Destiny 2 is in a weird place right now. Its third year has been met with more criticism than usual. Players decry, variously, the removal of seasonal activities and Seals leading to FOMO; the lack of good, meaningful loot; the dominance of the Eververse microtransaction store; the over-reliance on bounties and grind.
These are all valid complaints, and I'd be lying if I said I wasn't less enamoured with the game than I was this time last year.
But if there's one thing that I have absolutely zero complaints about right now, it's Rasputin's very big bunker slide.
The Seraph Bunkers are how players progress through the season. In story terms, a very big spaceship is on a collision course with the last city, and we've been asked to empower Rasputin, an already very powerful and only-maybe-trustworthy AI Warmind, by doing his bounties over and over and over again. For reasons.
Importantly, though, Rasputin's bunker is found deep underground. And that means to get to the core, you need to slide down a big chute. It is the most fun you can have in Destiny 2 right now, even if—or maybe because—it doesn't always go well.
You can of course, not jump at the end of the chute, thus landing safely and securely at the bottom. That's what Zavala would do—by which I mean it's the boring option. The game here is to try to land perfectly underneath Rasputin's terminal, which requires both a) speed and b) momentum. And as anyone who's been yeeted into a wall by a boss stomp can tell you, that's a deadly combination.
Get it right, though, and it's an exhilarating thrill. This may seem like a trite thing to celebrate, but Destiny 2 is a game that's built on a foundation of interactions that feel good. Through the good times and bad, it survives on the fact that killing an alien with a headshot feels good. That doing a big, weird, floofy Warlock jump is fun. That busting out your Super is just nice.
Most seasonal activities from Destiny 2's past two years have asked players to throw some balls at a thing. Crucially, though, throwing balls at things is inherently fun, so the game gets away with it. Just about. Sliding down a big chute—the sound of wind whooshing past as your pace quickens—is just another example of something Bungie consistently does well.
Bungie clearly has a lot of work to do right now if it's to find a seasonal model that can satisfy players without sacrificing the health and wellbeing of its employees—something Destiny 2 director Luke Smith has talked at length about. Year three clearly hasn't worked out, and hopefully some of the proposed changes for year four will prove better for the long term health of the series. But also, I'm happy to take solace in simple pleasures right now, and sometimes that means finding joy in a very good slide.