When Destiny 2 players got their first glimpse of Lightfall, one of the things that jumped out was the Pouka. These small, fish-like floating creatures had appeared much earlier in the game, as far back as Elsie Bray’s appearance in Beyond Light. For years, players wondered what her companion might be — an exotic pet? Some kind of Darkness analogue to Ghosts? It’s now been nearly two months since Lightfall released, and we still really have no idea what Pouka are in Destiny 2.
We’ve gotten some information, of course. In Lightfall, we learned that Pouka come from Neptune, and that their bodies are composed of a substance similar to the nanotechnology within the Quicksilver Storm weapon. Thus, it seems like they may have been created by the Neomuni at some point in the past. Additionally, Pouka have some kind of connection to memory. Guardians meditate at the Pouka Pond in Neomuna in order to access new Strand abilities.
Oh, and there’s some lore about how Elsie met her Pouka on an abandoned space station near Pluto and how it performs reconnaisance for her — Eris spotted it lurking around in some lore way back in Season of Arrivals. Elsie’s seems to be a juvenile and doesn’t really speak, only making simple cries.
Honestly, it seems like Elsie’s companion was introduced with either another origin in mind or no real plan for what it was. Then, when Lightfall was in development, someone had the idea to tie the Pouka in to Neomuna. Much like the inclusion of Strand in this expansion rather than in the earlier Witch Queen, it just doesn’t seem to make much sense.
Of course, any kind of resolution to a long-running mystery in a game like Destiny 2 is inevitably going to disappoint some players. Not all lore questions have to be tied up, and there’s something to be said for leaving blank spaces in your world. But you have to commit one way or the other.
With the Pouka, we got the worst of both worlds — a sort-of resolution of their identity and origin without it having any importance to the narrative or even being interesting. We just found out that yep, they’re from Neomuna, they’re vaguely related to Strand somehow, and that’s it. Maybe we’ll learn more about the Pouka in future seasons of Destiny 2, but at this point we wouldn’t bet on it.