Destiny Review – Bungie’s New Universe Shows Promise With Room to Grow

With a legendary reputation to live up to, iconic Seattle-based video game developer Bungie has a lot riding on Destiny.

Teased all the way back as early as 2009, Destiny is the realization of an entirely new universe crafted by the talented minds that single handedly revolutionized the first-person shooter on modern consoles with a little Xbox game you might remember called Halo: Combat Evolved. Having devoted over ten years to Master Chief John-117, the Spartans, and the Orbital Drop Shock Troopers of the fictional United Nations Space Command, Bungie handed over the Microsoft-exclusive franchise after the launch of 2010’s Halo: Reach to begin anew. Only, this time, development would consist of work on four different consoles, instead of one.

Fast forward to September of 2014, after a public Alpha and Beta, Destiny greets PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360 audiences and a new journey for both gamers and Bungie begins.

Destiny is the first title planned in a yet another decade-long effort to bring the studio’s new mythic science-fiction IP to life. So, with plenty more on the way, did Bungie get it right the first time?

Destiny

Player Versus Environment

You begin your journey as a Guardian risen from the dead by the Traveler, a magnificent yet ominous moon-sized sphere that floats mysteriously above the last city on Earth decades after defending the remains of humanity from an entity only known as the Darkness. Guided by the Traveler’s Ghosts, it channels its Light through you, granting you unfathomable abilities as one of three Guardian classes — Titan, Hunter, or Warlock — to take on the now returning Darkness.

It’s an enticing story set-up that, unfortunately, isn’t explored very thoroughly in this entry. Clearly, Bungie is saving the good stuff for later, via DLC or Destiny 2, 3, etc. I wish I could tell you that your curiosities will be satisfied by collecting and reading Destiny’s lore cards, known as Grimoire cards, but you’l likely end up with more questions than answers. Still, it’s where the majority of Destiny’s story and background lies, so you’ll have to really dig in if you want to get the most from it. Your travels through the game’s four playable locations — Earth, the Moon, Venus, and Mars — will only tell a more narrow tale that really serves as a mere introduction to the more complex universe and overarching story Bungie appears to be cooking up.

After molding your Guardian in Destiny’s satisfyingly deep character creator, you and your Ghost are off to discover the mysteries of the the current state of our solar system, the Traveler, and its enemies. You’ll explore neighboring planets, face unknown enemies, find weapons and armor, level up, and learn new abilities. Each Guardian classes is loaded with two sub-classes and their own set of abilities and alignment to one of three different damage types — Void, Arc, or Solar. You’ll find gear ranging from Common in rarity all the way to Legendary and Exotic, which is where you’ll find some of the most powerful weapons and armor in the game.

Destiny

Progressing through Missions and Side-Missions will further Destiny’s story, while Strikes will offer more difficult challenges that must normally be tackled in Fireteams of three and often require a little more of your time. In between, you’ll be able to accept Bounties and Patrol Missions to assist in your exploration of new worlds. They’re a great way to earn additional XP aside from the main campaign, especially if you want to boost your rank high enough to take on Missions on their Hard difficulty, something I highly recommend as it only adds to Destiny’s already gratifying combat and sandbox experience while yielding greater rewards.

When you’re not busy prying the solar system free from the grip of four invading alien races, you’ll take your helmet off and kick it back in the Tower, Destiny’s central social hub that overlooks the City and provides a stunning view of the Traveler. Here, you’ll visit various merchants for weapons, armor, ships, and other gear to customize the look and effectiveness of your Guardian. You’ll also find representatives from Destiny’s various factions which play a bigger role in the end-game experience.

Like all public zones in Destiny, you’re paired with upwards of 16 other players populating the Tower. You can wave or point to them, or get down and dirty in a massive dance party. Aside from kicking around a beach ball and a soccer ball, there isn’t much else to do in the way of leisurely activities. I would have loved to see the inclusion of a few mini-games that you could participate in with other. I also wish there were more options for communication. A command-rose of sorts would have done wonders for non-verbal communication, especially in combat scenarios. Destiny is filled with random, casual encounters both on and off the Battlefield, so having a functional alternative to partying up would’ve been much appreciated.

Destiny

Here, in these public spaces, is where some of Destiny’s most magical moments lie. Every so often, while on Patrol, the sky darkens and your Ghosts informs you of an incoming Public Event, a server-wide activity that occurs randomly but at timed intervals and calls upon any and all in the vicinity to participate. While the enemies in these events preset a tougher challenge than normal, Guardians at any level can lend a helping hand. All it takes to enter is one bullet fired at the giant mech walker that was just air-dropped from the sky, for example, and you’re in.

In addition to a celebratory dance-off, achieving a Gold Tier completion will usually yield upgrade material rewards and reputation that you’ll eventually need to access higher level gear from various factions in the Tower. Most of all, I find that Public Events reward you with the satisfaction of working with complete strangers to accomplish a specific task that you could have avoided all together.

Destiny is a highly social game without it ever being forced. As a particularly memorable example, moments before leaving a public space and entering a Darkness Zone to complete a mission, a stranger who was clearly about to do the same sent me a Fireteam invite so we could tackle it together. (Darkness Zones, by the way, are dungeon areas where respawns are restricted and you and your Fireteam, if you have one, are put into a separate session from others.) I could have simply ignored the request and headed on into the zone all by my lonesome, but I said, ‘What the heck.’

Now in a Fireteam of two, both with mics, I learned that this dude I didn’t even know is actually from the same city that I live in — a testament to Destiny’s matchmaking — and also just returned from Destiny’s midnight launch at his respective local retailer. We shared stories about how EB Games’ debit and credit services went offline Canada-wide mid-launch and how we both had to leave our spots in line to find a bank and get cash. We laughed about it, completed the mission, and I now have a new face on my Xbox Live friends list.

destiny-exodus-blue-screen-02-ps4-us-07jul14

Fireteams are managed in the start menu via an impeccably smooth user-friendly interface that can be accessed at any time, even during cutscenes or loading screens. Getting in and out of Fireteams and into Missions or Strikes is, for the most part, hassle-free, unless you run into mic issues, which I experienced on occasion.

The current state of communication, or lack-thereof, means that players will need to get into a party or join a Fireteam in order to chat with each other, as there is no voice chat otherwise. However, Bungie has mad it clear that improvements in this area are incoming. In general, Destiny’s overall always-online experience is entirely seamless and has, thus far, made for one of the better socially-centered games that’s not an MMO and doesn’t allow player-to-player trading.

And make no mistake. Destiny is not an MMORPG. Anyone diving into the game with this preconceived notion may be in for a bad time. Destiny is an action-based first-person shooter at heart that borrows heavily from loot-driven games like Diablo. That said, Destiny’s end-game will introduce terms familiar to MMO buffs like raids, farming, or loot-runs. And, while Destiny’s end-game can get pretty deep, it remains accessible and a little more relaxed than your traditional MMO experience.

Destiny

Upon reaching level 20, by which time you’ll likely have completed the main story campaign, Destiny starts doing things a little differently. Instead of grinding mobs after mobs of enemies to farm experience and rank up all the way to 30, players are required to find and upgrade gear that provides your Guardian with Light.

You’ll likely find a few decent pieces of Legendary items by way of luck throughout your end game endeavors, but the sure-fire way to get the good stuff is to participate in Destiny’s daily and weekly Strikes and more difficult Nightfall Strikes. There’s also a selection playlists to choose from that select a random Strike at varying difficulties so you can get into the action quickly. These earn you reputation and upgrade materials needed to buy or upgrade higher level equipment. They also have the chance to drop Strange Coins which can be used to buy from the rotating inventory of Exotic items carried by a special NPC that appears only on weekends.

Personally, I wish there were more Strikes that were exclusive to Destiny’s post-game. Diablo 2’s Secret Cow level and Diablo 3’s Whimsyshire level come to mind as more challenging but insanely fun post-game levels and I think Bungie would have done well to throw something similar in Destiny — something that doesn’t take itself too seriously and is entertaining enough to grind over and over again. As it stands, there really isn’t anything new to see once you’ve completed the story campaign. There are certainly more activities to participate in, but they all take place in locales you’ve already visited, save for the Vault of Glass raid.

