Is ‘Destiny 2’ any good? For many players, it doesn’t matter

The internet has spent a lot of effort deciding whether Destiny 2 is a good game. (Personally, I think it’s good fun). But, to be honest, the game’s quality is almost beside the point.

Many players have already caught the Destiny bug. They’re already playing it, and will continue to do so for days, months, and years.

We’ve spent a long time wondering what it would be like to have a Destiny game that plays well from the get-go. Now, we have it – yet it doesn’t feel that different from the launch of the original, and like the original, we can’t stop playing. What, exactly, were we waiting for?

Perhaps Destiny 2’s launch-day content is less important than its long-term plans. Players’ feelings about Destiny 2, from its structure, to its story, to its microtransactions, grow out of expectations borne from Destiny’s three-year lifecycle, and the expectation that this game will continue expanding for at least two more.

Destiny 2 Press Screen 10

Every time I look at Destiny 2, I can’t stop thinking about what it will become. That, at times, drowns out everything good and bad about the game. The merits of Destiny 2’s launch almost feel irrelevant next to arguments over the game’s future. Players aren’t just signing up for an experience that’ll last forty or fifty hours. They’re signing up for a game that’ll become part of their life.

‘Destiny 2’ or “2.0”?

For all its improvements, Destiny 2 is a continuation of mechanics and ideas of Destiny. It is more of a revision than an all-new game. Yes, it now has decent cutscenes, and some semblance of character development. The game’s previously obtuse progression, character levels and a gear-based “light” level, has been tweaked to be more complimentary. And the open-world areas are a bit more fun to explore. None of these changes take the franchise in a new direction.

The steady feed of content and improvements works in the game’s favor now.

The series has changed, however, over the course of its existence. The change was not part of any single release, but has arrived over many years. This steady flow has diminished the impact of what’s been added specifically in the sequel. For example, Destiny 2’s biggest improvement comes in the form of new storytelling techniques, including more facetime with NPCs and honest-to-god cutscenes, further improving on the light extra-narrative storytelling Destiny cultivated in its third expansion, The Taken King.

Destiny 2 is not the second entry in a franchise. It’s the second-generation iteration of a never-ending entertainment service, and the sixth chapter of an ongoing narrative saga. Throw in the changes added during seasonal events and random patches, and the wave of changes are so incremental that they all blend together over time. There will certainly be die-hard fans who can recognize every new change, but for most, the result is a game that feels more like Destiny 6 than Destiny 2.

The game as an old friend

This is most obvious in the game’s narrative, which benefits from the franchise’s extended canon. For returning guardians, the characters you speak to have real history — much more than the returning cast in most sequels — because there’s a good chance you’ve spent a lot of time with them. The bonds players have formed with them can’t be ignored.

Player who’ve made those connections will always be happy to see them again. Even when a single expansion isn’t an unequivocal upgrade, chances are you’re going to get something out of jumping in and connecting with your buddies Zavala, Ikora, and Cayde-6.

The steady feed of content works in the game’s favor now, as well. Few fans have batted an eyelash over the fact that some of the game’s features, such as clan support, were not ready for launch. Similarly, rumor has it the game’s first DLC pack will launch later this year. In the past, such news would have incited a virtual riot over the fact that the extra content should have been included in the primary game, but fans seem generally be content.

While that might be due to the honeymoon swoon of a new game, we think players are simply happy to be see more content coming soon. It seems players are fine with the notion that Destiny 2 is, and always will be, a work in progress. No, more than just fine – they wouldn’t have it any other way.

The views expressed here are solely those of the author and do not reflect the beliefs of Digital Trends.

Gaming

Blizzard’s latest hiring spree is likely for the unannounced ‘Diablo 4’

Activision Blizzard is hiring for more than a dozen positions on unannounced Diablo projects. Some of the roles are likely for the unannounced Diablo 4, the next mainline entry in the series.
Gaming

Everything we know about 'Red Dead Online', including the new mode Gun Rush

Red Dead Online will gradually rolled out to Red Dead Redemption 2 players via a beta. We've got all the details about the beta's suite of competitive and cooperative modes, as well as what to expect going forward.
Gaming

Here's where Xur is and what he has for wares this week in 'Destiny 2: Forsaken'

The weekly vendor in Destiny 2: Forsaken always brings Exotic weapons and armor, some of the toughest loot to find in the game. Here's everything you need to know to track down Xur: Where he is, when he shows up, and what he's stocking.
Gaming

Bethesda explains why ‘Fallout 76’ players using secret room are banned

Following a series of bans in Fallout 76 brought on by players entering a secret room in the game, Bethesda has explain exactly why these players' accounts have been temporarily deactivated.
Gaming

Xbox One X vs. PS4 Pro: Which console is more powerful?

Far from cooling down, the console wars are only getting more intense. We compare Microsoft's Xbox One X to Sony's PlayStation 4 Pro to help you decide which premium console is right for you.
Gaming

Fortnite V-Bucks being used by criminals for money laundering on dark web

Criminals are using Fortnite's V-Bucks for money laundering schemes on the dark web. Epic Games, apparently, is not doing enough to prevent the game from being used for the illegal activity.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: camera with A.I. director, robot arm assistant

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Gaming

Relive the 8-bit gaming era with the best NES emulators for Android and PC

For years prior to the release of the NES Classic, emulators have offered a means to every NES game ever created without needing the console. Here are the best NES emulators for Android and PC.
Gaming

Mortal Kombat 11 Kollector’s Edition comes with a life-size Scorpion mask

The Mortal Kombat 11 Kollector's Edition will come with a human-sized replica of the mask of Scorpion, one of the most iconic fighters of the series. NetherRealm Studios has also announced the game's preorder bonuses.
Gaming

Xbox app lets you access your console while away from home. Here's how

Microsoft's Xbox allows you to access your profile information and launch media content directly from your mobile device. Check out our quick guide on how to connect your smartphone to an Xbox One.
Gaming

These are the best indie games you can get on PC right now

Though many indie games now come to consoles as well, there's still a much larger selection on PC. With that in mind, we've created a list of the best indie games for PC, with an emphasis on games that are only available on PC.
Gaming

This list of PlayStation 4 exclusives puts its competitors to shame

The PlayStation 4's game library and incredible selection of exclusive games could make anyone with an Xbox One or Nintendo Switch think twice. Here's our list of the latest and greatest PS4 exclusives.
Gaming

Goodbye, Machinima: YouTube gaming channel pulls the plug after 13 years

Machinima, a YouTube gaming channel that was launched in 2006, has suddenly shut down, with all of its videos set to private. The #RIPMachinima hashtag is now making the rounds in social media to reminisce about the channel's content.
Gaming

Overkill’s ‘The Walking Dead’ delayed indefinitely for PlayStation 4, Xbox One

Overkill's The Walking Dead for the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One have been postponed without a new release date. The co-op zombie shooter suffered massive delays, then received lukewarm reviews once it launched for the PC through Steam.