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Destiny 2: Season 22 - Storyline, Weapons, And Everything We Know

Bungie is keeping details on Season 22 a mystery for now, but it'll be launching on a big day for Destiny 2.


The next season of Destiny 2, Season 22, officially begins on August 22, and after the last six months served as an epilogue to Lightfall with deep dives on the origins of the Witness and the mysterious Veil, the road to The Final Shape begins here. Right now, only Bungie knows exactly what will happen next season, although some leaks may have spoiled the surprise.

For now, we're mostly ignoring those rumors for a spoiler-free roundup of what you can expect in Season 22. Obviously, not a whole lot has been revealed so far, but we'll update this post with new details and assets as soon as Bungie begins to share those details. So far, the only real clue we have for what to expect from next season is a sneak peek at the new armor sets, and a cryptic reminder that "the Witch Queen must rise" if we're to have any hope in stopping the Witness.

In the last few weeks, Bungie has also spoken at length about how it'll be mechanically tweaking Destiny 2 in Season 22 as it focuses on improving underperforming areas of the game, tightening up sections in need of some maintenance, and experimenting with new ideas. Here's everything that we know about Season 22 so far.

Destiny 2 Season 22 start date

Season of the Deep officially ends on August 22, which is also the day of Destiny 2's weekly reset, and the start of Season of the Witch. What makes this day special is that it's also the date on which a new Bungie Showcase will be broadcast, detailing what lies ahead in the game's next expansion, The Final Shape.

Season 22 story

With all options exhausted in their attempt to pursue The Witness, the Vanguard embarks on a risky plan to resurrect Savathunm in Season 22. While the Witch Queen may be dead, her ghost Immaru is still around and makes a deal with the Guardians to bring back the Hive god and strike down her sister Xivu Arath in the process.

Narratively, players can also expect Season 22 to establish several story threads that'll lead into The Final Shape expansion. "From Season 22 and Season 23 onwards, it's the ramp-up and lead into The Final Shape," senior narrative designer Robert Brookes explained in an interview. "So it's a very different shape than what we were used to."

Seasonal activity

Altars of Summoning and Savathun's Spire headline this season's matchmade activities, two seasonal activities that revolve around slaying armies of enemies while empowering Eris Morn for her upcoming battle with Xivu Arath.

Season 22 raid

The upcoming reprised raid, Crota's End, will be available beginning on Friday, September 1, 2023 with the daily reset at 10 AM PT / 1 PM ET. Contest Mode, for anyone planning to compete for the World First title, will be enabled for the first 48 hours, just as it was for Root of Nightmares earlier this year.

Crota's End, as the name suggests, was a Hive-centric raid that introduced a number of fascinating gameplay mechanics to the structure of that PvE activity and notably ended with a Guardian slaying Crota with his own blade. We could also see one of the raids that has been vaulted in Destiny 2, such as Leviathan.

Destiny 2 Season 22 weapon updates

A recent Season 21 patch adjusted the performance of pulse rifles, bows, submachine guns, and shotguns, and beyond that, some interesting changes are scheduled for glaives, hand cannons, swords, and bows in Season 22. Several more Exotic weapons are also getting tweaked, as Monte Carlo, Two-Tailed Fox, Touch of Malice, and Le Monarque are all receiving updates.

Hand cannons will gain improved reload speeds and damage increases when targeting major or minor enemies in PvE, and guarding with swords will get a "substantial rework," according to Bungie. Various perks--including Bipod, Envious Assassin, and Under-Over--will be buffed in unspecified ways and more Exotics will see balance changes, including Le Monarque and Touch of Malice.

Destiny 2 seasonal weapons

Currently, there's no clue as to what the weapon theme will be in Season 22 and what new perks you can expect. These usually tie into the current season, like Season of the Deep's Taken-influenced weapons or Season of Plunder's pirate arsenal, so there's a good chance that this theme will continue in Season 22.

Season 22 artifact

Bungie has a new plan for the seasonal artifact in Season 22, and after being inspired by the success of Strand Tangles, the studio is looking to replicate that gameplay mechanic with "Elemental Orbs" that can be generated when enemies are defeated with Arc, Solar, or Void weapons. Throwing an Elemental Orb will produce a result that ties into the identity of that subclass, like jolting targets with an Arc orb, scorching enemies with a Solar orb, or applying a volatile debuff to any foe hit with a Void orb.

According to Bungie, here's what the artifact perks look like for Season 22:

Anti-Barrier Auto Rifle

  • Your equipped Auto Rifles fire shield-piercing rounds and stun Barrier Champions. Additionally, Auto Rifles are always overcharged when that modifier is active.

Arc/Strand Siphon Combo

  • Combines the Arc and Strand Siphon mods into one.

Thanatotic Tangles

  • Strand weapon final blows have a chance to generate a Tangle.

Overload Machine Guns

  • Uninterrupted fire from your equipped Machine Gun stuns unshielded combatants, delaying ability energy regeneration and lowering combatant damage output.
  • Strong against Overload Champions. Additionally, Machine Guns are always overcharged when that modifier is active.

