We’re less than two weeks away from Bungie’s major last Shape demonstration, which will encompass sections of the next two seasons as well as the game’s last expansion of Destiny 2’s Light and Darkness saga.
With Destiny 2 player morale at an all-time low, I’ve heard a lot of people suggest that The Final Shape must “blow us away,” “shatter expectations,” or, everyone’s favorite, “overdeliver.” I think players should be a little more…tempered than that.
At this time, I believe we know a fair amount about The Final Shape, which is now less than six months away. Both in terms of what Bungie has divulged, the logic of what should be coming, and the way expansions function in general. As a result, I’m not expecting much from the showcase, and I doubt it will live up to these “wow us” expectations.
At the very least, we know how things will begin. We’ll figure out how to follow The Witness through the Traveler gate, into some strange terrain presumably inside the Traveler where Cayde-6 is…present (but not living), and things will get crazy. This environment will most likely be the new zone for expansion, even if it isn’t entirely made up of trees and rolling hills when we explore further.
The possibilities for the saga’s final villains are not exactly obscure. Xivu Arath could be in the mix somewhere, but The Witness is clearly our major aim. But, given that this is the conclusion of the Light and Darkness narrative, it stands to reason that after all of this is resolved, there will be no more Traveler, no more Witness, in whatever form it takes, even if we keep all of our light and dark superpowers (“the Traveler lives on, in all of us!”). Maybe there’ll be a left turn when we learn the Traveler has always been the bad guy and we fight it instead. However, we have already learned the complete origins of both the Witness and the Traveler this season, so it is no longer a mystery to be solved.
We’re likely to obtain a sixth and final subclass. A “red” one has leaked in the same way that Strand did, as a demo film showcasing various in-game effects. Given that the original intention was to release Stasis and Strand in a row, but that was pushed back, I can see them releasing Strand and Red Subclass in a row here, just in time for the last expansion. We don’t know what it is, but it will most likely be covered in the showcase.
Bungie has also teased a slew of tweaks, or lack thereof, that will be implemented over the next four seasons. Some have already been mentioned for The Final Shape, but we know that the expansion will not come with a slew new Crucible and Gambit maps, as the State of the Game made plain.
However, there will be no major modifications to levels and power, nor will the New Light system be completely overhauled. The advent of the in-game LFG tool may be the most significant improvement to the game during the next few seasons.
I’m not saying we should expect The Final Shape to be terrible. I’m arguing that given the prior 2-3 expansions, we should have a good idea of what’s coming, and considering the nature of this being the “final” installment in this tale, we should be able to get rid of the Traveler and Witness once and for all. And we already know a lot about what is and isn’t coming outside of the story thanks to previous sandbox blogs and the State of the Game.
I’m hoping The Final Shape channels Witch Queen and serves as an excellent end to the series. But I believe what I’m most interested in is whether the showcase will focus on what happens after The Final Shape, as that appears to be a bigger mystery than the expansion itself. We’ll see what happens.