|System: Xbox One, PS3, PS4*, Xbox 360|
|Release: September 9, 2014|
|Players: 1 (2+ Online)|
|Screen Resolution: 480p-1080p||Animated Blood Violence|
by Matt Walker
Ever so often a game is released that changes the expectations of gamers. It changes the way we look at the genre, and becomes that one game everyone is playing. If you aren’t playing it there’s a level of jealousy those would be players have against everyone else. We haven’t had one of those types of games in a long time. We’ve had a ton of games that modify the way we enjoy certain things about the genre. The last time gaming felt truly revolutionized was Halo 2 (no I don’t count the Wii). With Bungie being behind the last truly great revolution, it seems only fitting they do it once more with their latest franchise Destiny.
Now before the inevitable haters scream at my review, let me explain. I know there have been MMOs, FPSs, and RPGs merged, molded, and conformed into some great titles of the last console cycle. Defiance, DCU Online, and Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn to name just a few, but there’s one single thing all of those are truly missing: accessibility. I’m not saying those titles are incapable of handholding the player to comfortable levels, but with Destiny there’s something more approachable going on. This is the single reason Destiny stands above all other attempts at bringing this type of gameplay experience to consoles.
Shooters really haven’t advanced as far as controls in the past “forever” and this is very true for Destiny. Why should it? The control schemes work and they work well, no real need to change them. It’s because of this the controls in Destiny are simplistic and consistently fun to play. Yes, it does play very close to a Halo game, but honestly what did you expect from the developers who made Halo? This is not a criticism by any means. Instead it is very much a point of praise. After all, the first players who will pick up this title will be those who have played Halo and love Bungie. Like I said earlier, “don’t fix what isn’t broken”.
One area that excels past the Halo standard, to me, is the story. It’s about aliens and space. Hell, it’s even about a savior of mankind in a sense. Often I find myself gladly being lead down this expansive world Bungie has created. It does allow for some player imagination as well. This is a great thing in my eyes. Whenever the player is able to take the world they are playing in and feel connected on a personal plane of storytelling, gaming achieves a whole other sense of wonderment. Which is why MMOs generally are designed for players who are not afraid to expand upon a world with their own imagination. Bungie has done a wonderful job bringing that element in the world of Destiny and anyone who has that mindset of playing will find the available story elements, world, and universe that much more enjoyable.
Destiny is broken down into little story sections for you to travel to and explore. Some of those levels allow you only to complete the story mission, some allow you a more open map exploration (at your own risk) and then you have the strike team maps. These are probably my favorite. These are hard as hell, and really require you to find a good solid team to help assist you in conquering the missions of pure, insane, damaging fun.
There are also huge amounts of weapons, gear, and even space ships you will get throughout the game. These weapons really cater to the way you play the game. Well, not really the ships and coolest thing in gaming, The Sparrow, ‘cause I am still waiting for Bungie to allow us to fly the ships, but at least you can jettison around the maps with the Sparrow, mentally reliving the only good scene from Return of the Jedi. That side rave and tangent put away, I love the weaponry in Destiny. While the weaponry in Destiny is very typical to a space epic, the gear is also very typical but enjoyable to collect and modify as you go through missions. Certain ones will have upgradable features that further increase the doubts you have about changing the armor you’ve been challenging the world with for non-upgradable higher level armor.