Destiny 2 Season of Dawn update

As of this writing, Bungie has released a new puzzle for the community to solve, implemented a much needed hotfix, and has gone through a lot of discussions. Let’s catch up on the past few days.

The Corridors of Time

So what’s this now? Well for starters, it’s pretty neat and I love the design of it. When you first enter the mission, the Sundial takes you to a passageway that leads to a hexagonal room with five other passages. Each passage has a symbol on a pillar in front of it, leading to another room with more doors. This is the crux of the Corridors of Time. So far the community, with the help of r/raidsecrets, has found 19 separate paths through the corridors, but they all lead to the same conclusion. They lead to a grave.

Whose grave this is is under debate within the community right now. Some say it’s the Guardian’s grave. Personally, I think something is going to happen with the Vanguard because of the symbol on it.

The puzzle has evolved to be supremely large, like thousands of pieces, but it all boils down to those same symbols. Nobody knows what the true ending to this puzzle is, yet. We’ll know soon enough though.

When you get close to it, it will teleport you back to the beginning of the corridors. Each time you complete a path, you should gain a lore entry, 19 in total. Begin with a new path, and continue on until you earn all of them. Oh, and little secret, there’s an emblem you can earn here. Watch the reflections. Or you can use this for all of the paths, credit to @berserkbrandee on Twitter for the graphic.

What is at the end of this questline? I hope a new weapon of some sort, cause that would be awesome. If you want spoilers to see whose grave that is (thanks to datamining), and what the potential reward could be at the end of all this, see this article from Paul Tassi at Forbes.

Hotfixes

Bungie put out some hotfixes to some very annoying problems yesterday. For starters Tess won’t bother me anymore because they disabled her notification in the Tower. Now only the Postmaster will bother me when I go to the Tower. I don’t need those Modulus Reports right now, but I’m too lazy to delete them one at a time.

They fixed Wish Ender, which was dealing up to 5 times its normal amount of damage thanks to its Broadhead perk. Bows are still good weapons, but sadly people will probably be using less of them now that this is fixed. Le Monarque is a great bow in my opinion because it deals poison damage, and it’s great for ad clearing if you have it.

The EDZ obelisk should allow you to interact with it now every time instead of randomly. You used to have to switch instances by fast traveling multiple times until you found one that worked, or by logging in and out of the game if you were on console. Somehow the interact component was despawning when loading into the instance. Weird, but that’s code for you- fix one bug, 100 more come up somewhere.

Something I didn’t know, there was another Telesto glitch which allowed you to get more Special ammo when using the Heavy Handed mod on your armor. Why is Telesto always involved with glitches?

“Discussions”

To wrap up this update, I’ve been seeing a lot of “discussions” going on lately around Bungie’s content, and I just want to add my two cents.

I see people saying that the content that we get with the season is stale and uninteresting and that they’re not going to play the game, and that’s fine. You don’t have to blast Bungie because you think their content isn’t good, just don’t play the game, play something else.

You can’t expect content on the level of Shadowkeep or Forsaken every 3 months though. 3 months is not enough time to produce that kind of content, even a year isn’t really enough time to produce that kind of content without employee burnout. That kind of content has to go through design, planning, coding, and testing, then public release. Bungie is doing all of this in-house now; they don’t have Activision helping them anymore, so cut them some slack guys. They’re still doing their best, and I applaud them for that. I’ll keep playing with my friends and having a good time, while those who just want to complain about it can go find something else to do with your time. /end rant

Sorry, just had to say that. With that said, I’ll be exploring the Corridors of Time tonight on our Twitch channel at 8 pm EST, so come hang out and chat, I’d love the company.

In for a shock — 2K confirms new BioShock game in development

If there’s a question that 2K Games has received ad nauseam, it’s along the lines of “Where the heck is the next BioShock game?” Well, thanks to a recent announcement from 2K themselves, we don’t have to ask that question anymore.  Their brand new studio Cloud Chamber will be working for “the next several years” on the latest game in this ultra-popular FPS series.  Not only is the developer roster composed of people who worked on the first three games, but it is being captained by Kelley Gillmore (Who has experience working on IP’s like Civilization and XCOM).  The fourth title in the BioShock series certainly won’t be a launch title for the next-gen hardware, but the folks at 2K will do everything in their ability to make this game as polished as it can be.

