On Tuesday, November 5, 2019, Destiny 2 fans rallied around a virtually unknown player who was the first to reach Power level 999 in the game via Season of the Undying’s seasonal artifact and its ability to allow players to level themselves indefinitely. Fans have held a theory for about a year now, due to one of the game’s lore entries from the Forsaken expansion, that a player at level 999 able to solo the Shattered Throne dungeon would end the curse of the Dreaming City and perhaps unlock the 15th wish for the Well of Wishes in the Last Wish raid. With a player finally at that level, the community rallied to see what would happen when it finally happened with more than 20,000 viewers on Twitch.
In short, nothing happened at all. No 15th wish. No end to the Dreaming City curse. For some, this is being seen as an epic troll by Bungie with others appreciating this “event” that was entirely created by Destiny 2 fans and their theory-crafting concerning the lore of the game. Either way, this will likely go down in the ongoing history of the Destiny franchise, as there was clearly no world-changing event that happened when Shattered Throne was beaten under these conditions but was instead a moment created purely by fans.
The Dreaming City curse theory goes back to a “choose your own adventure” style lore book that was added in the Forsaken campaign that made mention in a certain entry that the secret to the Dreaming City and ending the three-week curse cycle was a Guardian at 999 defeating the boss of the Shattered Throne, Dul Incaru, solo. Even from the beginning, there were signs that this particular lore book could not be trusted and could be another trick from the oft-mentioned-but-yet-to-be-seen enemy Savathun.
But this season’s artifact finally gave players the first opportunity to even hit 999 allowing them to test the theory. And the first player to reach 999 was a player known as Bagel4k, who had been grinding through bounties and gaining the millions of XP needed to get the artifact up enough levels to hit level 999. When he hit 999, he offered popular streamer and content creator Gladd his account to do the Shattered Throne solo. But what happened instead was Gladd and another player Zupah, who has also been grinding to reach 999, guiding Bagel4k through the Shattered Throne for his first time while streaming the run on Twitch.
Bagel4K cleared the dungeon and the theory was busted. The following day, Bungie posted an open letter to Bagel4k on their website, commending him on the power climb to 999. The letter was written by community manager dmg04, but there is a second voice throughout the letter written in brackets, that is meant to be the voice of Savathun, making this letter a quasi-lore piece that breaks the fourth wall of the game in some of other Bungie’s ARG/transmedia-style communications.
There are no doubt some fans who will continue to dig into this letter, the lore, and try to answer more “what if” questions concerning how fans might be able to beat Shattered Throne or secrets that Bagel4k missed during his run. But it is probably safe to say at this point, that this was a moment for Destiny fans created by Destiny fans by the hype and fandom of Destiny fans. And the search for the 15th wish continues.
Destiny 2: Shadowkeep is available now for PC, PS4, and Xbox One, with a Stadia version also in development.