Destiny 2: Shadowkeep is nostalgic and enjoyable (story review)

When I logged into Destiny 2: Shadowkeep, I was excited to return to the moon. There is a lot of nostalgia in returning to the moon in this game and it’s obvious as soon as you load in that Bungie was wisely aware of that.

When you first land, you are in a 100% familiar atmosphere (If you played Destiny 1). There’s a battle right on Archer’s Line showing you the chaos that is going on before you dive into the story. You even go back to the Hellmouth pretty early in the campaign to fight Omnigul. You visit all the areas that you used traverse looking for helium filaments and see all the familiar architecture. It’s a real blast from the past.

Ultimately, the story is what should be looking forward to.

Story:

You fly to the moon knowing that there is a disturbance. You meet with Eris and she tells you about these phantoms that are haunting her. They turn out to be her fallen fireteam members. She sends you further down into the dark below to investigate the cause of her nightmares and you find out that there is a huge Pyramid ship that’s been on the moon for a very long time watching and waiting.

From there it becomes your duty to stave off the nightmares on the moon, including some familiar villains from past encounters. You have to gear up to wade through the Pyramids darkness to enter its ship and confront the darkness. (Mind you, Mara Sov told us these enemies were on their way here. We just didn’t know they had an agent in the solar system this whole time).

However, when you finally get there, you find out that the darkness is playing you and you only entered because they wanted you to. I won’t spoil the end because I think you should play it for yourself, but I will say that the ending is ever lore master’s dream come true.

I enjoyed the story and I would only ask for more. Bungie, please keep going in this direction. It’s very interesting, it left me wanting to know more, and it left me excited to find out what’s next with the Pyramid and where ever this story will go. Good job.

guardian
This is my guardian without her helmet

Sorrow’s Harbor:

The new location on the moon, Sorrow’s Harbor looks dope. The area is well designed and it gives you another area to complete bounties and patrols. It’s the harbor for the nightmares, which is convenient because you need to kill a fair amount of those to progress through quests.
It’s a nice addition to the moon as you revisit familiar locations like Anchor of Light, the Hellmouth, and Archer’s Line.

Phantom Beacons, Finishers and other nuances:

Another positive and creepy thing that happened to me while wearing sound-canceling headphones, was a phantom screaming at me. When you are patrolling the moon, periodically you’ll get called out to by phantoms crouching in a corner and shaking with fear. They are now stand-ins for patrol beacons. The one that freaked me out the most was a man that screamed, “Help Me!” at the top of his lungs.

I nearly jumped out of my chair. Once I realized what it was, I thought it was well placed due to the narrative. It’s like the Dreaming City patrol soldiers, but way scarier and better as a result.

The little rabbits that show up with look like Friday Night at Freddy’s a little. They are super creepy. If you give them a rice cake, they’ll give you some materials. I even saw one in a lost section on the moon staring down a phantom cat from the Dreaming City. Super creepy stuff.

Rabbit vs. Cat - Destiny 2 Shadowkeep
Rabbit vs. Cat on the Moon in the Logistic Lost Sector

Whoever came up the Finisher idea needs a pat on the back every day. It’s so fun to be in the middle of a close encounter and then your character just makes this awesome move and puts down the enemy. It’s seamless and only adds to the fun.

I noticed on the battle pass that you can gain at least one unique finisher around level 10, so I look forward to that and I may even spring for one in Eververse if it calls to me.

Beginning the Grind and Server Maintenance:

I opted to turn in some of my tokens to give myself a jump start in the light level boost. I was able to do this in Destiny: The Taken King expansion with bounties. At that time, I reached the light cap before I left the tower. This time I was able to get to 760 using most of my Vanguard tokens and then built up to 822 light after a few story missions.

But as we all know, Destiny1 and 2 servers were shut down for emergency maintenance. As a result, I was barely able to get into the campaign with Eris before everything was shut down.

I can’t be mad at it though. I’d rather Bungie shut down the servers and fix everything than leave the game queues broken.

But that could just be a me thing.

After the maintenance, it became all about the grind. I hadn’t finished the story but I decided to take some sidesteps to level up. I ended up farming public events, patrols, strikes, and completing as many bounties as possible. As f this writing, I haven’t infused and I am currently using the blue armor and guns, even though sometimes it’s a struggle. I think it’s better in the leveling process by doing this and not using materials.

I still have some grinding to do to prepare for the raid on Saturday, but right now my light it the focus. I’ll decide what weapons and what gear is raid worthy when I’m done. Click here fora detailed level-up guide on how to achieve the soft cap of 900 light.

I haven’t been able to get into customizing the armor yet, as I am still using blue armor to level. But, I will update my thoughts on the new armor system when I get there.

Impressions:

Eris Morn, Destiny 2: Shadowkeep
Eris Morn, Destiny 2 Shadowkeep

Destiny 2: Shadowkeep is all about nostalgia with a few surprises. It’s good to have Eris as the leader of the story this time around and visit areas that I haven’t seen since Destiny 2 dropped. As a Destiny 1 player, I wondered if I should be upset that these locations are from a previous game, but then I told myself it’s still a new story and that is the major key here.

We have a new enemy lurking in the depths of the moon and that is worth it. Every expansion doesn’t need a new location if the story is adding to your experience.

The soundtrack for this new expansion is immersive, but it has always been. I guess it’s fitting that the game came out on October 1 because Destiny 2: Shadowkeep, especially on the moon, gives off all kinds of horror film vibes.

Overall, I am enjoying the addition of Shadowkeep to the Destiny 2 universe and I am looking forward to the raid on Saturday, October 5, 2019.

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