Destiny 2’s Forsaken DLC is a western-style bounty hunt

Destiny 2

Trouble out on the frontier. There’s been a jailbreak out in The Reef, and some of the orneriest varmints this side of Alpha Centauri are loose and causing a hill o’trouble. This place doesn’t need a Guardian – it needs a sheriff. Destiny 2 may have had some troubles this past year, but I gotta admit, I like the idea behind its next expansion, Forsaken. A wild western vibe, a fresh bunch of villains and some big mechanical changes on the horizon are due this September, as Bungie announced today on their big debut Twitch stream.

On top of the usual bunch of new areas to visit and things to blow up (more on that in a bit), Forsaken is bringing some pretty major changes to the game, first and foremost being a complete rework of the weapon system. Now you can equip any three weapons, so if you like the idea of rolling with a trio of shotguns you can, although you might have some trouble at long range. There’s also a whole new weapon type being introduced – bows – because every open-world FPS needs bows and arrows for some reason. There’s a new set of sub-classes on the way too.

Fans of the original Destiny will recognise the name of The Reef – an asteroid belt on the far edge of the solar system – but Forsaken’s take on it is rather different. It’s a dusty wasteland constructed out of asteroids haphazardly lashed together into a greater whole. Nathan Fillion (by which I mean Cayde) went and built a prison there, into which he stuffed all the biggest bad guys he could find. As with most of Cayde’s other ideas, this turned out badly and now you’ve got a bunch of big bads called The Barons and a swarm of lesser villains to shoot.

Outside of hunting down these bounty marks around the Reef, you’ll have a few new chunks of endgame content to get into. Of course there’s a new raid – The Ascent of Kings – which Bungie say has the most bosses of any Destiny instance to date, plus some big puzzles, but it apparently ties into a larger chunk of endgame stuff called The Dreaming City. Not many details on how it works exactly, but Bungie say that based on what players do, The Dreaming City can change from one week to the next, offering different areas and enemies.

Destiny 2

There’s also an interesting new competitive playmode, Gambit, that reminds me a lot of competitive shmups like Twinkle Star Sprites on the Neo Geo.  Two teams each have their own arena. Their goal is to kill NPC enemies and cash in the tokens they drop at at bank. Fill the bank and you summon a boss. Kill that, you win. But you can also spend tokens to send a big enemy to lock the enemy bank down for a while, or even send one of your team to raid the opposition in hopes of stalling them. Parallel PvE – I can dig it.

While all the new content does sound nice, I do worry whether this will fall into the usual trap of being another 3-4 hours of story content backed up by a handful of repeatable instances again. Kotaku reported that Destiny 1’s development tools were so unfit for purpose that it took eight hours to load a single map before work could even start, and given how threadbare Destiny 2’s current two expansions are, I wonder if that situation hasn’t improved much.

Destiny 2

Reservations regarding scale aside, Forsaken sounds like a pretty solid expansion, as far as new Destiny 2 stuff goes, and the weapon slot alterations alone will be a game-changer. That said, Bungie are possibly repeating one of their biggest mistakes with the original Destiny – Forsaken will be a near-full-price release, coming in at $40 (or $70 with a new season pass) while promising not much more than the other DLC packs. Here’s hoping that what they deliver on September 4th justifies the price.


  1. Ham Solo says:

    Nah thanks. Not after all the shit they pulled.

  2. mitrovarr says:

    They’re asking to much money given the quality of the expansions they’ve put out so far. CoO and Warmind just weren’t all that great. Either price of Forsaken should cover upcoming stuff too or the existing expansion pass should cover upcoming stuff too (but maybe not Forsaken because it’s a larger pack). Trying to sell both Forsaken and a new season pass is greedy, and frankly what they’ve delivered so far is not worth that much money (but you’ll have to get it anyway because it raises power caps).

  3. DatonKallandor says:

    If this was normal DLC price or even twice that, it could have been a buy.

    But this is essentially them selling us the base game AGAIN. It’s selling Destiny 3, except without putting in the work to actually make Destiny 3. And it’s a signal that they will keep doing this every year.

    Activision wants their games to be repurchased, full price every year, with a season pass on top. Hell fucking no.

    • M0dusPwnens says:

      You have forgotten the final step.

      They would like you to:
      1. Repurchase the game every year.
      2. Buy a season pass that costs more than the average PC game every year.
      3. Buy some lootboxes to get many of the most desirable rewards.

  4. Godwhacker says:

    I played it as the Humble Monthly unlock and fuck me was it ever boring. A big noisy corridor full of things either running straight at you or bouncing around sniping, with the occasional named big thing to break continue the tedium.

    • ThTa says:

      While I did enjoy it well enough (also got it from Humble Monthly, played through the campaign, not sure if I’m going back), it’s definitely a game that’s “Fun with friends”™.

      Which isn’t actually praise, as much as some people/reviewers insist it is – it’s the bare minimum: most things are fun with friends, it’d have to actively make you miserable for you not to enjoy spending time with your friends. And that’s something these games capitalize on, basically forcing you to play the game with your friends over very long periods in order to get the full experience, thereby associating your time spent with friends with the game itself as a kind of “shared hobby”.

      It’s something MMOs figured out a long time ago (people playing because they like their guild), and is now being pushed to every other DLC/microtransaction-supported game.

      This is not necessarily a bad thing (I’m not advocating for exclusively playing games alone), but it can enable some pretty shoddy pricing structures and muddies the perspective on whether a game is good.

  5. Troubletcat says:

    I’m still enjoying playing Destiny 2 every now and then but that’s a LOT of dosh, especially considering how small the two expansions they’ve released so far have been. I actually like the game and I think it’s a no from me at that price point. Can’t imagine this’ll go over well with a broader community that is very salty about the state of the game as-is.

  6. Maxheadroom says:

    Also you didnt mention that this DLC REQUIRES the previous 2, poorly received, DLC which is another, what? £30? Plus the new season pass and you’re not far short of £100 to get back on board this sinking ship

    At this point i think they’re just doubling down to milk the remaining whales still playing for all they can

  7. The Great Wayne says:

    Basically at this point this sums up to : “you’ll have paid between 130-160 bucks in september to play the game as it was promised a year ago”.

    I can’t even begin to understand how that’s ok in the eyes of any player. Also, they’re trying to artificially inflate the value of the expansion by marketing some everyday QoL alongside the “new” content (seriously, who puts up “adding vault space” in a roadmap ?), a move that doesn’t help rebuilding some semblance of trust with this customer.

    It’s already bad as it is, but when you compare it with other titles on PC adding far more content and having way more fair business models, it really is appalling.

  8. TehK says:

    Got the game in the humble monthly in May and I’m really enjoying myself, even so far that I got the DLCs afterwards. A nice little campaign (I actually like that it’s not that long), the guns feel pretty nice, beautiful visuals…. I got exactly what I wanted from it and while I (of course) can see quite some points of criticism, I don’t really understand why everyone seems to be hating on it. Maybe it’s because I didn’t play the first Destiny and didn’t have a lot of expectations.

    All the stuff that was announced for the Forsaken expansion seems really great to me and I’m very much looking forward to it. That said, I feel Bungie (or Activision?) always seem to manage to set the price point slightly above what I’d feel comfortable with. If the current DLCs were at 15€, I’d say, that those were pretty decent DLCs – for 20€, they’re a lot harder to recommend. In the same vein, the Forsaken seems to be slightly too expensive, especially considering they also want to sell a new season pass.

Comment on this story

HTML: Allowed code: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>