By Brenna Hillier,
Friday, 6 October 2017 00:49 GMT
Destiny 2 players face the ultimate PvE challenge when the Prestige version of the Leviathan Raid unlocks.
The Leviathan Raid’s Prestige difficulty will be available to Destiny 2 players from 10:00am PT on Tuesday October 10 – so a few hours after next week’s reset, in other words. It has a recommended Power level of 300.
Bungie is being coy about the details, but did say those Destiny 2 players brave enough to venture in will encounter “minimal” mechanical changes to the encounters. Make sure you’re completely onboard the standard version with our Leviathan Raid guide, so you can spot the changes and react appropriately.
Rather than making big changes to the Raid mechanics, Bungie said the idea is to throw you into “a more punishing sandbox” with Prestige difficulty. That probably means everything will hit harder and be less concerned wiht your own pitiful fire, so be sure to push your gear to 305 if possible (mods are your friends here; refer to our page on levelling up fast in Destiny 2 for further details).
Speaking of Power levels, it doesn’t look like the Pretige version of the Leviathan Raid will drop higher-rated gear. Here’s what Bungie had to say on the matter:
“Our goal is not to provide a boon to your character progression, but there are unique rewards to help you shine. Consider this your invitation to prove to the world that you are among the very best of the Raiders who overlook the City.”
That bit about helping you “shine” suggests we’ll see gear with some sort of unique visual effect, rather than the Raid-specific perks some Destiny 2 players are calling for (including us).
Iron Banner hits Destiny 2 next week, too. Hit up our Destiny 2 guide if you need to prepare for next week’s onslaught. Bungie will be tracking the world’s first Prestige completion of the Leviathan Raid, and with any luck we’ll have some livestreams and can report on the winner ASAP.
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The first Destiny 2 Faction Rally is over and the winners are as happy as any team of gloomy space goths could possibly be. Bungie confirmed that Dead Orbit won the first weeklong token-gathering competition, beating out all those who hitched their space wagons to Future War Cult and New Monarchy.
You may notice evidence of who won the first Faction Rally in Destiny 2 as you make your way back to the Tower.Congratulations, Dead Orbit. Thanks to all who played in support of their favorite faction. There is always next time! pic.twitter.com/7hjr6AdeVoOctober 3, 2017
Decorations are fine, but Guardians know the most important part of any event is the guns. The rally’s results determined which of three special guns would be added to the game and now we’ve got a good look at the victor: Haunted Earth, a slow but powerful kinetic scout rifle. Anybody can buy Haunted Earth, but if you pledged to Dead Orbit in the rally you can pick one up at a special price of 1,000 Glimmer. Everybody else will need to shell out 50,000.
Here’s a video of the gun in action. Keep scrolling for a list of the perks.
Haunted Earth Perks
High-Impact Frame: Slow-firing and high-damage. This weapon is more accurate when stationary and aiming down sights.
IS 5 Circle: Circular iron sights. Short zoom. Greatly increases handling speed. Model 6 Loop: Red-dot. Medium zoom. Increases range and handling speed.
Tactical Mag: Slightly increases stability, increases reload speed, and slightly increases magazine size. High-Caliber Rounds: Shots from this weapon knock the target back farther. Slightly increases range.
Field Prep: Increased ammo reserves. Faster reload when crouched.
Oh, and here’s the flavor text, just in case you want to feel really moody because of a sentence written on a gun.
“Those we’ve lost still linger in every place we look. Earth is no place for the living.” – Arach Jalaal
“White on white translucent black capes, back on the rack. Bela Lugosi’s dead.” – Bauhaus
The sherpas were a staple of the original Destiny experience; a system of charity, primarily facilitated online through Reddit and other platforms, whereby high level guardians looking for something to do would help less experienced players get through various Strikes, Nightfalls, Raids, and more.
Friendships were formed, wisdom was shared, and much loot was obtained but, with Destiny 2, the sherpa community was uprooted and rebooted, and all those pro guardians suddenly found themselves back at the bottom alongside everybody else. Now that Destiny 2 has been out for a few weeks, and players have had time to readjust, I talked to a couple of veteran Destiny sherpas about how the experience has been so far in Bungie’s sequel.
The most significant change for sherpas in Destiny 2 has undoubtedly been the introduction of Guided Games. Previously, with the first game, those who were either seeking or offering assistance online were doing so because Destiny had no system in place for strangers to play together in its end-game content. In fact, you could argue that the whole sherpa community was founded specifically out of a demand for something like Guided Games. Now that Bungie’s own solution exists, are Destiny’s original sherpas satisfied with the results, or do they feel as though they’ve lost a little bit of their purpose?
