When the first Destiny game came out (which I also covered in this magazine several years ago), I was largely disappointed that it was not coming to the PC. However, this time around, Bungie and Activision decided to bring it to the PC and let everyone with the most advanced gaming rigs out there see how much it could take. The game takes place a year after the end of the SIVA Crisis in the original Destiny.
Destiny 2 is a first-person shooter (FPS) with massively multiplayer online (MMO) elements. Much like the original Destiny, there is matchmaking; but matchmaking is now through the new Guided Games system which allows players to search for clans in the game to do strikes (the equivalent of dungeons) or raids. Guardians once again level up using experience points that are gained from doing the main story line, quests, strikes, and raids. The main races are Humans, the Awoken (blue-gray skinned descendants of Humans), or Exo (humanoid machines). Each class is merely cosmetic and no racial passive abilities are present.
Hunters still have the same Gunslinger sub-class that was present in the original Destiny, as well as the Nightstalker sub-class, with some changes. The new sub-class for Destiny 2 is the Arcstrider, which replaces the Bladedancer and focuses primarily on mobility. Warlocks have the Voidwalker and Stormcaller sub-classes from the original game, but have the new Dawnblade sub-class that replaces the Sunsinger sub-class. This is a damage-based sub-class that allows players to strike enemies with solar blades from the sky. The Titans still have the Striker and Sunbreaker sub-classes, but have also added the Sentinel sub-class, which is primarily a tank sub-class but can be used in an offensive manner.
Upon reaching the level cap (Level 20), one can improve their power level, which caps at 305 at launch (but will go higher in future patches). Each weapon you equip is classified as a Kinetic, Energy, and Power weapon, each with their own statistics. Without an elemental damage type, weapons are put in the Kinetic slot, while ones with an elemental type (Arc, Solar or Void) go into the Energy slot. Armor, Recovery and Agility have replaced Strength, Intellect and Discipline.
The Player vs. Environment (PVE) has changed since the original. Players can now explore the European Dead Zone (previously only a PvP map), Saturn’s moon Titan, Jupiter’s moon Io, and Nessus, a centaur planet. The Farm replaces the Tower as the social space, although a lower portion of the Tower is the main social space after you complete the game’s campaign. Patrol missions and public events still remain a part of the game, although more emphasis has been placed on world exploration and side quests. Adventures are new missions that players can undertake to acquire rare weapons and armor. Some Adventures can lead to Lost Sectors, which can be done without undergoing an Adventure. Flashpoints are another new aspect of PvE; it is a weekly event that takes place on one of the planets with an objective that yields high level rewards once completed.
Player vs. Player (PVP) takes place in the Crucible, and all game modes are now 4v4 (in the original, they were split into 6v6, 3v3 and 2v2). There is Quickplay, which rotates between Clash, Control and Supremacy, while Competitive Mode rotates between Countdown, a best-of-ten mode where players plant a bomb and defend it until it explodes. Survival is a best-of-seven mode where players share lives. If a player dies and the team has zero lives left, they lose the player for the remainder of the round. Iron Banner, a PVP mode from the original that disables gear balancing, will return in a later patch. Trials of Osiris has been replaced with Trails of the Nine, which also goes through the Competitive Mode games of Countdown and Survival. Players’ gear is locked in the Trials of the Nine, so one would have to prepare extensively before engaging in combat. To even access Trials of the Nine, one must complete the campaign, complete a specific quest, and have a certain power level before entering.
Two expansions are already planned for Destiny 2. The first is called Curse of Osiris and will be released in late 2017, while an unnamed second expansion will be released in 2018 and will focus on the Warmind Rasputin from Destiny.
Now that Destiny 2 is on the PC (and on the Battle.net launcher), it seems like more people will be playing the game as more opportunities arise to complete all the content and become great players in the MMO/FPS hybrid. The increased amount of content in Destiny 2 will ensure replay value for quite some time.
Also published in GADGETS MAGAZINE October 2017 Issue
Words by Ren Alcantara
Developer: Bungie | Publisher: Activision | Platforms: Playstation 4, Xbox One, PC