Destiny‘s April Update promises to bring new PvE content, a higher Light level, new gear, and more. Here’s what we think could be coming to Destiny next month.
Bungie has set the date—come April 12 fans will be diving into the Destiny April Update, which promises new content more substantial than any of the live events that have come before it during Destiny‘s Year Two.
Going off what little detail Bungie has revealed about the April Update, we speculate on what the update could be bringing:
New PvE Challenges
This could be as broad or specific as one can read into it. Considering Bungie’s history of live events this year, and the fact that it appears the majority of the development team is working on the major expansion slated for later this year (and of course the sequel coming in 2017), it seems unlikely this is a bevy of new destinations.
What does seems likely is a PvE event much like Queen’s Wrath, which debuted only once, just a month after the launch of vanilla Destiny. That event was not particularly valued among the community, but it’s important to look at the context to see why it was a failure.
Queen’s Wrath was an event where Petra Venj appeared in the Tower and offered bounties to complete. Once a bounty was completed, players were able to play a Nightfall-level version of a campaign mission, which had a higher level and special modifiers. The reward was exclusive Queen’s Wrath equipment that could only be earned through the event.
The problem was some of the player base wasn’t geared to complete the high level missions yet. And those who were soon discovered that the equipment they earned from completing the missions could be dismantled for Ascendant Shards, a highly desired material at the time, as it was required to fully level armor and raise a player’s level.
Bungie soon realized Queen’s Wrath had just provided an unintended fast track to get Ascendant Shards and level quickly and patched it within a day. Queen’s Wrath equipment would longer dismantle into Ascendant Shards, and without that benefit (especially when duplicate gear dropped from missions), all players gave up on the missions. The reward they wanted most had been taken away, and that pretty much sealed the fate of Queen’s Wrath. It’s never been seen in the game since.
Fast forward to Year Two with players looking for reasons to return to PvE. Queen’s Wrath (or an event like it) could return, offering high level PvE missions with special modifiers for exclusive rewards. Plus the economy is much different now with Legendary weapons now dismantling into Legendary Marks. This could be the perfect time to reintroduce such an event.
The other option is related to this picture Bungie put out above. Here is what appears to be Taken Guardians, or Guardians wearing a Taken shader. Notably, they are all wearing full sets of Prison of Elders armor and standing in the Reef, which is where the Prison of Elders is located. That has caused many to speculate that Prison of Elders, Destiny‘s Horde/Firefight mode introduced in the House of Wolves expansion, could be returning to offer said PvE content.
Perhaps the Taken have broken into the Prison of Elders and now Guardians must enter to take on modified Taken versions of old enemies. Add to it that Bungie said the April Update would offer PvE “replayability” and consider that the language is almost identical to how Bungie described the Prison of Elders when it was introduced. It could be an easy way for Bungie to freshen up content and give players a “new” experience.
New and Updated Gear
Bungie has already said the Light level cap will be raised in the April Update with new gear to collect.
Expect the same Light system to stay in place—after all, it’s in a fairly great place right now. Light levels have usually increased by two numerals with expansions in the past, which would translate into a 20 point increase with the new system introduced in Patch 2.0 and The Taken King. An educated guess would put the new cap at 340.
New Quest with the Blighted Chalice Strike
New Quest confirmed. New Strike confirmed. Quests since The Taken King have run the gamut from simple to complex, multi-day undertakings. Since this is the only Quest mentioned in the update, here’s hoping it’s a long one.
As for the Blighted Chalice Strike, this will be the first added since Taken King. However, it will be interesting to see if the Strike features a completely new locale, or if it reuses assets already in the game.
For those who played The Dark Below, they’ll remember that the Chalice was the object in the Crota boss fight from the game’s second raid. Players could only regenerate their health while holding the Chalice. So it’s probably safe to assume that the new Strike will take Guardians back to the Hellmouth and the Ascendant Realm.
This appears to be corroberated if what one Reddit was able to data mine months ago proves to be accurate. Here’s a data mined description found for the Strike: “A blight of Taken now roosts In the Hellmouth. Unchecked, they could refocus the Darkness within and descend on the City.”
New Gear and Rewards
As for gear, the known exotics that remain MIA could make their debut. Also expect all the vendor gear in the Tower to be updated from the Vanguard to the Crucible Quartermaster to the factions. Iron Banner and Trials of Osiris seem to be slowing down as well, as many players have collected all the armor and weapons those modes have to offer, so the gear exclusive to those modes could also potentially see an update. Trials might even take a short break, as players try to hit the new Light level cap.
It will be nice to get some fresh weapons in the game because the meta has pretty much solidified itself, and weapon variety has diminished. But remember, with every weapon season there are typically revamped versions of old favorites in the mix, so players should be able to find an equivalent to their tried-and-true favorites (with some lucky loot drops, of course).
When it comes to the mention of “New Rewards,” it’s likely to mean new shaders, Ghost shells, Sparrows, etc.
Sandbox and Crucible Updates
Every major update introduces new tweaks to the game, sometimes it’s weapon balancing or added features or just quality of life additions that make playing the game more pleasant. Expect some or all of the same here.
A weapon rebalance is likely since Bungie said it wanted to keep a more regular upkeep of the Crucible weapon experience in Year Two.
While on the topic of the Crucible, there’s a lot of buzz in the Destiny community right now that “Crucible Updates” or the “And More” could refer to custom and private games being added to Destiny. First off, there is no evidence for this rumor, but it’s definitely one of the most hoped for features by fans. And doing so could add tons of replayability and sustainability to Year Two.
It seems unlikely, but with so much desire for private matches, it could happen. After all Bungie is the developer who brought gamers Forge and Custom Games in Halo. Just imagine what fans could do with custom modifiers.
Does the fact that DICE added private matches to Star Wars Battlefront post-launch give some hope that it’s possible? Maybe, but that could be irrelevant as it’s a different developer and game. Either way, big fingers crossed on this one.
The other buzz going around the Destiny community refers back to the picture of the Guardians who appear to have been Taken. Are these new enemies? Is this related to a specific mechanic in the new Strike? Is it a Shader? It’s all up in the air right now, but that same Reddit user who discovered the description of the Blighted Chalice Strike may have also discovered the answer on this one. It appears that it will be a shader. Perhaps even the reward at the end of that new Quest.
Some more speculation under the “And More” category—could this new Update also add more story and/or lore? Expect new Dead Ghosts and Grimoire cards for sure. With The Taken King‘s new focus on storytelling, perhaps new cutscenes could be coming as well to push the story along.
Perhaps the Queen of the Reef (who Bungie confirmed to be alive and returning in the future) will make an appearance, calling Guardians back to the Reef to take on more missions to clear out the Taken. It could happen, especially if the Prison of Elders plays a major part in the Update’s PvE content or if Queen’s Wrath gets a revamp.
Lastly, fans have been hoping that Bungie would do something with the old raids, Vault of Glass and Crota’s End. There has been no mention of it, but Bungie could choose to revitalize those experiences by either releasing higher level versions or introducing new enemies (such as the Taken) into them, but that’s speculation at this point.
Regardless of which of these theories may or may not come to fruition in the April Update, fans are looking forward to see new content make its way to Destiny.