Destiny 2: Forsaken Preview Impressions – There’s Life Past Cayde-6

I recently got the chance to spend some time with Destiny 2: Forsaken at Bungie Studios to take a look at the new campaign and newest online mode for Destiny 2’s most ambitious expansion yet.

The first campaign mission (Prison Break) along with Gambit, the new competitive cooperative mode, gives a hint that Bungie is pulling out all the stops in Forsaken. Even in my short time with the game, I noticed that Bungie is looking to reinvigorate Destiny 2 with some big changes starting with the death of one of the franchise' major characters.

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Prison Break starts off like your typical big Destiny Campaign mission. You and everyone’s favorite lovable robot rogue, Cayde-6, are asked to help quell an intergalactic prison riot involving the worst of the worst. Here gangs of imprisoned Fallen, Hive, and Cabal all broke out of their cells and the warden of the Prison of Elders could use a couple of unkillable Guardians to lay down the law.

Of course, there’s more to the riot than it seems as you work your way deeper and deeper into the prison. Here you’re introduced to the game’s new enemy type, the Scorn. These corrupted Fallen are gross-looking mutated versions of the noble alien race armed with flaming flails and an ability to Warp around indiscriminately. Without getting into too much into spoilers (though basically everyone is aware of the event by now), the mission ends rather tragically with the demise of the smooth-talking Exo, Cayde-6, at the hands of the campaign’s Big Bad. Destiny 2: Forsaken begins on a somber tone as everyone reacts in different ways to the loss of Cayde.

It makes you realize how much of an impact Cayde had with the citizens of The Tower, the bustling hub for Guardians. This time around, there isn’t a universe-ending event that needs to be prevented. You’re on a solo mission of revenge for those responsible for the death of your friend. The mission seems personal in ways that you hadn’t really seen before in Destiny. You’ll get a glimpse of the never-before-seen seedy underworld that’s developed in the Galaxy while you and the other Guardians were too busy saving it.

When asked about whether it was easy to kill off Cayde-6, considering how well liked he was, Project Lead Scott Taylor and Game Director Steve Cotton said after some ‘internal debate’ they were committed to the idea.

“It flips. It’s a scary idea and then once you commit to it, these other things start to pop up. People are like, this is awesome. There were people were definitely afraid about it, then it flips", said Taylor.

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Cotton stressed that once that they realized the story they were going to tell there was no going back and it was a “big choice” to off Cayde.

The new cooperative mode, Gambit, offers an interesting new take on competitive multiplayer. This mode has two teams of four square off against waves for enemies as they drop Motes than can be banked. The more Motes you bank can actually spawn more enemies on your opposing team’s side and block them from depositing their Motes. Once you fill up your bank with Motes, a large boss monster appears that your team has to defeat. Here’s when things get interesting, everytime you or one of your teammates die, the boss monster regains health.

To make things even more intriguing, a portal to the other team’s map will periodically open allowing one player to invade their fight. My teammates decided to send in our best player to head invade whenever the opportunity arose and for 30 seconds he reeked absolutely havoc. Invading players are invisible to monsters and can really set you back when you’re close to achieving victory. Gambit is an interesting mode and a good option for players who want a decent distraction from hitting Raids or doing rounds of the Crucible.

Destiny 2: Forsaken has some stiff competition in the genre this Fall and even more so early next year, but the forthcoming changes and tonal shift should prove to be interesting enough for new and returning players alike. The big changes that came in 2.0 Update completely overhauling the Weapon Slot and Ammo systems, more vault space, and revamped infusion system show that Bungie is serious about improving Destiny 2 across the board to entice players to come back for more.

Destiny 2: Forsaken heads to PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One on September 4th. Stay tuned for our review, coming soon!

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