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Destiny 2 begins with a touching tribute to returning players (update)

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My face is leaking

Destiny 2 - two Guardians firing guns on Io Bungie/Activision

Destiny 2 developer Bungie said all along that it would recognize players’ accomplishments in the original Destiny with rewards in the sequel. The studio promised tangible items — namely, emblems — as well as some surprises. Now that we’ve played Destiny 2 ourselves, we know that the game’s acknowledgment of our time with Destiny and its four expansions is more meaningful than any in-game trinket could ever be.

[Note: We’ll be discussing the tribute in detail, so if you want to go in blind, we won’t feel bad if you stop reading here.]

Bungie said in June that it would give out as many as seven Destiny 2 emblems to mark the progress that you made in Destiny. Six of them were tied to Moments of Triumph or the Age of Triumph record book, while the other was related to Grimoire score. But it turns out that Destiny was tracking a bunch of your most memorable moments — and the people that you shared them with.

If you log in to Destiny 2 with a PlayStation Network ID or Xbox Live gamertag that’s linked to at least one Destiny character played before Aug. 1, 2017, the sequel will automatically detect that and import your Guardian(s). Then you’ll see a montage of your personal milestones from Destiny. Each one is a black-and-white drawing of the moment in question, along with the date of completion and the fireteam that you were playing with at the time.

There are a total of 11 Destiny Memories, starting from “The Black Garden” — the final mission of the original game’s lackluster campaign — and going through all four of its expansions to Wrath of the Machine, the raid in Destiny: Rise of Iron. You can see all of this author’s moments above, except for two, since he never attempted Wrath of the Machine and never reached the Lighthouse.

Some players are reporting that the feature is at times inaccurate. Jake Lear, an engineer on our team at Vox Media, said that his memory for the Vault of Glass — a raid, which is designed to be played with a team of six people — showed him beating it with just one other person. Lear doesn’t believe that would actually have been his first completion of the raid. “[It’s] probably from when I solo’d it using the warlock glitch,” he said.

Still, if you’ve done even a few of these things in Destiny, it’s a special thing to see those achievements laid out before you as you head into Destiny 2: a reminder of your hard-fought battles against the minions of the Darkness (and sometimes against the game itself), but also of the bonds you forged with your fellow Guardians. And you can rewatch your Destiny Memories at any time from the Destiny 2 character select screen.

Now it’s time to start a new adventure. For more on Destiny 2, read our review-in-progress and check out our extensive FAQ. And if you’re curious about how to play, don’t miss our guide.

Correction (Sept. 8): There are 11 Memories, not 10 — another one we’re missing is for making it to the Lighthouse. We’ve edited the article to reflect this.

Destiny 2 - start a new adventure Bungie/Activision