Destiny 2 Season of Dawn is here!

So, it’s been a little over two months since Shadowkeep released and the Season of the Undying started. How are things changing? Let’s dive in.

New Activity- The Sundial

Credit: Bungie

Osiris is causing trouble, again. Someone get a tracker on him. We built a Vex portal, we can use that tech to track Osiris in the Infinite Forest right? Anyways, the Sundial is the new 6 player activity that players can engage in, much like the Vex Offensive from the previous season. Not much is known outside of what we see from the trailer, but the Cabal are tampering with time in order to change the outcome of the Red War. Remember that? Good times, for looting anyways. Once I get some time with the new event, I’ll put an update out with my first impressions.

Saint-14 Returns

Okay, if you’re a Titan main (as I am), then you’re excited about this one. Saint-14, the “greatest Titan who ever lived”, is returning.

Back in the Curse of Osiris expansion, you could find out the fate of Saint-14 via Osiris’s Prophecy tablets, and obtain his shotgun Perfect Paradox. Now he’s back, and it looks like there are going to be a lot of Titans cosplaying as him too. You have to help him out in this season, but it remains to be seen what we have to do for him. I just hope we can get armor that looks like his somehow, cause it just looks awesome.

If you want a good lore briefing on Saint-14, check out this video from My Name is Byf. He is the “Lore Daddy” of Destiny, and all of his videos are top quality. Also, check out Bungie’s website, they posted six lore pieces (in the Media tab) leading up to the season release today.

New Exotics and Gear

The Artifact for this season is the Lantern of Osiris, which looks really cool. Hopefully it does some really cool things too. We get an exotic Scout Rifle- Symmetry. From the trailer it looks awesome, but we don’t know what it does, yet. Season pass holders instantly unlock it and a set of the new seasonal armor, but free pass holders can get it at rank 35 like Eriana’s Vow last season. Premium pass holders also get the headbutt finishing move (classically Titan), and an exotic Ghost shell, which we didn’t get last season.

What’s on the calendar?

Credit: Bungie

The Dawning is coming back next week, the annual winter event which usually involves a grind for special gear. Last year this led us into the Armor 2.0 with the event armor being the first set available, so I wonder what Bungie has in store for us this year.

It looks like the Sundial will have unique bosses, like the Blind Well. This will be interesting, but hopefully it’ll be a challenge.

We get two exotic quests this time instead of just one. Leviathan’s Breath is a great bow, and it’s great for dealing massive damage, as long as you can draw it fully. This was exclusive to Premium pass holders, and these are too. Let’s hope that they’re good.

Crimson Days PvP event is coming back as well. I never really participated in it, but I’m definitely going to this time. I know it’s a 2v2 team mode, where you have to eliminate the other duo while keeping yours alive, but that’s all. Now the real question is, will they bring back Sparrow Racing League? Please Bungie? That was seriously my favorite PvP mode.

That’s all the info I have on the new season right now, but I’ll post another article in about a week once I’ve done some of these events. The season runs until March 9th, so you’ve got time to get those season ranks for that cool gear. I’ll see you out there!

Vlast streams on our Twitch channel Friday mornings at 10:30 am EST playing Destiny or whatever game he feels like that day. Come hang out sometime!

-V

Destiny 2 Year 3 First Impressions

As of this writing, I’ve been playing Destiny 2 Year 3 for 12 hours. There are very good things, and some not so good things. Grab your ship, we’re going for a ride.

The Moon

How are things now on the moon? Well, in short, it’s hell. The geography has gotten even worse with giant fissures where cracks in the ground were once seen. The Hive are even more prevalent then back in Destiny, and they’re more powerful now. Needless to say, they’ve been up to no good up here. I won’t say any more than that because of spoilers. But, it’s a fun challenge.

Eris is still up here, brooding (and so can you if you got that pre-order exotic emote). She’s created a Sanctuary up there, or about as good as you can get on the Hive-infested Moon. Here you can watch her brood, pick up bounties, and some other cool stuff that you’ll discover as you progress through the missions of Shadowkeep.

