Destiny 2

Platform(s): PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X
Genre: Action
Publisher: Activision
Developer: Bungie
Release Date: Sept. 6, 2017


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PS4/XOne/PC Preview - 'Destiny 2' Forsaken Expansion Pack

by Redmond Carolipio on July 4, 2018 @ 1:00 a.m. PDT

Destiny 2 is a first-person action game that takes the player on an epic journey to defend humanity from annihilation.

Pre-order Destiny 2: Forsaken

Cayde-6 is dead. Or is he? That's one of the prevailing questions among Destiny fans following one of the trailers for Destiny 2: Forsaken, the game's upcoming expansion. Like most expansions, Forsaken promises a wealth of new content, including a whole new story, quests, characters and weapons. It's also going to bring with it a new multiplayer mode called Gambit, which has some engaging possibilities.

We got a chance to sample some of Forsaken's single-player action along with a few rounds of the Gambit mode during separate demos at E3 2018.

The single-player campaign in Forsaken is focused around the events at the Prison of Elders, a gloriously massive facility that apparently houses the galaxy's worst of the worst. The story mission we got to play plopped us right in the middle of the rioting in the prison that eventually leads — we can only assume — to an epic breakout that frees eight "barons" from the prison. It's on the Guardians to track down these eight barons, making them the fantastical intergalactic versions of Interpol or the U.S. Marshals. Tracking down these folks will lead to the aforementioned new locations and territories.

Riding shotgun with me during the story mission (sort of) was Cayde-6, the wiseass Exo Hunter class Guardian voiced hilariously by Nathan Fillion. I didn't notice any massive gameplay overhauls or have to make any adjustments to what I already knew from playing the Destiny series, so I was able to visually drink in the sheer size and design clarity of the Prison of Elders.

It's a monstrous, wide-open station full of cool-looking cells and machinery (and enemies) that feels like a drifting, isolated city in space. In addition to the typical shootout here and there, I also had to fight off waves of enemies while Cayde-6 had to figure out how to free himself from the confines of a server room. We also followed the lead of Petra, whom fans might recognize from previous Destiny expansions.

Our demo ended with a small cinematic scene, where a busted and damaged Cayde-6 is sharing words with a hooded stranger. The scene ends when this stranger pulls out a revolver, points it at Cayde-6 and the screen goes black, punctuated with the sound of a gunshot.

Lightening up the second half of the demo was a multiplayer round of Gambit, which pits teams of four against each other to determine "who is better at hunting evil." This means you're not shooting each other, at least not at the outset. Instead, both teams are dropped off at opposite ends of a map and charged with killing whatever enemies are in front of them.

Here's where Gambit's unique scoring system comes into play: The first team to "raise" a Primeval enemy and then take it out wins. How is that done? First, you have to collect the "motes" that the progressively stronger enemies drop when you kill them. You can hold up to 15 of them, but you lose them if you die. What you can do with these motes is "bank" them at a station that was in the middle of the map. The more you bank, the closer you get to raising the big, bad enemy your team needs to kill. To mess with the other team, you can also collect and bank enough motes to activate certain powers and raise "blockers," who are stronger, almost mini-boss level enemies that can keep the other team occupied while you rack up more motes. Another power you can unlock is the ability to actually invade the other team and wreak havoc within its ranks.

It's a lot to take in, and it took me and my fellow demo partners about a round to get used to it. Once we did, we joined others in reacting appropriately as beasts were raised, motes were gained and lost, and primeval monsters were getting ganged upon by both sides.

Forsaken has the potential to add plenty of fun to what looks like an already rich expansion. It'll be interesting to see what kind of life Forsaken adds to Destiny 2 when it becomes available in September.

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