26 Things You Might Have Missed In The Destiny 2 Witch Queen Vidoc
The Witch Queen expansion for Destiny 2 is nearly here, and thanks to a hands-off preview session with Bungie, we now have a whole lot of new information about Destiny's future. Alongside the preview, Bungie also released a new ViDoc that gives a much closer look at The Witch Queen than we've seen up to now. It explains tidbits about the story campaign, shows off the new destination in Savathun's throne world, gives new details about weapon crafting, and discusses Destiny 2's next content season, the Season of the Risen. But there's also a lot in the ViDoc that doesn't get any details or remarks from Bungie, while hinting at a whole lot of what we can expect in the coming months of Destiny 2.
While Bungie goes over a lot of the general sense of what's happening in The Witch Queen, the ViDoc also includes a whole lot of cutscene footage we haven't previously seen. All that new video provides some clues as to where the story might be headed in both the expansion and the first live content season of the year, and gives some tantalizing hints about the threats we're probably about to face come February 22. The ViDoc contains more information about Exotics from The Witch Queen we've seen in trailers, as well as more tidbits about some Exotics we haven't seen yet. We also get some quick details on the new Void 3.0 subclass system that will add deeper customization, and the footage of that system will have Warlocks excited for the new things they'll be able to do.
We've poured over the ViDoc to extract every tiny bit of information and snap every screenshot to glean every morsel of info we can about The Witch Queen and the Season of the Risen. There's a whole lot of blink-and-you'll-miss-it moments, so here's everything there is to see in the ViDoc, and what we think it all means.
The ViDoc starts with clips of what look like early cutscenes from the expansion. We know The Witch Queen will start with players heading to Mars, a planet that previously disappeared just before the release of the Beyond Light expansion through the weird and unknown machinations of the force known as the Darkness. Mars is back, and heading there will give us access to the throne world of the Hive god Savathun, which is apparently attached to her huge, ring-shaped, Alien-looking ship.
Links to Destiny's Past
Bungie mentions that The Witch Queen is continuing threads that have been put down in Destiny years earlier. In a big way, this expansion is a culmination of years of story and the beginning of the final chapters of the game's current story arc. When Bungie devs mention the past, however, the ViDoc cuts to this shot from the original Destiny's opening cutscene of humanity discovering the Traveler on Mars. That's interesting for a couple of reasons--first, because Mars is the start of the expansion and our connection to Savathun, and second, because we know Savathun and her Lucent Brood of Hive manage to claim the Traveler's power, the Light, in this expansion. The assumption is that Savathun has somehow stolen the Light, but this shot of the Traveler feels like it might be suggesting more to the story--like my personal fan theory that the Traveler has given the Light to Savathun. Or maybe I'm reading too much into this.
Rise of the Worm Gods
Ikora Rey is a key figure in The Witch Queen, clearly, and we get the sense that she's receiving visions from the clips in the ViDoc. In this one, Ikora sees the distant island first, then the vision coalesces to include the Hive's worm gods rising from an ocean. Our first guess here is that this is a reference to the oceans of Fundament, the Hive's original homeworld and the place where Aurash, Sathona, and Xi Ro first encountered the worms, as detailed in the Hive's origin myth, the Books of Sorrow. Through a pact with the Darkness-worshiping worm gods, the three sisters became Oryx, Savathun, and Xivu Arath, and went on to transform the rest of their species into the Hive.
During its Witch Queen preview event, Bungie said that Mars had returned "touched" by Darkness. We don't know how or why the planet is back, but we do see Ikora descend upon it in the ViDoc, and it's covered with strange lines that radiate energy and weren't there when the planet disappeared more than a year ago.
The story over the last year, from Beyond Light to the Season of the Lost, has included a number of characters. This shot gives us a sense of who's in play for The Witch Queen and the Season of the Risen--namely, everybody. Important additions here include Ana Bray and Lord Saladin. Ana was a minor figure in Beyond Light, but she has a close link to the Darkness through the Exo Stranger, Elsie Bray. Saladin worked with the Vanguard in the Season of the Chosen and has had close interactions with Caiatl, who we know is integral to the Season of the Risen. Looks like both will have important roles to play in the next few months.
The Evidence Board has been a consistent part of trailers for The Witch Queen. Turns out it's a thing you'll actually interact with in the game, which is pretty exciting given the "psychic detective" vibe of the whole expansion. Most of the things on the board right now we already know about, like the black nodes where you'll access Deepsight and the luminous moth that's part of Savathun's Lucent Brood power. Now, why is "9682" scrawled on one of those images...?
Welcome to the Throne World
A quick shot of the throne world map shows the node where you'll access the Classic and Legendary story campaign difficulties. We also get some quick hits of info from the rest of the map, which shows one of the public areas, the Quagmire. Here we can see Lost Sectors and Golden Chests to find in the new area.
Become Legend in the Story Campaign
Bungie told us players will be able to tackle the Legendary version of The Witch Queen's campaign straight from launch, provided you can handle the challenge. You'll earn double rewards all the way through, so it's worth the extra effort. The launch screen here shows a few of the modifiers to add difficulty you'll be facing. At least there's no Match Game.
