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Here's how Destiny: The Taken King's overhauled leveling and quests work

Samit Sarkar (he/him) is Polygon’s deputy managing editor. He has more than 15 years of experience covering video games, movies, television, and technology.

Destiny developer Bungie is revamping the game's much-maligned Light level system with the upcoming Taken King expansion, decoupling your level from the amount of Light on your gear. Bungie gave a detailed look at the revised system in a Twitch stream today.

As of The Taken King, you'll progress in Destiny simply by earning experience, just as you did for the first 20 levels. As Bungie's Tyson Green explained, "Anything that's earning you XP is going to bring your level up," so anyone can reach the new level cap of 40 just by playing Destiny. Light will now be an average of the attack and defense attributes for all your gear. That includes two new slots: Ghost Shell and class item.

Destiny: The Taken King - character interface screencap 1920 Bungie/Twitch

The inventory screen has been improved to provide more information about your gear. Instead of nebulous percentages for the Strength, Intellect and Discipline attributes, you'll be able to see the exact length of your abilities' cooldowns (and see them decrease as those attributes go up). And Bungie has expanded the vault space: You'll now have 72 slots each for weapons and armor. The number of general slots is staying at 36, but the new "collections" feature for emblems will reduce the number of general slots you'll be using.

Bungie is introducing a new item called a Spark of Light that will be waiting for all players at the Postmaster. It's a one-time-use object that allows players to instantly rank up a single character to level 25 and unlock The Taken King's campaign. Making it all the way to level 40 will unlock the ability to use endgame legendary gear.

Destiny: The Taken King - quests interface screencap 1920

The livestream also offered a look at the in-game interface's new Quests tab. It allows you to follow the progress of up to 32 quests. The Taken King will raise the number of bounty slots from 10 to 16, and you'll be able to select as many as four to track in the game; the progress of those bounties will be displayed when you bring up your Ghost in the game. Green noted that Bungie has tweaked bounties so they're "a bit quicker to do," and they're now designed so you can make progress on them during activities you'd already be doing.

More importantly, you'll be able to turn in completed bounties from the Quests page — you won't have to return to the Tower or the Reef anymore. Bungie visited Lord Shaxx during the stream to take a look at the new Crucible bounties, showing off five weekly bounties. Players who complete all five bounties within a single week will earn "nightfall-tier" rewards for doing so. And the Cryptarch will now sell legendary engrams.

Destiny: The Taken King launches Sept. 15. Here's today's entire livestream:

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