Rumored for weeks in news that leaked during the recent Bungie layoffs, the studio today announced that The Final Shape, the next year's Destiny 2 expansion and the culmination of 10 years of Destiny storytelling, is indeed delayed until the summer. Citing the need for more time "to deliver an even bigger and bolder vision" the delay raises questions about what is going to keep the community engaged in the meantime.
The fourth and final quarterly season for this year's Lightfall expansion starts tomorrow. Titled Season of the Wish, this season will progress through February as originally planned. But absent the release of the new expansion to follow, Bungie will instead pivot to mission based quests called "Wishes" to bide time, while moving up The Guardian Games to March to also try and fill the void. Personally, I loathe Guardian Games because they only highlight to me how my favorite subclass is so underpowered compared to the competition - a fact I generally succeed in ignoring the rest of the calendar year.
It's a tall task for Bungie. Revenues are reportedly down 45% below projections already and the community is largely strung out by the endless drip of micotransactions and double-dipping of charging for expansion on top of seasons on top of dungeons and other cosmetics, especially after Lightfall released and felt every bit a stop gap that was mailed in after Final Shape was first delayed after being initially planned to drop a year ago, but Lightfall happened instead. It's all detailed in my Lightfall review from last year.
I think the Destiny community, despite numbers dropping to record lows of late will plod along because those that remain are still in it to complete the story. There aren't many of us left, my clan that once thrived is absent on most nights and I often feel like the last one still playing. But I do like unwinding at the end of the night and shooting space bugs so I still find myself loading the game up more evening than not. So if Bungie says they need more time to knock it out of the park, what's a few months between friends?
Destiny 2: The Final Shape is now planned to release on June 4th, 2024. More details of the delay can be found on the official blog. Game Director Joe Blackburn took to the YouTubes to explain the news, an offer some hope for the future of the franchise: