Destiny Beta – My thoughts

As we come to the end of the Destiny Beta (PS4), a time to reflect on the experience and the anticipation.

Playing the Destiny Beta on the PS4 (and PS3) I got a bit more time with it than some others (*cough*XBox*cough*), but with the scope of the beta that merely meant one could choose between a leisurely pace, or grind through 8 levels in all 3 classes and do a boat-load of PvP in the Crucible!
The parts of the game that were there (seemingly most of the launch-content of Earth, with more to-be-added later) were not small, but by no means overwhelmingly large, and it didn’t take long for players to list all the locations of Ghosts, Golden Chests and whatnuts.
But even, then, there was fun to be had exploring on your own, in a small “Fire Team” or perhaps doing the add-on missions scattered across the country-side.

Please accept YouTube cookies to play this video. By accepting you will be accessing content from YouTube, a service provided by an external third party.

YouTube privacy policy

If you accept this notice, your choice will be saved and the page will refresh.

We had a brief (24 hours?) glimpse of the Moon, and while I personally didn’t do much there besides go and kill a bunch of enemies that decided to run headlong into my heavy machine-gun, I know some spent a lot more time going deep and exploring the Moon (side note: always pronounce “Moon” as if you’re Scott Manley: “Mün”).
Ultimately, though, it was good that the Beta ended when it did, because there really wasn’t that much more to see in the Cosmodrome, and there are only so many times one can repeat the inane story-missions, go do the 1 Strike Mission, or kill the enemies that for some unclear reason decide to go mine in the one location on planet earth, where there are Guardians. Cutting it short on the Moon just meant players were all the more anxious to get back into things.

Now, am I going to be pre-ordering Destiny, or buying it day-1? Erhm, no.

At this point, I’m not impressed with the story so far (The Narrative), and the story-telling (The Narration) isn’t hooking me either. Yes, it is a First Person Shooter, not some epic instalment in the style of Lord of The Rings, but even while shooting things in their faces (or face-like-areas), I prefer there to be a good, engaging story and an engaging story-teller; Resistance: Fall of Man did this for me, perhaps simply due to Cornelia Hayes O’Herlihy‘s voice and how her character told the story in between action-sequences, but at least in the Destiny Beta, there was nothing that triggered that “suspense of disbelief”. This game might have a great Story, but so far I’m not seeing it.

Then there is the PvP…. 6v6 arena-style might be great for some,or even for a lot of players, but that was already how we were playing games a decade and more ago. I would say there is not tactics in such a setting, no consequences (KDR – yay) or any persistence (wow – XP from PvP!); Sure there are tactics in 6v6 arenas, but there are no Grand Tactics, no plotting and directing, no…fun. Shoot enemy, die, respawn. Within a few hundred iterations of that, boredom sets in, at least for me.

As such, at well past 100 Euros for the game, 2 pieces of DLC, and Playstation Plus subscriptions (on PS4), I simply cannot justify the cost in the face of what seems to be much-too-short and boring experience.

So, the Beta has ended, I had fun, but ultimately it didn’t sell me on the game – but that is OK, it convinced a LOT of people to pre-order Destiny, and Bungie have had a chance to load-test the backend.
When September 9th rolls around, go do your thing, and I’ll go do something else – perhaps replay a Bioware game.