‘Destiny 2’ Used Xivu Arath Fan Art For New ‘Witch Queen’ Trailer

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Well, this is a weird one.

Earlier this week, Bungie debuted a new trailer for Destiny 2’s Witch Queen expansion, which gave off True Detective vibes, including a big “board” where Ikora is trying to connect all the dots between the various Hive gods and their schemes as we hunt down Savathun.

I almost wrote about this before, but as fans frame-by-frame analyzed as the trailer, as we knew they would, they found what appeared to be the clearest image of the Hive God of War, Xivu Arath, that we’ve seen to date.

The problem? This Xivu Arath image is actually fan art made by Mal E ( @relay314 ), posted online a year ago:

There’s zero question.It’s the exact same image used.

I spoke to Mal E, who confirmed they were not contacted by Bungie for use of the art, but believes they didn’t purposefully steal it, and this was just some sort of accident:

MORE FOR YOU ‘Genshin Impact’ Still Refuses To Increase Anniversary Rewards, Despite Fan Outcry Don’t Miss Destiny 2’s God Roll Nightfall Weapon From Xur This Weekend ‘Fortnite’ Has Destroyed The ‘Guide Industry’ With Challenge Changes “I don’t think it’s any foul play at all, 100% some kind of crazy mistake.I’m absolutely not claiming any theft of design, my art is referenced from the illustrated grimoire’s section on the Book of Sorrows and the sisters, which is one of my favorites! I just wanted to try my hand at drawing my vision of her face but facing forward.”

The art Mal E is talking about as a reference is below, this image from the Grimoire showing what we assume is Xivu Arath in the center, an image that also appeared in this same trailer.

I certainly don’t think Mal E wants the art scrubbed from the trailer, but this kind of thing definitely isn’t supposed to happen.I have reached out to Bungie to ask how this might have occurred, and will update when I hear back.

I’ve certainly made the mistake of thinking fan art was official art for a game, and using it in articles, so I expect something similar happened here.Bungie has no shortage of hugely talented artists, so obviously they could have just drawn up their own Xivu image and used it.I suspect this one was found and chosen because it sort of looked like a mugshot you’d see on a “crime board” like this.

This is kind of a big deal because we have not seen an actual image of Xivu Arath past that singular grimoire image, a frequently mentioned but never-seen character in the game.

But given that the final version we’re seeing of Savathun isn’t much like that image of the trio, I would expect that when we do see her, she may not look like this after all.

But we’ll see.

So, likely just a mix-up here, but that means this isn’t quite an “official” look at Xivu after all.We’ll see if we get a true reveal her before or during The Witch Queen.

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Paul Tassi

I’ve been writing about video games, television and movies for Forbes for over 10 years, and you may have seen my reviews on Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic.

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I’ve been writing about video games, television and movies for Forbes for over 10 years, and you may have seen my reviews on Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic.I cover all manner of console and PC games, but if it’s about looting or shooting, I’m definitely there.If I’m watching something, it’s usually science fiction, horror or superheroic.I’m also a regular on IGN’s Fireteam Chat podcast and have published five sci-fi novels.

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