Bungie showed Destiny 2 off for the first time today and it showed us a Vanguard as shattered as the Tower it was housed in. The stream opened with the gameplay reveal trailer, which showed The Tower and Guardians looking prettier than we’ve seen them before. The graphics this time round are an obvious upgrade on Destiny, saddled as it was with previous gen hardware constraints at birth. I’m not going to go into the trailer too much as it’s linked below, so just go watch it. I’ll wait.
Okay, then. Nice to have you back. Good isn’t it? Alright so the story looks to be that the head of the Cabal, Dominus Ghaul, has finally heard about the annoying, head popping, grave-dancing, resurrecting, cocksure Guardians of Earth and, more importantly, their Traveler, the giver of all their power. Ghaul decides that if anyone deserves that kind of power, it’s obviously him and his band of jet-packing, cosmic manatees and promptly comes and stomps all over our shit. They attach a huge claw-like machine to the Traveler (I’m going to call it a Space Hugger) which immediately cuts our Guardians off from it’s Light, which leaves us in a bit of a pickle, fighting back-wise. As Luke Smith said at the start of the actual event: “Spoilers. We lose!”
So it looks like we pop to new places around our Solar System, piecing back together what Dominus tore down so very easily, learning new abilities, getting new loot and popping heads along the way. All pretty similar so far, so I’m just going to concentrate on the new stuff, stuff like playing with NPC’s alongside you so we can all get depressed about how come Cayde-6, an actual robot, is sexier than us in real life.
First of all let’s talk about the three new subclasses we saw, Dawnblade, your new Warlock solar ability that comes with a flaming sword and the ability to rain down a crazy amount of scorching death in a way that will have the PvPers stocking up on salt within minutes of first meeting it. Titans get to play Captain America with their new subclass, Sentinel (even cribs off of Cap’s Sentinel of Liberty sobriquet), which gives them a void shield to charge about behind or to throw about the place like, well, like Captain America does. I main a Hunter and I love staffs in fighting games so I was delighted to find that for their new subclass, Arcstrider, the frabjious ones get a lovely arc staff to whoop people upside the head with. All awesome stuff.
Change is coming to PvP too, which is getting rescaled so that matches are 4v4 instead of 3v3 or 6v6. Not sure if it’ll be the same for Trials of Osiris yet. Bungie are also showing a new gametype today, which we didn’t see any of in the stream, but which I’m sure we’ll see soon, called Countdown, which is an Attack/Defend mode. That new UI I mentioned earlier comes with a new HUD that shows enemies with super and power slot ammo.
New weapons confirmed include SMGs, miniguns and grenade launchers, but we now have three different classes on guns, kinetic, energy and power, which I’m not going to speculate too much about as hand cannons have already been seen with both kinetic and energy versions. It also looks like a new Foundry ‘Veist’ has been seen in some images.
Patrols are back, but have been improved upon in a lot of ways, thanks to the way D2’s new map system works. In D2 you can launch any activity from the map including travel to other planets, there are hidden dungeons called Lost Sectors that will have their own bosses, there will be NPC’s actually in the world you’re in, this time round and it looks like you may be able to choose landing zones, which will be handy because we have Treasure Maps now. Public Events are back, but this time they’ll have Heroic difficulty too.
They showed us a little of some new places we’ll be glitching out of in a couple of months, too. First up, we finally get to play in the European Deadzone on Earth itself. Apparently the map is twice as big as any map in Destiny, probably because it took them twice as long to finally get us there. We also hopped over to a Vexxed-up machine world, Nessus, to hang with Cayde-6, Io, one of Jupiter’s moons for a chinwag with Ikora and Titan, Saturn’s largest moon is the only moon in the solar system big enough for Zavala’s big, blue head.
At this point in the stream Bungie told us that they wanted to make community at the heart of D2 and that clans were to be a big part of this, mainly through their new Guided Games system, where solo players can queue up with a clan that has open slots, meaning that you can have maybe 4 players from your clan for a raid and open that up to matchmaking. You can do this for every single activity in the game. This is great news, something D1 sorely lacks and you may get to play with a couple of Monkeys, if you’re lucky. There’s also custom clan banners and a shared reward system for your clan, that lets everyone in the clan work towards rewards together and seems pretty darn neat.
They also dropped news that the PC version (are PC Warlocks the Master, Master Race?) of D2 will run exclusively on Blizzard’s Battle.net, which seems fine to me, but I remain a console peasant, and have very little clue. All in all it looks like they listened to what we wanted and gave it to us, especially in terms of matchmaking and they dropped some nice surprises by moving clans closer to D2’s heart, where they belong. It looks pretty, and now it looks like you can drive a fu#%*#g TANK!
Bring it on, Space Hippos.