What to know before diving into Destiny 2.
While Destiny 2's biggest DLC expansion to date, Forsaken, is still a few days away, there's a ton of new stuff to check out in the game right now. Bungie has released a major update for all players to prepare the game for Forsaken. It's not only big in terms of file size--it weighs in at around 35 GB--but it has a meaningful impact on how the game is played right now.
Many new features and adjustments won't be enabled until Forsaken releases on September 4, but whether or not you plan on purchasing it, you can boot up the game and experience some major differences today. There are numerous tweaks to individual weapons, weapon types, perks, and classes, which you can read about in the full patch notes. For a primer on what to expect next time you boot up the game, here's a quick overview of some of the biggest and most important changes in update 2.0. And bear in mind you can potentially do so without already owing the game, as Destiny 2 is an early PS Plus freebie for September.
Update: To expand things even further, Xur has arrived, and he's working a bit differently than usual. As we knew from the patch notes, he no longer shows up on the map, nor does he simply go wherever the current Flashpoint is. More notably, the Exotic armor he's selling right now offers new perks over the existing versions, giving you a reason to buy them even if you already own those pieces.
Weapon Slot And Ammo Overhaul
As before, you have three weapons equipped at a time, but just which slot those weapons go in has changed completely. You no longer are restricted to having one weapon that uses Primary ammo in the Kinect slot and one that uses Energy ammo in the Energy slot. You can in theory have two weapons that both use Primary ammo, if that's your preference.
More meaningfully, Bungie has shuffled which slot many weapons go in. Shotguns, snipers, and fusion rifles can now be found in the Energy slot, meaning you'll be able to use them far more often than before, as they now use the much more common Energy ammo, rather than Heavy ammo. The Heavy slot remains home to certain weapons of those types, including Exotics like DARCI, Tractor Cannon, The Legend of Acrius, and Whisper of the Worm.
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While there are some exceptions, Bungie has readjusted which ammo type each weapon uses. Here's how things now look:
Primary Ammo Weapons
- Hand Cannons
- Scout Rifles
- Auto Rifles
- Submachine Guns
- Pulse Rifles
Special Ammo Weapons
- Fusion Rifles
- Sniper Rifles
- Trace Rifles
- Single Shot Grenade Launchers
Heavy Ammo Weapons
- Drum-Loaded Grenade Launchers
- Rocket launchers
- Linear Fusion Rifles
Infusion Works Differently
The process of infusion--where you take the higher Power level of one item to boost another of the same type--has changed in multiple ways. You're no longer required to match item types; for instance, you can infuse a pulse rifle using a hand cannon. Before, you'd need a pulse rifle to infuse another pulse rifle.
The cost of infusion has been adjusted to now also require a specific planetary material alongside Glimmer and Legendary Shards. Exact costs depend on the rarity levels of the items involved; infusing an Exotic into another item will ditch the Legendary Shard aspect of the price and reduce the amount of Glimmer needed.
This change ties in with planetary materials becoming far common. You'll now get them in large batches from things like opening chests, and they now serve as a primary source of gaining reputation on each planet, taking the place of tokens.
In terms of how and why this matters to you, it seems that infusing everything possible will no longer be the way to go. You'll want to carefully consider what you infuse and when, which may prove to be a welcome tweak.
You Can Get Forsaken Weapons And Armor Right Now
Forsaken might not be out, but you can actually start getting new gear from it already. The current Flashpoint is on Mars, and completing it can reward you with either a piece of Legendary Forsaken armor or a weapon. You can see those that we've gotten our hands on in the gallery below. That these items are available is notable because you don't actually need the Forsaken DLC to receive these items currently. It seems as if this is only happening as a result of a bug, given that it's mentioned in Bungie's list of known issues. Whatever the case, these are still items you can nab right now.
Completing the Flashpoint is no different than in the past, although how you track it has changed. Many of the weekly milestones are no longer seen from a menu in the Director. Instead, these are now found by looking at specific activities in the Director, or--in the case of the Flashpoint--by hovering over the planet's vendor on the map.
Bungie has warned that some things may be broken in-game until Forsaken and its accompanying patch launch on September 4. Be aware: That appears to be the case with the Flashpoint progress meter, which doesn't accurately reflect how much you've done.
More Vault Space
It's not the most critical of changes, but Bungie has increased Vault space to 500 slots. That's welcome for those who like to collect everything, and it'll be particularly important once Forsaken releases, as Destiny 2 will be introducing items with random rolls (as in the first game), so it may be beneficial to keep multiples of the same weapon or armor piece.
Another thing to bear in mind: the Collection is inaccessible until the 126.96.36.199 patch launches on September 4. That means you can't retrieve emblems and Exotics that you don't already have stored on you or in your vault right now.
Activity Changes To Challenges, Strike Playlists, And More
The precise way in which you take part in activities has changed. Existing challenges are gone, replaced by bounties that will be obtainable from the relevant vendor; "challenges" now refer to daily or weekly bonuses that were previously viewed as milestones. The Nightfall is increasing in difficulty, while the Prestige version has been removed. The Heroic Strike playlist is gone, replaced by Legacy and Forsaken playlists (the latter with increasing difficulty levels, based on your Power level). Here's how Bungie outlines them:
Heroic Strike playlists have been retired for all players and replaced with a single content-appropriate playlist:
- Strikes playlist matches the legacy playlist that is currently available in Year 1
- Recommended Power 200
- Will have modifiers
- Strike playlist has three difficulties to select from:
- Recommended Power 300 (not available when your level is 40 Power higher)
- Recommended Power 400 (not available when your level is 40 Power higher)
- Recommended Power 500 (always available)
- Will have modifiers
If you're looking for the Leviathan Raid and Raid Lairs, those are now located in the Nessus area of the Director. In preparation for his fate in Forsaken, Cayde has left the Tower, meaning you'll no longer be able to purchase scouting reports and treasure maps. And Xur, once he arrives, will no longer show up on the map, nor will he be found wherever the current Flashpoint is located.
This is just a sampling of the many changes that Bungie has implemented in Destiny 2. The game is very much in flux right now, as Forsaken is set to shake things up even further, with the annual pass set to continue expanding upon the game. Whether all of these adjustments are for the better remains to be seen, but whatever the case, it's an exciting time to be a Destiny 2 player.