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Bungie's Life After Halo: Destiny Review

By Julio Franco
Sep 23, 2014
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  1. bungie life halo destiny review destiny gaming console

    I'm standing in front of a cave, my assault rifle drawn. I'm shooting at a steady stream of identical aliens. I do this for an hour, hoping an alien will drop a good enough item so I can finally feel okay about walking away. That moment never seems to come. That's Destiny.

    I'm sprinting across a battlefield alongside two friends. A massive alien gladiator wielding an equally massive shotgun chases us all over, his minions appearing on all sides. We shift and maneuver, coordinate our defensive strategy on the fly, cry out for help, rush to one another's aid. For twenty minutes we survive by the skin of our teeth, until the boss goes down in a tower of flame. We circle back to where he fell and start to dance. That's Destiny, too.

    Read the complete review.

     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 6, 2015
  2. VitalyT

    VitalyT Russ-Puss Posts: 3,156   +1,431

    Yawn...
     
  3. yukka

    yukka TechSpot Paladin Posts: 831   +54

    That is definitely the best review I have read regarding Destiny. It sums up all the feelings I have had for the game. The cave of treasure, the randomness of the loot, the annoyance that bosses don't have any better chance to drop items than any other creature. I really like the PVP and it looks and plays brilliantly IMO but the endgame of "repeat all the missions at higher difficulties without any significant reward" doesn't interest me. They need to fix the loot to be more like diablo, they need to have more outright war scenarios like the mass spawning that occasionally happens near the loot cave, and they need to put some additional scenarios in. But treasure and mass spawnings would be a great start.
     
    H3llion and Julio Franco like this.
  4. ikesmasher

    ikesmasher TS Evangelist Posts: 2,561   +862

    It assumes that people don't want to know more about the lore because their "imagination" does the work for them. I was all aboard the destiny hype train but playing destiny has this weird overbearing sense of anxiety because you realize that you don't really know whats going on.

    Also, Destiny has some of the worst selection of video game hair ive ever seen. :p

    People try to praise the endgame and such but the fact that people have conquered the entire game this soon in is pretty sad.

    You can't justify this game's lack of real story, or how quickly one can get through it. Or its hair selection. You can justify pretty much anything else though.
     
    Julio Franco likes this.
  5. davislane1

    davislane1 TS Evangelist Posts: 3,565   +2,373

    This review makes Destiny sound a lot more exciting and challenging than it is. The only points I can agree with the author on are the soundtrack, gunplay, and how enjoyable the Crucible and Raids can be. Outside of those elements, Bungie failed to effectively deliver anything of substantial value.

    The game does an abysmal job of informing you about its universe or doing anything interesting. I could tell you how every mission revolves around the exact same formula. I could tell you how side missions have zero variation, how strikes are tedious and predicable (contrary to what the author suggested, enemies never behave unexpectedly), how the character creator is terrible, how the world levels feel artificial and boring, or how the loot system is broken (I'm looking at you, Cryptroll). I could even tell you about how the boss battles are uninspired and how this week's special Queen's bounties ask you to complete the same tasks as previous Crucible and Vanguard bounties. Hell, I could tell you about the glaring significance of "I could tell you." But I don't even have time to explain why I don't have time to explain that.

    I can't say that the raid puzzles were as challenging as advertised here. If anything, they are painfully obvious. The only difficulty with completing them is whether your team's gear is up to spec for the dungeon. It is a blast to coordinate with people, though. Raids require a complete team effort to succeed, and that generates a great feeling in a game.

    PVP is remarkably well balanced and fun. I've heard a number of complaints about how exotics and legendary weapons give people an advantage, but, frankly, I haven't seen it. Personally, I ditch my exotic primary w/ status effects (Thorn) for a rare auto rifle whenever I play PVP. RoF is also not an issue as, from what I've tested, each of the guns outputs the same DPS in PVP.

    Ultimately, this isn't a must play game. This is a game you pick up after the price drop, after you've finished playing everything else that's out there.
     
    ikesmasher and Julio Franco like this.
  6. amstech

    amstech TechSpot Enthusiast Posts: 1,457   +606

    I'll pass on this one
    Great writeup Mr. Kirk.
     
  7. yukka

    yukka TechSpot Paladin Posts: 831   +54

    The story is awful and the script for Ghost is up there with the worst obvious cliches I have heard. I ended up laughing at how bad it was by the end. It says things that are meant to be dramatic but I was all "wtf I have no idea who the hive/the other 2/errrr are. But when the story is done the game really begins...

    I just wish I knew who the different factions were (or could remember because I am sure I knew once) so I could go to the right planet to get the bounties and kill the things. Might have to wiki it..
     
  8. GhostRyder

    GhostRyder This guy again... Posts: 2,191   +590

    I have to agree because Destiny was sounding so epic and in all honesty after completing every mission other than multiplayer stuff I keep getting left wondering what the heck was going on and what did I miss.

    Every mission revolves around the same thing, protect the offspring of Guilty Spark and Cortana while it opens doors for you or gets information from the hordes of enemies charging in while every once in awhile fighting a bullet sponge boss surrounded by guards essentially there to give you more ammo. No variation for the most part and I found that the lack of interesting vehicles/vehicle combat during the campaign to be pitiful considering there are vehicles but they are rarely used on top of the fact the main vehicle you get has no weapons and makes it harder to run someone down with than a mongoose was in Halo 3.

