Destiny Beta: The Good & Mostly The Bad

The long awaited beta for Destiny finally hit Xbox One (don’t get me started Playstationites) and I have a lot to say about it. For the most part this game seems amazing. You’re thrown into the campaign with little to no tutorials – which is something I love. At this day and age most of the gaming community knows how to move and jump. It’s almost insulting to start a game and being walked through the basic controls. The things that do need to be explained, are explained exactly how they need to be. Just a short blurb.

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The campaign is where this game shines. Although it basically feels like Halo and Borderlands had a beautiful baby, it somehow feels like a brand new experience all in it’s own. The story isn’t explained that well but from what I gather you are a “Guardian” who is saving various planets from “The Fallen”; which is (much like Halo) a vaguely known alien species destroying whatever is in their path for some reason or another. I’m sure (just like Halo) it’s explained later but this Beta is basically a glorified demo and you’re thrown into a couple situations (levels) without much explanation besides the basic “The Fallen is here, and we need something they’re guarding”. I realize my take on the campaign is probably misleading as it’s actually far more intense that I’m making it sound. The gameplay alone shines bright enough where the mundane tasks of “follow this waypoint” is a wonderfully refreshing experience.

Looting was well outlined in the first mission, making it sound like the memories of Borderlands’ fighting friends for chests were to be brought back from the dead however it’s far too glorified for what it is. After playing all 6 or 7 missions, I picked up maybe 12 pieces of equipment which was barely enough to keep my character powered to his own level. Granted the max level is only 8 so I can only assume the loot is more common at higher levels, it really made the game seem unfair as I’ll explain later. You are given cash in the game (called “Glimmer”) but after all the levels are completed you barely have to enough to buy level 8 equipment. Besides the lack of decent loot (I’m always super unlucky in these games) this enemies are fairly easy. I didn’t even die (besides when I went AFK) until the very last mission when two nearly indestructible bosses were thrown in my way.

Normally I wouldn’t harp on the loot so much considering my awareness of my lack of luck but your equipment plays a big role in the Peer VS Peer arena. The only matchmaking game available in the beta is a basic area-capture which is where I would normally shine but I can’t find a good enough gun to compete with the competition. This makes the PVP side of the game seem completely unfair and unbalanced. Especially since everyone in the beta is already at the max level with excellent equipment. This makes it completely unsatisfying to get annihilated at every turn. The only hope is for a hardcore gametype that pins everyone together with the same weapons. Here’s to hoping.

Besides the unfair match making and the lack of split screen (apparently it’s a sin to mention couch co-op in 2014); I really have no complaints about the game. I probably over-hyped the game for myself since I can’t help but to be shaken with disappointment as I did pre-order a $180 chase-the-waypoint game. After playing the beta, I’m probably cancelling my Ghost Edition copy and ordering a standard copy which is about all I can say. I never buy games on release day so even if I decided not to ship out an extra $120 for this game, I’m still excited for it.