Destiny

Also only available in Destiny’s end-game is the Vault of Glass raid. There’s only one raid, as of this writing, but it sounds like our future may hold more. The Vault is Destiny’s most arduous challenge that requires a Fireteam of six Guardians, all of whom should be level 26 or higher. The challenge is difficult not because it merely throws its toughest enemies at you while upping their health and damage, but because it puts to the test every game mechanic you’ve ever learned in Destiny while asking you to coordinate meticulously with your Fireteam buddies.

The content in Destiny’s raid alone is almost as healthy as some FPS campaigns out there, considering it took the first group who completed it 14 hours to do so, but you’ll now find clans able to blow through it in under two hours. The challenge in itself, however, is unlike anything you’ll ever find in another first-person shooter. Gamers are certainly in for a treat if there are more to come via post-launch updates.

You’ll also need to complete the raid in order to find the appropriate gear that will allow you to reach Destiny’s highest rank, which leads me to the conclusion that the road to level 30 in Destiny is a very artificial and pre-determined one. The game gives you the illusion that you are completely free to rank up however you please after completing the story campaign, but, in reality, there are very specific requirements you need to meet that are the exact same for every other Guardian. ‘To reach rank 30, check off these boxes: Finish campaign, hope you find better end-game gear, upgrade it when you do with hard-to-obtain materials, do the Vault of Glass, hope you find even better gear, upgrade it when you do with even harder-to-obtain materials, rinse and repeat until you reach level 30, etc.’

It’s unfortunate because, clearly, Bungie has literally put hours, months, and years of thought into every single component that makes up Destiny as a video game, including how you rank up. The issue is that you end up feeling constrained to playing the game the way Bungie wants you to, not the way you want to. In the end, you get an extremely high quality experience, but one that is a little too on-rails for my liking.

Destiny

By far, my favorite aspect of Destiny’s end-game is how it’s managing to build an impressive community of helpful individuals trying to discover the most efficient means of ranking up or completing tough challenges when exactly how to do so is largely left to the players’ imagination. Visiting the Bungie.net forums and the /r/DestinyTheGame sub-reddit are now mandatory stops during my daily internet surfing routine and are truly pleasant places to interact with. It seems that, every day, someone posts a bit of useful information that uplifts the entire community and gives everyone something new to chew on, be it story or progression-related. So, as a bit of a side-note, thank you to those who take the time and effort to share their learnings with others.

Back on point, it is a testament to the universe and experience that Bungie has built from the ground up to bring gamers together. It’s my belief that this was exactly their intention, and they nailed it. Similarities to games like Borderlands are certainly there, but it doesn’t offer the same highly social gameplay Destiny does. Combat feels as it did in Halo, with the addition of the ability to aim down sight. But, again, Destiny’s gameplay goes a little bit deeper with more considerations involved, including player abilities, ammunition types, and the gear you have equipped.

Many subscribe to the notion that Destiny is a jack-of-all-trades and master-of-none, but I believe Bungie created exactly the sort of focused PvE experience they intended to — a shared-world first-person shooter that engages an audience much like an MMO does but remains accessible enough to keep a more relaxed vibe that doesn’t scare away the non-hardcore gamer.

It’s a little too constricting, at times, but it’s still addicting as hell.

Destiny

Player Versus Player

Upon hitting level five, the doors to the sacred Crucible open up, allowing you to partake in Destiny’s Guardian versus Guardian combat arena.

Four game modes are offered by default — Control (6v6 Domination), Clash ( 6v6 Team Deathmatch), Rumble (6-player Free-for-All), and Skirmish (3v3 Team Deathmatch with revives) — with new, limited-time playlists added on a regular basis.

Like Strikes, participating in matches earns you Reputation and currency called Marks that allows you to purchase higher-level gear, so there’s certainly some incentive to bash in another Guardian’s head inside the Crucible’s walls. The problem is that Reputation and Marks might be the only incentive there is for some, as Destiny’s PvP experience can often be as frustrating as it is fun.

The Crucible allows you to take your Guardian — weapons, armor, sub-class abilities, and all — and pit him or her against other Guardians and their respective loadout. The problem is that there are a lot of abilities in Destiny’s sandbox, including weapon abilities, sub-class abilities, and Super abilities, some of which are simply too effective to be properly balanced for PvP combat. It makes for an experience that’s differs wildly from the Battlefields, Call of Duty’s, and even Halos out there and is also insanely fun at times, but it also creates a mess just as often. I’m really not sure how any developer, even one as iconic as Bungie, could hope to offer a completely balanced multiplayer that’s as competitive as it is fun with the insane amount of abilities on hand.

