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Destiny 2 is a first-person shooter RPG video game published by Bungie for Windows, Xbox One and PlayStation 4. The game is set in a fictional sci-fi world roughly 700 years in the future following humanity’s colonization of planets in our solar system and an event called “The Collapse” that nearly ended life until a mysterious celestial body known as the “Traveler” saved the last remnants of civilization. Destiny 2 is a sequel following the events of the first Destiny game and was released worldwide on September 6th, 2017.
Two months after the original Destiny released, a sequel was mentioned in November 2014 by Activision CEO Eric Hirshberg and development began around the same time (in addition to numerous expansion packs). Originally planned to release in September 2016, the sequel was delayed until 2017, but eventually released on September 6th, 2017. Although several promises were made to players regarding the sequel, such as character progression carrying over, the game’s initial release received mostly positive reception.
Through several post-release expansions and changes, the game slowly transformed over its lifetime and has continued to undergo major revisions. Perhaps the biggest change occurred in October 2019 with the release of the Shadowkeep expansion that debuted a new version of Destiny 2 called “New Light” that consisted of a free-to-play version including content from the base game and the first two expansions. Also during this time, Bungie and Activision broke their partnership and slowly gave full control of the franchise over to Bungie leading up to the release of Shadowkeep.
This new free-to-play release also coincided with several changes to the monetization model of Destiny 2, making a bigger push for players to purchase content with the in-game currency “Silver.” Cross-saving was also introduced during this timeframe, allowing players to transfer their characters between any platform (though expansions needed to be bought for each).
The campaign surrounding Destiny 2 begins one year after the SIVA Crisis as Cabal forces led by Red Legion commander Dominus Ghaul invade the Last City, destroying much of the Tower (Guardian HQ) and the city itself. Players begin by launching a counterattack on Ghaul’s flagship, but fail after the Red Legion attach a device to the Traveler and drain his light. The Guardians subsequently lose their power and are forced to retreat. Through the base game’s main storyline, eventually humanity and their protectors manage to reclaim their light, defeat Ghaul and save the Traveler at considerable cost.
The events of the expansions (Curse of Osiris, Warmind, Forsaken, Shadowkeep) following in the footsteps of the campaign consist of several new adventures where players fight various new threats throughout the solar system alongside notable characters. Each of these content packs typically include new raids, strikes, patrols, missions, maps for PVP or entirely new modes like Gambit. In addition to the full expansions, various season passes have also been released throughout the game’s lifecycle, consisting of smaller bits of PVP or PVE content including weapons, armor, items and new missions to complete during a limited timeframe.
There are three classes in Destiny 2 (same as the first game), including the Titan, Hunter and Warlock, each with three elemental-type classes and three additional subclasses each. Players can engage in a wide range of activities for all three of their characters, ranging from PVE, PVP and even a mixture of the two depending on their preferred way to play. PVE content in the game includes Strikes, Raids, Patrols, Missions and Dungeons. For PVP, there’s Crucible and Trials of Osiris. Gambit is a mode combining elements of the two where players engage in a mix of PVE and PVP in a head-to-head game mode with another team of four.
Much like the original game, Destiny 2 has had a large online presence across numerous websites, social media platforms and online communities. At this time, the game has over 2.4 million followers on Twitter, 1.3 million followers on Instagram and 3.1 million on Facebook. On Reddit, there are two major subs, r/DestinyTheGame and r/Destiny2, the former with over 1.4 million members and the latter with 439,000.
Within all of these online communities, players discuss numerous topics surrounding the game and franchise, including things like fan art, gameplay clips and screenshots, cosplays and, of course, memes. In the actual game itself, several references to online and pop culture can be seen in the form of dances, emotes and other various elements -- helping to bolster the rich meme culture surrounding Destiny 2.
Particularly seen on the r/Destiny2 subreddit (as the main sub doesn’t allow memes), the community can be seen creating several examples relating to the game and online/meme culture as a whole.
One such example comes from Redditor RipstefanKarlsteffan, posted to the r/Destiny2 sub on November 19th, 2019. The meme (seen below) references a beloved character in the franchise “Shaxx,” who’s known for his loud, motivational dialogue during Crucible matches. The meme was upvoted over 21,200 times and commented on 377 times.
On February 2nd, 2020, Redditor HeterodactylFormosan posted a meme depicting someone reloading a sword, which is a common joke in the community since in-game swords require ammo to use. The post (shown below) received over 16,400 upvotes, 264 comments and a Reddit Gold award.
YouTube also hosts several meme-related videos referencing Destiny 2, including one posted on August 2nd, 2019, by YouTuber Hush under the title “destiny 2 except it's a huge meme.” The video (seen below) has garnered over 500,000 views and 37,000 likes since being uploaded.
The Trickster or Araskes is a Scorn Baron character in the 2017 multiplayer first-person shooter video game Destiny 2. The Destiny 2 character, The Trickster, known for deception, has been used as an image macro placed in reaction to a caption involving a cheat or a deceiving action.