Destiny Beta Impressions; Better Than Halo?

Posted on Aug 7 2014 - 4:00pm by Ben Brown
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Still though, it would be nice to see some tighter restrictions placed on vehicles so that there is more of an opportunity for players to take shots at these weak spots, with particular note to the tank which often kills in a single shot and has the ability to fire repeatedly on an incredibly short cool down. Adding a notable pause between shots adds pressure to hit right away to the pilot, knowing missing would leave them vulnerable for a time whilst waiting to fire again. As it is, players in tanks often stay a short distance away and repeatedly fire in the general direction of enemies making it near impossible to escape without some especially deft manoeuvres.

Upon completion of a match you are presented with information about the performance of all players involved, largely typical information found in most shooters such as a kill-death ratio, assists and points gained from completing objectives. The consistency of characters between story missions and crucible matches also means the inclusion of experience and equipment gains from crucible matches too, with matches often rewarding you with new weapons and armour. In my experience during time in the beta all rewards gained from crucible matches were notably unimpressive compared to rewards from missions. Notably however, unique items seem to become available during crucible events, as the Iron Banner event offered the opportunity to win items that were not accessible anywhere else in the beta. It is uncertain if these items will be available elsewhere in the full game release, but the inclusion of items only available during special events certainly makes involvement a much more tantalising prospect.

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The parameters for gaining these items does seem entirely random however, with no visible evidence explaining your reason for earning a piece of equipment. This caused a fair amount of outcry amongst the community as people grew increasingly irritable seeing underperforming players earning rare items at the end of matches. Whilst I do not necessarily have any issues with random chances to earn equipment during the matches, it’s easy to become frustrated when you see a player that was a hindrance to the team earning rewards substantially more impressive than anything you have gained during the limited time event. For the time being, inconsistencies and annoyances like this are present but compared to the scale of the game and the content on offer they are very minor.

For what appears to be such a small sample of what the final game has to offer, I gained a very large amount of entertainment from the content available. Each mission could be completed in a relatively short time, but continued to be entertaining on countless playthroughs. The small additional options such as free roam missions and bounties added a variety to gameplay that, though small, did a lot to prevent any monotony that might have presented its self otherwise. Towards the end of my 30+ hours spent inside the beta my want to move on and see new content was strong, but it didn’t detract from my enjoyment at what was available.

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A number of small gripes are present but all seem relatively inconsequential as of now and one would hope Bungie has already taken action against these from Beta feedback. The only true concern is that what content remains to be seen fails to offer the diversity Destiny will need to survive as long as seems intended for the game. If longevity is the goal than a large sampling of content is a must, and small teases seem to hint that this is exactly what is in store for us upon final release of the game this September. The beta has fortified my anticipation and curiosity about Destiny greatly, and leaves me completely confident that the game will be an incredible experience It also leaves me confident that it will be able to maintain my attention for a prolonged period of time, with the diversity present within its small sampling and it’s hints at bigger things to come, though I do fear that the end result, though immensely fun and crafted to sublime quality, may not be as much of a departure from the beta contend as I would hope. I have faith in Bungie, that the remaining planets we will visit are going to be filled with new and exciting adventures, and that the events and factions and game modes will continue to evolve and grow in number, and that Destiny will offer a spectrum of content so diverse that I never find myself losing interest once I have seen every mission and spent some time in every map.

Whatever the case, Destiny is and will undoubtedly continue to be one of the most enjoyable experiences in a game I have experienced in a long time. Not only did it make me crave returning even after I had experienced all of its content multiple times over, it made me break free of my typical restrictions, spending a large amount of time playing with friends using microphone as an almost exclusively solo gamer. Destiny may appear on the surface to be a simple mix of gameplay elements borrowed from other genre, but in reality it is an entirely new take on these elements. Destiny takes the familiar and allows us to view it in a new light all whilst offering new experiences never seen in games before, or at very least never done to such a spectacular quality.

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