Six Reasons Why I Actually Really Like Destiny

Destiny is controversial. Destiny is divisive. But I don’t want to talk about that. I don’t want to be all like, Destiny has its problems but…

I want to talk about why I am currently enjoying Destiny more than any other major game release this year.

That’s it. That is literally all this article is. A list of things I like. It isn’t an attempt to tell people they are wrong for not liking Destiny. It isn’t an attempt to tell you what you should or shouldn’t be enjoying about the game. It is merely a list of things that I personally like about Destiny, because I am enjoying it. A lot.


1. Destiny is beautiful

This might be the most obvious thing I like about Destiny – that it’s pretty. Overwhelmingly pretty. It’s aesthetically pleasing on just about every possible level I can describe. The skyboxes are glorious. You cannot interact with them but by golly you can look at them. Sometimes I feel like playing Destiny because I just want to look at the sky and what it looks like today. Sometimes that feels like as good a reason to play as any.

The environments are brilliantly designed, but still manage to feel as though they are naturally occurring. A difficult balance to strike in a shooter. A balance I appreciate.

In general, Destiny is one of the most beautiful shooters I have ever played. I want to be there. I want to hang out in that world.


2. Destiny’s core is near perfect

When the core of your game is solid, rewarding and engaging I will most likely ignore every single other flaw I can find. The rest, essentially, is window dressing.

I can’t emphasize enough how much fun it is in Destiny to simply shoot things. And in a game that is primarily about shooting things, this is important.

Fun is a shit word, maybe ‘engaged’ is better. Maybe it’s best to describe it as rewarding. Another way of phrasing is this: I am never bored when shooting things in Destiny despite the fact that is basically the only thing I am ever doing.

What is it specifically that works? It’s hard to pinpoint. Destiny is the endpoint of years upon years of working on shooters, tweaking small aspects of it, evolving, tossing out what doesn’t work. Bungie got it right first time with Halo: Combat Evolved, and Destiny is an evolution of that.

And the additions -- knife throwing, the upgrades – deviations from that core feel as though they’ve been given the same amount of care. On a moment to moment basis, Destiny constantly provides options for the player to creatively use a great range of mechanics to solve combat related problems.


3. Moving around in Destiny is 'fun'

It is isn’t it? Summoning a futuristic anti-gravity speed bike from thin air before hopping on it for boost-filled adventures across alien lands is a glorious idea and it works brilliantly in practice. It’s the sci-fi equivalent of whistling for your horse in Red Dead Redemption and it’s seamlessly woven into the game’s fiction.

It’s quick, accessible and looks slick in action. The boost feels weighty and it provides a great distraction from trundling across environments.

But even in general – manoeuvring in Destiny feels slick. The pace of movement is great, the environments feel worthy of exploration and the game has triple jumps.

Guys, Destiny has triple jumps. Triple jumps.


4. Destiny has triple jumps

I’m pretty much honour bound to love any first person game that has a double jump. Exhibit A: Metroid Prime.

But a triple jump? Sweet mother of God… that’s just fan service.


5. Destiny has that ‘one more go’ thing going for it

Alright, we’re moving into vague territory here. I don’t know why it’s so hard to stop playing Destiny. It just is. It’s more than the spinning reels of loot gathering. It’s the combination of it all: the loot, the levelling, the world, the core shooting, the traversal. The 1s and 0s, the fundamentals of Destiny, are so sound that it’s easy to just continue on and on and on…


6. The UI. Sweet lord the UI

Mostly, this is just about the general experience of Destiny. The world and its applications. The seamless way you can leap from levels to multiplayer without feeling like you’re playing a different game. The manner in which juggling menu systems is a pleasure as opposed to be a chore.

How did Bungie manage this? Seriously. I don’t even like fixing my gear up in Dark Souls, my favourite game of the last five years. That in itself feels like a huge achievement.


Ah the positivity. The glorious positivity. I’m not even going to mention the terrible exposition, dreadful voice acting, or the limited amount of content. Nosiree bob. I won’t mention it at all.


Comments

    I agree with majority, apart from UI and graphics.

    UI looks great, but is so damn inefficient that it hurts. Dat parallax, too. Overall it's barely a 6/10, but I don't care because it fits in.

    The graphics are okay for PS4. Yes, the sky is pretty damn amazing, but it's not the best-looking PS4 game out there. Overall, great effort and no complaints here - but have you played a cranked PC game? :P

    I'm with you on your conclusion of it. Looking forward to play it every day.

    Despite its flaws I'm also loving this game. Its a shame its getting such mediocre reviews.

      Who honestly gives a flying f*$& about reviews if you enjoy playing a game is this not what matters most?

    Something has got to be said when our local Dark Souls fanatic plays a game that riffs on the passive multiplayer and it doesn't even get a mention. There's just so much potential here and they screwed it, and that's not even including the whole lack of content issue.

      the lack of content "issue" is a non-issue, if you dont like this sort of game then that is fair enough, but there is no lack of content, it is essentially a FPSARPG with MMO elements, it has as much or more than any of the Diablo games have and they kick on hard for many years.

      Not to mention they are drawing it out in an MMO fashion, as they should, look at the first raid, beaten within 2 weeks of release, had they released everything they plan to release within the next 12 months at launch it would be gobbled up by these hardcore raider in a matter of weeks. It is also those progression raiders that perpetuate hype in the end game of any MMO, if they eat up all the content in a couple of weeks then vanish from the game for the next 12 months by the time they do have new content the game will have a fraction of the community.

      That aside, I have been playing extremely heavily since launch and have yet to run out of things to do, if you like the sort of game this is (hence the Diablo comparison) you will have plenty to do. Yes it is grind-y and yes it is doing the same missions, killing the same things over and over again, its ok if you dont like that, but thats personal preference not lack of content.

      Last edited 19/09/14 4:48 pm

        Seconded.

        I will say that I got over a lot of the repetitiveness by simply changing what I did whenever I got bored. I stopped caring about efficiently gearing, or even maxing out marks. I'll hop on, pick something and just play it, whether thats clearing bounties, strike playlist, pvp... Hell I spent most of my gametime tracking down dead ghosts.

        (Sad side story, only missing two now... One not available till Iron Banner and the other bugged.)

        Although it seems like it should be repetitive, it doesn't really feel that way if I just break up how I play.

        A normal MMO should be able to go at least 3 months without minor content addons. Its been a couple of weeks and people are already talking about expansion packs. I'm not trying to take away from your fun, but the fun you're having isn't content driven.

          Mists of Pandaria release date: 25th September

          First raid (Mogu'shan Vaults) release: 9th October

          First clear: 12th October

          Guess the end game WoW gamers were playing wasn't content driven either being they had cleared it within a couple of weeks.

            LOL, you can't be serious. WoW has been out for 10 years and is near the end of its lifecycle, thats why content has to come out this fast now. Destiny is just starting out, and you think its okay that it needs to release content like its already been out for 10 years? That's entirely the problem.

              No that is my point exactly, WoW is a 10 year old game with 10 years worth of content yet still releases on the same time frames and it's end game is about as content rich, has been the same for pretty much all the xpacs since WotLK, doesnt matter how old the game is its the same sort of cycle.

                I think you may have missed my point then; WoW is bleeding players because the veterans are burning out and consume new content faster than ever. Without new content the game would die regardless of the existing content. This is the problem that Destiny has NOW, just a few weeks after release. If you have to compare Destiny to WoW, compare it with vanilla - it was 6 months before BWL came out, and people still weren't tired of the base content at that point.

                I don't think this is a fair comparison because Destiny isn't an MMO, but my overall point is it has a lot of MMO elements without the content to justify it.

                  Comparing it to WoW on scale is unfair but the point is that I find it hard to believe people can justify saying it lacks content.

                  Destiny has half a dozen or so instances of varying difficulty, a raid, mark system for gear and a gatherimg/crafting system (even if the crafting side isn't all that in depth). This is as much as pretty much any MMO launches with, easily the level of DCUO, Rift, FFXIV (the first failed release) and more than Firefall which I'd say is it's closest rival.

                  I'm not sure what you're expecting but anyone who's already begging for expansion packs are the ones who burnt through the story and aren't willing to go through the grind or don't understand it. Destiny has the unfortunate position of really being the first mainstream console "MMO" (even if it's really MMO-lite) and it was not really marketed as such so I personally believe people had a different expectation of the game, don't quite understand the type of progression it uses (being unaccustomed to MMOs if they are console only players) or just straight up don't like that sort of game but refuse to admit they can't like the game (probably because of expectations).

    I agree on pretty much all points. I was really worried I would hate it being an MMO-y FPS but I've managed to play most of it solo with near-seamless matchmaking for strike missions. I did have to solo one strike last night when matchmaking failed to find me someone to play with, but I am not overly concerned about that as a systemic issue. Overall you can kill time without feeling like you're killing time. Grabbing bounties and then killing stuff to fulfil those bounties, or doing patrols, feels less like grinding and more like playing, and that's something I'm very happy about.

    I actually like the UI. I think this is the first time I've seen a console game assign the thumbstick to a floating cursor instead of having to flick digitally between menu items and it works nicely. The on-the-fly comparison system works great and is more intuitive than something like, say, Diablo III. Granted, this is aided by the fact that the stats were employing aren't as deep so there isn't as much tweaking required. This blends with the whole pick and and go experience.

    You go to orbit, pick a destination and load your mission - including patrol free roam. Zorch your bike into existence and tear across the landscape. Jump off and kill stuff or explore if you want, otherwise keep going. When you're done? Hop back up into orbit. Even though travelling is zippy and/or conducted via loading screens you still get a marvellous sense of scale - this is a big game. Admittedly it feels a bit empty in places, but I hope to see much more content branching off in the future (as in content that will open up, not just DLC). The next update seems to indicate we'll get to explore the Reef, so I'm pretty hyped for that.

    *this might be double-posted, for some reason the site wouldn't let me log in until I posted as a guest?

    I'd like to see a comparison of PS3 & PS4 versions to see the proper difference in graphics and what could be done with a current-gen only version. It still looks awesome though.

    One more thing I'd add is the AI. It's intelligent. It learns your tactics. That's great to keep the game challenging.

    One more one more thing I'd add is the amount of extra content they've been giving since day one. Yeah it's not extra missions, planets or aliens yet (DLC), but I had a real concern that once I hit level 20 and then maxed out my armour what would there be to do except start a new character and try it with a different class? Would there only be Crucible matches to play once the story missions were tiring? No, so far there's been a healthy amount of extra challenges, new strikes and more content coming this weekend. That's encouraging to see that Bungie are serous about keeping this game running and updated rather than loving it and leaving it once it's out

      I dunno, the AI tends to do just about the same thing every time - I find in every moderately difficult encounter there's always a way to exploit it. I also feel like the smaller enemies have Halo grunt AI - all they do is duck behind every single bit of cover imaginable and pop their heads out. Bigger enemies and bosses you can just position yourselves on opposing sides and force them to constantly rotate on the spot, taking turns with damage.

    I like dropships. It's so sweet seeing an enemy ship warp into existence, then hunting those mofos down with a well timed grenade. It was awesome in Halo and it's just as awesome now.

    Destiny is a fantastic game that will be changing and growing, people don't seem to understand that second part. I've honestly found most criticisms to be arbitrary and almost irrelevant. I mean people are mad at the story: it isn't done. People are mad at the value: you get dozens of hours NOW plus dozens LATER for FREE. I've heard people complain about graphics and Peter Dinklage, about the UI and the loot. They talk about these things as if they break the game but i've literally never even noticed a problem with these or any sort of obstacle i've needed to overcome for them to work effectively. It seems subject to the idea that if a person can conceive of a problem, then it IS a problem. Of course, this is entirely irrespective of the fact that it many never pose anyone a single problem ever.

    I'm having fun, Destiny's a great place to hang out too. I even have it on next me when i'm working just to take a break every hour or so and do a patrol, go to the tower or a game of control... Makes working way easier.

    Last edited 19/09/14 4:32 pm

      What work do you do that you can take breaks on games?!?

    Is this worth getting on PS3? I'm not really planning on upgrading to PS4 anytime soon as I've just upgraded my PC. Most of my friends would be likely to get this on console, so the PS3 version is the one I'd probably grab.

    Are the differences mainly just cosmetic/ player population?

      If you're playing with friends, why do you care about the population? :P

        Touche sir. But seriously, I dont have a large circle of friends, so being able to jump into PUG's when they're not online would be something to consider. Larger pop, easier to find groups.

          everything except raids and weekly missions is soloable or has public match making

            Weekly heroic strikes are soloable if you have the patience, well the first weeks one was. I haven't tried this weeks one yet but I've heard of people doing it.

            Granted, not the best way to experience the content =P

          Why not go back to Halo: Reach? Since it went free the population has recieved a boost.

            Because Reach is terrible and Destiny is actually decent?

      they are likely to only get it on console seeing as it only exists there :P if you have 5 friends who can play with you then population is completely irrelevant, as neo says, as 6 man is the highest amount you can have for any activity.

    I really wouldn't call having to go to the effort of going back to orbit in order to queue for anything including multiplayer 'seamless'... It honestly baffles me how pointless, and actually-not-very-social, of a 'social hub' the Tower is.

    I get wanting immersion... Feeling like you're dropping onto a planet from orbit, etc, etc. But there's a point when it becomes tedious and should be reined in just a tad for the sake of gameplay, especially when it comes to wanting to simply queue for multiplayer modes.

    Love it. A great platform to build upon. The criticism, though valid, seems to have generated major amounts of hate. If this were some Indie darling made by five guys in a basement the reviews would be through the roof.

    I know, I know. The hype machine. High expectations. That's all bullshit. I'm not addicted to the high production values.

    I'm addicted to LOOT... And to a lesser degree shooting things.

    Last edited 19/09/14 6:23 pm

      I've been playing Destiny flat out since it's release and I love it. The only suggestion I could make is making it easier to communicate with others In the tower , all it would need is where you select to interact with another player is a chat option and the other player could either accept or deny request , would make strike and raid organization much easier.

    In the end, Bungie us recreated Halo for online play and multiplatform. It's not a bad thing, and I enjoy it.
    That said, I am a bit disappointed in seeing Bungie break away from Microsoft because they didn't want to make Halo for eternity, only to turn around and make Halo again. They had a clean slate with a good reputation behind themselves, why is it then that they cant break free and create something different?

    I honestly can't see the hate it's attracting. I'm completely addicted, and it's the brought life to my PS4.

      I can, the first day or so and after finishing the story there was a lot of emptiness... There's a lot of expectations that they just didn't meet.

      However, once you get over that... It is a great game. I'm wondering why I was ever hesitant to say that now.

    It's funny people complain about loot in this game, In other games greens are near worthless trash and in this game almost every green I find is an upgrade (I'm not at Cap yet) and due to the rarity of the finds I'm getting excited when I see anything.

    I even like the fact there are no auction houses so you can't just go buy a bunch of dirt cheap green gear every level.

    Last edited 19/09/14 7:17 pm

      Soon as you hit 20 all the greens you get go back to being near worthless trash.

      Even breaking them down for crafting materials it gets to the point where you've got so much of these materials it becomes pointless... Even for the glimmer you get breaking them down becomes worthless as it is very fast and easy to hit the utterly bizarre 25k glimmer cap once you're running the strikes at level 20+.

        you must not be upgrading any of your gear because the materials don't become useless at all.

          I'm talking about greens specifically... I've upgraded pretty much everything I have as far as the ascendant mats I've had will take me, and still have a ridiculous amount of the materials you get from dismantling green weapons or armour.

          And even once I get more ascendant mats to finish upgrading the legendaries I do have, I'll still have weapon parts and plastisteel left over. So it definitely approaches pointless when the parts quite literally become a non-issue.

          I upgrade anything whenever I can and I have 200+ weapon parts at the moment doing sweet fa.

          They 're definitely handy early on but as you level up they do indeed become rather useless.

    I subjectively don't really agree with 2. The shooting is the most boring and tedious part of the game for me, especially since the AI is basically the same as Borderlands' "Pop out and shoot if you're shooty, run at the player if you're melee, or just stomp around and shoot if you're a big guy". Firefights become a heck of a lot more interesting when you start taking advantage of the jump/glide/lift mechanics to incorporate verticality into your attacks and employ your melee skills (and knife throwing skills which I wish was more frequent) and big attacks. It's also really amusing to watch everyone hunker down after you throw a grenade at them.

    Best game I have played all year, it's shear fun factor is huge for me. That being said I wish a dang purple would drop for me, none after 20 hours at level 24 is ridiculius

    Love it, really don't understand why it's reviewing poorly but don't care as I'm having a great time playing it, as are millions of people. I am looking forward to future expansions and additions to the game and Bungie have already announced new content for the coming months.

    Oh my god, THANK YOU. Reading this has been refreshing. I'm so sick reading reviews etc saying that Destiny could have been this or should have been that. How about Destiny is just what it is? It doesn't follow all the conventions and I think that's one reason why I LOVE it. It's beautiful, different and overall very engaging.

    Let's all perpetuate the idiotic stereotype that its ok not to hire a writer for your game because its just a game who cares.

    Been loving this game since day 1. Hop on every day to smash out my bounties, do some strikes and work towards improving/acquiring better gear. I have no complaints outside of the typical "raids + weekly strike need matchmaking."
    One thing I'd love is proximity chat, similar to that of dayz. Imagine how awesome dance parties would be in the tower with people to talk to?

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