As you’re rearranging your life schedule to get in some serious Destiny 2
game time when the beta starts up next week, don’t forget that there’s one thing you can do right now to prepare for the second coming of Bungie. You can download the official Destiny 2 companion app
, which is coincidentally the same
app as for the original Destiny
, only now upgraded with even more features for the sequel.
The improved app informs you about the latest game news and updates, allows you to make and mange your clan, helps you coordinate efforts between your friends, and delivers all manner of information about weapons and gear.
One thing you won’t be doing when you play the beta is doing it at 60 frames per second. This is because while that is technically possible, the team decided to cap it at 30 fps as a trade-off. “Could we make a Destiny game that ran at 60 fps?” Bungie said in Edge magazine this month. “Yes, but the space would be smaller, it would be less cooperative, and there’d be fewer monsters to shoot. That’s not the game we want to make.”
“Do you see all that I have done?”
The stakes are high for this fall’s Destiny 2, with a near-unstoppable villain smashing through the status quo to set himself on the top of a rubble of worlds and Destiny 1 character accomplishments.
On top of this morning’s news about some of the bells and whistles coming for the PC version, Destiny 2 released its launch trailer today to set the stage for the events to come. It’s a wild ride through a broken landscape with desperate sorties, Tron-style frisbees, massive guns, and even a chicken. Our money is on the chicken.
Treat yourself to some cinematic adrenaline after the break!
We are one week away from Destiny 2’s open beta test
on the PC, and computer players might be growing both excited and anxious about getting their hands on this franchise for the first time.
Bungie seems to be going to great lengths to reassure the PC audience that they will not be an afterthought, nor will their version of the game be inferior (it will be the opposite, in fact). ““We wanted to treat PC gamers like first-class citizens since the first day of development,” Bungie CM Deej said. “It’s built from the ground up to be amazing on state-of-the-art hardware. It should feel native on the PC.”
Speaking at an early Gamescom press event, Nvidia announced some additional features for Destiny 2, such as text chat, graphics that scale up to 4K, SLI support, and HDR lighting. The open beta will run from August 28th through the 31st and will be exclusively accessed through Blizzard’s Battle.net. Nvidia said that it will release a game-ready driver on August 24th, so make sure you grab that if you’re planning to try out the OBT.
The wait for the Camelot Unchained beta has been long and arduous in the way that only “just sit around and wait” can possibly be, but it’s almost here. It’s going to happen! We don’t know quite when, but we do know that we’ve got a new guiding principles document for beta. So it’s coming very soon.
Meanwhile, we also bid farewell to both Tree of Life and Fragmented, as both have launched this week.
More beta news? We’ve got to be honest, it’s been a quiet week… but this stuff might all tickle you along the way just the same.
- We realize that Kritika Online is in an open beta where anyone can play right now, but don’t worry too much, as the game does in fact have a roadmap and launch plans. So that’s cool. Full launch in September!
- You know what else has beta plans? Guild Wars 2. Specifically, another preview weekend of Path of Fire starting up this weekend. At this point you’ll be done with it before it actually launches, which… wait, that’s not a good thing. Maybe ease up on previews.
- It’s only fair to note that Osiris: New Dawn also has a closed beta plan. This might seem odd for a game in Early Access, but a plan is a plan.
- The open beta for Destiny 2 isn’t here, but a new trailer to tease it is here, so you can split the difference a bit? That should be fun to watch, at least.
- It’d be wrong not to mention that Just Survive has now dropped the H1Z1 branding and is supposed to be getting more updates again. We’ll see, but it’s a thing.
- Last but certainly not least, the servers for OrbusVR’s closed beta are online now, so you can jump right in if you’re all (head)set to go. Wordplay!
But is there a list? Yes, of course there’s a list. It’s right down below, and while it may be trimming down slightly it still has no shortage of entries. Perhaps you’d like to let us know about things we may have missed in the comments? Either phase changes or new titles, we’re flexible.
It seems like the entire MMO blogosphere wanted to chip in thoughts on the Guild Wars 2: Path of Fire
announcement, whether or not each writer was playing the game. So what did they all think?
“Finally, something other than dragons to fight!” enthused Occasional Hero. “I love mounts. And I love leaping and jumping mounts,” wrote Aywren Sojourner. “BUT. We all know what else a mount system introduces — cash shop opportunities!”
GamingSF ran down the features, saying that he’s on the fence as to whether or not to come back: “The best way to know that, I suspect, is to play some of the game in the time between now and the 22nd of September.”
