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The Magic of the Whisper Mission in Destiny 2
The Destiny community is fun to watch.
There are only a few other gaming communities in which players respond to the hint of a secret with single-minded obsession. The hunt for Bigfoot in GTA 5. Secret quest chains for world bosses in World of Warcraft. The mystery of the eggs and the frozen key in Banjo-Kazooie.
It started with an innocent post on r/DestinyTheGame. u/blurryferret discovered a weird event during the Taken public event on Io. Following the train of comments in this thread is fascinating. Other users quickly figured out how to trigger the anomaly and started to explore the jumping puzzle. People jumped in to share their progress, revealed optimal routes and shortcuts, and then strategies for defeating the powerful bosses waiting at the end of the mission.
The community was ecstatic when the reward was discovered: Whisper of the Worm. The return of Black Hammer, or Black Spindle, one of the most powerful guns in D1 packing an even greater punch. Then Destiny legends like Datto and Esoterickk tackled the Heroic mission, revealing the details of the exotic catalyst and a new mystery involving chests, oracles, and a satisfying nod to the long-rumored final chest from the original Destiny raid Vault of Glass.
Following this saga was exhilarating. I was working, but I’d jump into reddit occasionally to check on the community’s progress. The DTG subreddit was more alive, more involved, and more excited about the game since D2’s release. Solving mysteries like the Whisper mission brings people together more than maybe anything else I’ve seen in the gaming community.
The weekend it was discovered I jumped into the mission on Saturday night with two other Guardians. It took a few hours, four attempts, and lots of checking online for updated strategies. We finally prevailed and earned our reward by hanging back and using Polaris Lance, as many other players had recommended. It was immensely satisfying to earn the Whisper, probably more so than the first time I cleared the Leviathan raid back near launch. As good as that felt, it would not have been as rewarding without the buildup of watching the mystery unfold on reddit.
The Whisper mission is the first really intensive mystery in D2 that took a lot of community involvement to solve. I know Bungie was watching the reaction, and I hope it was rewarding for them to see how much people loved it. Though it isn’t represented well in the campaign missions, the lore of the Destiny universe is deep, mystical, and filled with countless mysteries, and I think the opportunity to solve those mysteries is one of the keystones of the Destiny experience. Here’s hoping we’ll see more of these events going into the second year of D2 with Forsaken.