After six years since the game was released in September 2017, I finally decided to give it a shot after my friend asked me to do so (for the hundredth time, probably, I’ve already lost count). I have vast experience with the MMO and First Person shooter genres, so I had some expectations from both standpoints. Even though Destiny is not an MMO in the traditional sense, it is still massive and even went on par with industry giants like World of Warcraft. So, without further ado, let’s cover how it went.
New Player Experience
Since the game has been out for quite some time now, there’s a whole timeline of events that I’ve missed, and worst, some of them, I won’t even have a chance to try out. The Vaulting of content means that legendary classic campaigns, such as Red War and Forsaken expansions that were most recommended to me are now unavailable, hurting the world-building. Jumping straight to the current storyline is confusing unless you can be given at least a short version of its lore.
The New Light (this is what the new players are called in the game) introduction questline sends you on a journey, gradually introducing you to all the game’s main mechanics and providing us with some good pieces of gear for your class, including good Exotic Armor. Or at least it’s trying its best to do so, as even with its current pace, it still feels like you are thrown straight into the endgame way too soon.
Instead of leveling up your character like in WoW or other MMOs, you increase the Power Level of your Guardian. Specific Power Caps cut out most of the rewards from the pool that can further improve your power, forcing players to do more complex activities to upgrade the gear further. The level caps are:
- Soft Cap of 1750
- Power Cap of 1800
- Pinnacle Cap of 1810
Completing the campaign of the latest Lightfall expansion provides players with a 1770 set of armor, which, as you can see, gives you a good jumpstart, but I’m not sure if it’s even possible unless you do the campaign with a friend, as I did. My weapons did not affect the enemies much compared to what my Titan friend could do, smashing through enemies with a hammer and grenade launchers. At the same time, I was only helpful when I had the special abilities overcharged with the campaign story mechanics. But once you’re at 1770, the main journey is still ahead. You will have to farm lots of powerful and pinnacle activities that drop power-improving loot only once a week, and honestly, I feel like outsourcing this farm to Destiny 2 boost service is well worth it, as for me, the time is worth much more.
Gear and Builds
I started playing at the perfect moment when some quality-of-life changes went live, such as all armor mods being available to all players immediately instead of unlocking them through vendors and activities. The mods are pretty straightforward – some increase the stats of your armor and provide utilities, while others offer enhanced defenses or improve your weapon’s damage based on their elemental affinity. And if you are just starting your collection of Exotic Armor, you wait for a weekend to come – the Xur vendor spawns in one of the fixated locations each weekend and remains there until the weekly reset. There, you’ll be able to pick at least two pieces of random exotic armor and pick up a quest that will bring you one step closer to obtaining some powerful Exotic Weapon from the Exotic Kiosk.
The kiosk is located in the tower, and you can purchase some of the most powerful weapons in the game that were added in previous expansions. To get one, you will need a rare currency rewarded for completing the mentioned quest from Xur.
As a fan of first-person shooters, the feeling of each weapon, the gunplay, and the overall design captivated me the most. Maps, the design of enemies, how you deal with them, and the power fantasy of classes with different abilities perfectly combine fantasy with sci-fi themes and ideas. Indeed, a space magic! Each gun feels unique instead of being a copy-paste from one another, and I swear I can log in to Destiny just to shoot for a while as a sort of anti-stress. Yes, it’s just that good and satisfying.
As expected from the RPG game, there is a scale of enemies difficulty, some are much easier to deal with, and others can kick your ass rather easily. Yet, even as a new player, you don’t feel like a complete dead weight and can deal quite a lot of damage and destroy ads and elites, especially using your abilities.
While the game is struggling to provide a new player experience that will instantly capture your attention from the get-go, this very same game can make you fall in love at first sight if the theme and gameplay appeal to you – even the F2P sample is well worth giving it a try and deciding for yourself if you want to dive deeper into the universe of Destiny.