Not everyone is on board with the expansion. “The announcement did not in any way overcome my healthy skepticism of the ‘horizontal progression’ philosophy of the game,” chimed in Endgame Viable. And In An Age seems like he’d wants to play, but admits that the business model puts him in a “mental bind” regarding both expansions.
Hey, graphics junkies and PC fans. Are you hyped for Destiny 2’s
PC launch yet? In case you’re not, Bungie
and Nvidia have a brief video out effectively demonstrating why waiting a little longer for the game to hit PCs is going to be worth it.
“Experience Destiny 2 in 4K with uncapped frame rates in the PC Open Beta August 29-31. Pre-purchase Destiny 2 on PC Exclusively at Blizzard Battle.net and get 24 hour early beta access starting on August 28. Begin Destiny 2’s epic cinematic story campaign, fight below the surface of Nessus in the three-player cooperative Strike Inverted Spire, and enter the Crucible to put your competitive multiplayer skills to the test in two 4v4 modes.”
We’re sure it’ll be pretty for you console folks too. Just not as pretty. And hey, you get to play five weeks sooner. Eyeballs below.
The down side for players looking forward to Destiny 2
on the PC is that they have to wait a little longer for pretty much everything. The good news? Sometimes that wait means things like getting a beta less full of bugs. Bungie is fixing several bugs from the console beta
including the infinite supers glitch, the infinite grenade glitch, and the Warlock glide glitch (which the designers enjoyed, but was ultimately a glitch and thus needed to be fixed).
The PC beta will also feature faster charging for supers across the board, more damaging grenades, more power ammo drops, and an issue with Warlock melee having more range than that of other classes. So it’ll be a more balanced experience when PC players get to jump in, proof that good things do indeed come for those who wait.
Gamasutra has an unusual piece from an Ubisoft developer this week arguing that co-op gameplay is the industry’s rising midcore trend, one that he believes will ultimately outstrip team competitive games. “It’s all about all the big data and stats that are finally available and can be mined,” author Andrii Goncharuk says, “and no surprise that it’s showing that players who played co-op mode have much more play hours, and players who played co-op with friends have even more play hours.”
He may be right, though first you’d have to believe co-op ever went anywhere to begin with (and console players would probably tell you nope!). But as I read the article, I couldn’t help but see MMOs in most of the arguments he’s making about what makes co-op games sticky, and yet MMOs are being edged out all the same. And while I don’t like to think of the MMO genre’s space in the industry as a zero-sum situation, the reality is that when people tire of MMORPG baggage but still want social play, co-op is exactly the sort of game they retreat to.
For this week’s Massively Overthinking, I asked our writers to reflect on the rise of co-op PvE games outside the MMO label. Do we play them? Do we prefer them, and when? How can we learn from them? Is the popularity of smaller-scale co-op hurting MMORPGs?
She enters your apartment and you stand ready to greet her, wearing your Destiny 2-branded bathrobe
. “Come in,” you purr, offering her a sippy cup full of Destiny 2-themed energy drink
with Destiny 2
-themed ice cubes. “I’ve carefully planned our evening, darling. It should be special.”
“Ooh, I like my dates to have class,” she replies for no readily explainable reason, stepping carefully past the teetering pile of Destiny 2-branded Pop-Tart boxes. “What is that wonderful scent?”
“I’ve been burning these Destiny 2-themed scented candles,” you say, holding up your Ghost-shaped candle holder because your interactions have the air of a thinly veiled advertisement. “Tell me, darling, would you prefer the scents of Venus, or do you long for the musky odor of the Dreadnaught?”
“You choose, you astonishing portrait of seduction,” she cries. “Take me now.”
(Yes, all of these are real products for sale for actual money in the real world. Except, oddly, for the sippy cup.)
Don’t forget to drink your Ovaltine! This is not a joke: ActiBlizz just sent ’round a press release announcing a partnership with Rockstar energy drinks and poptarts
, which I’ve just learned is actually properly formatted as Pop-Tarts. This was important enough that it needed to invade my inbox, and by god, I’m going to make sure you’re informed of this critical partnership development
“Destiny 2’s international collaboration with Rockstar Energy Drink includes limited edition ‘Destiny 2 themed’ cans in different flavors available in the U.S. and Canada, U.K. and Germany. The U.S. flavors are Original, Punched, and Zero Carb. Canada flavors include: Original, Punched and Burner. The U.K. flavors include: Original, Punched Guava, and XDurance. The Germany program features flavors: Original and Sugar Free.”
For some reason we all need different flavors? Guava? What? “Score loot with cans!” No!