Especially in 12-player game modes, things get a little too hectic for my liking. Considering all of the Super Abilities that can devastate entire groups of Guardians, insanely powerful rocket launchers, grenades, one-hit-kill shotguns, fusion rifles, and sniper rifles, and the fact that every Guardian can carry a primary, special, and power weapon all at once, it just gets to be a bit too much. It’s fun …until you can no longer escape all the insta-deaths and ability spam. It also doesn’t help that the Shotgun-Melee combo reigns supreme on nearly half of the Crucible’s 10 maps and that the Hunter’s Super abilities are grossly over-effective when it comes to pure killing.

It’s my firm belief that Destiny’s 12-player game modes would fare much better without Super Abilities whatsoever and if players could only bring a primary weapon, a weaker secondary weapon, and one or two grenades into battle. That would narrow the balance considerations down to just class abilities while retaining most of what makes Destiny’s PvP unique.

If you’re like me, you’ll want to stick to the Crucible’s 6-player Rumble and Skirmish game modes. The toned-down player count and the additional thought and precision that is required in the timing and placement of Supers keeps things just calm enough that it no longer feels like you’re always running head-first into the meat grinder. The 3v3 Skirmish game mode is a particular favorite of mine that is, by far, the most competitive in nature due to its heavy focus on small team play tactics. It’s where I feel I’m most rewarded for staying alive and reviving teammates and where scoring kills feels much more fulfilling.

Now, if it’s not the the insane amount of one-hit-kill abilities and weapons, you may also have to deal with shaky “netcode” that can sometimes leave you scratching your head wondering how the enemy you just melee’d to death some how smoked you with a shotgun a second after he or she died. Mutual kills are not at all uncommon in Destiny’s multiplayer, which can lead to the feeling of being robbed of your kills. Considering some of the seriously sophisticated tech behind Destiny’s PvE online infrastructure, I find it odd that Destiny’s PvP suffers from such discrepancies.

Destiny

Finally, Destiny is a beautiful game. Pristine 1080p on both the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, Bungie’s shooter is easily one of the first true next-gen looking titles to grace the console audience. But its pleasing visuals does not come without a cost. 30 frames per second is certainly acceptable in a PvE scenario where skirmishes against enemy AI aren’t nearly as demanding as facing other human players and it’s easier to get around a sub-par level or control responsiveness. But, becoming so accustomed to the doubled frame rate offered by competitive multiplayer titles like Call of Duty and Battlefield on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC (where it can even surpass that rate), the drop back to 30 can be jarring and tough on the eyes, especially when turning quickly.

The choice to sacrifice frame rate for visual quality was likely a difficult one and, personally, I don’t think they’ve necessarily chose wrong, but it irks me to know that I could be getting an experience that’s literally twice as smooth if next-gen consoles were capable enough. At the very least, Destiny runs at a rock solid 30 FPS. I mean rock solid. Six Guardians could unleash their visually flashy Super moves on screen at once and I don’t think Destiny’s frame rate would budge.

To sum up my thoughts on PvP, I didn’t get the Halo-killer I thought Destiny could have potentially ended up being — not that I wanted it to, anyways. Despite the amount of fun there is to be had in the Crucible, it’s clear that Bungie has a few kinks to work out, especially to ensure that gameplay isn’t hindered by frustrating “netcode” issues.

Destiny Versus The World

Destiny is the product of truly next-gen thinking and insane attention to detail. (Watch your Guardian leave footprints in the snow in Old Russia and check out the action on any of the hand cannons as the hammer cocks back and the chamber rotates while you slowly pull the trigger on your controller.) It’s also one of the best reasons out there to upgrade to the newest generation of consoles, despite running just fine on the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360.

On PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, Destiny boasts some of the most impressive lighting effects I’ve seen yet with highly detailed character models that are a pleasure to look at. Not only does Destiny look great, but the superb art design leads to a more stylized look that’s more exciting than if it were to attempt photorealistic visuals. Jaw-dropping backgrounds are met with gorgeous skyboxes that shift color in Destiny’s day and night cycle. All of this is wrapped in grandiose soundtrack that gives it that final touch. Aside from the over simplified and rather bland story, Destiny’s music, visuals, and rich lore surrounding these noble Guardians, the mysterious Traveler, and the menacing Darkness only serve to create an engrossing universe that I often catch myself craving to learn more about.

Nearing Destiny’s level 30 cap, my mind is already racing ahead in anticipation of what Bungie has in store for us over the next decade. I’m 90% certain that it’s because I’m hopelessly addicted to the amount of fun I’m having in it with friends and strangers alike, but there’s always that hint of doubt that my addiction was artificially engineered as a way to blind me from Destiny’s lack of actual end-game content and to butter me up for more DLC and sequels. In the end, I hope it’s a testament to the top quality standards that Bungie exerts in its craftsmanship, and not Activision’s clever financial and marketing strategies.

Destiny

3.5 / 5

It’s my hope that Bungie never wavers in their strive for perfection, but perhaps learns to loosen their grip a little and to let us play the game the way we want to.

Despite the score I am rewarding the first entry in Bungie’s new IP, I am convinced that Destiny is one of the first must-own titles of the new generation of gaming we’ve entered into and that it will end up shaping the industry in a very impactful way. I can’t stop playing it, and it’s likely that you won’t either as you progress through Destiny’s story and highly addicting, albeit linear, end-game activities.

In the years to come, I think Bungie is still on track once again to leave behind yet another unforgettable legacy, as it did with the Master Chief and Halo. There’s still room to grow, but they can only go up from here.

This review was based on the Xbox One retail version of Destiny.







David Veselka
Co-Founder / Editor-in-Chief
Musician, Gamer, Geek.
  • Aria68

    3.5 ?! No way dude, 3.0 is fair though!
    My version of review!!

    This game’s biggest issues can be summarised in one word: Repetition
    Playing the repetitive missions for the repetitive objectives on the repetitive maps/levels against the repetitive enemies, at the end you will have %50 of getting a repetitive award. Not even funny!!!

    Sure it’s beautiful, gameplay is great, but even if it didn’t have these i’d have been 1 out of 5.
    The game campaign is unbelievably disgustingly cheap! i don’t even know how much from that $500 million has spend on this game. But man isn’t it all spent on Marketing ?! cuz otherwise it wouldn’t make sense that much money spent on development of this game.

    • Not trying to persuade you otherwise, but just for clarification, the budget for this game wasn’t quite $500 mil.

      “According to Bungie COO Pete Parsons in talk with GamesIndustry, Destiny’s development costs are ‘not anything close to $500 million.’ By the sounds of it, the large financial backing is there to help Bungie bring their new IP to life over the course of it projected 10-year life span. ‘I think that speaks a lot more to the long-term investment that we’re making in the future of the product,’ he added.” – http://mp1st.com/2014/06/27/destiny-officially-rated-development-cost-anything-close-500-million-says-bungie-coo/#.VCe71ildVxc

      Doesn’t change your point, but just wanted to make that clear 🙂

      • Aria68

        Yes i know that, that’s why i mentioned, i don’t know how much of that money goes to the development of the game.

        • Right. Yeah, not sure!

          • Aria68

            but Dave i gotta tell you man the game was huge let down for me, i threw in 60 hrs of gameplay within a several days, i though i never be back on BF4 (lol at least for a while), but here i am telling u, i did my best to stick to the game but after many hours i realized grinding and farming for hours and hours or playing the same missions repeatedly! it’s just not worth it man!!! i mean something after 1 hour shooting at the same boss you don’t feel like you are playing/ shooting anymore…
            you start the game playing against the basic enemies and even when you play the high level strikes you are playing with the same exact enemies in a different size or same size but with a yellow double digit rank on top.
            It’s ridiculous, how lazy! how insulting is this game yet it managed to sell like crazy. Such an Unfair industry!!!

            • I hear you bro. I’m stuck at that level 28 range right now where there isn’t a whole lot of incentive to grind out for the materials to upgrade my gear to get me to level 29. I guess what keeps me around is the combat; I really enjoy it. I’ve also got a few regulars I play with that keeps things interesting. Still got the raid to complete as well.