It's tough to say for sure, but it looks as though the Season of the Risen might take Caiatl's fleet to the moon. These shots seem like they include Luna's desolate landscape, rather than the throne world's, but it's tough to say for certain. If it is the moon, we might be seeing new structures there thanks to the spread of the Lucent Brood.
That Cabal Ghost Shell
There are better shots of the Cabal-themed armor that's coming as part of the Season of the Risen, but let's take a minute to marvel at this Ghost shell, complete with Caiatl tusks.
During the Season of the Lost, Crow was dispatched to act as diplomatic liaison to Caiatl, and Lord Saladin has also been spending a lot of time interacting with the Cabal leader. Looks like they'll also be a big part of the alliance between the Cabal and the Vanguard against the Lucent Brood.
Some of these shots suggest the Vanguard might be getting in over its head by working closely with Caiatl, though. This shot looks like some kind of science facility where a Cabal Psion is studying a Hive Thrall. Bungie said the Season of the Risen will concern the Cabal using its Light-blocking technology, last seen in the Season of the Chosen, on the Hive, so we might be seeing the Cabal experimenting to see if their tech can work against Savathun. But this shot looks a bit...spooky. Like maybe we shouldn't trust the Cabal too quickly.
The Cabal Air-Lift a Big Gun
Is Caiatl just bringing a giant gun to Mars? Is the Cabal assembling a land tank?
Psions at Work
This is an interesting shot, in which we see a couple of Cabal Psions doing...something...to a Lucent Hive Acolyte. The bubble around the Acolyte looks like the psychic weirdness we've seen Psions do in locations like the Leviathan raid. Maybe we're seeing them trying to rip the Light out of this Hive guy. Weirdly, though, they seem to flank him while he faces toward the camera--almost as if they're aiding him, rather than attacking him. Hmm.
Guns. Lots of Guns.
A few quick shots of the crafting interface also show some of the weapons we'll see in the expansion. Here we have Father's Sins and Thoughtless, two weapons that also sound like they're directly referencing Caiatl's experiences with her father, Emperor Calus. Then again, Father's Sins looks like it's a weapon from the expansion, not the Season of the Risen. So in terms of Savathun and the Darkness, who's the father whose sins this gun is referencing? We're guessing Oryx.
And here we have Come to Pass, which has the sound of a reference to Savathun spookiness, and Sweet Sorrow, as in "parting is," which we'd bet is more reference to the fascinating backstory of Caiatl.
A closer look at the crafting interface at the Relic, the Darkness artifact located on Mars, shows a little of how the system works (which we detailed even more in our crafting preview). Here you'll add perks that affect reload to this Glaive, but only some of them are unlocked. You'll need to level up the weapon more by using it in order to gain access to new perks. We can also see one of the currencies involved in crafting, called Neutral Element.
Osteo Striga is Expensive
This shot gives another look at crafting, this time for one of the new Exotic weapons, the submachine gun Osteo Striga. This one takes several new currencies, including Resonant Alloy, Neutral Element, Ascendant Alloy, and Ruinous Element. Oh, and Glimmer. Sounds... involved. That said, controlled rolls of Osteo Striga mean you won't have to re-run a mission like Harbinger or Presage to get new rolls of the Exotic.
The ViDoc gave a closer look at several of the Exotic weapons we've seen teased already, including Grand Overture, a gun that gives you the missile barrage power of a Cabal Colossus. You can also see some Titan armor here from the Season of the Risen.
Cabal Space Magician
This shot gives a closer look at the Warlock brand of Cabal-themed armor for the season.
Echo of Exchange Fragment
Void 3.0 brings the Stasis loadout approach and user interface to the Void subclasses. It's a major change that should allow for a whole lot more customization and versatility among Void players, and the ViDoc gives a quick look at some specific elements. Here we get a look at the Echo of Exchange Fragment, which earns you grenade energy as you punch enemies to death.
Echo of Remnants Fragment
The Echo of Remnants buffs your grenades that explode and stick around for a while. Vortex grenades, Void Walls, Void Spikes, and Axion Bolts all last longer with this one equipped.
Echo of Reprisal Fragment
If you're the kind of Guardian who likes to wade into the fray, the Echo of Reprisal Fragment will give you some benefits. As you kill enemies while you're surrounded, you'll gain additional Super energy.
Chaos Accelerant Aspect
Aspects are the big, important pieces of a subclass loadout--your Aspect has a greater effect on what your subclass can do, and it contains slots into which you can equipt Fragments. With Chaos Accelerant, Void Warlocks gain the ability to overcharge grenades, with various spiffy effects.
Child of the Old Gods Aspect
With the Child of the Old Gods Aspect, your rift generates a Void Soul, similar to the Arc Souls that Arc Warlocks can currently use to help them in battle. The Void Soul attacks and siphons energy or health from enemies as you fight them, giving you some Devourer-style buffs as it helps you out in battle.
All About Ikora
Though the shots we've seen from the ViDoc suggest a lot of characters will be involved in The Witch Queen's story, including Saint-14, Ana Bray, Eris Morn, and Lord Saladin, the central figure seems to be Ikora Rey. Lore included in the collector's edition version of The Witch Queen fills in some interesting characterization for Ikora, and she's all over the ViDoc's clips of cutscenes. Expect this to be Ikora's story, much in the same way that Beyond Light was the story of Elsie Bray.