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Destiny 2: Don't Fear The Grimoire Reaper

Rasputin is a warmind.

“Destiny (2) is calllinnnnnnng meeeeeeeee” sang Brandon Boyer of early 2000s hit group The Thrills. “Open up my eeeeeeeeeager eyesssssssssss, cause I’m ready to read more grimoire cardssssssss.”

Well, I have some bad news for you, Brandon. Destiny 2 [official site] is doing away with grimoire cards in favour of sticking the lore in the game and not, e.g. in a completely separate app on my telephone.

This piece of Destiny news was actually something I’d assumed after watching the presentation they gave revealing the first footage of the game. It sounded like Bungie were going to jettison the bits of the original game which didn’t really work and it had sounded like they wanted to beef up the story side of things and that would include the associated lore.

In case this is all gobbledegook to you, Destiny had these things called grimoire cards which you could unlock as you played. You’d earn them kind of like achievements for doing different things in the game like playing different crucible modes and you can rank some of them up by killing enemies – that sort of thing.

They were an incentive of sorts in that completionists would then need to do a lot of different things in the game in order to get all the cards, or maybe it would spur you on to try new modes because you wanted more story. Despite the claims that there is no story you’ll find swathes of the community who have been through the game and the associate lore in the grimoire cards to make all kinds of intricate and cool connections.

You also learn things like how the alien who sells exotic weaponry and other cool bits and bobs from some dark corner each week is probably the same guy who released the brutal jerk Skolas from The Nine (he had been sent as a gift). Skolas is one of the game’s most difficult bosses and you can find him in the Prison of Elders. It’s a 3-player challenge mode and Skolas does my head in.

The fancy named guns have stories and the names are significant.

I like to pop by and read the theories on the subreddit from time to time because I don’t enjoy that kind of detective work myself. I have 3695 grimoire points and have read maybe half the cards I’ve collected. But reading about it does bring other dimensions to things like the names of guns or passing references other characters make. With that approach I ended up seeing the world of Destiny as this story-rich thing, but I do see how you could play the game, get fed up with the app and the cards and the weird way that stuff is gated and drip fed and decide that it was all just waffle. Like Bungie had left out a crucial ingredient from a cake recipe – maybe the eggs – and then just cracked them into a side dish and served it all up. ALL OF THE BITS OF THE CAKE ARE THERE SHUT UP.

Anyway, to get back to my main point in all of this, Bungie have decided to add the eggs to the actual cake instead of laying them into an external app. Forbes’ Erik Kain asked the game’s world lead Steve Cotton if grimoire cards would be a thing in Destiny 2 (Des-2-ny/Deux-stiny/Dos-tiny/2Destiny2Furious) and he said “No.”

“The answer to that question is ‘no’ and the reason it’s ‘no’ is because we want to put the lore in the game,” Cotton told me. “We want people to be able to find the lore. All the story is told through the Adventures, it’s told through the characters in the world, it’s told through the campaign and it’s told through scannables you find throughout the world.”

The game’ll be out later this year, possibly later on PC than the September 8th console launch. In case you’re in the mood for more Destiny lore in the meantime here’s another snippet:

Miley Cyrus’s real name is Destiny Hope Cyrus. Miley comes from the nickname “Smiley” because she was a chipper baby.

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Philippa Warr

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