Guiding the guardians
On the contrary, sherpas like noob35746 (don’t be fooled by the Reddit username, he’s a Destiny veteran already enjoying the nuances of endgame in Destiny 2) thinks Guided Games barely holds a candle to the value of the sherpa system, and offers up his explanation as to why.
“Guided Games doesn’t really function as an effective ’looking for group’ mechanic, nor does it work well for good Sherpa runs.” he explains. “It doesn’t allow you to pre-plan runs or even ensure that people have budgeted the time for a Raid, plus if the group disbands you don’t really have any options. The wait times are horrendous for sherpas in Guided Games, and you’re rolling the dice on who you end up with.”
As someone who has frequently attempted to seek out fireteams via Guided Games, I too can attest to the fact that the system in its current form has problems. Wait times in the queue are far from ideal, and the absence of checkpointing makes it an awful entry point for the Leviathan raid, which can take several hours to complete and is typically done so over a series of multiple days.
The other advantage for sherpas offering help online, as opposed to finding potential apprentices through Guided Games, is that it gives them more choice and flexibility over the constitution of their fireteam. This is why mentors like Soggy_Diaper still prefer to organize a sherpa-led raid outside of the Guided Games platform.
“When I run the raid I like to bring only 1 or 2 people who have not completed it or still struggle, since putting them in my team of 4 it makes it easier to guide them,” he says, explaining that: “with the new Raid mechanics of Leviathan, I find it gets too hectic with three or more inexperienced players who don’t fully understand encounters.”
Noob35746 and Soggy_Diaper’s comments are indicative of Guided Games’ growing pains, but not every Sherpa shares their viewpoint on the new feature. Jmitch219916 argues that Bungie has made Destiny 2 a far smoother experience for new players compared to its predecessor, “way better at helping inexperienced guardians complete Raids, [with] Guided Games the best it can be for the time being.”
The end of an era?
This is good news for players with less time on their hands, who can still enjoy as much of Destiny 2 as possible without the need for unreasonable investments in time and energy. But what about the experience for the sherpas themselves: those who are used to dedicating a lot of their personal time and energy to Bungie’s shared world shooter? Guardians like TheObsessedGamer, for instance, would go so far as to say that the game has become too easy, especially after getting used to the end-game flow of the original Destiny.
“I’ve played a lot [of Destiny 2], but I’m already done with it just a few weeks after launch”, he tells me. “I was grinding hard still on Destiny 1 for items, but in Destiny 2 the level system feels like a ladder more than ever. I wanted way more items, guns, and gear to hunt for, and with more ways to hunt them.”
Squirrt is another estranged Destiny 2 player who doesn’t see himself returning to the game anytime soon, despite the fact that he played the original game right up till the Rise of Iron expansion from last year. “Now that there’s no real grind, I don’t see the point of helping others progressing. And without PvE leaderboards, there’s nothing to even distinguish if you’re an elite player: for better or worse, any sense of elitism is gone from the game.”
The “grind” that Squirrt refers to is something that every vanilla Destiny player will be familiar with, and the imbalance between effort and reward was generally considered to be one the the first game’s biggest problems. But, at the same time, making it through Destiny’s grind was almost a rite of passage for the “elite” players that Squirrt is talking about; an endurance test which allowed Destiny’s sherpas to gain the knowledge and reputation they needed to distinguish themselves from those they took under their wing.
With Destiny 2’s milestones feature and its expanded breadth of content, all guardians are now free to play as they choose, safe in the knowledge that any of their preferred activities will still reward them with a healthy amount of loot, experience and reputation.
Outside of Guided Games, sherpas like Army61040 express to me their grievances with Destiny 2’s clan system, particularly its arbitrary cap on 100 players per clan, which hampers the ability of a sherpa to do their job.
“How can a clan of sherpa’s grow and accept new members when they only have 100 slots?”, asks Army61040. “Our clan has found a way around this, but that is because we refuse to turn anyone down and set our rules to invite only. This is what a Sherpa does. They don’t care how difficult it is, they always find a way to make sure their team and members are taken care of and that nobody is denied help.”
Bungie itself has explained that this limitation is to foster a sense of intimacy and familiarity within each clan, so that players can more easily get to know each other. Still, compared to other games with Guilds and Clans that can run up to the thousands in player numbers, this restriction is perceived as a problem for sherpas who are specifically seeking out anyone, friend or stranger, to whom they can offer their services.
