Destiny 2

Game review by
Chad Sapieha, Common Sense Media
Destiny 2 Game Poster Image
Popular with kidsParents recommend
Online shooter promotes social play, has violent combat.

Parents say

age 11+
Based on 24 reviews

Kids say

age 11+
Based on 80 reviews

Did this review miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive, diverse representations in books, TV shows, and movies. Want to help us help them? Suggest a diversity update

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

Promotes positive social, cooperative multiplayer experiences with friends, but focus on frenetic, sensationalized, remorseless combat is troubling.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Human heroes (whose gender, skin color may be customized) fight bravely to save solar system, but they sometimes also seem to take pleasure in violence. They slaughter hundreds, thousands of sentient alien soldiers with little regret.

Ease of Play

Intuitive controls, but challenging objectives -- especially in latter part of game. In certain modes and scenarios, ease of play will depend greatly on skill of people you play with.


Players shoot aliens -- in competitive play, other human characters -- with a variety of futuristic guns, explosives in intense, nearly nonstop fast-paced combat. Small amount of black fluid occasionally sprays from alien enemies, who disappear once defeated. Bit of red blood sometimes shows up on screen of wounded player characters.


Mild, infrequent profanity, including the word "a--hole."


Supports in-game transactions with real-world currency. Sequel to massively popular game.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Destiny 2 is a sci-fi first-person online shooter in which players engage in nearly nonstop combat that sees them killing countless aggressive aliens using a variety of futuristic guns and explosives. Battles are frenetic and intense, but there's no gore, and the violence is directed at aliens (except for in competitive multiplayer modes, where humans fight humans). Defeated enemies sometimes emit black blood before disappearing, while humans bleed a small amount of red blood when injured. The player's customizable character is clearly on the side of good, fighting a grave menace to save the solar system, but it's also obvious that he or she takes pleasure in combat and shows no remorse over killing hundreds or even thousands of sentient aliens. Play is designed to promote positive social and cooperative experiences, with players able to join up with friends or strangers in most modes. Parents should also note that players can purchase certain items within the game using real-world currency.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byHighScore October 29, 2019

Good Sci-fi for Tweens and Teenagers

Destiny 2 is a good sci-fi with a great story and action that is captivating while also relatively tame. There is virtually no gore or blood, and the violence i... Continue reading
Adult Written byDiana_Clinton July 12, 2018

Great game promotes teamwork and hard work.

As a mom of 4 I approve very much of this game, usually I am extremely cautious around this genre of video playing. But my kids had a blast playing this game. I... Continue reading
Teen, 16 years old Written byWill Hearden May 21, 2020

Inaccurate description by the site

First of all, the player vs. player mode is called the Crucible (or Gambit, which is much more complicated and mixes PVP and PVE.) Not everyone plays as a human... Continue reading
Teen, 14 years old Written byGuitarChump3324 July 17, 2020
While it can be hard, this game is a masterpiece. I can not think of any blood or gore in this game. While it has slightly mature themes such as loss and grie... Continue reading

What's it about?

DESTINY 2 pits the series' vaunted Guardians -- protectors of the last remnants of humanity -- against a new menace: the Cabal Red Legion, a faction of aggressive aliens intent on stealing the Light, the force that makes the Guardians essentially immortal. The adventure begins with the Red Legion laying waste to the Last City on Earth and capturing the Traveler, the source of the Light. Players spend the rest of the campaign -- which can be played solo or cooperatively with a couple of other players -- journeying around the solar system, learning what they can of the Red Legion while mounting a counter-offensive. As in the original Destiny, players explore a series of open and exotic worlds, choosing between a mix of story missions and side quests, all while growing in level and collecting and equipping more powerful loot. Players can also engage in competitive multiplayer modes in the Crucible. Once the campaign is finished, they can join forces with other players to take on special missions called strikes and raids, while continuing to grow their character.

Is it any good?

The original Destiny made for plenty of good times with friends, but there was plenty about it that needed fixing. Happily, this adventure solves a lot of its predecessor's problems. Destiny 2 tells a much less convoluted and more entertaining story that's easy for players to understand. More than that, the missions -- both primary missions and side quests -- are better integrated within the world. There's much less repetition, and missions are now accessible from within the worlds in which they take place, which means fewer loading screens and a better sense of immersion and context. Plus, players can now access an in-game map and even fast-travel to specific locations on each world to save time. And the worlds available at launch -- Earth, the moons Io and Titan, and a distant planetoid named Nessus -- are gorgeous, exotic, and detailed, a pleasure to explore not just once but each succeeding time, as well.

Multiplayer has also evolved. Public events on each world are now easier to find and participate in and provide tiered goals. Competitive play in the Crucible offers a pair of fun new modes called Countdown (an objective-based match) and Survival (teams share a pool of lives). Strikes offer the same everyone-can-play fun as in the original game, and while raids are still limited to teams of friends rather than strangers (perhaps the biggest disappointment in the sequel), Bungie has at least made it a bit easier for solo players to find and join a group of pals in need of an extra player. What will likely keep people coming back, though, is the perpetual promise of bigger and better loot, leading to higher levels of Power. This part of the game is evolutionary and will likely change with the release of expansions. That said, the growth systems at launch -- you can modify weapons and armor, grow your abilities in the class of your choice, and raise your primary level to 20 and Power level to 300 -- should prove plenty compelling to keep people playing for quite a while. It's not flawless, but Destiny 2 is an undeniable step up from its predecessor.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the impact of violence in the media. The bulk of the violence in Destiny 2 is aimed at aliens, but is there a substantial moral difference between killing sentient aliens and killing humans?

  • Talk about screen time. Destiny 2 is designed to keep people playing for weeks, months, and even years, so what's your strategy to make sure you don't become too obsessed with such engaging and immersive games?

Game details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love science fiction

Themes & Topics

Browse titles with similar subject matter.

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality and learning potential.

Learn how we rate