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Destiny 2: E3 2017 Roundup




DESTINY 2 - E3 2017 ROUNDUP

E3 is over for another year and we’re already counting down the days to 2018’s installment of ‘Video Game Xmas’. Until then, let’s talk about a certain game you might have heard a lot about lately… Destiny 2.

A ton of new info was announced in LA this past week in terms of what to expect when we finally get to play the full game in September. So, here’s a breakdown of all the info to come out of E3. Speaking of September, let’s start with…

D2 coming earlier, PC date confirmed



Destiny 2 will now be arriving Sept. 6 on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One - two days before the previously announced Sept. 8 release date and ahead of its PC debut on October 24th. This was revealed after the [newest trailer](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D8E7jUjOQi0) was shown at Sony’s E3 2017 press conference, with the world getting the first glimpse of Dominus Ghaul - the leader of the Red Legion and the initial primary antagonist of the sequel.

Beta dates finally announced



First expected at the ‘Worldwide gameplay Reveal’ but not revealed, Bungie finally announced to the Destiny universe via [Twitter](https://twitter.com/Bungie/status/874463204247691264) when we can finally get our first chance to play the next installment in the franchise. In terms of dates and times - July 18th/19th (10am PST) for the PS4/Xbox One respectively, before an open beta period starting July 21st (10am PST) on both systems, with everything ending July 23rd (9pm PST). PC gamers will get to test out an early version of the game at some point in "late August."

In terms of what the beta will include, we know right now that the first story mission ‘Homecoming’, the ‘Inverted Spire’ strike, PVP (what exactly?) and all the new subclasses (Sentinel, Dawnblade & Arcstrider) will be available to play, alongside existing classes ‘Striker’, ‘Voidwalker’ & ‘Gunslinger’. As for ‘Defender’, ‘Sunsinger’ and ‘Bladedancer’... they won’t be coming with us to D2. So long our fallen classes. Gone but not never forgotten.

Goodbye Bladedancer, hello Arcstrider



Bladedancer is no more for Hunters but fear not, you have an Arc subclass to be proud of and get excited about once again. Arcstrider was [revealed](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NhU946bX2A4) in-depth at E3 on the showfloor for the public to play and it certainly did not fail to deliver. With the new ‘Arc Staff’ super, looking more stronger (armour wise) in combat and visually awe-inspiring, you’ll love slapping everyone silly, or becoming a blur on the battlefield. Part ninja, part Jedi, all amazing. Welcome back Arc Hunter, we’ve missed you.

Timed exclusives return once more



If PlayStation 4 is your platform of choice for Destiny 2, there will again be [timed exclusive content](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rXZYMVqwvDQ) (until Fall 2018, at least). The exclusive content announced so far is the following:

[ul][li]- Lake of Shadows - an exclusive strike
- Armour Sets -‘Terra Concord’*** (Titan), ***‘Tesseract Trace IV’*** (Warlock) & ***‘Icarus Drifter’*** (Hunter)
- City Apex - an exclusive ship
- ***‘Weapon Borealis’*** - an exclusive exotic sniper rifle, with triple elemental burn damage
- Retribution - an exclusive PVP map
[/li][/ul]
**No ranked PVP at launch, not ruled out in the future**
Something that was a surprise (bad perhaps?) to come out of E3 Destiny wise was Bungie confirming that there will be no ranked PVP multiplayer at the game’s launch. Much to the chagrin of the PVP community, the much wanted fan-requested would simply not be able to make the cut for Sept 6th. Game Director Luke Smith that Bungie isn’t doing ranked play, but then said that the studio is currently working on “something” that may or may not “make September”. Whatever that is, we’ll find out soon enough. Right now, never say never...

Something brand new for the PVE fans



To balance off the disappointment of no ranked PVP multiplayer at launch, Luke Smith did confirm something brand new coming to PVE - ‘Flashpoints’. What are Flashpoints? They are a weekly PVE activity with ‘Nightfall’ tier loot. Speaking in a podcast interview, Luke Smith said Flashpoints are designed to drive Destiny 2 players to a particular Destination each week – that means either Earth, Io, Nessus or Titan. There, they will discover activities like treasure maps and special enemies. The nature of the event should mean you find plenty of other players having a crack at the baddies.