              But, content-wise, I totally get you. Not sure how a game of this caliber fell so short on content. Sucks you got fed up with it!

    • Paul Thomas

      The game is a SWS (Shared World Shooter) which itself if combination of aspects from FPS, RPG, and MMO. MMOs are common for having repetition. Also after a while when does an FPS not get repetitious?

  • Waited a few weeks for this review and well worth the wait. I think the Crucible is probably the worst multiplayer I’ve ever played, needs lots of balancing or a mode just dedicated to Halo 2 styled arena shooter settings.

    • KillzoneVII

      Agreed, maybe not the worst but I have said since day 1 that the Crucible is the most unbalanced multi-player I’ve ever played, and I still stand by that.

      It’s a bummer too because as balanced as Halo was I expected much better from bungie, the same guys who really got me into social multi-player gaming with Halo 3.

    • Justen Holstein

      It gets way too spammy. I also can’t stand the fact they didn’t allow match making for raids. That’s beyond an oversight in my opinion and a lot of others. Plus you can’t talk to people at all in the game unless you invite them to your party. Bungee made plenty of mistakes with this game

    • MegaMan3k

      Agreed.

      Destiny’s MP feels like a crummy F2P game you’d find in the dredges of Steam.

  • Mr Frags

    Fantastic review; however, I disagree with the social aspect. I feel that most of my encounters are pointless. In my entire time playing Destiny, I’ve only really encountered one or two people that would work with me (aside from events). With the lack of VoIP and other fundamentals such as a chatbox, I find it hard to work with randoms. If I see somebody, it’s hard for me to care. Alas, the social assets in this game are lacking, which is a letdown because that was one of the things Bungie got us hyped up for the most.

  • xHDx

    Nice review, but I think the Multiplayer and balancing issues are the things that are bothering me.
    The multiplayer is extremely repetitive. it’s good, but it could do with some more game modes. Correct me if I’m wrong but all we have is; 3v3 and 6V6 TDM, Domination and FFA. That’s it. I’d like to see some more game modes and more maps.

    • thomescarte

      until I lo0ked at the check saying $886O , I didn’t believe …that…my brother was like realey earning money parttime from there labt0p. . there best friend haz

      done this 4 only twenty three months and a short time ago paid for the depts on there house and purchased a gorgeous Jaguar E-type .From this ,,,————–http://cashforum.org/new.,.

  • MrMultiPlatform
    • MrMultiPlatform
    • MITCHELL22

      LEWIS

      disqus_LCxV4xg02J til. I saw the check which had said $4611, I accept that…my… mother in law was like they say actually receiving money parttime on their computer.. there sisters neighbour haz done this 4 less than six months and at present cleared the debts on their cottage and purchased a great new Infiniti. we looked here,..

      http://superjobs.net/newest.,..

    • awkenney

      Angry Joe’s review was similar to how I felt. I also felt that there wasn’t enough solo content. Given that I’m playing on PS4 and I don’t know anyone other than myself who owns one, bringing together a group of friends for this game can be difficult if you want to experience everything the game has to offer.

  • billy

    again someone addressing the netcode…. back in halo days trades where as common as today in destiny, mainly through the damage system. melee, shotgun and sniper trades all happened often. only then nobody cried netcode issues, thats a thing of today after shit games like bf4. only when i encounter a player with bad ping have i questioned how he could have killed me after i killed him, but its exclusively with the same bad ping player in the same lobby, not with the rest of his team. everything about this game takes me back to my halo youth, from character animations to gun mechanics to PvE AI, even the way a enemy player flies through the air after giving them a headshot with a sniper. that is also why i can dominate crucible with a 3 + kd and 180 combat rating since day one so long after playing my last halo multiplayer game.

    to bad anything that is hyped as much as destiny always tends to disappoint on some aspects due to high expectations but if u ask me, its the best shooter out on console today.

    • Aria68

      Actually BF4’s netcode with it’s 64 players and load of destruction and vehicles and other matters manages to be millions times better than the netcode of Destiny, it’s too bad that even me that i never complain about netcode im like what the f*ck is that !!!!!

    • Halo classic was a fantastic game for its time, but why only strive to meet standards that were set a decade ago? It’s 2014.

