For years now, Destiny 2 has followed a similar pattern: release a big annual expansion followed by four individual seasons with familiar loot grinds and a predictable pace of narrative beats. No longer. After The Final Shape drops in early 2024, Bungie revealed the game will move to a new structure with bigger but fewer updates throughout the year.
The announcement came during today’s 2023 Destiny 2 showcase and it’s still not entirely clear how the new system will work. Here’s what we do know. Instead of four seasons a year, players will get three episodes. Each episode will span 18 weeks and consist of three acts. New story missions, quests, and gear will then be introduced throughout the episode. The first three for 2024 are called Echoes, Revenant, and Heresy.
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Bungie is also promising that players can jump into episodes in any order they want, making them sound more self-contained than current seasons, which often build off the events in the prior one. Will episodes only last through the year before their content is wiped away like Bungie does with the current seasonal structure? Is this the same amont of content spread out through the year more evenly, or fewer updates (three instead of four) in favor of bigger, more impactful ones?
The massive shift in the weekly life of Destiny 2 players will arrive after The Final Shape expansion wraps up the in-game events of the past decade. The first three episodes will deal with the fallout from that showdown, and almost sound like an epilogue as the Destiny universe figures out the core conflicts that will define the future of its universe. They’ll also be arriving as players debate the health and sustainability of Destiny 2 as a live service following a dissapointing Lightfall expansion and major criticisms of the sci-fi MMO’s pricey microtransctions.
Game Director Joe Blackburn tried to win back some goodwill from the Destiny community in a very brief but perseonal video released a week prior to the showcase. Among other things, he mentioend Bungie would be putting together a strike team to focus on improving PvP, once a core pillar of the game. He also promised fans a free set of Eververse armor in Season 22, which went live today.
Notably, he said nothing in the 2023 showcase was a direct response to recent community backlashes. Episodes may be exactly what Destiny 2 needs to find a better balance between drip-feeding out new content and leaving players bored and hungry between each big new update. In the meantime, the bigger conversation around what the future of Destiny can and should be will continue.
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