The rewards players will earn from Flashpoints are high level, equivalent to a Nightfall reward from the original Destiny. Smith said specifically that even solo Destiny 2 players can participate, so you won’t need to matchmake to get your hands on it.

Also mentioned during the interview was an activity called “Silent”, which is making a return to Destiny 2.

New raid, new death penalty



Destiny 2’s raids may not be getting any easier, but a feature is being tweaked for the sequel. Bungie revealed that the raid in Destiny 2 will have a new death penalty. Luke Smith mentioned in an interview that the new raid will have a different death penalty than in Destiny 1. Whilst what exactly that penalty would be was not revealed, he did suggest that the days of no revives are gone, potentially for both Heroic and Normal difficulty. This means goodbye to a fireteam member being downed and forced to watch the rest of the fireteam complete an encounter or boss fight. Speaking of goodbyes...


Goodbye darkness my old friend…




The Darkness is gone. That’s right, The Darkness will not be appearing in D2. Destiny 2’s story will be about light and hope.

While The Darkness was a mysterious term that was referenced quite often in the original Destiny, not one really knew what it actually was. And that could be the main reason as to why the majority of D1’s story was lacking, bereft and left with so many unanswered questions that the passionate fanbase desired to be answered. Smith did confirm however that The Darkness would eventually return but only when Bungie fully knew what it actually is and how it will be used.

That is not all that was announced this past week. Here are a few other tidbits/newsworthy comments to come out of E3…

- Destiny 2 has more cutscenes and more missions than Destiny 1. Fantastic to hear that.
- Clan sizes still capped to 100 but we are now able to invite players to clan in-game.
- Ships still only a loading screen. Space battles remain a dream for now unfortunately.
- The new vault will be accessible on ‘The farm’, the new social space to come in D2.
- Taken return, along with SIVA and Vex. Still awaiting confirmation of Fallen and Hive to return.
- ‘Visual indications’ will be in place to acknowledge veterans players from Destiny to show the distinction they deserve.
- Everyone will experience the story in the same way, with no differences depending on what class you are playing.
- Collecting engrams in the world is now the main source for getting weapons in D2. Interesting…
- Guardians being transferred across platforms is a “Very long-term vision” for bungie, but will NOT be happening at launch.

So there you have it, Destiny 2’s E3 experience in a nutshell.

Up next for Bungie and the Destiny universe? The Betas! Fingers crossed the servers can survive and we enjoy the small (but large) taster we will get to keep us sweet until September.

We’re nearly there guardians. Gary, i mean Ghaul… is not far away from experiencing our backlash.



Destiny 2: Top 10 Features



THE TOP 10 FEATURES COMING TO DESTINY 2

It finally happened. Last Thursday we finally got to see a glimpse of our future. In person in LA or stream around the world, us guardians were given the privilege to see ***Destiny 2***.

The highly anticipated sequel to Bungie’s acclaimed franchise is soon upon us. After watching the gameplay reveal stream, the emotional ‘Homecoming’ mission, the new PVP mode ‘Countdown’, ‘The Inverted Spire’ strike and countless other videos of gameplay footage… I’m ready.

With this in mind, these 10 features could prove worth updating your Destiny journey in just over 100 days...

AN ACTUAL STORY



Yes, you are reading this correctly! Destiny 2 will have an actual story for us to get engrossed in and become emotional about. Without question the most exciting feature, the story campaign (“The Red War”) is what Bungie is calling it’s “cinematic experience”. Why are we so excited and pumped about D2’s story? Because D1’s was pretty much non-existent (besides The Taken King in my opinion).

Out of place, out of sync, not diving into the game’s amazing lore… they were many faults. The main issue was that it just didn’t deliver and it hurt the reputation of the franchise as we know Bungie has the experience and skill to create story masterpieces (Halo: Reach for example).

With a promised bigger campaign, more missions/encounters and more cinematics, Destiny 2 looks to be promising us a real narrative. Starting off with “Homecoming’, being attacked by the Red Legion and the Traveller being taken as hostage by the imposing Ghaul, we start all over again. No gear, no light, we’ve simply lost everything.