“Destiny 2 serves the kind of players who have two hours a week to hop on play to the game and be done,” says Squirrt. He makes the remark as if it were a criticism, and maybe for a retired sherpa like himself, it is. But Bungie’s decision to democratize Destiny 2 has ultimately been for the betterment of the game overall, boosting the appeal of long-term commitment to a wider franchise of players, even if that bittersweet bite of the first game’s grind cycle has been dulled in the process.
Even with all these changes, though, willing sherpas are not going to be out of a job in Destiny 2 anytime soon. While Guided Games has been, at least in theory, celebrated as a step in the right direction for improving the quality of life of the Destiny experience, its technical shortcomings and haphazard implementation has allowed the sherpa community to pick right back up from where it falls short. It seems as though the honorable work of the sherpa is never quite done.
Bungie has announced Destiny 2’s first Iron Banner event, and the multiplayer competition has seen some major changes since the first game.
“Your fighting abilities, not your power levels, will decide the outcome,” said Bungie. That’s a massive change from the way Iron Banner worked in the original Destiny. In that game, level advantages were enabled in the mode — if one player was at a Light level of 240 and another was at 280, the second Guardian would do much more damage to the first.
This isn’t the case in standard Crucible PvP matches in either Destiny or Destiny 2; all that matters in a head-to-head battle is each player’s skill level, not their Guardian’s power. It sounds like Bungie wanted to bring that same level playing field to the Iron Banner in Destiny 2.
Another change is that Bungie has replaced the bounties and ranks of Destiny’s Iron Banner with Iron Banner engrams. In the previous game, the more Iron Banner you played, the better Iron Banner-exclusive gear you could get; the best weapons and armor were restricted to rank 5, which required hours and hours of play. It’s unclear if Destiny 2 will gate access to Iron Banner gear in a similar way.
You’ll earn Iron Banner tokens just for playing, although you’ll collect more with wins. Presumably, you’ll turn in those tokens to Lord Saladin to earn engrams. You can bring in your own fireteam or depend on the luck of matchmaking to play, with daily and seasonal milestones to work toward. One of the flashiest rewards will be the Iron Banner-specific armor.
Control is the gametype for this first Iron Banner event. It will run from 2 a.m. PT on Oct. 10 until 2 a.m. PT on Oct. 17. You’ll need to have finished the game’s campaign to participate, and then you have to visit Lord Saladin in the Tower to begin the Iron Banner quest.
The raid will get an update as well
The Prestige version of the Leviathan raid will launch at 10 a.m. PT on Oct. 10 as well, and hints about the upgrade — which recommends a power level of 300 — are vague but exciting.
“Mechanical changes to the encounters are minimal, but they are there,” Bungie announced. “The Prestige Raid is about mastering a more punishing sandbox. Our goal is not to provide a boon to your character progression, but there are unique rewards to help you shine. Consider this your invitation to prove to the world that you are among the very best of the Raiders who overlook the City.”
Expect a race to be the first team to finish this version of the raid. “World First will be counted,” Bungie stated. “We can tell you no more.”
Did you get the shivers? I got the shivers. It’s going to be a big Tuesday for Destiny 2 fans next week.
Once you’ve ground your way through Destiny 2’s campaign and deep into its endgame, what else is there to do? Keep grinding for slightly marginal gains, obviously. Once your Guardian has hit a Power level over 300, chasing after high-quality loot to level up the rest of your gear is very much where the ‘action’ is. But it’s a slow business, so it’s no surprise that smart players have banded together to make the chase slightly easier—using the magic of spreadsheets.
Using the powers of crowdsourcing, users of the Destiny subreddit have begun tracking when in-game vendors are dishing out engrams containing level 300 loot. The info is being collected and verified on a half-hourly basis, and compiled into this handy spreadsheet, so you see which vendor to visit and when.
However, in order to be able to get engrams to drop at this level, you have to be able to reach 300 in the first place. “Once your Base Power level (your Power level excluding any bonuses offered by weapon and armor mods) is 300, certain vendors (listed above) will offer engrams for reputation that range in Power from 295-300,” explains Destiny Redditor PSN_TalonStrike.
“For the qualified individuals, the Power levels appear to be consistent globally and to change every 30 minutes. We’re working on gathering data to discern any patterns and perhaps automate a system to report this in the future.”
There’s also now a site serving the same function, so if you’re one of the Destiny 2 elite and over Power level 300, you can help the communal effort here.
Destiny’s lore, famously, is housed in things like gun descriptions and collectibles. How does this affect the way we interact with and understand the game?
