Bungie has confirmed that the new Dungeons coming to Destiny 2: The Witch Queen in 2022 will not be included with the standard edition of the year-long expansion, but will instead come with an additional cost. That can either be through buying the Digital Deluxe Edition of The Witch Queen, or through upgrading or buying them separately at a later date.
This is the first time that game activities have been taken and hived off behind a secondary pay, and the thoroughly vexed community has understandably fallen into a cabal of anger and disappointment at this decision.
Bungie’s lead community manager Chris Shannon clarified what the situation was on the Destiny subreddit:
Hey everyone. We’ve seen some debate around the new dungeon content and wanted to clarify how it will be delivered next year.
If you get the Digital Deluxe Edition of The Witch Queen you will receive the expansion, all four Seasons for the next year, and the two Dungeons. If you get the Standard Edition, you can still upgrade to the Deluxe Edition to get the dungeons later. We will also be offering a separate way for you to purchase the Dungeons in the future, but they will not be included in the Season passes.
We will share more info on this closer to when this content is set to go live.
The standard edition of The Witch Queen costs $39.99, giving players access to the new story content. However, Destiny 2 also has four season passes that are spread across the year, and these have recently been available standalone or bundled into a Digital Deluxe Edition. They don’t contain any separate activities, but do have access to some additional gameplay elements in addition to unlockables.
This follows on from the previous announcement that a special 30th Anniversary Pack was to be released to celebrate Bungie’s 30th anniversary, charging $24.99 for the content that would include a third Dungeon in addition to the two planned to release during Year 5. What wasn’t clear up until now was that those first two Dungeons would be locked into the Digital Deluxe Edition.
The Witch Queen’s Digital Deluxe Edition costs £69.99 / $79.99, while the Deluxe + 30th Anniversary bundle costs £87.99 / $99.99
The potential mitigation here is that Bungie has done this while increasing the amount of endgame content that they are releasing through the coming year. There will be three new Dungeons, a new Raid and one remastered Raid from Destiny 1 released over the next year, starting in December.
Dungeons were introduced a couple years ago as new endgame levels, somewhere between a Raid and a smaller Raid Lair in terms of length, but designed for a 3-player fireteam. Cooking up so many of these activities does take more resources to produce, and so the production costs are higher for Bungie, though it does break the monetisation pattern that Bungie settled on two years ago. It also potentially pushes more casual players away, knowing that they won’t have access to everything that Bungie is creating without a significantly higher outlay.
Destiny 2: The Witch Queen will release on 22nd February for PlayStation, Xbox, PC and Stadia.