Destiny 2 revealed: ‘massive campaign’, ‘4v4 crucible’ – and an in-game map

Halo developer Bungie has lifted the lid on Destiny 2, revealing the first details about its follow-up to the 2014 massively multiplayer online first-person shooter.

As the first true sequel to Destiny, following three years of expansion packs and content patches, Destiny 2 provided a chance to start over for the developer: existing players will lose their weapons, armour and other assorted collectibles. The game’s storyline sees the players’ Guardians – the last defenders of humanity in Destiny’s far-future setting – similarly stripped of their powers through an all-out assault on space-god the Traveller.

Bungie described the main campaign as being longer than any in the series, with “more cinematics” and “more story missions”. It’s a notable change from the recent history of the game, which had de-emphasised structured narratives in favour of player-led adventures. But Bungie hopes the main plot will return to being a core part of the experience.

For many players, particularly those returning from the first version, the more notable updates will be the varied quality-of-life improvements that Bungie announced. Topping the list is the developer’s answer to a much-requested feature: matchmaking. Much of Destiny’s content was only playable with a pre-made group of friends, as a response to “how toxic gaming communities can get” in short-term, high-pressure match-ups, according to social lead ME Chung.

Now, a new feature called Guided Games will allow solo players to find others to play with by linking them up with pre-existing clans looking to fill gaps in their line-up.

A similar change has been made in the Crucible, Destiny’s player-versus-player mode, which sees team sizes shrunk to 4v4 across the board. The move will again make it easier for those who can’t find a full group of six friends to still play with people they know, while also being easier to understand for new players, according to Bungie’s Luke Smith, the game director for Destiny 2.

Another major overhaul in the sequel comes in the way players explore the world outside of story missions or Strikes, the game’s co-operative set-pieces. Destiny 2 now lets players drop straight in to the game world, where they can still patrol like in the first game, doing simple missions for small rewards, but also explore more generally: finding new characters, performing sidequest-style “adventures” for them, and tracking down “lost sectors”. The whole thing is made easier with another new feature long missing from the franchise: an in-game map.

In a first, the PC version of the game will be exclusively available through Battle.net, the online platform of Activision’s corporate sibling Blizzard, developers of Overwatch, Hearthstone and World of Warcraft. The move could prove unpopular amongst players who are used to relying on Steam, the largest PC games store, for buying and managing their collections. All of Blizzard’s recent titles are similarly exclusive to Battle.net.

Destiny 2 will be launching on PS4, Xbox One and PC on 8 September 2017, with an open-access beta running “later this summer” for players to try the game before it launches.

Activision provided travel and access to the Destiny 2 Gameplay Premiere.


comments powered by Disqus