Destiny: Setting Without a Plot

There are many elements right or wrong in Destiny, and after hitting max level and playing multiplayer for weeks I can safely say I’ve formed an opinion on both. Many argue that Destiny was held back in its storytelling by being an FPS MMO. However, The Old Republic, for all its microtransactions and irritating repetition, did succeed in storytelling despite being an MMO. Destiny did not. Let’s examine why after 7.62×39 hunting ammo we talk about some of the positives of Destiny.

THE POSITIVES

The Multiplayer – You choose these competitive multiplayer options from the Crucible, which is the Guardian’s way of blowing off steam, I’d expect. Destiny’s multiplayer, as expected, is pretty seamless. The different game types are really well done, and offer varying experiences based on player preferences. I prefer 3v3 “Skirmish” game mode instead of 6v6 “Clash”, for example. I find it more tactical and less chaotic. Some players will prefer “Control”, in which you and your team capture territory. There are a lot of options here, and it shows that they’ve really put some thought into it.

My one complaint is that vehicles aren’t used as often as they should. The “Combined Arms” limited game type allowed increased use of heavy ammo and vehicles, but it only lasted for three days in September! I miss the days of old when you and your friends would load up on a warthog just to get blasted into the air by a rocket launcher.

The Strikes – Strikes in Destiny are the equivalent of instances in most MMO’s. These are interesting, usually culminating in a fight with a horde of enemies at the end, then a boss is introduced, and finally you have to beat both the boss and the horde of enemies. It’s predictable, repetitive, and so much fun when you have mics. I played the Strike playlist enough to buy most of my armor pieces, but I found the most enjoyment in playing with my friends in a Fireteam. In these groups, we were able to communicate and enjoy one another’s company while trying to complete some scripted event. It was so much fun.

The Strikes are very limited. There aren’t many and you typically play the same ones you played in the single-player campaign, just at a higher setting. This was fun at first, but as you play the same strike over and over, it loses its glimmer.

I once did the same Martian strike three times in a row due to random bad luck. The worst part was that we’d get to the end, then someone would quit, then the other guy would quit, and then I’d be left alone until I also quit. Despite white-knuckled fury, I wasn’t able to beat it. I did eventually, but in those three times in a row I ended up physically hating the Cabal by the end of it.

Three-Man Teams – I remember trying to conquer a boss in Destiny with my friend and I. After we got swarmed by the Cabal for the last time, we gave up. Originally we decided to partner up to tackle him, because we wanted to record gameplay for YouTube. Eventually we were unable to progress and a bitter feeling took root in our perceptions of the game. This is one problem with a three-man team: once one member leaves, you’re down 33%.

I’ve noticed you depend too much on your team mates for Strikes. A person who leaves abandons two people to take on a whole mission on their own, an awkward partnership forged in hatred of the guy who left. Inevitably that partnership will dissolve and then you’ll be alone to quit. This is a huge problem, and there needs to be punishments for abandoning Strikes. So far there’s a reporting system, but you need to have the player’s information on screen in order to report them for leaving, and typically it’s too late by the time they’ve left.