Originally set for release on September 17, Destiny 2: Shadowkeep, the next major expansion in the Destiny universe, has been pushed back to October 1 to allow Bungie a little bit more time to get things ready for the upcoming chapter. Shadowkeep isn’t just slated to bring more content. It will fundamentally reinvent many systems in the game, approaching the MMO and RPG-like mechanics with a lot more fervor. Along with this delay, the free-to-play Destiny 2: New Light base game has also been pushed to the October 1, 2019 release date. Bungie released a statement on its blog talking about the delay.
This Fall is the first step on a journey for what our team wants Destiny 2 to become – a place for you and your friends to play anytime, anywhere; owning the action MMO and RPG elements that we love about the game; and crushing barriers to entry for friends. We just need a bit of extra time to take the first step.
We didn’t make this decision lightly. We know for some of you (us too), Destiny releases are events where you take time off of work or develop a sudden sickness that keeps you from school or work (we get it, a bunch of our team takes some time off to go on their own Destiny Jacket Quest). We’re sorry for screwing up your plans and we wanted to share this information as quickly as we could.
Bungie’s Luke Smith and Mark Noseworthy said that as the September release approached, it became clear that their “releases for this Fall would benefit from a bit more time in the oven.” This will mark the first time since Destiny 1 that Bungie hasn’t had a major September release for Destiny, with Shadowkeep just inching outside of that window, though it’s also the first September that Bungie hasn’t been partnered with Activision.
“Being independent means that the future of Destiny 2 is entirely on our team. It also means that we’re agile enough to choose to do what’s best for the game and our players, even if it’s the hard choice,” Luke and Mark said. They acknowledged that this change may impact players who were planning on taking time off for the new release and added some additional “date housekeeping” to make sure that everyone could update their calendars, including Cross Save arriving ahead of Shadowkeep’s launch and when players can expect the next Raid:
- The World First for the new Raid Garden of Salvation will begin on Saturday, October 5. It’s a weekend Raid race and Contest will be active
- We’re extending Moments of Triumph through September 17 – you’ll have three more weeks to complete this year’s challenges and unlock all of the in-game and Bungie rewards
- We’re going to run an additional Iron Banner the week of September 17 as well
- Cross Save will come online later this Summer, so you’ll have time to sort out your Friend Lists well ahead of Shadowkeep
Today’s TWAB (This Week at Bungie) should have more information regarding the delay and how they plan to keep players active for those additional two weeks, while Luke Smith is working on a “State of the Game” post that will dive into what Bungie has learned from the last six months of Destiny 2, and how they plan to incorporate what they’ve learned into Shadowkeep.
Delays are never easy for developers or players, but it’s clear that Bungie wants to make sure they get this launch right. An extra couple of weeks to make sure that we get a quality release is welcome. As a Destiny player who is very much looking forward to Shadowkeep, I’d rather a delay lead to a more pristine launch than have something broken or incomplete release earlier while Bungie scrambles to fix it. Shadowkeep and New Light show too much promise for the new direction that Bungie wants to take this universe to let a botched launch reduce their impact.
In a time where developer crunch is also a hot topic, it’s nice to know that Bungie is the kind of studio that will opt to delay an already established release date rather than put that pressure on its employees. They’ve done a great job at explaining how prioritization of content and features mean that some seemingly simple things haven’t seen fixes. With Shadowkeep’s delay, that becomes even more clear that the studio can only put its efforts into so many things while maintaining a healthy studio culture.
Even with the Destiny 2 Shadowkeep delay, there’s plenty to do in the game right now. This week launched the Solstice of Heroes event, which will allow players to get a head start on getting a set of Armor 2.0 gear. Moments of Triumph are also currently running, and this delay gives players more time to earn that title and the rewards that come with it. If you simply can’t wait to get back to the Moon, make sure you check out Bungie’s video showing off how the lunar surface in Shadowkeep differs from what players remember in Destiny 1.