The first expansion pack for Destiny, titled “The Dark Below” will launch worldwide on December 9th, Activision announced Wednesday.
In a press release issued by Activision and developer Bungie, “The Dark Below” will feature “all-new weapons and gear to earn through new story, cooperative and multiplayer activities.” The level cap for players has also been raised from level 30 to 32, with gear progression going beyond 30 and new bounty slots being available. “Destiny was created as a living universe, which has allowed us to improve the experience post launch in real-time,” says Bungie president Harold Ryan. “It also gives us insight into the things players are looking for in new content. We’ve seen from feedback that people want new activities, gear and weapons, and of course the immensely popular Raid. The community helps shape our development decisions and that’s really important to us.”
The new stories and missions for “The Dark Below” center on a new character named Eris, who warns the Guardians of the Hive’s plan to summon the god, Crota, to destroy the Earth. Players will find Eris at the Tower and will be able to accept special quests from her, which include three new missions that will increase their light and earn them new rewards. The storytelling in “The Dark Below” is said to be different from the game’s standard narrative, which was largely criticized by reviewers and fans for nearly being nonexistent.
“What you’ll see in this expansion, it’s going to be a very different approach to telling a new story to players than the thematically-driven story from the original launch of the game,” Ryan said in an interview with Eurogamer. “It’s going to feel much more loot driven and story driven in that it’s going to feel faster-paced with more action as you go through it, and with exposition. The important thing about Eris is, this story is going to be her story, and she’s going to send you on a mission that’s a lot of fun.”
A new co-operative Strike called “The Will of Crota” pits players and their teams against Omnigul, as she tries to expand the Hive’s army at the command of Crota. Three new multiplayer modes will also be available: Pantheon: a Vex temple set inside Black Garden; Skyshock: an old interplanetary defence array filled with vehicle and infantry engagements; and The Cauldron: an abandoned Hive ritual site. Lastly, there’s a new six-player Raid named “Crota’s End,” set deep within the depths of Hellmouth.
PlayStation owners will gain access to exclusive content, such as the co-operative Strike, The Undying Mind, an exotic weapon, and more. Xbox owners will have to wait for the exclusive PlayStation deal to expire in fall of next year to gain access to these content.
“The Dark Below” will cost $19.99 for PS4, PS3, Xbox One and Xbox 360 owners. A “Destiny” expansion pass including the “The Dark Below” and the second expansion will go on sale for $34.99.