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Written by Dustin Murphy
Welcome to Destiny a game that was meticulously (supposed to have been anyway) crafted by Halo development veterans over at Bungie. Over the past year I’ve spent more than my fair share of time with the game between review titles, and each time I take a break to go back; I find myself hating the game more than the first time around. The game, however, does have a certain bit of draw to it, a kind of draw that makes you want to pick up your disc, put the game in, and continue on. For some it’s the PVP system, for others it’s the raids, and for a different group – the new dungeon like raid called Prison of Elders. But underneath these few substantial things that make us come back, the game does suffer a sense of distinguished design flaws, and story holes that have made no sense at all and left us confused as to why some of the content is even there. So in turn, I’ve been asked to re-review Destiny itself before even taking a look at The House of Wolves as a whole since I’ve yet to down that pain-in-the-ass Skolas in Prison of Elders level 35. The answer to that? We won’t be doing that. Much like any game, sorry Bungie, but your game is an MMO, you made a hybrid and still have yet to admit it since you’re following in the steps of World of Warcraft; we won’t be stepping aside to nitpick at the game once more, but instead will be doing as we did before, but this isn’t the place to discuss that. Instead we are here to discuss the very real issues that hide deep within Destiny that can’t really be ignored anymore.
/-/ Who the F**k are the Cabal? /-/
So you’ve completed Mars, congratulations, you’ve managed to survive the overpowered space turtles that seem to destroy moons and or planets to make a prime example out of why you shouldn’t get in their way. If you’ve watched E3, you know they were hiding on Mars to get away from that asshole by the name of Oryx, the Father of Crota. As we get underway we’ve taken on multiple missions that introduce us to this powerful and mean faction of enemies, but the issue here with them is – the Vex take over the story, and we learn nothing about this powerful foe. We have no idea what their story structure is, where they come from, why they are as powerful, feared, and as militarized as they are, but we also have no damn clue to a story that describes anything about them outside of well… The Grimoire, which is an underlying issue with the whole story telling, because who the literal Hell goes and reads that thing anyways? If you do? Congratulations; you’re unique, devoted, and a die hard fan, but for the average gamer, they don’t read this thing, it’s a waste of space really.
With the past two expansions that are leading up to The Taken King we have gotten a story that explains each of the enemy factions, that has built up their leader structure, and even given us an idea of who they really are. This can’t be said for the Cabal however, a faction that we could only hope would have received the same treatment with their own mini-expansion like the others. Downside? Doesn’t seem like that’s going to happen, if it happens, it won’t until we receive The Taken King on September 13th of this year.
/-/ That Damned Thorn in PVP /-/
Have you been to PVP recently? As a person that has decided to give it a shot and see if it was worth returning to, I’ve found one thing that’s a problem – there are certain guns that are the go to weapons in PVP. Want the list? It’s short, so take a look:
- Thorn – Pistol
- Last Word – Pistol
- Hawkmoon – Pistol
- Icebreaker – Sniper
- Truth – Rocket Launcher
Notice the length of that small list? Unfortunately it should be longer due to the wide array of weapons that are available, but due to balancing, ways to resist some of the weapons, the chances are slim to none that you won’t be getting your face blown to pieces. The most common one though? Is Thorn.
In short, Thorn is one of the games most unique Exotic Weapons in the games library. It allows a DoT (Damage over Time) debuff that ticks down slowly that causes for damage over time, a way to not heal while it’s burning your health down, and becomes a pain in the arse to stay alive against. Unlike the Suros Regime (if you’re familiar with the nerfing this gun got, fans almost went to the streets and rioted in a figure of speech), Thorn is a gun that is the go-to-pvp gun, one that hits hard, ticks down health, and sends you to your respawn screen faster than you could imagine. In short? It’s a pain in the ass to stay alive again unless you are quick to get away or kill the person popping shots off at you.
What could be done to fix this underlying issue? Easy, make it so that there is a way to heal up quicker against burns, give players armour to go to that will help better counteract this painful to stay alive against weapon. Other words? Why not build a structure for armour that is more beneficial in PVP than it would be in PVE? Why not build a set that allows for quicker damage over time drop off or even damage resistances that will be easily balanced across all classes that help benefit against certain types of weapons? Sorry Bungie, but this shouldn’t be a problem, but it is, and it exists. Even several forum writers have begun to rise up against this issue or just ignore PVP all together like I have.
/-/ Combined Arms Needs to be Permanent /-/
Did you play Destiny when it first launched and go straight into Crucible to see if you have a bigger set of balls than the other players? I know I did soon as I hit Light Level 20. I was rocking a Void Walker Warlock among the best of them. This time around I decided to return to Crucible for the first time since the launch of House of Wolves since I was not at all interested in seeing what they did with the release of DLC I: The Dark Below, which was literally nothing, but add onto what was already there with just a few maps and a few small changes to the game modes that were made available.
Now to get back on track to the point being made here. If you first joined the game when it launched you probably remember the maps First Light and Bastion (Turrets, Devastators, and Pikes galore), which is two of the most fan favored maps despite their balancing issues, but they offered something very similar to Halo’s experience with vehicles of both air and ground. For those who enjoyed those maps are now forced to wait it out and hope that Combined Arms returns in order to even get into them. Why? Because Bungie said so and fans cried out when the new players joined in with hopes of getting in on Combined Arms in the first place. The downside? It’s barely ever there and this means you’re stuck with Control, Clash, and the few others that seem to be there at all times. Bungie, please take note, and give us this playlist as a default. You know you aren’t hurting for game modes, we all know you aren’t, but it’s your attempt to draw us in and captivate us with timed modes, which is honestly a bad idea in all honesty. It neglects those who want those large maps to play on as maps that are there by default. Or why not just throw them back into the rotation for those of us that want them?
/-/ Bungie, Your Business Model for Destiny Sucks Worse than CoDs /-/
We all knew this one was coming, and this is from the guy who has bought a copy of the game, a season pass, and even helped throw down some money to help get his little brother a Destiny PlayStation 4 bundle so that he could enjoy the glory that Destiny was supposed to be. A game that changed the first person genre as a whole, but also a game that seeks to define what online capable games such as this was supposed to be able to do. What now? We’re given one of the worst business models that anyone could have ever imagined, a model that is completely screwed, and ignores the die hards who love this game, the ones who bought the season pass as well as have been there since the beginning: The Veterans.
Recently watching E3 I decided to read through and see what the original players got, which was just a few shaders, a pat on the back, and a push down a flight of stairs. While the pat on the back and a push down a flight of stairs may not be realistic it still applies here. So lets take a look at what Veteran Players as they have classified them, is receiving.
- “As a thank you to our most loyal fans, you will receive a commemorative Founder’s Fortune Year 1 Emblem, Sparrow, Armor Shader, and more at launch with your purchase of The Taken King.”
- New Players: 3 New Emotes, New Shaders, New Exotic Class Items with bonus XP
So what does this mean? If you really want to reap the benefits, it looks like you’ll want to be a new player or you’ll want to buy the collector’s edition of it for 79.99 USD, but it comes with the following: Base Game, Season Pass, and The Taken King Expansion and well, all those nifty little bonuses, but to those who already have all that? You’re quite frankly being ripped off and Bungie knows it. Downside is? They don’t care and it doesn’t seem they are going to fix that anytime soon.
/-/ The Taken King is Your Last Chance, Bungie /-/
While Bungie may think they have it strong, there’s a almost silenced rumble that has been going through the gaming community, which is slowly getting louder, and eventually may just turn into a brontide of pissed off fans who have lost their patience with the game. With many of the elements and business practices being flawed, it’s hard to say that Destiny is what it deserves to be. While I’ve not nearly booked the time that many have, I have spent an ample amount of time doing raids, strikes, helping my friends, and even deleting as well as re-rolling characters just to have some fun. This includes deleting my Titan just to make another one for the Heck of it, but also simply just going through each of the appearances.
Though with The Taken King, what all we can say? We all know what’s coming with it, but for many of us this is Bungie’s last chance to really make a game that draws us in before titles such as Tom Clancy’s The Division and others come out.
About the Writer:
Dustin is our native console gamer, PlayStation and Nintendo reviewer who has an appetite for anything that crosses the boarders from across the big pond. His interest in JRPG’s, Anime, Handheld Gaming, and Pizza is insatiable. His elitist attitude gives him direction, want, and a need for the hardest difficulties in games, which is fun to watch, and hilarity at its finest. You can find him over on Twitter @GamingAnomaly, Google+, and or you can find him on PSN with RaivynLyken.