Brood with me, Guardian, and face fear.

Power Resets

So everyone, whether you’re a new player with New Light, or a veteran who had already reached power cap in Year 2, starts at the new lowest light of 750. This is both good and bad. Good because if you’re like me and haven’t done a bunch of adventures, you can now go do them and get decent rewards for it. Bad for new players because they don’t get the experience of leveling from zero, which to me is essential, but maybe not to others.

Season Pass

Okay, so there has been some controversy over Bungie including a season pass in to the game. Most battle royale style games have season passes which require you to play an absurd amount of games just to get anything good out of it. This one, however, seems to be rewarding both free players and those who purchase it the same at the start. You gain experience here just by doing your normal stuff- campaign, quests, strikes, PvP. It doesn’t take long to gain levels either. In my 12 hours logged (about 2 of those were idle and in menus and such) I’ve gained 8 tiers, almost to the 9th. If you hard push you can gain even faster too.

Free tier on top, Paid tier on the bottom (not my screenshot)

There are two tiers: free and paid. Free season pass is included for everyone and this is where the Season Artifact resides, and it seems pretty well balanced, at the start. There are some tiers where free players get nothing, but up until rank 35 (where you would get Eliana’s Vow) there aren’t many of these. After this, however there are more blank spots, especially as you get above rank 60. Plus, most of the free rewards in the higher tiers are the Nostalgic Engrams from Eververse, so is this really a reward for all the time spent playing?

The paid season pass (included if you bought the deluxe edition of Shadowkeep) is where most of the good rewards lie. Glimmer and XP boosts for you and your fireteam, awesome weapons, and ornaments, as well as more frequent Upgrade Modules are here. Also, if you get the season pass, at rank 1 you get a crate that has Eliana’s Vow and a set of seasonal armor for your class.

Each season can be purchased as a whole set, or individually. The current season is Season of the Undying, which features Vex events and the seasonal artifact- Eye of the Gate Lord- which can be upgraded to give you armor mods and other effects.

Weasels and Squirrels and bugs, oh my!

Squirrels are not good, in this sense, or in legacy Magic The Gathering. If you need context on the latter, Google it. Personal qualms aside, Weasel and Squirrel are error codes dealing with connection issues in Destiny 2. They took down their servers shortly after launch on October 1st because people could not log in. Shut down at 4 pm EST and back up at 9 pm EST, I’d say that’s a decent turnaround for login issues on the first day with new servers on a different service. Bugs are still being found and fixed, including where The Scarlet Keep strike on PC wasn’t performing matchmaking. I ended up beating that strike solo, in just under 40 minutes, and it was actually pretty fun!

Review ongoing

Overall, I’m having a blast with this new year and new expansion. I hope that sometime down the line that Bungie adds more free tier rewards and doesn’t just focus on the paid season pass. I’m wishing them luck that their bugs get fixed quickly, and I hope that those who are playing New Light are enjoying their time in the universe. Eyes up Guardian, we’re just getting started.

Vlast plays Destiny 2 on PC and streams on our Twitch channel! Give us a follow and see him live Friday mornings at 10 am EST.

Destiny 2 Prepares for Shadowkeep Launch

Destiny 2 is releasing their latest expansion Shadowkeep on Tuesday October 1st. There are a few things players should know before this.

Maintainence

The game will be down for maintainence today, Monday September 30th, for 24 hours. This is to prepare for the move over to Steam and for the launch of Shadowkeep.

From Battle.net to Steam

Remember that you will no longer be able to play via the Battle.net launcher, it will only be available on Steam. If you have not already moved your account over from Battle.net to Steam, you can link your account on Bungie’s website.

Bright Dust changes

Bright dust can no longer be acquired by breaking down Eververse items starting October 1st- they will now break down into legendary shards.

Also, break down any unused mods, they’re permanent with the new update, so you only need one of each.

New Light releases

New Light is the free-to-play version of Destiny 2, meaning that if you’ve been on the fence about playing, jump in! The base game, and all campaigns through Forsaken will be included. Worlds will be unlocked via experience, not campaign progress, with this update.