For me, this is Destiny’s Empire Strikes Back. Almost literally.

NEW SUBCLASSES



With a new Destiny experience comes new subclasses, and boy they look amazing. Bungie revealed one new subclass for each of those guardians - the Sentinel Titan, the Dawnblade Warlock and the Arcstrider Hunter. The Sentinel is geared toward defense and close-quarters combat, the Dawnblade is designed for aerial destruction and the Arcstrider is focused on acrobatic moves. In other words, we are getting Captain America, an aerial Spartan and an acrobatic ninja. WHICH SOUNDS COOL.

The three new subclasses are replacing some existing ones though, with us saying goodbye to the Defender Titan, the Sunsinger Warlock and the Bladedancer Hunter. However, fret not as Bungie is making up for this by including some of the defining powers of those subclasses as non-super “class abilities”. The Defender’s god-like bubble shield is gone, but it can put up forward-facing shields. Sunsingers can’t resurrect themselves anymore, but now becomes an ability to heal fellow teammates. With these no longer being supers, you’ll be able to use them much more frequently.

We might have lost some fan favorites, but we’re getting new amazing super/abilities so that fills me with confidence. Here’s hoping to the new subclasses being amazing and overall all 3 classes becoming more balanced and equally as fun to play as. Just please leave my Titan alone.

NEW WEAPONS/GEAR/LOADOUTS




Out goes to the rigid setup of Primary, Special and Heavy we have been used over the last 3 years. Now weapons will be split up based on the type and level of damage they actually do - with the three weapon slots being Kinetic, Energy and Power. What does this mean? We effectively now carry 2 primary guns at the same time, with special weapons such as sniper rifles and shotguns for example now becoming power weapons, our new ‘heavies’.

Another difference between those groups is that kinetic weapons can’t do elemental damage, with that being limited to the energy slot.

It might take time getting used to the changes in our weapon setups, but Bungie said it’s goal was to give players more freedom in setting up their weapon loadouts. Hopefully that will be the case come September.

The reveal also showed off a number of interesting bits of gear. Some highlights being a minigun, submachine guns, new style of swords, new exotics and grenade launchers.

In terms of actual gear and armour pieces, nothing has been revealed from Bungie besides what we’ve actually seen in footage and screenshots. Hopefully E3 will tell us more.

NEW WORLDS/LOCATIONS TO EXPLORE



The planets of Destiny (Moon, Venus, Mars, The Dreadnaught on Saturn and The Plaguelands on Earth) have been retired in favour of a new solar system map. Available to visit now will be Jupiter’s moon IO, Saturn's largest moon Titan, and the sulphuric vex machine world of Nessus. We’ll also be heading back to Earth, but the Cosmodrome has been replaced by the EDZ, an European locale that’s twice as large as anything in Destiny to date.

With the Tower being destroyed, guardians need somewhere else to call home and that place is ‘The Farm’, our new social space which is lead by Hawthorne, a new major NPC in the franchise.

There has also been a clear attempt by Bungie and their art/design teams to make these worlds very different to what we’ve seen before, with Titan for example being a world entirely covered by water, meaning we’ll be exploring oil rig-like structures.

Whilst exploring these planets, we now have far more things to do. Out goes the current tired structure patrol and is now replaced with a more engaging journey of exploration and side-quests. No more scanning a box and killing 10 enemies, in comes 3 new (we know of so far) challenging modes to PVE patrolling.

+ Heroic objectives whilst not gone into huge detail, these are going to be an updated version of the current public event, with more epic encounters/boss battles to be combated by multiple guardians it seems.
+ Treasure Maps - pretty self explanatory, hunt down enemies/objects to get rare and sought after loot.
+ Then there’s Lost Sectors, which appear to be the biggest new activity. NPC quest givers will be able to mark unknown areas on your map, which can then be explored like RPG dungeons. Inside each is a hoard of treasure defended by a boss, which when defeated will unlock the special loot.

