It’s safe to say Destiny has become a genre-defining FPS game. When it comes to mixing a fantasy storyline, elements of grinding for loot, missions and PvP in the Crucible, Bungie has gone beyond what it previously achieved with Halo. And with a sequel on the way for Autumn 2017, here’s what we know about Destiny 2.
So far there have been a lot of rumours and speculation, but the only confirmed news comes from the recent Activision Investors Call.
The first point was the clear aim to broaden the reach of the Destiny franchise. This is likely to come from breaking into new markets, and one clear opportunity would be to make the game available on other platforms, specifically the PC. Destiny was surprisingly limited to the Playstation and Xbox for both last and current generations, so the computer FPS market was untouched. That also means Bungie can offer Destiny to players in countries where PC gaming dominates.
And Destiny 2 is also intended to draw in more players as well as keeping the existing fanbase hooked on the game. Bungie plans to make the sequel accessible to anyone who is new to the series, and to lapsed players, which may mean a more casual experience is part of the set-up. But to manage this tricky balancing act, there will have to be many of the features and elements of Destiny that will be transferred over.
One question is whether players will be able to keep their current Guardian characters in the new game. At the moment that hasn’t been confirmed either way. But if it does happen, the maximum weapon and light levels will need to be significantly increased to offer any progression for the large number of experienced Destiny fans.
What we do know is that Destiny 2 will take place in the same universe as the first game. There’s no plot reveal yet to indicate whether it will be a continuation of the current storyline, or set elsewhere in the timeline, but the first game did have a fairly open-ended climax.
Will Destiny 2 Appear in 2017?
The short answer is that it’s almost guaranteed for Autumn. The Activision call stated development is on track and proceeding according to plan. Apparently it’s doing ‘great’, after the decision to put teams to work on the sequel during the development of the last content expansion, ‘Rise of Iron’. And Bungie have also adopted the common practice of brining in other teams to focus on areas of the game – something which helped keep the likes of Call of Duty on schedule.
It also means Bungie are likely to fulfill their aim of releasing more post-launch content for Destiny 2, to prevent the kind of drop-off they seemed to encounter with the first title. That may mean more frequent, smaller chunks of content, or more special seasonal events and sparrow racing. Either way, adding to the existing universe more often will keep existing fans like me hooked for longer, and also provide more ways to entice new players into the Destiny universe.
The final reason to have faith Destiny 2 will appear this year is simple. If Bungie has to delay the release of the game, Activision would be entitled to claim a large chunk of stock in the still independent studio. So missing their deadline is probably an unthinkable outcome after the company moved from Microsoft backing to being published by Activision and offering something different to the annual Call of Duty releases.
Will Destiny Characters Return?
So we don’t know how the plot will shape up. But there will be a completely new cinematic story campaign for us to play through. And the cut scenes in Destiny were pretty well received, along with the individual characters that you encountered on the way. From the Ghost which revived and accompanied you throughout, the Guardian Vanguard leaders like Cayde, or the more mysterious Eris, it’s been mentioned that some of the memorable characters will certaintly return. And life wouldn’t be the same without the weekly check on what Xur is offering.
There’s still a lot of uncertainty, but we’ll try to keep up with the latest facts and rumours building up to the release of Destiny 2.
The main buzz is around larger areas, with planets feeling more real and lived in. That means towns and outposts with ‘play-in destinations’, and a bigger role for the Cabal.
Probably the biggest support for this is a promotional image posted on Twitter by the official Mega Bloks Mega Construx account which features a playset showing Commander Zavala fighting against the Siege Dancers’ tank.
— Mega Construx (@MegaConstrux) February 19, 2017
The Mega Bloks rumour also suggested a Cabal Bruiser Battle Set with Lord Shaxx fighting the Cabal Red Guard (which didn’t appear in Destiny 2), and an Aspect of Glass Building set. The reason this is still a rumour is that only the Cabal Bruiser set has anything which doesn’t tie in to the first game, and there’s no image of that yet. But when asked, the new Zavala set will be released ‘this fall’, which obviously would be when Destiny 2 will be released…
Hypothetically, the Cabal invading the Tower would be the sort of event which could justfy resetting characters or weapons for a fresh start – and the Splicers did get close in the Rise of Iron.
Let me know in the comment whether you’d like to see the existing storyline continue, or whether keeping your current Guardian is a deal breaker for the new game. After all, while reaching the level 40 player cap wasn’t too taxing, collecting the maximum 400 Light Level was more of a challenge, especially accessing all of the best weapons and armour.