Pre-load to get a head start

You can pre-load the game on Steam now to get ready for launch tomorrow. It’s almost 80 GB, so free up some space on your drive if you need to.

That’s all, looking forward to seeing new Guardians and returning veterans!

Call of Duty Modern Warfare Beta Impressions

This weekend’s Call of Duty Modern Warfare Beta included all consoles finally and gave us an idea of how cross-play will work in the franchise. I had previously played the PS4 only alpha and beta and also gave this weekends new Ground Wars mode a spin to see how it feels.

I should start off by saying while I’ve always enjoyed Call of Duty games, I’ve never been a huge fan myself. I did buy last years Black Ops 4, but apart from the free games offered on PS Plus (Black Ops 3 and MW Remastered) I’ve never really played that much apart from at friends’ houses. Still, COD multiplayer has always been fun and frantic even for a rookie such as myself.

Gun Fight

During the alpha and both betas I’ve played mostly Gun Fight, a 2v2 mode where every 2 rounds each team is given a new gun with random mods. Usually this means a standard gun with maybe a new scope or extended mag, but sometimes results in monstrosities like a shotgun with a sniper scope. Every round is timed and every person has one life. If one team isn’t dead by the end of the round, a flag is planted in the middle that each side can try and capture to win.

This mode is fast, tense, and honestly my favorite mode. It’s refreshing to play on even ground with everyone else in the match. Obviously someone who is more skilled has an advantage, but even a someone like me who doesn’t have much of a background in COD games can pull off a win. Forcing everyone to have the same loadout allows newer players to know what they’re up against while still letting pro players flex their FPS muscles.

Ground War

Just this weekend Infinity Ward added a new mode called Ground War to the rotation. It’s a 32v32 mode with a huge map and vehicles including ATV’s, tanks, and helicopters. The objective is to capture several points scattered throughout the map and hold them to rack up points while fending off the opposing team.

Unfortunately this is my least favorite mode. The idea is neat and at least isn’t another tacked-on battle royale mode, but it’s mostly a mess. Spawning is horrible. Whether I spawned on someone in my squad or one of our controlled points, I was often immediately murdered without even getting to look around. I also found it difficult to tell friend from foe and other players knew that. Someone would sneak into our base and stand at the back shooting everyone while we all frantically searched for where the attacker was.

Also the map is a waste. Apart from well defined zones, it’s environment is forgettable and mostly unused. At least 90% of the fighting occurs in the central buildings and 3 main control points, essentially making it a standard COD match, just with too many players. The vehicles handle well but apart from the tank only offer a quicker way to get to the centralized fighting. Getting caught in the open is a guaranteed death sentence because snipers (already far to prevalent in COD multiplayer in my opinion) are rampant.

Classic Modes

In its more standard modes Modern Warfare excels though. For years the franchise has been the gold standard for online multiplayer and this re-imagining looks to keep that reputation. Granted I ran into an issue where I could only play one match and then had to restart the game to get into another, the few matches of Domination I played felt good.

The only significant change is in how the game feels. You can hear and feel every action with the gun whether it’s firing, switching, or just reloading thanks to top notch sound design and animation. It’s hard to describe but the guns feel heavy, meaty even. Reloading is harsh and maybe even violent but serves to make the guns feel different from past titles. I think it’s part of why Gun Fight feels so good to me. It showcases how versatile the guns are in modification, and how tactile the moment to moment game-play is.

Technical Stuff

To get even more technical, cross-play is active for the last few days of the beta now. While I seemed to mostly be paired with other PS4 players I did participate in a party of both Xbox and PS4 players and it still played well. We couldn’t make a chat party though which is unfortunate but understandable. You can opt out of cross-play but not controller types which I’m not a fan of. That might be available in the full game, but playing against mouse and keyboard was not an experience I recommend.

Final Thoughts

To finish up, I do wish the beta was available longer so I could play more, which is really what’s important. There are amazing parts of it that I love, like Gun Fight, but the addition of Ground War is a waste I think. That being said, I do think the mode will have it’s fans. It’s not completely broken and there is fun to be had. At one point I got into a turret on the tank and when the driver parked up on a hill I was able to rain fire down on unsuspecting players from a distance. The I got taken out by a sniper and my fun was over before it ever really began.

