On November 10 Bungie releases the third expansion for Destiny 2 and takes the first step in a trilogy of stories intended to run until 2022. The game also takes the step out into the next generation of consoles, with cross-generation play, seasons that last all year and a new focus on the beginner experience.
This guide is aimed primarily at new players taking their first steps in this alien and dangerous world, as well as returning fans who need to catch up. Regular players can instead look forward to our guide for Beyond Light, where we will improve in detail about Stasis, Europe and the activities that await in the future.
If you are unsure about Destiny 2: Beyond Light is something for you, I can highly recommend the free version Destiny 2: New Light. It’s a great edition to test the waters, especially if you do it after November 10 when the new introductory experience is available. Then it is easy to expand the game with Upgrade Edition (which gives the two previous expansions The cause and Shadowkeep) or current Beyond Light.
Destiny 2 is what is popularly known as a looter shooter, an action game from a first-person perspective with a random reward system intended to engage players for a long time. Stories and events drive the game forward seasonally with new activities to participate in, missions to complete and equipment to gather to shape your character’s combat potential and appearance. Bungie describes Destiny 2 as an action MMO in a changing world that you and your friends can play anytime, anywhere, for free.
You play as a Guardian, a resurrected soldier blessed with cosmic powers to fight evil. Ghost, a mechanically small messenger, is your helper and source of power. Together with other Guardians, you fight to protect the last of humanity. In addition to your powers, which manifest themselves as fire, lightning and gravity, you arm yourself with a wide variety of weapons and armor to defeat the enemies that threaten the solar system.
Destiny 2 has both PvE (player versus environment) and PvP (player versus player) in a smorgasbord of activities. Players can take on linear story missions, do instances in so-called Strikes, or patrol freely at one of the various destinations. In the competitive Crucible, players can compete against each other in intense matches and those who are really brave can compete every weekend in the Trials of Osiris for a chance to win the most exclusive items in the game.
When you and your comrades-in-arms are strong enough, you can take on the biggest challenges Destiny 2 has to offer: raider. These test not only your skills but also your ability to work together and patience. They are the game’s most unique experiences and offer exciting environments, interesting stories, tricky puzzles and intense battles!
Destiny has a long and rich background story which is largely about a cosmic battle between two polarizing forces, in the game called Light and Darkness. It is said that hundreds of years ago humans discovered a spherical body on Mars with paracausal properties. This cosmic machine gave humans three times as long life and enabled great technological advances. The machine came to be called the Traveler. Mankind aimed at the stars and colonized the solar system, and for a time there was peace. But it would turn out that the Traveler had an ancient enemy and when it arrived it brought doom. Traveler was injured and humanity almost died out. In the aftermath came aggressive forms of life to plunder and conquer.
The hope lies in the Guardians who were brought to life by Travelers’ envoys, the little robots we call Ghost.
When Destiny 2 came 2017 invaded the Red Legion, militaristic space creatures, to hijack and conquer the Traveler. They succeeded and all the Guardians lost their power. Thousands died in the attack. Those who survived withdrew. With the help of the player, the heroes made a counterattack and defeated the leader of the legion. In the desperate final battle, the Traveler came to life again and sent a wave of light through the galaxy. This light aroused dormant pyramid ships – the representatives of darkness and a mythical evil.
For a time, the Guardians seemed to regain their former glory. They defeated threat after threat, rescued two legendary heroes, avenged an injustice, repaired high-tech forges, and met the capricious needs of an outlawed space emperor. They also found an ancient pyramid ship inside the moon that unleashed a plague of nightmares that players still deal with today.
Recently, they restored an ancient satellite defense system to avert a global catastrophe from wiping out humanity. But nothing could stop the pyramids from attacking the solar system.
When you log in to Beyond Light humanity stands at the edge of the abyss. The pyramids have arrived and herald the end. An emergency signal draws us to one of Jupiter’s moons. There we become aware of an empire strengthened by the forces of darkness. It is also there, in Europe, among frozen high-tech ruins that we hope to find answers to the cosmic conflict we find ourselves in.
There are many names to keep track of Destiny 2 though as a new or returning player, there are only a few you need to keep in mind when Beyond Light released.
