To make sure you never miss out on your favourite NEW stories, we're happy to send you some reminders

Click 'OK' then 'Allow' to enable notifications

Destiny 2: The Final Shape review - A celebration of Destiny and a fitting ending to boot

Destiny 2: The Final Shape review - A celebration of Destiny and a fitting ending to boot

Is The Final Shape the ending Destiny 2 deserves?

It’s been a long journey. Since Destiny first debuted back in 2014, ten years have passed and the story of light versus dark has taken us across the galaxy to various planets, all while under the gaze of The Witness, and the shadow of the Traveler. The Final Shape, the last expansion in this current storyline, is finally here, and it’s bringing to a close the long-running story that millions of fans are invested in.

The pressure is on Bungie more than ever. Ten years is a long time to continue telling the same story, bringing in new characters, enemies, and features throughout the continued expansions and seasonal content. There have been some misfires over the years but the developer has been determined to bring the best narrative possible, accompanied by stellar gameplay mechanics. So, the big question is, has Bungie stuck the landing?

While the jury is still out on the continuing support of the game after The Final Shape, I’m pleased to say that, as a fan who has consumed more lore than you can shake a stick at, and has run countless raids, strikes, dungeons and daily quests, The Final Shape is a damn near perfect send off.

The Final Shape
The Final Shape

We will get to the new mechanics this expansion has introduced in a moment but there are some points to touch on regarding the story and its characters, though I’ll be keeping a lot of the explanation to a minimum to avoid spoilers.

Perhaps the first thing to address is absence. Of course, the community and the world at large lost a tremendous actor and soul when Lance Reddick died in March 2023. The Destiny community came out in force to support our commander, Zavala, and many were worried what would happen next. Of course, Bungie brought in Keith David to take on the role and he delivers a brilliant performance that honours Reddick but also allows his own version of Zavala to co-exist. He puts in a blistering turn as the Awoken commander channeling anger and fury, though we also get the familiar calm demeanor we expect, at times.

But, this is an expansion based on anger. It’s The Witness finally here to destroy everything we’ve held dear over the years. They have entered The Traveler and we’re following in after them in the hopes of saving the universe from this demented threat. The Witness wants to reshape the universe in their image, one without pain, loss and suffering, which on the surface sounds idyllic, but as we all know, there must be balance in all things.

The Final Shape
The Final Shape

What transpires then, once we’ve entered The Traveler, is a chase to reach The Witness before they can enact the Final Shape and to do this we’re going to put a band back together, traverse familiar territory, plus run through a wealth of moments that feel like the greatest hits of Destiny and Destiny 2. The campaign takes us through lost sectors, a new strike, a brand new environment, and yet it all feels familiar in the same way an old jumper slides on and instantly brings comfort.

Without wanting to give too much away, inside The Traveler is a form of Destiny 2 that is perhaps the most beautiful it has ever been. Bungie has pulled out every stop, they’re pushing hardware to the limit and creating a world which smashes together places and planets we’ve visited over the past ten years. It all meets in a surrealist daydream, one that is bursting with colour one moment, and brooding in darkness the next.

In terms of theme, narrative and imagination, this is Destiny at its best. It’s weird, funny, heartbreaking, otherworldly, and a feast for the eyes. All the enemies we’ve fought before have been brought back, as well as a few new ones The Witness has been saving for us. The entire expansion is a coalescence of ideas and moments that have defined the live service MMO shooter for so long. And it’s both rewarding and a whole heap of fun.

The Final Shape
The Final Shape

This meeting of so many elements is drip-fed throughout the 10-15 hours of gameplay. We see environments literally mashed together, enemies who feel like a combo of others merged, and of course, we finally get to let loose and multi-class out Guardians.

That’s right, with The Final Shape we’re no longer confined to one element around which our class is based. You can merge light and dark and bring together parts of each elemental class in order to construct something that is entirely yours. At a key point in the story early on, your Guardian will unify light and dark before opening up the character class menu and showing off a wild combination.

If you want to run a Void super with Solar grenades and an arc melee, you can. If you want to shake this up and decide on something more unique, go for it. The wheels are off and we’re speeding into a realm of new possibilities. What this means for the game as a whole is anyone’s guess as the meta will consistently change while Bungie balances this new venture. But it’s great because you’re no longer pigeonholed and Guardians can finally break out of the confines of one element.

This concept continues in the game’s next big mechanic change which is seen in the combination of light and dark, a new prismatic power that lets both flow through you in order to buff your Guardian’s strength and defence by pressing both thumbsticks and unleashing a new power as you blast away prismatic enemies who are surrounded by a rainbow, crystal shield.

The Final Shape
The Final Shape

Beyond these shifting new abilities, The Final Shape spends much of its runtime focusing on The Witness and how we can destroy them. And whether you believe it’s a fitting end depends on how you feel about live service games generally. Still keeping the actions of the plot to myself, it’s clear to see that Bungie intend on using this new episode (seasons are no more) to expand the narrative and elongate it. It’s an odd choice, but it’s one I can’t have an opinion on until it has played out over the coming months. And while that may sound vague, you’ll know exactly what I mean once the final mission has ended.

What should be championed here is Bungie being Bungie and them leaning into what made Destiny so special in the first place. Throughout the story beats of The Final Shape there’s a greater sense of community as we meet characters and journey along with them. These are NPCs we’ve been with for many years and we’re seeing them at their very best. I’m not ashamed to say I cheered at points, I got choked up several times, and a couple of moments had me grinning from ear to ear. Bungie has saved the best for last.

Beyond these points, the game hasn’t really changed since the Lightfall expansion last year. We still have guns, ghosts, and the galaxy. This isn’t a time for reinvention, it’s a time for retrospection and celebration. This is ten years coming to some sort of close and it’s a point at which we can look over what Bungie created and cheer them on. Is this the end? Unlikely. But it’s an end, and a very good one at that.

Pros: Better Guardians, brilliant story, gorgeous imaginative worlds

Cons: It's the end(?), some may want more story, live service pitfalls

For fans of: Destiny, Sci-Fi epics, and long-running narratives

8/10: Excellent

Destiny 2: The Final Shape is available now on Xbox (version tested), PlayStation and PC. Review code was provided by the publisher. Find a complete guide to GAMINGbible's review scores here.

Featured Image Credit: Bungie, Sony

Topics: Bungie, Reviews, PC, PlayStation, Xbox