Lightfall: Destiny 2 expansion UK release date and time on Xbox and PS5, preload explained, downtime - raids

Fans can’t wait to get their hands on Bungie’s new content, but there is an issue with preloading to be aware of

The sixth year of new content for Destiny 2 begins this week with Lightfall, the game’s seventh major expansion of its kind since Bungie’s popular sci-fi shooter service first launched all the way back in 2017.

The add-on will add new missions, PvE locations, PvP maps, player gear, weaponry, and a new raid, among other types of game content.

Lightfall improves Destiny 2’s core gameplay in a number of ways, but though the game is available to pre-load in some regions, allowing you to download the substantial update beforehand and jump right into the action when it goes live, there is one major issue with this.

Here is everything you need to know about it.

What is Lightfall?

Lightfall is the next significant expansion to Bungie’s sci-fi shooter, the seventh of its kind, which kicks off the game’s sixth year of additional content.

The add-on will introduce new content across the game, including new missions, PvE locations, PvP maps, player gear, weaponry, and a new raid.

Over the course of the year, two new dungeons as well as a reprised raid from either the first Destiny or one previously removed from Destiny 2 will be released. Throughout Year 6 of the game, four seasonal content offerings will also be made available.

(Image: Bungie)
(Image: Bungie)
(Image: Bungie)

Lightfall enhances the core gameplay of Destiny 2 in a number of ways, most notably by adding a new free roam world in the form of the cyberpunk-like city Neomuna, a recently discovered settlement located on the planet Neptune.

The expansion is not standalone content, meaning you’ll need a copy of the Destiny 2 base game before you can access any of its content. If you’re already a hardened Destiny fan, the Standard Edition of the Lightfall expansion costs £39.99, while an Annual Pass Edition - which will also grant you access to Seasons 21, 22 and 23 of the game - costs £79.99.

You can purchase Destiny 2: Lightfall through the corresponding digital storefronts:

When can I play it?

Destiny 2: Lightfall will be available to play from Tuesday 28 February 2023. It’s scheduled to be available in the UK from 5pm GMT on that date. It will be available on PlayStation 4 and 5, Windows, and Xbox One and Xbox Series X/S platforms.

24-hours of server downtime will precede the expansion’s launch, kicking off at 5pm GMT on Monday 27 February. During this period, Bungie will make all of the necessary behind-the-scenes updates and changes in order to ensure Lightfall’s worldwide rollout happens as smoothly as possible.

The game is available to pre-load in some regions, meaning you can download the large update ahead of time and get into the action as soon as it goes live. However, there is one major issue with this...

What’s going on with pre-loads?

While pre-loads for the expansion have been accidentally made live a day early in some areas, downloading and installing Lightfall will completely eliminate your ability to play the game until its official launch.

This means it will be impossible for you to finish any last-minute farming or preparations ahead of the new expansion, and while you will be able to boot up Destiny 2, you’ll only be able to enjoy the new Lightfall title screen and music - access to the full game remains locked off.

Players on PS5 seem to be more affected than the majority of other platforms, with Sony’s consoles attempting to push automatic updates on players ahead of time. Even players who haven’t yet purchased the expansion might see their consoles attempting to download the update, as everyone can access Neomuna at least as a patrol space.

This pre-load was not supposed to go live until the scheduled 24-hours of Destiny 2 server downtime. Holding off from pre-loading Lightfall means you’ll still be able to enjoy all of the features of Destiny 2 in its current state, so you’ll still be able to make in-game preparations for the expansion’s full drop.

In order to continue playing the game normally, Bungie advises users to pause the download if they notice their console attempting to download it. But because of the way the PS5’s library system is set up, you have to go through a number of steps in order to keep playing.

This essentially necessitates a complete reinstallation of the game, and because of this, many PS5 players are opting to let the download do its thing, voluntarily sacrificing a couple of days’ of Destiny play.