One of the biggest criticisms of Destiny 1 was its lack of a coherent narrative. While that is likely due to the tumultuous development of the original game, now Bungie is hoping to get a fresh start with Destiny 2. The game’s director says the addition of story and a driving narrative is one of the biggest changes coming to the sequel to Bungie’s sci-fi social shooter.
Luke Smith, Destiny 2‘s game director, says that there are multiple layers of storytelling in Destiny 2, and that importantly, it will be easy for the player to follow:
“It’s actually focusing on having a followable narrative, and having a big sort of storyline, epic scenario. Layering the story content in a way we haven’t done yet for Destiny.”
Smith goes onto say that the main narrative of the game tells the story of the Red War. It’s what has been shown in the trailers so far and sets up the tale of the Cabal, led by Dominus Ghaul, taking the Last City and stripping the Guardians of their Light and powers.
Aside and in addition to the story of the Red War, Smith says that players will experience story in new ways, like referring to activities Bungie has discussed before, such as Adventures and Lost Sectors:
“You have adventures that are stories about the worlds, the planets and the particular enemies contained therein – it doesn’t directly relate to the Red War, it tells a different story.”
It’s all going to create a more “cohesive campaign” according to Smith, who also says that he hopes new players to the franchise—which Bungie and Activision are hoping for, especially with the addition of a PC version—will enjoy and notice the difference in how Bungie is now approaching narrative in Destiny.
Destiny 2 appears to be following in line with The Taken King, which righted the ship, so to speak, by adding a strong villain and story that Destiny had very much lacked up until that point. It feels familiar, and probably should considering that Smith and the leadership team of Destiny 2 were the ones behind The Taken King as well.
While vanilla Destiny players had to piece together the narrative by reading the lore found in the Grimoire cards accessed outside of the game, Destiny 2 looks to be trying to put as much storytelling straight into the game. Whether or not that narrative will be worth following, however, is yet to be determined.
Destiny 2 launches September 6 on PS4 and Xbox One, with an October 24 release on PC.