“The U.S. partnership with Pop-Tarts® will fuel players’ Destiny 2 gaming experience by offering XP Boost, free with purchase of specially-marked packages of Pop-Tarts®.** In addition to this limited time offer, Pop-Tarts® will feature custom-designed, collectable packs highlighting each Guardian Subclass.”
We could practically copypasta last quarter’s Activision-Blizzard report to this one and nobody would notice. That’s because once again, it’s the Blizzard segment of the company driving the revenue flow; Blizz’s incomes rose 4% year-over-year to account for 42% of the revenue (with King and Activision itself trailing behind).
“Blizzard had the biggest quarterly online player community in its history with a record 46 million MAUsB, up 38% year-over-year. The Overwatch community continued to grow more than a year after launch, setting another all-time MAUB record with the release of two seasonal events in the quarter. Hearthstone MAUsB grew year-over-year and quarter-over-quarter to an all-time record, driven by its expansion, Journey to Un’Goro.”
Blizz is also talking up its “time spent” metric and claiming that it’s increased in World of Warcraft year-over-year, which should shock absolutely no one given Legion:
For everything, there is a season, turn turn turn. We’ve bid farewell to Albion Online this week, as it has launched properly and thus no longer qualifies as being in beta, but we also can say hello to the early access period for Dark and Light. Seriously, that just came out of nowhere, after ages of delays. It’s kind of awesome like that. So hooray for new early access!
We also bid farewell to Gigantic as it reaches its official launch. It’s like everyone graduating from college, although in this case college is full of supposed tests that are mostly a matter of building notoriety and… huh. That analogy works surprisingly well.
More testing news? Of course, friends, of course.
- The launch content for Tree of Life is available on the game’s test server, according to press releases. You can check out the game’s launch trailer, too, if you’d like.
- Good news for Destiny 2 fans on console, the open beta is running this weekend! Who doesn’t love that? PC players, presumably.
- Absolver isn’t quite an MMO, but it’s got a lot of the tropes, it has a nicely ornate combat system, and it’s launching on August 29th. So it’s all cool, and it’s almost there, right?
- As Chronicles of Elyria slowly rolls out its tribes, the developers have stressed the idea that you will have to pick and choose your tribe based on what you want to do in the game. So you can be whatever you want, as long as what you want is something your chosen tribe is already good at.
- Closed beta weekend in Citadel: Forged With Fire starting on Saturday? Don’t mind if we do. Yes, that’s moving particularly fast. So fast that you can fly, even.
- Last but not least, if you want to muck about on tropical islands while muttering about how this sly dog must’ve hidden the treasure in these parts, you’ll be quite excited about the riddle quests in Sea of Thieves. If you want to discuss how most pirate raids were about getting supplies instead of treasure and there was no reason to go bury this stuff… you should probably just bow out now, honestly.
Well, after all of that I’m sure everyone wants to retreat to the safety of the list of games in testing, yes? I know I do. It’s down below, and you can feel free to scroll through it and let us know if we’re missing something important in the comments.
Fans hotly anticipating Destiny 2 will be able to start testing the game on consoles next week, and you can pre-load the game now… assuming, of course, that you paid for it in advance. You can also check out a preview of its PvP, and if you believe Superdata, it’s going to be a big deal when it launches. Not that you needed an analysis firm to tell you that, of course.
Other beta news? Aw, heck, I guess we can do that.
- I think it’s time for another OrbusVR closed alpha test. The seventh, in fact; it is here and features pet dragons and hair. Hopefully not in the same space at the same time; dragons tend to not go well with hair. Burning smells and all that.
- Good news for those of you hoping for a self-proclaimed massive online sandbox RPG to drop out of the sky with little to no forewarning – here’s Citadel: Forged with Fire. Yes, that’s how it’s selling itself. Early access slated for later this month, which hopefully will be enough time for you to stop blinking in confusion. Perhaps reading about how magic will work might help?
- Speaking of sandbox titles, Tree of Life has quietly ambled along in early access for some time, but it’s exiting that stage of life and going into full launch in August. No exact date has been given, but August only has so many days, right?
- Riders of Icarus launched! I mean, sure, it had already launched a while back in every practical sense, but now it really launched officially. There are no backsies on that one.
- Last but not least, Albion Online celebrates its final week before a full launch by addressing a mild snafu regarding its founder packs. Hey, that ends things on a classy note, I’d say.
List of games in testing? Yeah, that’s here, just like always. Things are running normally, there is no need to be alarmed, the cat is on the mat. You can let us know if you like the betas you’re playing or if something slipped into a new test phase without us noticing in the comments, too. Familiarity is welcoming.