      Destiny’s network solution needs to be seriously tightened up. Call of Duty runs at twice the frame rate Destiny does and yet kill-trades are non-existent.

      • Yazzer

        Did they fix the kill-trades in the last couple versions of COD? I haven’t played COD since Blackops, but I remember plenty of kill-trades in the few versions of COD that I played (COD4 – BLOPS)

  • Katana67

    Said it in a previous thread, but the tools for greatness are all there. The fundamentals.

    But they’re just not robust enough at this time, for me to consider Destiny as a full-on good game at release. I tend to give developers, especially Bungie, the benefit of the doubt. But it just seems that content-wise, there just isn’t enough meat on the proverbial bones.

    I was expecting to explore the solar system, as I’m sure I’d heard repeated many times before release. I got a handful of planetary themeparks.

    I was expecting the game to have, if anything, a robust storyline. I got a decent, but minor, 5-hour preamble to a gear grind.

    The thing they really, just categorically, did well though in Destiny thus far… has to do with the aesthetic and the “mysterious” quality that they were trying to achieve. The game is mind-bogglingly beautiful, which almost… almost… makes up (for me anyhow) for the lack of content. I could spend hours just running around the relatively small Tower area, just because of how beautiful and immersive it is. Likewise, I like that a lot of Destiny is left unexplained or unclear. With regard to the player-involved story, I suspect we’ll be unfolding this over time. But the background of Destiny, the backstory, is more akin to Star Wars Episode IV before it was accompanied by the prequels. Things, concepts, organizations, motives, are left hinted at rather than “Oh, here’s a convenient Datafile explaining this group’s entire history and reason for existing” a la Mass Effect and pretty much every game ever.

    Personally, I just couldn’t care less about the competitive multiplayer aspect of Destiny. I’m sure it’s good, and what I’ve played has been fun. But I don’t really view it through the lens of its arena multiplayer.

    What I would’ve liked, and think they should implement somehow, is a free-roam/open-world planet/area in which PvE and PvP are combined. Where you have high-level NPCs and players in a “free-fire” area, with obvious rewards. Adds a bit of a “dangerous frontier” aspect to Destiny which I thought was lacking.

    Overall, and I think most reviews echo this sentiment, I think Destiny has some solid bones… but there’s not a lot of meat to them.

    I suppose time will tell if Bungie can keep people interested in the long term. But it’s certainly debatable as to whether this is an acceptable “release” product.

    • Just saying

      I agree with you but paying $15 to unfold parts of the story that they so briefly hinted at is ridiculous. I should pay $35 to know what’s the story with the hive then the fallen (based on the DLC cover pics) and they will include 1 raid and 1 strike in each of those! IMO, I think Bungie was gonna throw more in the main game but Activision thought otherwise. That’s only because the trailer had footage that seemed way better than what we have now and I don’t think that the footage was a hint for DLC content. They took some stuff out and put it in DLC. Again that’s what I think, I may be wrong!

    • Destiny has hooked me

      I turn on my PS4 gonna play something else then the Destiny logo pops up with the music playing then 5 hours later still playing Destiny. The graphics, music, controls are so beatifully done it sucks me in and will not let go. For that I think Bungie has nailed what they set out to accomplish which is a beautiful addicted FPS with insane polish and tech/ immersion. No matter how many strikes or patrols I do they never get old because the gun play and gameplay is so stellar. I am a 29 year old gamer who has played every FPS I can get my hands on and Destiny on a pure control and technical level is second to none. I for one am hooked and will be for the long haul. Did I mention the music. Simply stunning.

  • Guest

    Correct score for the game, it is very overhyped. Repetition and design flaws kill it in my opinion

    The game that lives on potential and promise and hope is in dlc then it is not a good game IMO

  • Just saying

    I throw in 5 months of gameplay in Warframe which basically have the same formula but I can’t stand this game after 3 weeks of playing, it’s still addictive though but boring. For the lvl 30 discussion that’s going on, did you see a single player that is lvl 30? I didn’t and I’m lvl 29 with all my armor pieces maxed out including 1 maxed exotic helmet! I don’t think the Raid gear goes beyond that as all legendary armor parts give 27+ light when maxed and exotic gives 30+ light but I maybe wrong because I didn’t get a Raid armor piece yet.

