Destiny Beta First Impressions
Last week, Destiny Beta launched and everyone who owns an Xbox One/360 or PlayStation 3/4 could play for free, given that they had an Xbox Live Gold and PlayStation Plus subscription. We have seen the lands of Russia back in the old days, explored the historic weapons and armor inside the Tower, and challanged other players (Guardians) within the Crucible. Everything seems pretty awesome initially, but minor issues get in the way as the game progresses.
For example, exploration sometimes leads you into an area with an unknown purpose. In many cases you could get lost and wonder why you are here. Another is that enemies "level up" and take a more considerable amount of ammo to kill. Also worthy of nothing is the multiplayer mode's slow pacing due to lack of mobility.
When we're talking about Halo, a noticeable trait is its engaging storyline that makes sense. However, Destiny is more like Minecraft in the way that it doesn't really have linear progression. The world is insanely huge and there are just so many missions and battles that you could do. Because of the wide range of choices, I felt that the storyline doesn't really go together and feels disconnected. However, having a story isn't actually necessary to have a good time. Because Destiny created such huge interesting worlds with some backstory, that's good enough for me.
Players immediately notice that when reaching higher levels like level 6, the enemies will cause you to run out of ammo quick. In some cases, they will take hundreds of shots before they will die. A great example is during the Devil's Lair Strike Mission, which is meant for players over level 5. You start of by going through room after room full of enemies, some even above level 8. Finally, you will reach a Devil Walker spider tank in a large field. Its got a rocket launcher and machine guns that will shoot any guardian attacking it. Moreover, it has got crazy armor buffs and takes over 10 minutes to kill using everything a 3 man team has, including heavy, special, and regular weapons plus special abilities. It will be interesting to see how Bungie will better balance enemey difficulty to scale with Guardian levels.
Since multiplayer is focused on cooperative modes, the game is lacking in competitive development. Most of the time, you will just do Strike missions, but if you are in the mood, you could play against other Guardians. The feel of competitive multiplayer feels just like Halo, mainly because of the way the map is laid out and its available vehicles. On the downside, Guardians can't really jump and boost effectively and causes a loss in movement speed. The gravity in the game has more of an effect on your character so getting to high places takes more time than you would probably like. This makes it so that finding players to kill is more rare and slows down the entire game. But perhaps this has something to do with the 12 player cap Bungie imposed in multiplayer. I think they aren't ready to scale up to 24 or 32 players yet because they need to figure out what they want to do, and that's what beta is for.