Monochromatic Maestro

  • Dealing elemental ability damage increases matching weapon damage, and elemental weapon damage increases matching ability damage. Bonus granted is 10% for 5 seconds.

Piercing Bowstring

  • Bows gain shield-piercing arrows, which bypass combatant defenses.
  • Strong against Barrier Champions. Additionally, Bows are always overcharged when that modifier is active.

Solar/Strand Siphon Combo

  • Combines the Solar and Strand Siphon mods into one.

Origin Perk Specialization II

  • Weapons with the Head Rush, Nanotech Tracer Rockets, Unsated Hunger, and [REDACTED] Origin traits are always overcharged when that modifier is active.

Elemental Fury

  • While stunned, Champions take bonus damage from your abilities and Elemental Orb damage

Rapid-Fire Ranger

  • Rapid precision hits made from long range weaken the target.

Unstoppable Scout Rifle

  • Aiming down the sights of a Scout Rifle for a short time loads a powerful explosive payload that stuns unshielded combatants.
  • Strong against Unstoppable Champions.
  • Additionally, Scout Rifles are always overcharged when that modifier is active.

Void/Strand Siphon Combo

  • Combines the Void and Strand Siphon mods into one.

Elemental Orbs: Void

  • While using a Void subclass, Void weapon final blows have a chance to spawn a Void Elemental Orb. Void Orbs can be thrown to create a Void explosion that makes enemies it damages volatile.

Communal Pickups

  • When an ally destroys or picks up your Tangle or Elemental Orb, the Tangle cooldown is reduced by 5 seconds, and you gain bonus damage with weapons matching your subclass for 10 seconds.

Elemental Embrace

  • Subclass elemental buffs grant you bonus recovery and damage resistance against combatant attacks of the matching element type.

Overload Hand Cannon

  • Landing consecutive hits with any Hand Cannon you are wielding disrupts combatants, stunning them, delaying ability energy regeneration and lowering combatant damage output.
  • Strong against Overload Champions. Additionally, Hand Cannons are always overcharged when that modifier is active.

Origin Perk Specialization I

  • Greatly improves the benefits provided by the Head Rush, Nanotech Tracer Rockets, Unsated Hunger, and [REDACTED] Origin traits.

Elemental Orbs: Arc

  • While using an Arc subclass, Arc weapon final blows have a chance to spawn an Arc Elemental Orb. Arc Orbs can be thrown to create an Arc explosion that jolts targets it damages.

Refreshing Pickups

  • Picking up a Tangle or Elemental Orb grants energy to your least-powered ability.

Elemental Munitions

  • Combatant final blows with Tangles or Elemental Orbs have a chance to drop Special or Heavy ammo.

Unstoppable Fusion

  • Aiming down sights for a brief period with any Fusion Rifle you are wielding loads a powerful explosive payload that stuns unshielded combatants.
  • Strong against Unstoppable Champions. Additionally, Fusion Rifles are always overcharged when that modifier is active.

Diviner's Discount:

  • All Scavenger mods are discounted.

Elemental Orbs: Solar

  • While using a Solar subclass, Solar weapon final blows have a chance to spawn a Solar Elemental Orb. Solar Orbs can be thrown to create a Solar explosion that scorches targets it damages.

Semi-Auto Striker

  • If you have fewer than 2 stacks of Armor Charge, rapid precision shots with Bows, Snipers, and Scout Rifles generate an Armor Charge.

Frenzied Stacks

  • Your Armor Charges grant bonus damage to your thrown Tangles or Elemental Orbs. Your Armor Charge now decays over time.

Gambit is becoming "optional"

The writing is on the wall for Gambit, as Bungie says that the PvPvE will become more "optional" in the months leading up to The Final Shape. Not wanting to devote valuable resources or staff to this mode, Gambit will become a part of Destiny 2 that can be safely ignored for the most part.

Crucible updates

In comparison, there's a lot to look forward to in Destiny 2's PvP. Next season will see a new Vex-themed map added to the playlist, a new mode will allow you to wield seasonal weapons against your fellow Guardians, and a new modifier that emphasizes gunplay are just some of the changes on the horizon.

New Strand Aspects

Destiny's newest subclass gets three more Aspects next season: Weavewalk for Warlocks, Whirling Maelstrom for Hunters, and Banner of War for Titans.

Destiny 2 power cap

The overall player power cap--the combined power level from all your equipped armor, weapons, and gear--has remained the same in Season of the Deep, and Bungie has confirmed that it won't be raised in Season 22.

Bungie has seemingly deemphasized the need to chase Power levels as of late, and it's long been rumored that they could eventually be removed entirely.

Quality-of-life updates

Bungie isn't showing its entire hand just yet, but next season, you can expect the following convenient changes:

  • Cosmetic favoring
  • Purchasable Stasis Aspects and Fragments if the Beyond Light campaign has been completed
  • Transmat effects will no longer be consumable items
  • The Fireteam-Finder (LFG) feature will be added
  • Exotic Mission rotator
  • Increased Masterwork material cap
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