Seattle is one of the best cities in the world. Perhaps even the best. There's something special about the northwestern parts of the United States. It's clean, the residents are incredibly friendly, the views are striking, the food is good. One other thing that is great about Seattle is that Bungie has its offices on the outskirts of the city - in Bellevue - a beautiful place with wide streets, amazing restaurants and a generally cosy atmosphere. However, this isn't an article in a travel magazine, the reason for our time in Seattle was, of course, to play the new expansion coming to Destiny 2 - Forsaken.
Those who are already familiar with Destiny 2's past year know that Bungie has been changing the game from the rather difficult path it's been at since it was released a year ago. We did like Destiny 2, we rewarded it with a solid nine out of ten, but as time went by it became more and more obvious that there had been too much simplifying and streamlining the experience rather than making sure that the loyal Destiny players had something to enjoy. Destiny 2 was a polished game with decent content but it was lacking in terms of depth and end-game activities. That's going to change now.
The reason for this change comes via the start of the second year of Destiny 2. In addition to a new campaign and more story content, it also means new gameplay mechanics and other tweaks. Things like weapon slots, balance changes and other features are already unlocked for all players, whether you buy the new expansion or not. Of course, those changes are included in our general impressions of Forsaken - a combined package is what defines the experience that Bungie wants to give us with the expansion. It may be worth noting that the segment of the text contains at least one giant spoiler (although it has been included in the marketing for the expansion) and if you definitely do not want to know anything, you have now been warned.
Forsaken begins on a classic Destiny premise. As a player, you travel to The Reef with Cayde-6, the ever happy exo, to prevent a riot in The Prison of Elders where the galaxy's worst villains are hold up. After a handful of clashes with various enemies, it is clear that the actual riot was a diversion, what is actually going on is that Uldren Sov (the queen's brother) has released the so-called Barons; an extra naughty bunch of horrendous Fallen who have been in prison for a long time and who now want out so they can spread terror around the system.
Narratively, the tone that comes as a direct consequence of the above events is obviously dark. What does it actually mean when a Guardian actually dies and how do the vanguard handle it? The player's task is usually to keep the peace of humanity's last cities, not take on revenge-driven missions, but it doesn't matter. Uldren Sov will die. He's going down.
Immediately thereafter, Cayde-6 will meet his death. Uldren executes our loving exo with his own weapon, after a little bit of smart mouthing from Cayde. This is what will define the story. Revenge. It's a fresh take in a series that tends to be about subduing any extra powerful force that threatens the whole universe's existence. It's more personal - more gritty and actually easier to be motivated by. We take the murder personally; we want to avenge our friend.