03 Inviting newcomers into the fold • PLATFORM PS4, XBOX ONE, PC • STYLE ONLINE MULTIPLAYER SHOOTER • PUBLISHER ACTIVISION • DEVELOPER BUNGIE • RELEASE SEPTEMBER 6 (PS4, XBOX ONE), OCTOBER 24 (PC) Destiny 2 F ollowing a reveal event a month earlier, Bungie opened the door to Destiny 2 for the rest of the gaming world at this year’s E3. Between the two events, which shared almost identical demos, it’s abundantly clear the franchise’s first numbered sequel has big ambitions, and isn’t content to stick to established structure. While the dedicated Destiny fan community has found a lot to be excited about so far, the game’s most signifi-cant evolutions aim to invite new and lapsed play-ers into the fold. Storytelling is far more central than before, and Bungie team members regularly point to ways that Destiny 2 keeps the player engaged with the unfolding plot. Distinct and carefully drawn villains, lore elements drawn into the game world rather than in an external website, and story missions with more frequent and meaningful NPC interac-tions are just some of the steps being taken. The game also features more cinematics than any other game in Bungie’s history. Character classes and subclasses have been redesigned to allow for optimal setups no mat-ter what choices you make. Weapon types have been wholly reset; kinetic, energy, and power weapons divide armaments in more understand-able and flexible categories, letting players con-front challenges in the way they want and with the hot 50 tools they want. And more detailed destinations encourage exploration, offer clear maps and activ-ity options, and allow for seamless transition from one location to the next, without the need to go to orbit first. Like at Destiny’s first appearance, E3 afforded attendees a chance to check out an early story missions, and one of the strikes, and try their hand at the new Countdown competitive game mode. New to the show was the playable Hunter sub-class called the Arcstrider. This devastating melee-focused combatant plays like a kung-fu master or D&D monk, zipping between enemies and electri-fying them with arc energy.