The moon has opened for business, and Destiny is out in the wild. Reviews have yet to really pop-up, though, and for good reason. After all, it’s an online-only game that just went live the other day. Written impressions will come, for sure, but like you, us reviewers are experiencing the full game for the first time. As such, our written thoughts have been delayed a bit.
The We Got This Covered bunker received its review copy yesterday, and an all-nighter was spent with the game in order to get some first thoughts collected. So far, my manly Titan has conquered several story missions, and is nearing level 7, thanks to some early morning matches in the competitive Crucible. If you’re new to things, that’s Destiny‘s player-versus-player multiplayer realm, where classic game modes like Team Deathmatch, Free-For-All and control point capture play out in frenetic fashion.
Our full review should be published by the end of this week, or during the early portion of next week, so please check back for it then. We apologize for the delay, but are sure that you understand why it’s necessary. In order to properly review a game of this ilk, we need to give it time and test it in the company of other online players. It gives us the opportunity to gauge server strength, performance and community behaviour, and also makes for a thorough review, as opposed to something rushed.
I will tell you, though, that I’m enjoying my time with Destiny. That said, I’m not blown away by the game. It’s fun and immersive, but I’ve yet to find the wow factor that all great games include. Maybe I will, though; only time will tell.
Most of my time has been spent within story missions, as well as one free roam patrol, wherein I was able to walk around and find my own missions to undertake, by activating beacons. Since I played late at night and most of my friends were well ahead of me, I undertook the Earth missions alone. That led to some challenging encounters, because Destiny isn’t exactly a single player focused game. Even on normal, it can be pretty tough at times, especially when it throws much higher-levelled enemies at you. I’d be lying if I said that I never became frustrated.
Being the type of person who loves single player RPGs, and also happens to be a completionist, I find myself scouring Destiny‘s environments for secrets and hidden loot caches, of which there haven’t been many. However, despite doing this in missions that are listed as being for levels one through five, I’ve come across enemies who level in the early to late teens. Of course, this has led to instant death and forced respawns. The good news there is that you can come back to life almost instantly, by pressing square. That is, during normal segments. The game throws you into the fire about once a mission, in shadow realms where respawning is prohibited. If you perish — which I’ve done a few times — you’re shit out of luck and have to restart that particular part. Most of the time, it was failure to get back into cover that led to my deaths, with boss characters being responsible for most of the damage.
When I wasn’t fighting enemies on Earth, in order to unlock access to the moon, I was either walking around the surprisingly tiny Tower hub or competing in the Crucible.
The Tower is a good place to go if you need a breather, want to buy new gear or have discovered items deciphered, or even dance with a stranger. There’s little to it, though, and it’s not a place that will go down in video game history for its creativity or greatness. It simply exists as a hub, where you can do the above or progress your story by talking to your character type’s elder.
On the other hand, the Crucible is a realm where players can hone their skills and show off their prowess. It’s a bit like Halo, and allows you to bring your abilities into the fray. As such, it seems like those who have levelled up more have a bit of an advantage, but I may be wrong. I got my ass kicked a lot, and really need to work on my skills.
In fact, the entire game has a bit of a Halo feel to it, which is understandable given Bungie’s past. Destiny is its own beast, however. It just so happens to incorporate things from Microsoft’s behemoth, including its jetpack-like boosters, high jumps and energy grenades. That, and some of its gunplay mechanics, which feel pretty great.
The last thing I’ll say about the game is this: If you liked its Alpha and its Beta, then you’ll enjoy the full experience. If not, it’s likely that it just isn’t for you. It runs very well, and looks really good on PS4, but it’s not going to be for everyone.
Stay tuned for our full review of Destiny, which we’re working hard on and look forward to publishing.