Destiny 2’s final gambit – how Bungie aims to bring its FPS back from the dead

By Kirk McKeand
23 August 2018 17:30 GMT

During a presentation at gamescom this week, Destiny 2 design lead Lars Bakken vowed that the next expansion will turn the FPS sequel around.

With Destiny 2: Forsaken, Bungie is “doubling down”, offering more looting, more shooting, and more ways to do both in a personal story.

Everyone’s favourite (okay, not everyone’s) robot, Cayde-6, is killed while investigating a prison break. He puts up a fight, but Uldren – the main antagonist of Forsaken – and his eight barons snipe his ghost out of the sky and throw him through a wall. Savage.

In killing off one of Destiny’s most beloved characters, Bungie aims to make your mission feel more pressing. Squeeze that trigger, watch the numbers pop, and think of Cayde-6.

The expansion transports us all into a lawless frontier to battle the Scorn, a magic-wielding group of Fallen and possibly the toughest, most dynamic enemies we’ve faced yet.

Luckily, we’ll have the tools to deal with them. From Cayde-6’s signature revolver, the Ace of Spades, to a twin-firing rocket launcher dubbed the Two-Tailed Fox, our arsenal will be more varied and explosive.

Bungie says it wants to make Destiny 2’s players feel “faster and more agile” than ever before, it wants the rewards to be worth the effort of attaining them, and it wants to address the criticisms of the base game. Bungie aims to shake shit up.

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One of the biggest new features coming with the expansion is Gambit, a PvP/PvE hybrid where timing is everything.

In Gambit, two teams fight separate waves of enemies. The enemies drop motes, and the team that banks enough motes can trigger and take on the boss. Kill the boss first and your team wins, but there’s a catch…

When you bank a set amount of motes, you can send over a blocker to the opposing team. This AI-controlled enemy is a tank and your opponents will have to work together to take it down. While they’re doing that, you bank more points.

You can also choose to send over one of your teammates to periodically disrupt the opponents’ run. This is the gambit. Do you want to sacrifice a gun and potentially slow down your human enemies, or do you need everyone to concentrate on the AI?

While Forsaken might be scratching a familiar itch to previous expansions, the introduction of Gambit should breathe new life into Destiny 2’s competitive scene at least. It remains to be seen whether Forsaken will do the same for the game’s progression, rewards, and story, but Bungie is saying all the right things.

A triple-A developer admitting fault? It’s a gambit, but it might just pay off.

Destiny 2: Forsaken is out September 4 on PC, PS4, and Xbox One.

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