Destiny 2 Season 18: Release date, new raid, Arc 3.0 & everything we know

Lloyd Coombes
Destiny 2 Arc subclass super
Bungie

Destiny 2’s Season 18 release date is coming soon. Here’s everything we know so far, including when it starts, all we know about the next raid, and all of the Crucible changes.

Destiny 2 Season 18 is getting closer, with less than a month to go until the Lightfall reveal event that will signal the end of Season of the Haunted (Season 17).

That could mean that many of the Season 18 details are kept under wraps until the season starts, but we do know that there’s plenty to be excited about. Arc 3.0 will make its debut following the successful deployment of Solar 3.0 and Void 3.0, while the Disjunction map will be added to the general Crucible rotation pool.

As the game starts building momentum toward Lightfall (expected in 2023) and then The Final Shape, Destiny 2 Season 18 could be absolutely pivotal for the future of Bungie’s loot shooter. Here’s everything we know.


Contents


Destiny 2 Season 18 release date

Season of the Haunted will run until August 23. That’s the same date that the Solstice of Heroes event ends, and the day of the developer’s big unveiling of what’s coming next.

The Destiny 2 Season 18 release date will be on that day at weekly reset (6 PM BST/10 AM PT/1 PM ET), meaning you’ve got plenty of time to level up your Season Pass and Seasonal Artifact.

Destiny 2 Season 18 content

destiny 2 players battling in crucible match
Bungie
Destiny 2 is getting a new Raid in Season 18.

New Raid

While Season of the Haunted added the new Duality dungeon, Season 18 will add a ‘new’ Raid to Destiny 2 on August 26.

This six-player, endgame activity is likely to be released during the season to allow players to grind power levels, but some players have suspected Bungie may reach into the Destiny Content Vault to repurpose an old Destiny raid.

The Leviathan was added as a patrol destination in Season of the Haunted, but players have also suggested King’s Fall or Wrath of the Machine from Destiny 1 could arrive.

Season 19 will introduce another new dungeon.

@DestinyTwoLeaks on Twitter suggests that King’s Fall could be the next raid, but Bungie won’t be revealing what it is until the Lightfall reveal event that happens on the day the new season begins.

A Bungie blog post says the [Redacted] raid, whatever it’ll be, will go live at 10 AM Pacific on August 26, with the following conditions:

  • The raid will launch with Contest Mode enabled for 24 hours.
      • You will need to be at 1560 Power to be at the cap for all of the encounters.
  • Clearing the raid with Contest Mode active is the first step to access the new Challenge Mode in the Director and the special Triumph for completing all of the challenge Triumphs for each encounter.
  • Completing the secret Triumph, a curated list of challenges in this newly unlocked Challenge Mode, will be how a fireteam crosses the World First finish line and claims their prize.
  • To enforce the Triumph requirements in the Challenge Mode, your team will wipe if you fail the success conditions during any encounter.

World’s First Raid race

While Bungie has traditionally kicked off World’s First Raid races on Saturdays, this time it’ll start on August 26 at 10AM PT.

Here’s Bungie’s rundown:

  • The raid will launch with Contest Mode enabled for 24 hours.
      • You will need to be at 1560 Power to be at the cap for all of the encounters.
  • Clearing the raid with Contest Mode active is the first step to accessing the new Challenge Mode in the Director and the special Triumph for completing all of the challenge Triumphs for each encounter.
  • Completing the secret Triumph, a curated list of challenges in this newly unlocked Challenge Mode, will be how a fireteam crosses the World First finish line and claims their prize.
  • To enforce the Triumph requirements in the Challenge Mode, your team will wipe if you fail the success conditions during any encounter.

Crucible

Disjunction, which is set on Savathun’s Throne World, was added in Season of the Haunted but only for Iron Banner: Rift.

Destiny 2's new Rift map for PvP
Bungie
Disjunction is the first new PvP map in some time.

Season 18 will add Rift, and the map, to the general Crucible pool, meaning you’ll be able to play it more often and in other modes.

Iron Banner will also swap to a different mode, Eruption. Bungie says racking up kills will cause players to start ‘Surging’, increasing the points scored and reducing cooldowns with kills. Hitting five kills without dying triggers a ‘Primed’ state that puts your team on The Hunt, buffs everyone’s cooldowns, and more — until after fifteen seconds your Guardian explodes unless you get another kill to keep going.

