Destiny 2 has been in the hands of players for 10 days at the time of writing and people have had plenty of time to play it on both ends of the spectrum. The more hardcore of the Destiny players. people like myself, will have run through a large majority of the content just because we are looking for the next thing that gives us some story info and, more importantly, new loot.
On the face of it, Destiny 2 has boat loads of content and was touted to be an exponentially bigger game than the original, but does it live up to this. When you break the game down to it’s core elements, does it really have that much more to do than Destiny 1? Is this just the humble beginnings of the content that is planned for us? Or is that it?
There are a few main pillars in the Destiny games and expansions that constitute their playable content. The first is the story missions. In Destiny 1, these were widely considered to be re-playable snippets of content, good for things like daily missions and farming certain enemies for bounties etc. In Destiny 2, the story missions are much broader and longer, packed with backstory cutscenes, intense battles and plenty of running commentary to keep you up to date. Destiny 2 nails the “story” in these missions, but they are no longer as widely replayable as the original game’s, instead coming from weekly meditations from the Warlock Vanguard, Ikora Rey. While the story is much better and almost double the length in the second game, it only scratches the surface of what keeps players coming back to Destiny.
The Crucible is the Player vs Player multiplayer offering in Destiny 2. There has been a somewhat significant overhaul when it comes to things like number of players on each team, gamemodes and playlists and endgame Crucible content. To start with, it is now 4v4 across the board, rather than 3v3 and 6v6. This is a very good change in my opinion as a lot of the bigger gamemodes are now very much suited to the smaller teams, however it splits the community down the middle as people are not happy that it is the only 4 person activity in the game. This means when you finish a 6-man raid or a 3-man strike, you are either going to need to find someone or ditch 2 people to jump into PvP which can be problematic. The pros far outweigh the cons though, as connections are stronger with less people pinging the host and games are more competitive as the number of players jumping into encounters is much more controllable. There are other changes to improve the quality of life such as changes to the frequency of heavy ammo spawns, better super notifications and clearer indications of how you did on the end of game scoreboards. The Crucible is still a great place to spend a lot of time in Destiny, and probably will remain that way unless we see any significant additions to the PvE content side of the game.
The most replayable side of PvE seems to be lacking to my tastes. Strikes offer little reward now as specific boss loot was inexplicably taken out. Public events are good for exotics and legendaries, but playing them over and over again stinks of Destiny 1 grind that people hated and farming for weapons with different rolls has basically been removed, with players hoping the introduction of mod slots would be another way to personalise weapons but is actually just a boring way to change the elements of weapons and add an arbitrary 5 power to your gear.
I have not done the raid yet, as my clan and I are waiting to experience it on PC, but people are making positive noises about it, which I find hopeful. However, there is only so much you can do the raid without it getting stale, as good as the raid is.
What I’m trying to say with this article is… where is all of this content we thought we were going to get? Where is the endless horde mode, in an arena with hundreds of enemies coming through doorways that you kill for points and you fight until you die. On the subject of points, why was strike scoring taken away? If anything we should have seen the evolution of it in this game, with a leaderboard to keep track of who is the most creative at clearing these strikes. And while we’re talking about things getting taken away, where are the private matches so we can arrange our own tournaments and keep the game going that way?
There is so much potential for this game to be so good, but Bungie need to have plans in place to add a steady stream of content or they are going to watch player numbers fall rapidly over the next few weeks. We need ways to feel like we are improving, striving for something and right now, I feel like I’m close to the end of everything I can do in this game, which is truly saddening.