Neither the pinnacle PvP activity that Destiny 2 players knew as Trials of the Nine nor a revamp of Destiny 1's Trials of Osiris are coming to the game as part of this fall's Shadowkeep expansion. And while developer Bungie has yet to give an estimate of when the mode may finally return, it sounds like Trials won't be in Destiny 2 anytime soon.
During the reveal livestream on June 6th - in which Bungie revealed the Shadowkeep expansion, the free-to-play Destiny 2: New Light, and explained its goals for Destiny 2 in the future - Destiny Game Director Luke Smith was asked when Trials would return to the game.
Smith said that Bungie will be revamping the playlists of Destiny 2 with the launch of Shadowkeep and Season 8, but avoided giving a definitive answer about Trials, saying that Bungie has a lot of work to do fixing the core of the game before adding Trials back to it:
"What we're doing with Season 8 is we are looking at the playlist structure and we're going to make changes to the playlist structure. We're going to talk about a bunch of that later this summer. The crappy metaphor for the way I'm thinking about this is we have some additions we want to make to the house, but first we've got to look at the house, repair the foundation; we've got work to do and maintenance to do and we have to do more upkeep than we've been doing."
When pressed again about when Trials would be back, Smith returned to the metaphor about the house saying, "We've got work to do. We have to repair the foundation." That pretty clearly suggests players should not expect the return of Trials in the Shadowkeep expansion. And the fact that Bungie will not give an estimated timeline and is sticking to this philosophy that the foundation of the game needs work, it could be quite some time before the pinnacle PvP activity returns.
For those unfamiliar, Trials of the Nine was the weekly competitive activity in Destiny 2, but for the most part, fans were unhappy with how the activity played. It changed a lot from the Trials of Osiris 3v3 Elimination mode that veteran fans knew from Destiny 1, and Trials of the Nine never really picked up the same kind of popularity and status as Trials of Osiris. So, Bungie removed Trials of the Nine going into Season 4.
What may serve as a consolation to fans of Trials is that it appears that an Elimination mode may be returning to Destiny 2 in Year 3, as spotted on screens in Bungie's recently released ViDoc. While it won't be Trials with its unique rewards, the Elimination game mode from Destiny 1 could invigorate PvP fans who have felt especially neglected over the lack of content for them in Year 2 and its Annual Pass.
Destiny 2 is available now for PC, PS4, and Xbox One. Destiny 2: Shadowkeep releases September 17, 2019 for Google Stadia, PC, PS4, and Xbox One.