Bungie's big sequel is no longer a console exclusive
Bungie has always said it has a 10-year-plan for Destiny, and now in year three, we have a better sense of where the shooter sensation is headed next.
Officially announced today, Destiny 2 will release this autumn and expand the experience with plenty of new worlds, fresh gameplay elements, and more customization options than ever. And you'll get a first taste of it this summer with an early access beta test.
We're still fairly light on details, but this is everything you need to know for now.
1) THERE'S A NEW THREAT
Destiny 2 surfaces a new threat for your Guardians to take down: the Red Legion, led by the surely-horribly-evil Ghaul. You can catch the surprisingly funny reveal trailer above, and here's the official synopsis from Activision and Bungie:
"Humanity’s last safe city has fallen to an overwhelming invasion force, led by Ghaul, the imposing commander of the brutal Red Legion. He has stripped the city’s Guardians of their power, and forced the survivors to flee. You will venture to mysterious, unexplored worlds of our solar system to discover an arsenal of weapons and devastating new combat abilities. To defeat the Red Legion and confront Ghaul, you must reunite humanity’s scattered heroes, stand together, and fight back to reclaim our home."
And now we have a narrative reason why your Guardian's progression in the first game won't carry over: with the Tower in ruins, all your stuff is gone. Womp, womp.
2) IT'S COMING TO PC TOO
While the original Destiny was a console exclusive across PlayStation and Xbox platforms, the sequel will also start off on PC, as well as PS4 and Xbox One. Last-gen consoles were cut out of Destiny's future back when Rise of Iron skipped PS3 and Xbox 360.
We don't have any sense yet if the PC version will vary at all in approach, besides sure support for keyboard and mouse, but there's an intriguing wrinkle here: the possibility of cross-platform multiplayer support. We've seen it with select games, like Rocket League, which is compatible between PC and PS4, as well as PC and Xbox One… although not between consoles just yet.
3) WE HAVEN'T SEEN ANY GAMEPLAY
Between the reveal trailer and the hilarious teaser, we have a sense of the tone that Destiny 2 is trying to strike here – plenty of personality and humour (thanks Cayde-6/Nathan Fillion), for sure, while keeping the gung-ho sci-fi edge.
However, we haven't seen any actual gameplay at this point… nor do we have any hard details from Bungie on what to expect. The official fact sheet has generic statements like "gameplay activities for all types of players" and "new worlds and stunning environments to explore," but what will that really mean once you're loaded up and on the hunt for loot?
No clue. But we'll find out on 18 May: that's when Bungie will host a livestream event to showcase new gameplay and spotlight the array of additions coming to the game. So mark you calendars, Guardians.
4) IT'LL HAVE A BETA THIS SUMMER
Luckily, we won't have to wait long after the livestream to actually get our hands on Destiny 2: Bungie has a beta test scheduled for sometime this summer, and we imagine that it will be available across all three platforms at some point.
Don't be surprised if PlayStation 4 gets first crack at the beta, as it did with the first game (which also had a PlayStation-exclusive alpha before that). Activision still has an exclusivity deal with Sony that grants special content to PS4 owners once the full game arrives, and we imagine early beta access will also be part of that alliance.
5) START SAVING FOR SEPTEMBER
There's no date yet for the beta, but we know when we'll get the full game: 8 September worldwide, on all three platforms.
In addition to the base physical or digital game, there will be a couple of special editions of varying extravagance. The Limited Edition set includes the game, expansion pass for two big DLC add-ons, premium digital content, and a fancy Cabal-themed collector's box with a few little trinkets inside. That one will sell for US$100.
And if you really, really love Destiny, then you might want to start socking away cash for the Collector's Edition, which has everything from the Limited Edition along with a real, wearable Frontier Bag. It can be used as a backpack or messenger bag and includes a solar panel USB charger with light, paracord, solar blanket, and a 15in laptop/tablet sleeve. That bundle will set you back a stunning US$250.
It may well be all quiet on the Destiny 2 front until the gameplay livestream on 18 May, but we'll let you know if any other exciting details emerge in the meantime.