Still, if you’re a fan of Call of Duty and especially the Modern Warfare series I think this game will be perfect for you. They’ve kept what’s great about COD while adding the right amount of new things and details to keep the series relevant and exciting. Hopefully you’ve had the chance to play the beta before it ends on September 23, but if not you can pick up the game on October 25.

How an Event Pulled Me Back Into Destiny 2, Again

So as of this writing, it’s update day! I figured that while I’ve got some time, I’ll write up something about Destiny 2.

I’ve been a Destiny player since the first game came out, and I’ve had a blast during this whole journey in that game and the sequel. However, I haven’t done much PvP at all because I’m not really a PvP player, so most of my experience in this game has been PvE. I’m usually an on-and-off player, but that changed with this event, the Solstice of Heroes.

With this event which runs until 8/27, a repeat of the event around the winter solstice, you get a suit of armor with specific objectives attached to it. First, Eva gives you a helmet. Then she sends you to a new area called the EAZ- European Aerial Zone.

New Area- European Aerial Zone

The EAZ is a floating island above the EDZ. According to the lore, it is made out of the memories of the triumphs that Guardians have faced. Essentially, it’s a ruined area of the EDZ that is floating in the air, so be careful not to jump off the edge.

Each time you come, you and two other Guardians face a new type of enemy- Fallen, Hive, or Cabal. I haven’t seen Vex here, maybe it’s because not many Guardians in the lore have survived the Vex? Anyways, a new enemy type comes up each time.

Bosses Galore

When you arrive, you have 5 minutes to defeat minibosses all over the map. As you do, orbs will drop according to what element you kill them with. If you match the element of the day with your subclass and pick up 30 orbs, you’ll get empowerment. Each element gives a different state of empowerment- arc gives absurd speed, solar gives a destructive nova, void lets you turn invisible when you crouch, along with other effects.

After defeating the minibosses, the final boss, or sometimes bosses, show up. Some of them are tougher than others, like fighting all three Cabal bosses by yourself while the other two just go AFK… That was an experience, but I did it.

Anyways, during the boss fight, some Taken will show up. Called the Prismatic Taken, once you defeat them, you’ll receive a Prismatic Orb, which instantly gives you empowerment when picked up.

Hunt for Your Loot

After defeating the final boss, a single chest shows up. Open it, and each player receives a Solstice Package, full of goodies like items and currency. But you can’t open it just yet. You need 15 Solar Key Fragments to open it. Depending on how many minibosses you defeated, you’ll have that many chests to find all over the map that contain these fragments, or more packages. Some are easier to find than others, but you have 2 minutes to find them. Good luck, and have fun!

Meanwhile, Back at the Tower

After completing your first round of EAZ, head back to Eva. She asks you to meditate at the statue, which gives the rest of the armor pieces, the Drained armor. Each of these also have objectives, ranging from Crucible and Gambit matches to Strikes in the playlist, to collecting elemental orbs. This took me a couple hours to do, most of it being the strikes playlist and Gambit. I learned that Gambit is actually pretty fun, but that I still don’t really care for Crucible.

While completing these objectives, you can pick up bounties from Eva to earn more Solar Key Fragments, as well as earning them via Strikes, Crucible, Gambit, and Public Events. So honestly, it’s not hard to earn the fragments.

After completing the first set of armor objectives, meditate at the statue again, and you’ll get a Renewed set of armor, and a new set of objectives, this time longer. I’m still working through these, but they’re not too bad, especially if you’re doing it with a friend.

Once more, after this set, return to the tower and meditate. You’ll recieve the final set, the Majestic set. If you complete these final objectives, the armor is Masterworked. I don’t think I’ll be able to do this, but there is good news. Once you hit Majestic level, you get this armor in the new expansion Shadowmoon, and there is a set bonus for it as well.

Overall, this event is really fun, for me. It got me into Gambit, and I’m having fun just running around working towards a new set of armor that I can get in the new expansion.

I’ll be playing this live on the SSG Twitch channel on Friday 8/16 at 10 am EST, so come on by and hang out! You can also find me playing on my personal channel from time to time.