With this game we pick up right after the end of the original Destiny and all its DLC. Before we get into that let me say a few things. Bungie had taken everything we loved in the original Destiny and cranked that to 11, all while discarding the unwanted features. Gone are the constant hopping in and out of orbit, the “samey” feel to much of the things, the power creep, and the lack of an organic feel.
It no longer feels like an episodic game akin to Halo. It is a living, breathing fight across the planet. Public events are marked on the map. Lore, vendors, and missions are right there scattered across the battlefield with you. You can fast travel without having to leave the planet.
My personal favorite is the writing. This story is immersive, sucking you in at all points. Even in the fact that you’re struggling to regain your powers as you fight to hold humanity from the brink of extinction. The NPCs all have personalities. Even the enemies are given life through breathtaking and suspense-filled cut scenes or encounters with them while actually playing.
Now at the time of writing this, the servers are having some glitches, but these are expected to be resolved soon. This includes login issues that reportedly have been resolved, hiccuping in frame rates, and long wait times on PVP. These do not appear to be an effect of the consoles, but rather the servers. Expect these to be resolved swiftly.
EYES UP GUARDIAN!
Spoiler warning is in full effect as I explain what has happened up to the start of our live play video. I strongly suggest not skipping the cut scenes, as they are amazing. As we showed in our coverage of the Destiny 2 open beta, the last known human settlement known as Tower was attacked by Ghaul – the new leader of the Cabal – and the Traveler’s light has been suppressed or stolen from us, the guardians. Now devoid of the Traveler’s light, we fell to Earth, after a rather brutal kick from Ghaul.
Holding our ribs, and likely bleeding internally, we hobble through the landscape until we find our now damaged Ghost, the very creation of the Traveler who made us into a guardian in the first place. Denied the light, our constant companion voiced by Nolan North, does much to portray the fear of suddenly being mortal and brings it all into perspective. The ghost points out he can heal you, but if you die it’s game over.
With that in mind, you trek further avoiding the patrols and hunting parties of the Cabal. Even coming across camps of guardians who were slain mercilessly, defenseless without their powers. Taking a gun from what appears to be a fallen hunter, you continue on following some ambiguous falcon vision. Through fights and much trial, you will find that there are those who not only chose to live outside the Tower, but have continued the fight without guardians ever being a factor. An amazing testimonial to the tenacity of the spirit within us all.
Turns out, the falcon you have followed belongs to the leader of such a group of resistance fighters. In the background of their base, known as the Farm, you spy the fallen remains of part of the Traveler that had broken off prior to the coming of Ghaul and his Red Legion. Perhaps it fell when the Traveler pushed back the Darkness?
Hawthorne, the aforementioned leader of this rebellious faction, warns not to go near such a forbidden dead zone. You do not listen, and fight through waves of Fallen, until you find the Shard of the Traveler still contains the light in its purist form. With a giddiness akin to an older sibling that snuck their younger sibling a special treat, the Ghost warns you this is going to be intense.
The warning barely gives you time to brace yourself before you are flooded with light, restoring your abilities and even granting you the new subclass that Destiny 2 introduces. Much to the amusement of all, a contingent of Fallen arrive at what for them will prove to be the worst timing ever. With this we will enter the European Dead Zone, or EDZ, and jump into the live play.
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