After fighting to separate from Microsoft, Halo developer Bungie found itself in an interesting place. It’d freed itself from making Halo sequels, but hadn’t delivered a title outside of the series in years. The company set about building a new franchise quickly. First, it partnered with publisher Activision. Then it gave the public their first glimpse of Destiny. Destiny will have been around for three years this coming September. Don’t expect more expansions like Rise of Iron and the House of Wolves. Instead, the studio is cooking up Destiny 2.
Per Activision, Destiny 2 will attempt to move the franchise in some new directions. The game will reward all those who have spent countless hours investing time and energy into learning the mechanics of the first game. At the same time, the publisher hopes that Destiny 2 will have more appeal for casual gamers than the original did. That makes sense, Destiny is often criticized for the opaqueness of its lore and complicated system of rewards and reputations.
Here’s 3 things we know about Destiny 2 thus far.
The Destiny 2 Release Window
Series developer Bungie doesn’t like to share any information about its plans, preferring to promise only what it can deliver. That being said, publisher Activision doesn’t have the same philosophy. It’s a publicly traded company that has a responsibility to detail its plans to shareholders and the public, especially if it thinks those plans will have a big impact on earnings.
Activision confirmed Destiny 2 will release in 2017 during its earnings report for the final quarter of 2016. In statements made after the earnings announcement, the company said that developer Bungie was aiming for a release date this fall.
As for exactly when in the season, that much is up in the air. It is worth noting that Bungie has a habit of introducing new games and expansions in September, just before the fall rush of games kicks off. It seems unlikely that the company would use the launch of Destiny 2 to break with that tradition.
One thing that the company didn’t confirm is which platforms Destiny 2 will be available on. Sources who spoke with video game website Kotaku say that Destiny 2 is coming to PS4, Xbox One and Windows PCs. That’ll be very, very big news, if proven to be accurate. Destiny was built specifically for consoles. It only ever saw releases on Xbox One, Xbox 360, PS3 and PS4. Even today, it’s not available to owners of Windows PCs.
Destiny 2 Will Focus Enhancing What People Love
At some point later in the year, Activision says that its planning a huge reveal for Destiny 2. That didn’t stop the company from teasing Bungie’s goals for the new game. “If you’re one of the millions of players who’s really invested in Destiny and have put a lot of hours and passion into that game, you’re going to love this game, and there’s a lore more of what you love here.”
It’s hard to quantify that without having seen the game or gotten a glimpse at its feature set, unfortunately. It’s possible that this could be a hint at player’s being able to import their characters, for example. We just don’t know enough about the game.
Destiny 2 Could Have a Better Story
“For anyone who either hasn’t yet tried Destiny or hasn’t played in a while, we think we’ve made a sequel that’s going to have a lot for them to love, too,” a statement about the game during the earnings announcement read, according to GameSpot.
The statement goes on to hint at a better story for Destiny 2 than was included with Destiny and its subsequent expansions. It teases characters that are “memorable” and “relatable.” The company also mentions its intention to make this new game more accessible than was the previous game. Accessibility is important as Activision specializes in games that have mass-market appeal. The Call of Duty franchise is a huge boon for its bottom-line every year. New games in the series are often compared to big-budget box office movies than video games because of how episodic and approachable they are.
For now, that’s everything. We don’t have a detailed list of changes that company has made to multiplayer and the games modes. We also don’t have a transition road map. As such, it’s still unclear whether gamers will be able to take their character with them, even if they can’t keep their gear.
As Destiny 2 is on track for a release this year, it’s likely that we’ll hear more about the game shortly before the Electronic Entertainment Expo in June. Historically, Activision uses events around the summer to set its agenda for the fall.