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Here’s how Destiny 2 will revive classic moments, like the Vault of Glass raid

Game director Luke Smith explains the Destiny Content Vault

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Destiny - a Guardian in the Cosmodrome on Earth Bungie
Ryan Gilliam (he/him) has worked at Polygon for nearly seven years. He primarily spends his time writing guides for massively popular games like Diablo 4 & Destiny 2.

On June 9, Bungie unveiled the future of Destiny 2. The studio showed off the fall expansion, Beyond Light, and finally revealed details on Destiny 2: Season of Arrivals, which went live an hour later. But Bungie also spoke about the next three years for Destiny, mentioning the expansions coming in 2021 and 2022: The Witch Queen and Lightfall.

Alongside that three-year plan, Bungie announced a new feature called the Destiny Content Vault. The studio will remove some current content from the game as it adds new locations and activities. Old content — including locations, strikes, and raids that players left behind in the original Destiny — will then come out of the Destiny Content Vault. This includes the return of Destiny’s beloved Vault of Glass raid sometime in Year 4.

Ahead of the reveal, we spoke to Destiny’s game director, Luke Smith, about the implementation of the Destiny Content Vault.

The Destiny Content Vault explained

Fall 2020 Director Destiny 2
The Destiny 2 director this fall, after Beyond Light launches
Image: Bungie

In the fall, Bungie will remove four existing planets — Mars, Mercury, Titan, and Io — from Destiny 2. Players won’t be able to land on them, or participate in those locations’ strikes or missions. But that loss comes with a positive tradeoff.

“Shelving content into the Vault is about making space for awesome new stuff,” said Smith. “So, each year when a new expansion set comes out, things are going to leave. And, you know, we’re going to end up being super clear about what’s leaving.”

Smith told us Bungie did its research about which planets to take away. In Smith’s experience — which echoes our own, and that of many players — he only goes to a planet like Titan when it’s the weekly Flashpoint, or on a rare mission.

Last year, Smith and general manager Mark Noseworthy told us the studio can’t grow Destiny 2 forever — speaking to the game’s massive file size. So why not remove an underused planet like Titan to make room for something new, or a beloved activity from the original Destiny?

Mixing old and new content

gjallarhorn 2
The infamous Destiny Gjallarhorn
Image: Bungie

The Destiny Content Vault exists to restore beloved weapons, locations, and activities, but returning content won’t be the only offerings for players each year. Smith told us the goal isn’t to re-sell players locations they’ve already been to. Starting with Beyond Light, all of the new expansions will add locations and experiences players have never seen before. Players will continue to see a mix of reprised and brand-new content — which will help inform Bungie of what it should add back next.

“I can totally imagine, down the road, players having some ability to inform or influence what comes back,” said Smith. If players want to see the King’s Fall raid return, or the beloved Gjallarhorn, they can ask for it. It doesn’t mean Bungie will always oblige, but players can request old content without fear that it will replace new ideas coming to Destiny 2 — like it did when Shadowkeep re-added the Moon as the prime destination.

Reliving the original Destiny inside Destiny 2

Destiny - Vault of Glass entrance
The entrance to Destiny’s first raid, the Vault of Glass
Image: Bungie

In Beyond Light, players will go to Europa, a moon of Jupiter initially teased in the original Destiny. But an old location is also returning. Bungie will revive more of the original Destiny’s Cosmodrome location (after rebuilding part of it for the new-player experience in Shadowkeep). This includes the first Strike players ever participated in, the battle against Sepiks Prime in The Devil’s Lair, as well at the Cosmodrome’s other two Strikes from the original Destiny.

“The future of Destiny is going to be built inside of Destiny 2,” said Smith. Bungie wants players to see the best it has to offer, the greatest hits of Destiny content — all through the modern Destiny 2 engine. “We’ve built so much content over the years, a bunch of it’s super awesome, and that’s just been gone,” said Smith.

The Destiny Content Vault exists to help players experience the original Destiny content that was left behind. For veteran players, it creates an opportunity to revisit a beloved location or replay a favorite raid. The Vault of Glass is often touted as one of Destiny’s best raids, and was the first glimpse players ever had that Destiny would be more than its initial weak impression.

But the Content Vault could also see the reintroduction of lost Destiny 2 content. When Bungie takes Mercury away in the fall, it’ll be inaccessible to all players. But, in a year or two, the studio could theoretically reintroduce Mercury as a remastered location like the Moon or the Cosmodrome.

Players will need time to get used to content coming in and out of Destiny 2, but with a reprise of the Vault of Glass raid as one of the first releases, it shouldn’t be a tough pill to swallow.

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