rewards whenever clan members accomplish in game feats. Other players who don’t wish to be in a clan or simply want to play with a different group can partner up with new people by looking through a list of clans and decide which ones look best to them. They can play with these preferred clans for as long as they like without joining and then leave without any pressure. Also, if players drop late in big missions like raids or strikes, new members from those preferred clans can now sub in easily. Bungie came up with this system to specifically combat the toxic nature of players in matchmaking settings.
Probably the most potentially disappointing thing about this presentation, however, is how they made it a point to say there was just going to be one new raid. They didn’t even say at launch either, so hopefully it isn’t another Vault of Glass situation where the raid launches well after people have already given up on the game. Destiny has always suffered from a lack of content, and only having one of the game’s biggest draws without confirming its launch window is a huge misstep.
Destiny 2 is out September 8th, 2017, and the first public beta will be available later this summer.