D. F. Krieger

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Monday Review: Destiny the game for PS4

Destiny came out on September 9th, with a lot of hype. Considering it is spearheaded by the same people who gave us Halo 4, there was good reason to be hyped up. I'll admit, I was vastly excited by the release of the game, but I fear buying anything new if I don't absolutely know the franchise like the back of my hand (for example, I'll buy Monster Hunter or Pokemon like it's going out of style.)

Sunday, I was offered the ability to play Destiny on a PS4 by a friend. I don't own a PS4 yet, as I'm still trying to justify jumping consoles at that expense, but that's another issue altogether. I happily agreed and started from character creation.

So in Destiny you have 3 races to choose from: Human, Awoken, or Exo. For once in my life, it was actually a tough decision. Each race had distinctive features that made it visually appealing. Human is pretty obvious. Awoken is similar to human, but their skin has a swirling glimmer like a galaxy lies on the surface of their bodies. Exo is a robot race. You can chose gender too, regardless of race. I love this as I prefer playing a female character.

This image does not do the characters justice by any means
Next, you get to choose your class. There is Warlock, Titan, or Hunter. Titan seems to be the heavy hitter/defender. Warlock allows some AoE attacks and such. Hunter is the sneak class of the three. I chose Hunter as I tend to excel at sniper rifles and back stabs when playing shooter games.


So, game play starts you off in single player mode where you learn the basics such as melee and how to shoot. Let me take a moment to say the graphics are breath-taking and gorgeous. Any doubts I had about whether the game would display as well as the commercials and trailers presented were instantly put to rest. The programmers and developers kept me on the edge of my seat, where as many openings bore me to death and all I want is to hurry up and get through it so I can get to online play.

When I did get to the online feature, it was still crisp and clean graphics. The enemies respawned often enough to keep everyone busy. I also noticed (and maybe it's just me assuming) that the designers programmed it so kill stealing is nullified by giving xp to anyone who took a shot at the creature. This allowed me to easily team up with complete strangers in tough situations without ever needing to say a word to them. There were several times I bit off larger groups than I could chew, only to have some people jump in and save my rear. And there were a few times I would see people who needed help, and I'd snipe off two or three of their enemies in an effort to aide them. An atmosphere of silent camaraderie seemed prevalent, where in past MMO's I found myself screaming at "Kill stealing sons of *&^" when I'd whittle enemies down only to watch someone blow through, land the killing strike, and take the xp. Not so, in Destiny.

Not my screenshot, but this is the tank mentioned. Screenshot from Here


There are also events, which can be anything from "Defend this point" to "Take this single powerful enemy down." One that I participated in a few times involved taking down a small enemy tank that packed a powerful punch. I noticed that the other players and I fell into a pattern of shooting it as we stood in a circle around it. We took turns which kept the tank from being able to focus on a single individual and no one died. It took us 3 minutes 18 seconds to conquer the event. Now, don't think events are easy. I'm merely trying to drive home the sense of working together I got from the game. I can't say everyone will, but for one I didn't end up surrounded by trolls and this made the experience so much more enjoyable.

A word on ammo. It will run out so be careful. You can't just blow through ammo and expect to be okay. The enemies do drop ammo, but if you are a distance killer like me, you'll need to learn to adapt your techniques to the limited ammo in your inventory until you can get down there and collect.

Obviously, I can't say enough good things about the game at this point. It is Free to Play, but with PS4 you do have to have the PlayStation Plus membership. I've heard on PS3, no membership is required. They do not allow cross-platform play, so PS3 can not play with PS4, or PS's play with Xboxes. You can trade gear between your own characters, but not with your friends. There is no split-screen play. Each person who plays has to have their own console and copy.

Neat Facts:

Peter Dinklage (best known as Tyrion in Game of Thrones) voices the Ghost (the orb that acts as your sidekick)

Bill Nighy (best known as Viktor in the Underworld movie series or as Davey Jones in the Pirates of the Carribean series) narrates and voices The Speaker

Claudia Black (best known as Officer Aeryn Sun on Farscape or as Morrigan in the Dragon Age video game series) voices Tess Everis, the Special Orders NPC

Crispin Freeman (best known as Alucard from Hellsing) voices the Awoken race male voice.

Nathon Fillion (best known as Captain Mal from Firefly) voices Cayde-6 of the Hunter Vanguard.

I don't know about you, but I'm in awe of all the big name actors. There's more, but I've listed the ones I recognize the most.

I highly recommend this game to anyone who enjoyed the Halo series (though this is a completely different storyline/world than Halo) or enjoys first person shooters. I will definitely be picking up my own copy before the week is over. Right now, they are having a special where if you buy the digital copy on your old console, when you upgrade to a new console you'll get the game for free so you don't have to start from scratch. Bloody brilliant! The graphics are gorgeous, the game play is enjoyable, and there are endless worlds to explore. For those who haven't seen it yet, I'll leave you with the official trailer: