Bungie is bringing cross-progression to Destiny 2 as part of a new Shadowkeep year three update. The change comes just months after the game studio, known for titles like Halo and Destiny, parted ways with its longtime publishing partner Activision. Destiny 2 players will now be able to share their characters across Xbox One, PC, and Google’s new Stadia game streaming service.
You’ll notice that PlayStation 4 is the big missing part of this cross-save feature, but there’s clearly work happening to get cross-save working on PS4. “We’re still working with PlayStation to figure out the transition,” explains Stadia project manager Andrey Doronichev in a statement to The Verge. It’s not clear if Sony is holding cross-save progress back, or if there are just technical hurdles. In Google’s Stadia event, the company put a “transfers from PlayStation 4 to Stadia are pending approval from Sony” note on its stream.
Bungie later confirmed that this support is actually coming to the PS4, though. In a press event after Google’s Stadia stream, a spokesperson confirmed PS4 won’t be left out. “Bungie and Sony are working with Sony to ensure cross-save comes to PS4 when Shadowkeep launches,” says a Bungie spokesperson.
Sony recently changed its stance on cross-play and cross-progression, but the company has been accused of dragging its feet recently. This is probably why there’s mixed messages between Bungie and Google, as the situation is complicated by the fact Bungie did previously have exclusivity deals with Sony for some Destiny 2 content, which held back features like cross-save as not all content is the same across PS4, Xbox One, and PC.
Either way, the move is big boost for cross-play and cross-progression for the industry. It follows similar moves by games like Fortnite, Rocket League, and Minecraft. Previously, Destiny 2 players had to create separate characters and progress collecting guns, armor, and other collectibles on an account that could only be accessed on each individual console or PC. This cross-save support will now allow players to play the same character across a console or PC and keep the same progress.
It won’t allow PC, Xbox One, and Stadia players to play Destiny 2 raids or PvP activities together, though. There’s still no cross-play, but cross-save is a good step forward either way. Destiny 2 launching on Google Stadia is also a big boost to Google’s game streaming ambitions, even if you’ll need to buy most of the games. Google isn’t doing a full subscription service, so you’ll be paying $10 a month to effectively rent a PC in the cloud. That’s similar to other services like Nvidia’s GeForce Now, or other rivals like Shadow.
Now we just need the rest of the game industry to follow and get the games we love playing to work on any of the hardware we love without having to worry about what console our friends are using, or whether the hours of progress will transfer between every platform.
Update, June 6th 1:10PM ET: In a later event Bungie has now confirmed cross-save will come to PS4.