Still, the biggest change for the Crucible will come in matchmaking. Bungie’s recent blog post explained that the developer is working to implement a loose form of skill-based matchmaking where after connection quality is assessed, the game will begin to identify closely ranked players in terms of skill. This process will continue through Season 19.

Sandbox changes

Bungie has promised a midseason weapons update in its weekly blog post, but interestingly some of the changes are being pulled forward from Season 18.

The big changes include updates to the controversial airborne effectiveness stat, as well as tweaking certain weapon types.

The devs provided a handy “TLDR” summary here:

Buffs 

  • Airborne Effectiveness:
  • Improved baseline airborne accuracy and aim-assist for all Primary weapons.
        • Added a static airborne effectiveness buff to some existing perks.
        • Raised the base AE stat on several Exotic weapons.
      • Tuned up some underperforming Primary weapon subfamilies in PvP.
      • Increased pellet Shotgun damage in PvE.
      • Increased ammo per Special brick for Glaives, Forerunner and Eriana’s Vow in PvP.
      • Linear Fusion Rifles no longer receive increased flinch in PvE (will still receive increased flinch in PvP).
Nerfs 
  • Tuned down some overperforming Exotics in PvP.

Destiny 2 Season 18 weapons

As is always the case with Destiny 2 seasons, we’re expecting a new Ritual Weapon for the season that offers unique decals for Vanguard, Crucible, and Gambit.

There will also be an exotic weapon tied to the season pass, but as for what it could be it’s hard to say. The Grand Overture is a machine gun/rocket launcher hybrid, while the Trespasser is a lethal, Robocop-style sidearm we didn’t think we’d see again after Destiny 1.

While Bungie hasn’t confirmed what weapons are being added to activities, we know of some that are being removed. As per Bungie, you can expect these to leave the game in Season 18:

Activity Being removed in Season 18 Being added in Season 18
Iron Banner

Peacebond Sidearm Archon’s Thunder Machine Gun

TBC
Nightfall PLUG ONE.1 Fusion Rifle The Hothead Rocket Launcher TBC
Trials of Osiris Eye of Sol Sniper Rifle The Summoner Auto Rifle TBC

Destiny 2 Arc 3.0

Sandbox Lead Kevin Yanes has suggested that many of the Synaptic Spear attacks found back in Season of the Risen are actually a testing ground for Arc 3.0.

Destiny 2 Arcstrider in PvP
Bungie
Arc 3.0 is coming with Season 18.

While we’re still waiting for a full list of Arc 3.0 aspects and fragments, Solar 3.0 and Void 3.0 both introduced a series of buffs and debuffs to apply to enemies, bringing them closer to Stasis.

Bungie had previously said that Arc 3.0 will focus on chain-lightning, which means it could be great fun for clearing large groups of enemies.

Gunsmith reputation changes

In a recent blog post, Bungie confirmed that The Tower’s gunsmith, Banshee-44, will be getting another overhaul in Season 18.

Destiny 2 Banshee-44
Bungie
Banshee is getting another overhaul in Season 18.

Daily Gunsmith bounties will now award 50 reputation, instead of 25, meaning players can earn 200 reputation each day. Rep earned from dismantling Legendary or Exotic gear will also climb from 3 to 5, too, meaning players can earn a lot more in a shorter space of time to help players rank up more quickly.

Destiny 2 Season 18 story and characters

We’re still hopeful of a SIVA-focused season, but whatever happens in Season 18 is likely to start building story momentum toward Lightfall – especially with a reveal event on the same day.

We’re also yet to hear about what Rasputin has been up to in recent months, with rumors suggesting the AI Warmind now has a body.

The expansion is expected to properly introduce The Witness, so there’s a chance we’ll hear more from his cohorts in the same way we dealt with Calus in Season of the Haunted.

With the Bound In Sorrow quest finished, the Vanguard and Cabal’s alliance seems stronger than ever. Could it be time to check in with Mithrax and the House of Light?

Destiny 2 Season 18 price

Season 18 will continue with the Season Pass model, meaning you can buy it for around £10/$12 per season.

If you have Witch Queen’s Deluxe Edition, you’re already covered for seasons 18 and 19.

With new premium event rewards coming with Solstice of Heroes, could it be time for Destiny 2 to move to a subscription model?


For more on Destiny 2, be sure to check out our other content for the loot shooter.

Best PvP weapons | Destiny 2 Promo Codes | Destiny 2 Prime Gaming Rewards | Infamy Ranks Guide | Glory Ranks Guide | Current Xur location | Current Trials of Osiris map | Iron Banner countdown | Weekly reset

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