    • theSupremeVishnu

      Raid armor will give you 30 light per piece.

  • MegaMan3k

    You’ve definitely cooled to this game since your first impressions following release … 😉

    • My early-mid impressions were definitely more positive. I was just getting into Destiny’s end-game and was excited to get new gear and tackle new challenges — Felt pretty good. My review score was maybe 4/5 a week ago.

      It took a long time, but I’m glad I waited to the point I did. Now at level 28, inching my way 29, I’ve got a good grasp of what Destiny’s end-game is all about 🙂

      • Joel Santana

        Enjoy getting those raid set pieces to get to level 30. 😛

  • J4MES

    I traded in Destiny for Wasteland 2. Best decision I’ve made in gaming for a long time. One may be a Kickstarter funded classic RPG and the other, a $500,000,000 ‘MMO/Co-op/RPG’ but the gulf between them in terms of depth and gameplay is staggering. I think Bungie tried too hard and failed to deliver in each area what they initially marketed. Boderlands: The Pre-Sequel will show them how it should have been done.

  • Mike

    We will get the rest of the story….. in DLC….. Its bullshit but its also contagious.

  • Has anyone got the “Monte Carlo” yet??

  • theSupremeVishnu

    Laughed when you said Destiny was a social game.

    • I think it’s far to call it what I did: A social game that isn’t forced — A relaxed social game, if you will. The functionality is there, IF you want it.

      And, I mean, technically, it is social game on the simple fact that you’re always playing next to real players. If you took that away completely and just played Destiny as a totally single player experience, I don’t think it’d have had nearly the same impact.

    • Jamie McDonald

      Considering the amount of the time you play hand-in-hand with other players I’d say it’s very social!

  • DigitalDaniel

    I’m currently level 27 but fatigue kicked in after a few days to be honest. I mean, a porn movie got more story than Destiny.. So disappointed in Bungie. And the recycled content, my God I’m sick of Devils Lair and the other boss battles. And the strike missions, another snore party. PVP is okay, but it’s unbalanced and lacking modes and maps. Not to mention the awfully random reward system for loot where the guy with 0.1K/D gets exotics while top 3 gets greens or nothing.

    I think this game is even in bigger trouble when other games comes out, it will most likely lose lots of players. Hell, I have friends who is already trading in the game tomorrow and will be playing Shadow of Mordor instead.

  • softgrip

    Destiny – 3.5. A game I want to play a lot!! Loot, good multiplayer, good control.

    Forza Horizon 2 – 4.5. A game that looks like shallow arcade trash. I loved forza 2 and gran Turismo series, but horizon has nothing going for it. I normally love racing games, but this looks like rubber band AI with space physics.

    • “A game that looks like shallow arcade trash.” Sounds to me like you haven’t played the full retail version yet 🙂 I have, and the scores for each game are perfectly reasonable. Horizon 2 has everything going for it.

      And, I’m with you. Destiny is a game I also want to play a lot, and I am. I’m seriously addicted to it. But, I’m an FPS guy at heart and I barely play racers. As a reviewer, you’ve got to keep your biases out of it. Destiny has some very serious and very real problems that a game like Horizon 2 just doesn’t have, respective of their styles.

      We all have our preferences, but it would have been completely unfair to objectively score Destiny higher.

  • LOGIC

    Nobody buy dlc for this game! We CANNOT let cut-up stories sold to us in pieces become the standard for games.

  • disqus_11DcWvgx3Z

    All these comments need a tampon. Destiny despite its repetitive nature is still a amazing game. Control, Art, and Tech wise craps allover most games these days.

  • MrMultiPlatform

    The MP is so damn bad. It has MAJOR balancing issues.

  • Nathan Longardner

    I’m all about competition, but with destiny PvP it’s just so different and fun I have excused it’s lack of balance somewhat. The hunter is good, but you didn’t even mention the warlock insane abilities( those grenades…) plus the triple nova bomb wrecks Control. And then there’s the exotic and legendary Auto rifles…. (SUROS REgime.. so broken..). I never expected destiny to be good anyway, so the fact it is fun is enough for me, at least for now.

  • jean-Alexandre thibault

    This is the best and most accurate Destiny review I have read as of yet.
    And I read LOTS.

    Especially the PvP aspect.

    Good job!

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