Destiny 2 is finally here, and fans of Bungie's popular multiplayer space shooter have plenty of reasons to be excited.
The next Destiny installment promises larger worlds, imposing new enemies and a variety of ways to play, and will bring the series to PC for the first time. Whether you're a devoted Guardian with hundreds of hours under your belt or are just diving into the series now, here's everything you need to know about Destiny 2.
What's the deal with Destiny?
For those just diving in, Destiny is a multiplayer shooter made by Bungie, the same folks who created Halo.
The game blends first-person shooting gameplay with elements of massively multiplayer online games, allowing you to run into other players in virtual worlds and tackle challenging missions with a big group. You play as a Guardian, tasked with protecting Earth's last city from a bunch of nasty alien races. It would take days to fully make sense of the Destiny universe, but you can check out our Destiny Dictionary to get up to speed.
Destiny 1 first launched in late 2014 on to mixed reviews, though follow-up expansions such as House of Wolves, The Taken King and Rise of Iron improved the game significantly. Activision let slip that a Destiny sequel was in the works just months after the original game released, with various leaks hinting at new features and a possible PC port. Flash forward to 2017, and that sequel is here.
When is Destiny 2 coming out?
Destiny 2 will launch on Sept. 6 for PS4 and Xbox One, and Oct. 24 for PC.
What's new in Destiny 2?
There's a ton of new stuff to look forward to in Destiny 2, so here's a quick breakdown of it all:
Story: Earth's last safe city (which served as your home base in Destiny 1) is in shambles after being attacked by an evil new group known as the Red Legion, so it's your job to shoot them back into space. Key characters such as Commander Zavala, Ikora Rey and Nathon Fillion's ever-charming Cayde-6 are coming back. According to Bungie, Destiny 2 will have many more cinematic cutscenes and story missions than the first game.
Subclasses: Destiny's three classes — the bruising Titan, the magic-wielding Warlock and the nimble Hunter — are all getting awesome new abilities. The Titan's Sentinel ability will let them toss a shield around like Captain America, while the Warlock gets a fiery sword called Dawnblade. Hunters can look forward to wielding a cool electric staff called the Arcstrider.
Multiplayer: The game's competitive Crucible mode will now be 4 vs. 4 for all modes, instead of 3 vs. 3 or 6 vs. 6. Highlights include Countdown, a new objective-based mode that has teams take turns arming and defusing charges. Classic gametypes such as Control and Rumble will return.
Clans and Guided Games: Speaking of teammates, Destiny 2 will make finding a group of Guardians much easier. The game will feature more robust clan support for communicating with your pals both in and out of the game. There's also Guided Games, which will allow solo players to be matched up with clans that are looking to help them get through tougher challenges, such as Raids and Nightfalls.
Exploration: Destiny 2 will offer four worlds — Earth, Titan, Io and Nessus — and will allow you to navigate between planets without having to return to orbit first.
What versions of Destiny 2 can I buy?
The base Destiny 2 game will cost $60, and you can get it bundled with its Expansion Pass for $90. There's also a Digital Deluxe Edition and a physical Limited Edition with a fancy steelbook case, both of which cost $100. If you want to go all out, the $250 Collector's Edition gets you a Destiny-themed messenger bag, a collector's box and all of the goodies from previous versions.
As with the first game, Destiny 2 will have a variety of PS4-exclusive content until at least Fall 2018, which is good news for PlayStation fans and a bummer for everyone else.
What do I need to play Destiny 2 on my PC?
Here are Bungie's official spec requirements:
- CPU: Intel Core i5-2400 / AMD Ryzen R5 1600X
- GPU: Nvidia GeForce GTX 970 / AMD Radeon R9 390
- RAM: 8GB
- CPU: Intel Core i3-3250 / AMD FX-4350
- GPU: Nvidia GeForce GTX 660 / AMD Radeon HD 7850
- RAM: 6GB
If you're buying or building a new gaming PC for Destiny 2, Bungie suggests springing for at least an Intel Core i5-7400 and an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060. If you want to have the same mind-blowing 4K, 60fps experience we had at E3, you'll need an Intel i7-7700K and an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 Ti.
Can I carry my Destiny 1 character into Destiny 2?
Yes and no. According to a Bungie blog post, you'll be able to carry over your Guardian's appearance, but not their powers and items. Bungie says that this decision was made in order to make Destiny 2 feel brand new for everyone — after all, returning Destiny players would have a big advantage over newbies if they entered Destiny 2 with a ton of weapons and gear.
Is Destiny 2 worth buying?
We'll have to spend some serious time with Destiny 2 to know if it's worth your cash, but early reviews of the game are extremely promising. According to critics that got their hands on a good chunk of the game pre-release, Destiny 2 cuts out the bloat of mechanics that made Destiny 1 feel like a chore, allowing you travel quicker, level up more easily and spend more time shooting up aliens with great-feeling guns. The game's cinematic campaign is getting lots of big praise, both for its gorgeous cutscenes and for the swath of activities there are do to in-between missions.
We're eager to see how Destiny 2 holds up after a few weeks in the real world, so stay tuned for impressions.
Image Credit: Activision
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Mike Andronico is Senior Writer at CNNUnderscored. He was formerly Managing Editor at Tom's Guide, where he wrote extensively on gaming, as well as running the show on the news front. When not at work, you can usually catch him playing Street Fighter, devouring Twitch streams and trying to convince people that Hawkeye is the best Avenger.