In my case, I accidentally ended up joining a faction that is basically space Trump. Whoops. In the latest episode of the Favecast, Gita Jackson and I discuss what it’s like to play Destiny 2 without reading any of the lore, versus devouring it to answer one important question: does Cayde fuck or nah?
You can listen via the embed below, or find an MP3 of this episode here. Alternatively, we’re on iTunes here (leave us a review!), on Google Play here and/or check out our RSS feed here.
As always, if you have comments, responses, or topic suggestions, send us an email to email@example.com, subject title “Fave This.”
For those long-term Bungie fans, many know that the Seventh has always been a date favored by the company. Typically their in-game launches take place on those dates, so it only makes sense that Destiny 2 players are sure that the first Secret Quest will be revealed on October 7th. Pair that with Bungie already confirming several big events on the way for October, the Secret Quest reveal seems all the more likely. Here’s why.
The first Iron Banner will be dropping this October alongside of a few other added in-game adventures. For those looking to take on the Leviathan Raid in a new fashion, the Prestige difficulty is also on its way this month. With the addition of the Secret Quests, many players that are bouncing around in the post-campaign content are looking forward to seeing what other new changes have been slated since the first Destiny hit.
Talking with other players, scouring the message forums, and our own personal take on Bungie’s usual style – here are some of the popular theories as to what the drop might look like for Secret Quest loot, and where it could take place.
The biggest theory that Destiny fans are bringing up is the secret area during the 1AU mission during the main campaign. The theory is that this room will unlock for the Special Quest, which is believed to be on October 7th. A few Guardians have already gotten a taste of this secret room through in-game glitches, but it didn’t reveal anything more than a few enemies. If this is anything like the Black Spindle mission in the first Destiny, if the room will house the new quest; it is possible that what is inside will be completely different.
The second most popular theory making its rounds concerns Io. The hope is that though the world quests seen on this planet end once Man of War is obtained, that with the Secret Quest opening up will bring back the ability to continue on for the quest to unlock an exotic linear fusion rifle.
Of the two, the first seems more likely, and more enjoyable, regarding more fleshed out content. Only a week to go to see if these theories prove correct and what else Bungie has in store for Guardians all over the world.
Also coming this week is a planned maintenance schedule for a few key hotfixes, including the ever present PlayStation 4 hiccups. For more on what’s targeted and when the period will take place, check out Bungie’s schedule here.
Destiny 2 is out now for Xbox One and PlayStation 4, with a PC release slated for October 24th.
There are tons of ways for players in Bungie’s Destiny 2 to equip the best of the best when it comes to gear. From public events, to the Nightfall Strikes – even just a simple rehashing of the game’s events through Meditations can earn some decent loot. For those Guardians that aim to have the best power level obtainable (just over 300 with the help of modifications), the grind may be very familiar. Luckily, there’s a simple tool that helps scope out the best ways to land that 300 level drop rate.
What was previously thought as a random gear scaled actually turns out to be more methodic than many realised. Because of this, there’s a vendor tool that players have found that helps track when 300 level loot is doled out. The only downside? This tool is entirely dependant on active players, but with everyone working together for the common goal of that sweet, sweet loot – the rotation is being worked on after careful mapping of patterns between vendors and Guardians.
The tool itself is called the Destiny 2 Vendor Gear Tracker and is relatively new and does require active (and honest) players. The creator requests that no one votes on the input data with less than a 305 power level. From the information collected, the power level of gear available rotates every 30 minutes and will usually be somewhere between 295 – 300 in level. Because of this tracker, anything less than 300 is ommitted, thus making this an incredible asset for those looking for specific drops.
The site is easy to use. All of the vendors are listed clearly to show who is currently offering 300 gear, and who are not. This simplistic tool is an amazing way for players to hoard their tokens until the vendor of their choosing is for sure offering what they are looking for. Don’t waste those on a cloudy maybe, this tool will offer a way to be more confident going into trading those accumulated weapon parts or tokens.
It’s important to note that this isn’t an official Bungie tool. This was fan-created but it does have a nice tracker down at the bottom to show an estimate of how many other Guardians are contributing to this data. It’s pretty easy to use too! Simply level up a vendor (hey, Devrim Kay!) and make sure not to claim the engram that will be unlocked. After notating what level it will be decrypted as, tally your findings on the tracker if it is not a 300 drop. If it is a 300 drop, then mark that in the correct portion.
Super easy for those that are wanting a little more control. Of course there are other ways to receive this level of gear – most notably the Nightfall Strikes (our guide can be found here) and the current raids.
Destiny 2 is currently available for Xbox One and PlayStation 4 players, with a PC release slated for October 24th!