Something also coming to D2 that has been long, LONG sought after by the players is an actual map. Yes, AN ACTUAL MAP! Trust me, the small changes to Destiny 2 will turn out to be the most significant.

Plus… no more orbit. Yes, no more sitting around for an eternity waiting for others anymore. THANK YOU BUNGIE.

CHANGES TO PVP



PVP and it’s Crucible is being majorly revamped, which will now feature 4v4 gameplay across all modes. The HUD will give new information like whether your opponents have their super available or if they’re carrying power ammo, allowing for more strategic gameplay. Additionally, there’s a new Countdown game type with an attack / defend structure being added to the Crucible.

By watching some PVP footage as well, PVP looks slower and not as fast paced, with the TTK (‘Time To Kill’) being longer as well. Also, abilities will not be as powerful and dominant as they were in Destiny 1. An example of that being sticky grenades no longer being to instantly kill guardians.

These changes will hopefully make the PVP side of Destiny 2 a more enjoyable experience as a whole and signal an end to the dreaded ‘meta’.

IMPROVED VISUALS/AUDIO

ore dialogue with major NPC’s.
- Audio cues for a more immersive expereince.

I could go on and on and on about the visuals and audio enhancements added to Destiny 2. They simply are are amazing. To me arguarbly the biggest change to the franchise even.

ENTER THE PC DOMAIN

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Now that community is going to grow even larger with the inclusion of PC. D2 on PC will offer an immersive, visual experience like no other. Being held back by legacy consoles, Destiny was limited to it’s true potential on PS4 and Xbox One and such suffered for it. Now with PS3 and Xbox 360 long gone, Bungie can maximise Destiny on all fronts now.

The PC version will tie into Blizzard’s Battle.net online network instead of using Steam. Bungie will also not lock the frame rate of Destiny 2 for PC. Hardware limitations on the Xbox One and PS4 don't make this possible for console players. But PC gamers will get to experience the game in 4K, but only if they have a powerful graphics processor and a 4K display. Plus of course there will also be full mouse/keyboard support, text chat, an adjustable field of view and 21:9 monitor support.

With the PC version being described as the “pinnacle experience” to play Destiny 2, it seems like now is the time to start investing in a keyboard and mouse to be treated to an amazing journey on the newest format to join the Destiny community.

GUIDED GAMES/CLAN INTEGRATION



While not new to Destiny, Clans are now built into the game itself, making it easier to manage, grow and customise. Being part of a clan will give you shared rewards, even if you only play a few specific missions or matches per week, everyone will benefit in some way.

For those who want to play solo, then Guided Games combines the two concepts. Clans can advertise for additional players to join a Fireteam - completing a team of three or six that wouldn't usually allow matchmaking, such as the Nightfall or Raid - with solo players able to select their desired group based their specific requests.

The solo players can then freely move on after the game, or if they enjoyed their time with the clan, decide to join up. In my opinion, Guided Games is a huge addition to the franchise. The potential game changer right here for all the solo players in the Destiny universe.

THE ‘SURPRISES’ WE STILL DON’T KNOW



With we already know about Destiny 2, another feature that is intriguing is what we don’t know about Destiny 2 as well.

And this is where we can continue to dream, brainstorm with one another and try to put the missing pieces together to the eagerly awaited sequel. So, what could they be?

- New enemies to feature along with the existing foes already expected?
- New PVE/PVP modes replacing Iron Banner, Challenge of Elders and Trials of Osiris
- Will Xur decide to work a full week instead of part-time now?
- Exotic weapons are continuing to be part of our gaming experience, but how many will return? Will we be fetching a Gjallarhorn for a third time?
- PC exclusive features such as skins, outfits, etc?

The possibilities are endless right now it feels.

NO MORE ORBIT

Did I already mention no more returning to orbit…? ;)

CONCLUSION

Us guardians are ready. Ready for the new worlds, the new weapons to cherish, the new memories to create and to stop Ghaul from ending humanity. Simply put, Destiny 2 cannot come quick enough. (Needs a time machine, bad.)

Destiny 2 releases worldwide on 8th September for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One and on PC shortly after.

By Terry Sazio



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