Bungie Weekly Update - 07/18/2014

Jul 18, 2014 - Dust

This week at Bungie, we launched the first stage of the Destiny Beta.

In our last episode, we compared the Beta to a rocket. As that metaphor holds up under the strain of hundreds of thousands of breathless downloads, we’ll remind you that we’re just getting started. The boost to orbit has many stages, and our launch only culminates when every last one of you has completed your journey to the stars.

If you’re playing, we hope you’re having fun. If you’re waiting to play, we’re eagerly anticipating your arrival. This grand experiment is incomplete without you. The mission so far has been promising. Every second, we see new Guardians choosing their race and their face, and then strapping on their boots to begin walking the path to legend. 

There are still more Guardians who need to redeem their codes and get into the game. Some of you have discovered that this is absolutely a real Beta. We’ve already learned what happens when a stampede of gamers try to fit through the same freshly-installed door. There is more for us to learn and more for you to experience. 

Let’s get into the details.

Fires of the Crucible

The Destiny Beta is like a microcosm of the final game. Over time, you’ll learn that your adventure in Destiny will evolve with you. Many of you have a day or two of gameplay under your belts. Your Guardian has evolved – become more dangerous. Perhaps you’ve even proven your worth on the level playing fields of the Crucible. This weekend, we will seek to forge even stronger Guardians in the fires of the Crucible.

Welcome to The Iron Banner. Lord Shaxx isn’t the only legendary Guardian tasked with hammering you into fighting shape. When the time comes, new doors will open in the Tower. The Iron Banner crest will be set alight, and Lord Saladin will emerge with new challenges to overcome, and a new way to earn honor and glory for your Guardian.

The Crucible proper is all about putting your skills to the test. Iron Banner requires another crucial element: Power. 

Lars Bakken knows a thing or two about competitive play: “Bring your absolute best gear because we turn on Level Advantages. That means your Attack and Defense ratings matters in Iron Banner matches.”

We’re not just giving you new ways to play. We’re expanding on the arenas where you’ll fight. “Two maps get added into the new playlist,” says Lars. “The fan favorite Rusted Lands returns from the Alpha, and we take you to Mars for the first time ever with Blind Watch. Iron Banner is the ONLY way to see these maps in the Beta.”

New maps are not the only reward for your bravery in this new competitive construct. According to Designer Leif Johansen, “Iron Banner has limited time rewards, so show up with your ‘A’ game. Losing a match may make the difference between getting that bad ass Assault Rifle or not.”

Lord Saladin will be waiting. Before you enter his domain, heed this final warning from Lars: “Get ready to kick ass. You will be tested here unlike anywhere else in the Beta.”

The Iron Banner begins on Saturday, July 19th at 2pm PDT. It will remain open for two hours. Every Guardian will receive a message when the Tower doors that lead to Lord Saladin open for the first time. Every Guardian will need to be ready.

This won’t be the only opportunity to experience something new in the Beta. Stay tuned for more!

One final note: If you unlock the Crucible with a promotion to Level Five while the Iron Banner is active, you will need to report to Lord Shaxx before you can play to receive your initial invitation!

Companion Ship

For a long time now, we’ve been making vague promises about how you’ll be able to connect with your adventure as a Guardian wherever life finds you. We love our vague promises. You know what we love even more? Keeping them.

The Destiny Companion is now available for download on iOS and Android. And, it works with the Destiny Beta. If you’ve started to play, inspect and manage your Guardian from the palm of your hand. If you’re waiting to play, this is one download you can begin before you create your character.

Check out the power that we’re putting into your hand. The Companion is a mobile extension of the experience that will live right here on Bungie.net. Show off your Guardian. Manage your inventory. Watch the Grimoire bloom with the knowledge of your discoveries. Debate the finer points of the game on the Destiny forum. Start a Clan. Guide your journey from one shared moment of action to the next.

The Destiny Companion is your mobile battle station for managing your campaign to protect humanity. Your first step down that path is to download it.

There’s no way we could ever answer (or even detect) all the questions you asked us this week. That doesn’t mean we won’t try to shed some light on a few interesting subjects. Let’s open the Sack.

MyNarwhal  Why can I only play First Light and Shores of Time? I thought Rusted Lands and Blind Watch were supposed to be available for the Beta?

Scroll up. See Iron Banner.

GTBrooks  Why is the Beta level cap at 8?

Because the Destiny Beta is just the beginning of your adventure. To truly become legend, we’ll see you in September. Once you reach the level cap in the Beta, you can continue to upgrade your weapons and gear. That will come in handy when you meet Lord Saladin.

Claude Errera  Apparently, characters created on the PS4 are available when the same account logs in on a PS3. Am I allowed to say that?

You’re allowed to say whatever you want, Mr. Errera. How are you today? You’re certainly looking well.

Your question points to a very interesting truth about how Destiny will work. As you’ve discovered, as your Guardian evolves it will be able to travel from one generation of console to the next. Just like hopping worlds, you can use the same Guardian on Next Gen and Legacy Gen consoles – so long as you stay in the same system. Ergo, you can move from PlayStation to PlayStation and from Xbox to Xbox, but not across product lines.

According to David Shaw, our self-professed Chief Pyrotechnical Officer, this was the plan all along, as we set out to build an adventure that would span generations. “Our service is built with flexibility in mind. As a player of Destiny, you have a Bungie account that’s bound to your PSN ID or your Xbox LIVE Gamertag, instead of a specific generation of device.”

Hylebos  Why isn't there a medal for killing someone while they are dancing in the Crucible?

Because putting that smug bastard down in the moon dust is all the reward you should need. No mercy for dancers in a live combat zone, Guardians.

L3g10NsL3gACy  Will anything in the Beta change after the two days of maintenance or the dates of the Beta after the 22nd?

Yes - especially on the 26th. You want to be there for that day. Report for Beta testing duty at 2PM Pacific. Your rewards will be handsome and permanent.

platocplx  Is there any chance any of the feedback from the Beta will be taken into account or is it too late in development?

The chances of this are 100%. We’ll refine the way Destiny works in ways that you may never detect. We’ll polish the games in ways you’ll notice immediately. It all depends on how the conversation here goes.

relliK42  Any secrets for us to discover in the Beta you dastardly, handsome devils?

Yes. If we told you about them, they would cease being secrets and you would no longer be challenged to discover them. Go explore!

That’s enough news for now. At this very moment, Guardians are fighting on Earth and beyond. We’re going to join them.

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