Bungie hosted the second of three Destiny 2: Curse of Osiris Twitch livestreams Tuesday to go over some of the new activities that will be available to PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC players. This included a look at a new public event, plus more details on the ability to forge new weapons, the Infinite Forest area, and Strikes.
New Public Event on MercuryAs covered last week, the Fields of Glass on Mercury serves as a public play space between the Lighthouse social area and the gateway to the Infinite Forest. It also serves another purpose as it was custom built to host the largest and longest public event in Destiny 2 yet.
The new Destiny 2 public event will see Gatekeeper Hydras spawn at different locations. These drop orbs when killed that serve as keys that open otherwise inaccessible islands. Dunking the orbs opens the next phase of fighting in the middle before moving to another island and then back to the middle to finish the fight.
There is a heroic version of the event, but it is not clear if that is what was shown during the livestream. It appears not, based on what happened when the event was completed.
The entire event lasts about seven minutes and will reward players two chests. However, you could almost hear the sad trombone sound when Community Manager David "Deej" Dague described the public event as the most rewarding yet, and the player in the stream then received only two tokens and a rare armor piece, which led to an entire new meme created by the community.
The debate over the value of the Destiny 2 token economy does not appear to be going away anytime soon. Bungie has mentioned changes in the economy recently but has not gone into great specificity yet.
Still, the event at least looks interesting at first glance, and the two chests at the heroic level will mean a greater chance to earn more powerful Legendary and Exotic loot. However, it will be interesting to see if the new public event will have any variations or else it will quickly get old.
The Forge and PropheciesAs previously covered, the Lighthouse will see the addition of a forge and a wall of weapons to track 11 new end-game weapons that will be available when completing the Destiny 2: Curse of Osiris campaign. Brother Vance will have three Prophecies (quests) available for players every week. These send players out to acquire specific items by completing events like strikes, public events, crucible matches, and the new heroic adventures.
These items will be placed in your Destiny 2 characters inventory where they can be used to fulfill the requirements of the Prophecy. The Prophecy can then be turned into Brother Vance where he gives back a fulfilled Prophecy that can be used at the Forge to craft a new weapon.
This is a nice move by Bungie towards the direction of making weapons and armor earnable through quests instead of the current random nature of tokens. The only major issue is the static nature of the perks on the weapons, but this is something Bungie will likely not deviate from in Destiny 2 for various reasons.
Since there are 11 weapons and only three Prophecies are given out per week, this means it will take players at least four weeks to obtain all the weapons. We've seen this before with the artifacts in Destiny 1: Rise of Iron. It is not a terrible mechanic. However, it will be interesting to see if it is enough to bring more than just the hardcore players back week after week once the Curse of Osiris campaign is complete.
StrikesThe Destiny 2 campaign saw Strikes relegated to a stand-alone playlist that had no real connection to the main campaign or post-campaign story. Curse of Osiris will make Strikes part of the expansion's campaign that can be played solo or with others just like any other story mission. The two new Strikes will also be added to the Strike playlists.
Making Strikes part of the Destiny 2: Curse of Osiris campaign is fine and removes the disconnect that exists with the current collection of activities. The more important Strike news actually came during last week's livestream when Bungie showed Heroic Strikes would finally be added back into the game. It's baffling why they were removed in the first place, and the Strike playlist has suffered for it.
Heroic Adventures and the Infinite ForestBungie touched on the Infinite Forest in the first Destiny 2: Curse of Osiris stream but didn't actually show the new play space. This is part of the Vex's reality engine in the hollowed-out core of Mercury where the bio-mechanical race simulates events in the past, present, and future to determine the outcome that benefits them the most.
Gameplay wise, the Infinite Forest consists of an unknown number of set pieces that are put together in different combinations with different enemies to provide Destiny 2 players with a new experience each time through. The use of near-randomly connected tilesets is not new to games but is new to the Destiny franchise.
It's not exactly clear to what extent the Infinite Forest will be utilized in Destiny 2. It will certainly be part of the Curse of Osiris campaign and the Heroic Adventures. The latter was demonstrated during the stream where the middle part of the Adventure was the changing tilesets leading to a hand-crafted play space for the finale.
Bungie did not go into great details about the difference with Heroic Adventures beyond they will be offered by Brother Vance, come with different modifiers to make them more difficult, and will have better rewards.
The addition of ever-shifting tilesets is a neat new feature in Destiny 2 and will help with replayability. It's not clear to what extent this will be used but could potentially be a great addition to activities like Strikes in the future. Of course, Bungie still has to solve the current end-game issues surrounding the disappointing lack of incentives to keep grinding and playing in Destiny 2.
The biggest issue with what was shown of the Infinite Forest is that the same groups of enemies are present that have been around since the early days of Destiny 1. The Fallen and Hive shown during the Adventure looked much the same, despite the setting being a "dark future" where all light has been extinguished and the Vex rule.
Overall ThoughtsThe second Destiny 2: Curse of Osiris livestream largely went over like a wet balloon with the community. This is because Bungie had already touched on most of the subjects during the first livestream, and the new information should have been conveyed then or held back instead of splitting it into two streams.
The new public event, the changes to the strikes, Heroic Adventures, the forge, and other new additions all feel like a nice progression from the base Destiny 2 game. However, things like Heroic Strikes and Heroic Adventures feel like they should have been in the base game. Meanwhile, the issues with the unpopular token economy and lack of end-game incentives still loom large over Bungie's sequel.
The December 5 launch of Destiny 2: Curse of Osiris will bring the second season of the game, along with some promised quality of life improvements and balance changes. The Bungie live team has not had much time to add these to the game, so it seems doubtful that dramatic changes won't be seen until the start of season three in March 2018.
[Featured Image by Bungie/Activision]