If you are a completely new player, you will get acquainted with Shaw Han, a patrolling Guardian stationed in the Cosmodrome (former Russia). He was recently announced by Bungie as a mentor for beginners. Most likely he will introduce you to how Destiny 2 works in everything from mission jargon and weapon handling to background history and other good-to-know. After that, it is highly likely that he will become the contact person for the destination, like other characters associated with the planets they are stationed on.
This mysterious cyborg was introduced already in Destiny 1, but then disappeared without a trace. What we do know about her is that she is a time traveler who knows the bleak future we face. IN Beyond Light she reveals herself again to answer all our questions and guide us in the use of Stasis. She has also called Drifter and Eris Morn to Europe and together the trio will play an important role in the story.
Eris is a hardened Guardian who has survived horrors we can not imagine. Traumatized but armed with occult knowledge and a will of steel, she has made it her lifeblood to understand and defeat the dark forces that threaten humanity. Her wisdom comes in handy in difficult times.
A cynical man who survived for centuries by balancing on the fine line between good and evil. Few trust him because of his shady past, but if you gain his trust, you can trust him to cover your back. One thing you should know about Drifter: for him, it’s all about survival. It is Drifter who organizes and runs the twilight store Gambit, a game mode that mixes PvE and PvP.
Variks the Loyal
Member of the breed Eliksni and a traditionalist. Variks was previously a prison guard in Queen Mara Sov’s court. After leaving his post under mysterious circumstances, we now find him in Europe in the company of Eramis. What relationship they both have is unclear, but Variks seems worried about their people.
The villain in Beyond Light and a cunning and charismatic leader. A former baroness who now leads her own empire. With the help of the forces of darkness, she now rejects the traditions of her people to drive change. Violent change. Defeating her will be one of our primary goals in Beyond Light.
This mysterious filure appears every weekend somewhere in the solar system to sell exotic items. His past is unknown and his waffling does not give us many clues. But one thing he is careful to convey: that his will is not his own. You want to visit him every week to expand your arsenal or find an exotic armor with better features than your existing ones.
Commander Zavala, Ikora and Shaxx
A trio of well-known leaders. Commander Zavala is the front figure for all Guardians and is responsible for Vanguard missions (Strikes and Nightfall). He is a stoic figure who has recently begun to doubt. Ikora has an important leadership role in the game but unfortunately no function for you as a player. Shaxx, on the other hand, is responsible for Crusible (PvP) and is a great warrior, but without much grounding in the ongoing story.
Crow and Osiris
Finally, the central characters of the story for next season (Season of the Hunt). Crow is a recently awakened Guardian who in his previous life was a villainous prince who was manipulated to overthrow his people – and he murdered one of the most beloved characters in Destiny’s story! He is a very complex character that I recommend you take the time to get to know. Osiris on the other hand is a legendary person who is banned for his controversial theories. He has dedicated his life to fighting the time-traveling killer robots Vex, but this time takes on more direct threats.
With a reasonably good idea of what Destiny 2 is and what you can expect in the expansion Beyond Light it is high time to discuss some tips. I have been in the game since the original came in 2014 and have seen the game both top and bottom. What I have learned is that you yourself set the bar on what Destiny is for something. You can take it chill and just keep up with the story, run missions and do some side activities. You can manage what the game gives you and can try the more difficult content from time to time – preferably with the reinforcement of experienced players.
You can also choose to play in the upper level and invest heavily in Destiny. Then you are looking for the most effective routes to increase in level, actively hunt for weapons with optimized properties and are active in the performance-intensive activities. Personally, I commute between the two levels. Usually I’m somewhere in between. My recommendation is to play to have fun!
If you are a brand new player, my tip is to experiment and explore. Play with the different weapons, test all classes and dip your toes in the activities. Find something that suits you. Destiny will always have a meta, a top layer where a selection of weapons and properties dominate. But it is entirely possible to create something personal that works. Since Destiny is a loot-based game (where the majority of all objects are random), it can be beneficial to read about which properties are currently best, mostly so that you do not happen to get rid of an uncut diamond.
Finally, I want to round off with the fact that Destiny is a social game. Although you can do most things on your own thanks to matching with other players is Destiny 2 as best in the company of friends. If you do not already know someone who plays Destiny, maybe you can persuade someone to try the game with you – it’s still free to start!