Bungie held its third and final “House of Wolves” live-streamed event on Wednesday, so now we know about pretty much everything that’s coming in the second expansion pack for “Destiny,” which lands May 19:
- A new social space. Right now, players (see: Guardians) are limited to visiting Earth’s Tower to get bounties, buy weapons, and exchange engrams for rewards. In House of Wolves, they will be able to access the Vestian Outpost in the Reef, a new area in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. The Reef space also includes new vendors that sell bounties, weapons, and other missions specific to the House of Wolves storyline.
- New story missions. In this expansion, the Queen calls upon all Guardians to hunt down the House of Wolves, a group of aliens called Fallen that were once loyal to the Queen before they decided to rebel. There are at least three House of Wolves story missions we know of.
- A new three-man cooperative strike called “The Shadow Thief.” You can watch the entire strike here (it’s about 14 minutes long).
- A new “arena” mode called Prison of Elders. This is what we learned about on Thursday. The Prison of Elders requires you beat five rounds of increasingly difficult enemies — each round has three separate waves you must fend off — that culminates in a randomised boss fight. Bungie’s keeping specific Prison of Elders rewards, and how to get them, under wraps for now. This new game mode can be played at four different difficulty levels, including one Level 28 mode that offers matchmaking with other players, and three more difficult Prison of Elders modes at Levels 32, 34, and 35, that require you form your own fireteams.
- A new multiplayer mode called Trials of Osiris. Each weekend after May 19, Guardians will be able to purchase their passage into the Trials of Osiris: Like a game of mini golf, each player gets a scorecard. You can get up to nine wins, or three losses; if either of those happens, your card gets “completed,” and you can return to the Reef to turn in that card for specific rewards. The more wins on your card, the better the rewards. As for the game mode itself, Trials of Osiris calls for players of three (no matchmaking here either, sorry) to take out other teams in elimination-style rounds: Your team gets a point for eliminating the other team, and the first to five points wins the game. Each round is two minutes max, and the only way to get back in a game, once killed, is to be revived by a teammate or wait for the next round to start.
- New crucible arenas, and major tweaks to the system. Bungie is doubling all the rewards you get for completing multiplayer matches, and promises that for the first time, one’s performance will determine the outcome of the rewards — random number generation (RNG) won’t play as much of a role. But more importantly, the company is introducing three new arenas for all players, and one new Crucible location that’s exclusive to PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4 owners. Also, the old arenas introduced in the last expansion will join the general rotation to ensure freshness.
- New weapons, armour, and gear. Bungie has also raised the ceiling for Guardians’ power or “light” levels, and players will be able to upgrade all legendary and exotic armour to meet that new level. There’s also a ton of new gear that’s themed after Prison of Elders and Trials of Osiris, a new multiplayer game mode that rewards the best players with awesome Egyptian-themed rewards.
There are a ton of other tweaks and improvements to the game — most importantly, Bungie listened to fans and tweaked its in-game economy for exchanging different types of materials needed to ascend one’s gear and power level, making it much simpler and easier to get to the higher levels needed to play Destiny’s endgame content like Prison of Elders. But in general, all of these additions are highly welcome.
“Destiny” is a rare game that’s truly evolving as time goes on. There was a lot of anticipation leading up to this game, and though many were disappointed by its offerings at launch, Bungie has proven time and time again that it’s listening to its community and willing to implement the most desired changes.
Compared to the previous expansion, House of Wolves offers something for everyone — and you don’t even need to purchase the expansion to access many of these features, including new Reef social space and enhancements to the Crucible. And with all the new content and challenges, there will be plenty to keep Guardians busy until we’re introduced to the next chapter in Bungie’s 10-year game plan.
Bungie put together a great video explaining all the additions of House of Wolves. You can check that out below.