Destiny 2 will be getting a new pass on the sound effects, music, and sounds that fans are used to hearing—but Bungie looks to be combining the brand new with the familiar.
One of the aspects of the soundscape of Destiny 2 that players will surely notice when they play the game is the music, which has always been a notable aspect of the game (and Bungie’s history with the Halo series) ever since Marty O’Donnell created the original soundtrack for vanilla Destiny.
Since O’Donnell and Bungie parted ways, O’Donnell’s longtime partner Mike Salvatori – along with others like music director and composer, Skye Lewin – have taken the helm on the music for the franchise. Lewin says that Destiny 2 continues the history and feel of music laid out in the original game, but the music is all new for the sequel:
“There’s definitely got to be a balance between that feel that Destiny 1 set out and making it new. And so, there are actually some recurring melodies from Destiny 1 that people will hear in Destiny 2, but there’s also new melodies that convey the same feel in a different way or set the same mood or the same vibe.”
Lewin explains that they create musical themes that support both the locations and the enemy races, so when designing certain pieces, Bungie must sometimes combine those together. Using the example that Destiny 2 has a new location (with its own musical theme) where Hive show up, Lewin explains that the music has to blend the cues that help identify the Hive with that of this new location.
Just listening to gameplay of Destiny 2 so far, many longtime fans will hear the changes made to even familiar sound effects like jumping, grenades, weapons, abilities, and more. It’s actually something we noticed right off the bat when going hands-on with the game in the past.
But for all the changes that are happening to the audio in Destiny 2, Head of Audio Jay Weinland says there are certain sounds, like picking up engrams, that will still be very familiar to fans:
“There’s a couple sounds like the picking up of engrams… […] They’re very difficult to land on, and once you land on them, you’re like ‘that’s the one.’ If you want to make that sound that players are going to latch onto every time they pick up something cool in the game, you want to make it so they know immediately what that is and brings out their excitement level.
Destiny 2 launches September 6 on PS4 and Xbox One, and October 24 on PC.