In mid-August, Destiny developer Bungie streamed an official first look at the next big expansion of its epic sci-fi space shooter, The Taken King. As it gave a sneak peek at the new elements, areas, weapons, and encounters that the expansion will bring to the table, it also gave us a glimpse of how the game is going to be played, moving forward. Massive changes are coming to the games most basic systems, and it promises to make the game a new experience, new dungeons or not. Here's how:
1. No Light
After progressing to level 20 through the more traditional means of gaining experience through kills and mission rewards, a new stat - Light - would serve to determine you over all combat power from then on. A Guardian's Light Level was it's new statistical measuring stick, and was derived by the power of the player's gear and could only be increased by getting better drops. This was always a contentious design choice, as it made progression difficult and frustrating, especially since Legendary engrams drop so infrequently, and rarely actually produce Legendary Items.
The Taken King patch will change all of that, making leveling up strictly an experience based grind now. By simply playing Destiny, Guardians can hit the new level cap of 40. It's about time, really.
2. More Informative Information
As silly as that sounds, Destiny has a pretty big problem with disseminating its information to players in a coherent fashion. Probably the biggest offender of this was the Strength, Discipline, and Intelligence attributes on items. They provide bonuses to the cooldown times on specific abilities, but would display these bonuses as percentages based on the original cool down time. None of which were clearly displayed. A 50% bonus to cool down is cool, but whats that time really mean in seconds? Now, Destiny will tell you.
3. Proper Quests
Quests are getting modernized to resemble the quest format of The Taken King when it comes out. TK's quest design is inspired by Legendary equipment bounties, which are checklists of feats you have to perform and situations you have to play though in order to activate a legendary piece's power. Quest will now be more diverse and exciting, and you will be able to track up to 36 in a convenient new menu tab called Progress.
4. More Bounty Support
Bounties will also get a repackaged in the Progress tab. The amount of bounties you can accept at once has been risen from 10 to 16, and they will all show completion information on the Progress tab. They can also be turned in to quest givers directly from this screen, instead of having to travel to the Reef or the Tower. Up to 4 of them can be tagged to be followed every time you pull up your Ghost, giving some more utility to a screen that does very little. Bounties themselves are also getting overhauled, generally to make them easier to complete on a daily basis with The Taken King..
5. New Ghost
Peter Dinklage's voice work for the Ghost in Destiny is being completely replaced by Uncharted and Last of Us voice actor Nolan North. Though the Game of Thrones actor's take on the character wasn't all that well received, dissatisfaction isn't the reason Bungie is calling or a redo. Dinklage's Hollywood schedule makes him very difficult to get a hold of for dedicated recording time. North, on the other hand, is a dedicated voice actor, and is used to being on call work at a moment's notice.