I built my first PC last week, just in time to try out the Destiny 2 Beta. I fumbled through the introductory level while attempting to seriously learn keyboard controls for the first time. As I crawled my way between waves of enemies, I marveled at how beautiful the game looked running off the unbridled power of my newborn computer. I decided that Destiny 2 would be the first game I buy for PC, even though I invested hundreds of hours into the original on PS4.
Then I learned that the PC version of Destiny would launch on Oct. 24, almost two months behind the console version which is currently available. Unsure if the wait would be worth it, I researched the pros and cons of getting the game on PC over console. Finally, on Tuesday evening, as I watched the pre-order clock wind down to zero, I bit the bullet and purchased the game on the PlayStation Store. Minutes after the game installed, my choice to buy Destiny 2 on PS4 was validated. Slight spoilers incoming.
Before the character select screen, an introductory cinematic plays followed by a scrapbook-like sequence which recounts the events from the original Destiny. These “memories”, as the game calls them, described a harrowing threat from the first game and how my fictional character overcame them. I thought it was cute how Destiny 2 recapped the lore from the first game by treating these story details as memories. The first one, for example, reads, “We stepped through time and prevented a garden from consuming the stars”, as if I actually did that myself. I noticed something during the first memory that made my heart race.
My name appeared in the corner of the screen right below a date. I now understood that these memories were a list of my accomplishments from the first Destiny. I advanced to the next memory and, this time, under my name was someone else’s. It was my old roommate, the one who taught me everything I knew about Destiny. The one who guided me for the first couple months before I was able to take on the universe on my own. It was a shared memory.
This continued until there were no more tales of my escapades through the galaxy from the original Destiny. Even though I hadn’t played Destiny for months, remembering how much time I invested into it filled me with pride. I defeated Crota, became a pro at Sparrow racing, and wore my Crest of Alpha Lupi with pride. Most importantly, I had a blast doing it and it was nice to be reminded of that as I re-entered into the Destiny universe for the first time in over a year to start a new adventure with a new avatar.
That’s when the game surprised me. After the memory slideshow finished, the game loaded the character select screen and there she was: My short-haired, purple-skinned, glowy-eyed avatar that I created in college the night Destiny launched. She had been transferred into my Destiny 2 save file. I teared up.
The thought that I could play Destiny 2 with the same avatar that I created three years ago made me grin from ear to ear. I felt a strong ownership as I started the first mission, knowing that I earned the accomplishments listed in those memories, but also understanding that my work as a Guardian was far from over. No longer was I embarking on a brand new adventure. I was picking up where I left off, a retired veteran taking up her rifle once more in the face of a new intergalactic crisis. Had I switched to PC, I would have missed out on all of this.
Destiny 2 does a great job of building off of the lore from the first game. Many side characters from Destiny, like Amanda Holliday and Lord Shaxx, have a more active story role in the sequel. All these familiar faces and locales helped to solidify my place in the world and made me feel like my actions from the first game had a direct impact on this one. As the events of Destiny 2 unfold, I look forward to reuniting with old allies, making new ones, and continuing the heroic adventures of a story I began crafting for myself in 2014. Good thing short hair on women is still in style.