    Not only all that but the weapons themselves are pretty much the same thing and the only difference are a few different stats. I could ignore that but man some of the guns in the game and getting them are just ridiculous. The whole loot system is completely flawed because its all luck based and really shows using the grind cave as a better option then fighting for an hour or so on a boss. There were so many segments I found utterly pointless and time consuming to the point where I was pissed I wasted over 2 hours killing that dang cabal commander and his lieutenants which were all bullet sponges just to receive a cloak that was worse than the one I'm wearing. I also feel the shops completely suck in terms of purchases unless you spend so much time doing bounty challenges (Which I do not mind doing) and even then the equipment that gets unlocked still feels like a big middle finger to the face.

    I will continue to play and sadly I bought the season pass because I really want to love this game and honestly the gun play is really run. The game looks great, sounds great, and plays great (With respect to physics and weapons) but the main game was beyond short and lacked any difference in battles.

    Last, WTF is with the story. I mean come on I was brought back from the dead after what a couple hundred years. I am PRETTY SURE I would have some questions or be a little more freaked out by that then just a little pat on the back while they hand me a rifle and say "Alright kill some aliens". Its just clearly lacking any polish or real story telling skills. Heck I hate to be this arrogant but I am pretty sure many if not most of us here or around could have done a better job with the story. It literally feels like the game will be sold to us in pieces in all honesty and maybe when the expansions come out we might get a better understanding of the story...
     
  9. Puiu

    Puiu TS Evangelist Posts: 1,915   +537

    I'm waiting for the PC version to come out for them to add much more content.
     
  10. davislane1

    davislane1 TS Evangelist Posts: 3,565   +2,373

    You aren't being arrogant. You're being realistic.
     
  11. GhostRyder

    GhostRyder This guy again... Posts: 2,191   +590

    Indeed, but I still value peoples skills in the industry when it comes to story telling as it is not an easy venture hence why I said it that way. But in all seriousness they literally dropped the ball with no explanations on what was going on. The only segments I felt with any decent story telling involved the queen and her brother out on the edge of the universe until they obviously dismissed you with a setup clearly stating "WE ARE DLC FOR LATER!!!" and the stranger basically saying "ILL BE BACK ONCE YOU DEPOSIT $40 MORE DOLLARS" after handing you her rifle.
     
  12. I liked Halo, and for me it has only got worse since the first. Sure there are some improvements on graphics, on some fights. But nothing holds up to the first. It was just a cash cow.
    And I bought an xbox360 pretty much just to follow it more, but no, I couldnt after 3. Halo Reach just lost my interest.
    It just feels old.
    I remember seeing this and thinking, wow, Assassins Creed / Borderlands 2 mix. Pass.
    I don't see much in the way of originality. And it seems to me as much as the review says yes, the people have spoken.
    I was right to pass on this.
    But in sale on steam if ever it comes this way. Sure I can part with a fiver.
     
  13. classic reflux

    classic reflux TS Rookie

    This review, while it makes several points I agree with, does not provide a fair or accurate description of what Destiny's endgame is all about. If someone who had yet to play the game read this review, they would be under the impression that practically the only way to advance post level twenty is to just mindlessly farm the loot cave all day long.

    This is simply not true.

    Though it's barely mentioned in this review, a significant component of Destiny's endgame is leveling up faction reputation and acquiring specific kinds of currency in order to obtain legendary gear. Once you level up rep with a certain vendor you're able to use a currency called marks (acquired either from PVP or PVE activities, whatever floats your boat) to purchase legendary gear. Doing weekly strike challenges also guarantees players a rare currency called "strange coins" which can be used to purchase exotic (the highest level gear in the game) items from a vendor who only arrives in the hubworld on weekends. Going this route (doing weekly challenges and various PVE/PVP activities) as opposed to solely farming the overworld in the hopes of dropping engrams is, in my opinion a much more satisfying way to approach the endgame. The game is designed to reward doing activities that provide reputation and unique currency by giving players the ability to purchase high end legendary gear; going this route ensures that you are not at the mercy of random number generation for getting your top level gear.

    Additionally, when you're engaging in all of these structured activities (weekly strike challenges and PVE/PVP activities) you are gaining engrams (that do sometimes decode into legendary items) by killing enemies anyway! The Cryptarch (who does provide better gear more consistently as you level him), really seems like a complimentary piece of the endgame grind and not the primary focus (as the reviewer seems to believe).

    All loot grind style games have a certain amount of luck and chance to them, it's just part of the formula, but to characterize Destiny has forcing players in to a post level twenty purgatory where all they can do is the farm the same spot until they can experience the raid is a gross misrepresentation. Pay attention to weeklies/dailies (and limited time events like "Queen's Wrath"), do bounties, and level factions. This method adds variety to the shooting and ENSURES that you'll get legendary gear. Don't read this review and assume that the loot cave is practically mandatory. Some people prefer to mindlessly grind the same spot, if that's your style, right on, I don't judge. There are however, other ways to play this game.
     
  14. It's a shame that a competent person writes such good reviews on a massively corrupt site. I do not support Kotaku what so ever, ever since they ignore facts and post a majority of click bait articles that only further their agenda. Other than that, this is the most in depth and fair review I've seen for Destiny so far, before they really get to the end game stuff that is, and I appreciate the read.
     

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