When this game was first announced I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it. It quickly became one of my most anticipated titles to date. I’m not one to shy away from MMOs and usually they have me hooked from the get go, so I could not WAIT to play Destiny.
A few problems arose for me around release – so I wasn’t able to pick it up from day one. The comments from friends and family seemed extremely positive, so as soon as payday came round I decided to put down some of my hard earned moolah and pick the game up.
I chose to go with Exo, a race of humanoid machines. After a little research on the class systems within the game, I soon jumped in as an Exo Hunter. I’d played the Destiny Beta so the game play leading up to the tower was very familiar. After scouring my surroundings and spending a little time in the tower I was left unsatisfied with the interaction I was able to have with other people. About ten missions in, I still felt a lot of isolation, only ever grouping with people to complete challenges to then quickly disband and move on to other things.
Character Creation isn’t as expansive as I first hoped.
I don’t think I’ve ever felt so much isolation in an MMO, I’ve felt less lonely in single player games, due to significantly more engaging NPCs. This isn’t due to the players themselves but from the poor array of tools offered to hold any form of interaction others.
As I continued to play I felt as though there was barely any tutorial or help at all to describe my surroundings. I was harvesting spin metal and didn’t really know what purpose it served; this was relative to many other parts of the game too. After killing enemies there was very little direction to what was and what wasn’t loot, it didn’t seem prominent enough when dropped and was left scattered and almost blended into the playing field. I missed out on a lot of loot early on due to this, a brief explanation of this would have served me well.
Although the planets and landscapes are visually beautiful and the view from the tower is quite a breathtaking feature, I felt let down by the maps themselves. I’d have liked nothing more than to descend towards the city below and explore it for all it was worth. The linear driven maps and sceneary quickly became as tiresome as the variety of missions. Having to complete similar tasks over and over again become tedious, very quickly and I felt as though the missions could have had a lot more scope in terms of story, plot, character interaction and variety.
Although beautiful, the landscape has very little to offer in terms of exploration.
I felt as though the story was lacking, it seems like Destiny has a fantastic lore and back-story to offer and I’d have loved for them to focus on this a lot more. Yet I found myself muting cut scenes and instead chose to listen to a podcast later into the game. There was just nothing engaging about it at all. I found myself using my sparrow a lot to quickly travel from point A to point B. There proved no point in exploring much of my surrounding, it just felt empty with nothing to offer.
I’m a big fan of being able to switch between first person and third person within RPG type games like this one, seeing my characters progress and evolve, especially aesthetically, is very pleasing to me. The amour and clothing equipped by my character looked great but being unable to remove my helmet to see my characters face when outside of the tower was baffling. I soon found that most pieces of armour within their icon avatars looked quite different to what they did when wearing them. As I reached later levels I found that nearly everyone else at my level within my class looked very similar, a problem pointed out by many others.
One part that I couldn’t get my head round was the choice of changing your ship. Although the only time I ever got to see it was in the incredibly long loading screens when travelling between planets and missions. To manually take flight towards other planets within it, the option customize it and even engage in dog fights in open space would have been a brilliant addition to the game.
The Crucible is a great addition and breaths more life into Destiny, if broadened it could even work as a stand alone game.
I was also disappointed to find out that I couldn’t engage in any PVP combat while traversing planets, instead I had to enter the Crucible, to which I was met with level 32 players while only being a mere level 10 at the time. Although weapon stats were levelled to accommodate all contenders, I quickly found that those of a higher rank still managed to keep there skills that they’d obtained when levelling up, this resulted in lower level players quickly becoming disposed of. Although not been able to match make I felt like Crucible was a strong part of the game and one of the only parts where I felt as though the game succeeded.
The point where the game comes alive is with friends. I suggest rounding up a group of your closest Guardians as this is where the game really shines and salvaged it for me a little. I really wanted Destiny to be this big phenomenon for me and to a lot of people it is. But I was just so disappointed with so many aspects of it that I found it hard to push myself to go back. My friends list of Destiny players has since dwindled as other have lost interest in it and moved on to other games.
As much as I’ve tried, I’ve just not been able to agree with others on how great this game is. I felt as though it lacked so much, although does have so much potential to be so much more. On paper it seemed like a perfect game, but that’s not always the case when facing it hands on.
As negative as I may have been within this article, Destiny is worth picking up, especially if your going to be playing with friends. The crucible adds a great break from farming but those looking for an in depth MMO should really only rent or completely avoid this one.
The reason I may have seemed so harsh was due to the expectation I had prior release. I’ll more than likely work on Destiny until I receive the platinum, but I really can’t see it being a game that I may reminisce on further in the future. It seems my Destiny within the game is not the one I hoped for, I hope the series is able re-work the potential it has and expand on this within a future instalment.