> # Welcome to GameGrinOS v1.01 > # How can I help you? > # Press ` again to close
Hello… | Log in or sign up
Destiny 2: Shadowkeep Review

Destiny 2: Shadowkeep Review

Destiny 2: Shadowkeep is the latest expansion for Bungie’s troubled sequel, its first since splitting with publisher Activision alongside the simultaneous Free to Play re-launch of the base game entitled New Light and represents, perhaps unsurprisingly, a fresh start and a statement of intent for the franchise going forward. It takes us back to the Moon, a major destination in the original Destiny and its expansions and focuses on the Hive as well as their spooky shenanigans after the sequel took a deeper look at both the militaristic Cabal and the uncaring, mechanical Vex.

Old areas get a makeover but with some spooky additions

Destiny has had a confusing history with its story, from last minute rewrites to having important and interesting elements relegated to an out of game grimoire in the original game. Destiny 2 tried to fix a lot of that by bringing a lot of that reading material in-game and also strived to show rather than tell in cutscenes. The series has a very dense backstory and with Shadowkeep taking us back to the Moon, re-introduces players both new and old to events that harken back to the very beginning in clever, subtle ways.

But before we get ahead of ourselves, the expansion sees the return of Eris Morn, a prominent Hive expert from the original Destiny who has mostly sat out of events in the sequel. She has been investigating a disturbance on the Moon, specifically a mysterious pyramid shrouded in darkness that appears to be resurrecting enemies from across the series so far. It’s up to you to investigate and combat these nightmares and figure out what it all means.

The Moon as a location is really well crafted; it’s a complete remastering of the areas seen in the original Destiny but it has a vast array of new sections, mostly around the Hive’s mysterious Scarlet Keep. The story missions in Shadowkeep are arguably the best Bungie have created so far, with enough variety in the activities you perform that they all feel unique, and for me they surpass the prior high bar of Forsaken. The Moon also makes for a nice change of scenery compared to the amount of high-tech environments the game has seen so far.

Shadowkeep proves again that the Destiny engine is capable of beautiful lighting

They do have a couple of points through the campaign where you are basically sent out to perform other activities on the Moon which does affect the pacing but it’s an effective way of getting you to see all the expansion has to offer. Like other expansions, there is a lot of background tied to side activities like patrols. Unlike earlier expansions though, patrols in Shadowkeep have a much larger narrative focus making them much more interesting to engage with rather than hinting at things environmentally. It also still has Lost Sectors (repeatable semi-hidden areas that house a boss and a loot chest) and Public Events around the moon to enjoy.

The choice to re-visit the Moon and the story they are telling is a clever way of reusing assets and material that already existed. The nightmares being enemies we’ve fought in prior expansions along with the smart usage of the pyramid to potentially recontextualise series events we thought we understood makes perfect sense as a place for Bungie to take stock and take the game forward.

The core gameplay is as solid as ever, with fun missions throughout the campaign

The campaign does have a really sudden end however, without any explanation of how you get from the revelation at the end and the fade to black to back in the hub. This could be an intentional choice, perhaps with the intent to fill in that gap at some point in the coming months via the new focus on having Seasons feel narratively important but it still feels stark and out of nowhere.

The Shadowkeep campaign is well worth playing, not only for those nostalgic for the original Destiny and The Taken King especially, but for everyone who enjoys a solidly told and mysterious plot that seemingly still has things to come.

8.50/10 8½

Destiny 2: Shadowkeep (Reviewed on Windows)

This game is great, with minimal or no negatives.

The most compelling plot and potential twist the series has had to date with fun missions and a return to perhaps the most iconic location in the series’ history. The moon is definitely haunted but it’s a lot of fun hunting those ghosts!

This game was supplied by the publisher or relevant PR company for the purposes of review
Simone Brown

Simone Brown

Staff Writer

Often reminiscing about the 'good old days'. Simone has almost perfected her plan to enter the Speed Force and alter the timeline.

Share this: