Developed by the iconic company that revolutionized online gaming with Halo 2, Bungie delivered “Destiny” 3 long years ago. While the game has earned its place in video game history as one of the most played games of all time, it has had its fair share of flaws and questionable marketing decisions. I cannot in good faith say it hasn’t captivated me with its impeccable gameplay and incredibly extensive (while not necessarily in-game) depth of epic and en-thrall-ing (see what I did there) lore. Since its release, Bungie has changed nearly every aspect of Destiny, from the game’s economy to weapon balance, had multiple expansions, and grown from something worth playing into something legendary. Personally, I’ve put well over a thousand hours into this game, many of which were with close friends, however, strangers, who may or may not have become friends, were always there to fill the empty slots of raid fireteams. Now, with e3 on the horizon, Destiny 2 is approaching with hype at an all time high and I can’t help but wonder what’s in store for us devoted guardians as we move toward our next adventure.
To our delighted surprise Bungie revealed the gameplay of Destiny 2 before e3, and while unbelievable amounts of hype overwhelmed me during the reveal, I’ve since calmed down and had a chance to collect my thoughts on what I’ve seen and what I hope the juggernaut developer has brewing for us. A wide variety of minuscule elements of the original Destiny had me questioning Bungie since day one. Various, maybe insignificant to some, things such as seemingly redundant perks on weapons, “open worlds” that weren’t really open, the dreadfully agonizing “orbit” loading screen, an incomparable level of repetition, and a lack of truly desirable rewards have earned the series a hesitant nod. I remember reading the first feature article in my Game Informer magazine and imagining an expansive world, unlike anything we had ever seen. Perhaps my imagination ran a bit too wild, but then again when I hear the term “open world” I don’t think I’m wrong to expect as little loading screens as possible. Not only that but I hope for side missions and a map full of hidden treasures and fewer barriers keeping me from satisfying my curiosity. Destiny, at least in that aspect, failed to fulfill my need for adventure.
With all due respect, Destiny is one of the smoothest and most gloriously beautiful first-person shooters I think anyone has ever played. Many players would agree that the raids were some of the best (and worst) times they’ve ever had online but just as many would say they never got to experience the raids due to a lack of in-game “looking for game” system (though if you’re an Xbox One player the console has helped a lot with its new LFG mechanics). Another group of players, who’s sole purpose was to thrive within the game’s PvP arena, would tell you the game was relentlessly unbalanced, and they coerced Bungie to make a number of meta changes throughout the years leading to class wars within the community. All in all the game has had its ups and downs and suffice to say has cemented its place in gamer’s hearts, but what does this mean for our future in the coming sequel?
During the reveal, a lot of features were announced that made fans and current players rejoice and find hope for the upcoming fate of their gaming lives. But I think to anyone who hadn’t played the original Destiny, things like, a map, and being able to fast travel without having to return to orbit first, would seem not only mandatory but rudimentary. Reviewing the reveal and a lot of other gamer’s thoughts on youtube, led me to wonder how much “new” content we’ll be seeing in Destiny 2. Much of what we have seen is new and interesting, however, we have also seen the return of a couple subclasses from the first game. While I am in no way opposed to seeing these subclasses in a new format, I am fearful that their return may mean we’ll see less of something genuinely fresh. Side missions will finally make their debut in Destiny 2 and I hope has Bungie has taken the time to play a few other RPG’s and decides to give us a hefty amount of content to explore and dive into upon release.
The marketing plan seems to be the same as the original Destiny with a vanilla release in September followed by two expansions available in a season pass, but that is something that caused a lot of controversy in the first installment with “misleading” advertising and overestimated expectations. So far we’ve only been promised the same amount of explorable worlds as the first game, although they are to be “the biggest we’ve seen in Destiny” that is not really the most convincing statement as previous worlds were essentially glorified circular loops with “turn back” barriers in all directions, and caves that were nothing more than spawn points for enemies and resource chests. We’ve also only heard talk of one new raid in the initial release, while these are easily the best and most extensive missions in the Destiny universe, the concept of one raid might pose troublesome if players are able to burn through all of the content in the first month of the game’s release.
I want to see this game succeed, I truly do, even if it is just what I imagined Destiny 1 would be, and there is still a lot we don’t know about the sequel, but with e3 just around the corner, I can’t say with all honesty that I’m back on the Destiny bandwagon. Hopefully, Bungie will deliver a showcase to end all the skepticism during the convention and we’ll all be jumping for joy at the chance to participate in the beta later this summer. Either way be sure to check back in for all the details regarding Destiny 2 and everything else at e3 right here @MagGamer. #IamMagGamer