I will be the first to admit, I didn’t like Halo. Before you come after me with a pitchfork, understand that I am a PC Gamer at heart and could never really handle playing a FPS (First Person Shooter) on a console with a controller. It always feels clunky and unresponsive to me. I also never really liked Halo’s repetitive maps, meaning, most of the maps felt relatively the same to me. I won’t even get into multiplayer, with my lack of skills, Multiplayer is really just me getting wrecked over and over again (Some video of that shortly). All of that being said, the Destiny Beta has blown me away. Destiny is most closely related to an MMOFPS but in my opinion Destiny is creating it’s own genre.
Upon starting the game there is a character creation screen. The options for customization are slim and I’m not sure if that is because the beta only has a few options or if this is it. There are 3 races and it doesn’t look like race changes anything as far as stats or bonuses. The 3 choices are Human, Exo (android-ish), and Awoken (look like aliens).
The 3 classes are Titan, Hunter, and Warlock. Titan is most closely related to a Warrior class in other MMOs, Hunter closely resembles a Hunter / Rogue Class, and Warlock is most like a Mage. Now that being said, the class only provides you with unique skills, the game is still primarily a FPS and no matter what gear or class you have, if you can’t aim, you aren’t going to do well. With all the experience that Bungie has with Halo, the Aim-Assist is phenomenal. (Aim-Assist is what helps you be a little more accurate since aiming with a controller isn’t as precise as aiming with a mouse. Think like a very minor aimbot.)
After character creation the game puts you through a tutorial mission where it teaches you how to play and gives you a little back-story. **A side note: Peter Dinklage plays the voice of the Ghost (your little robot companion) and he does do a good job I think. Whatever the fuss was over his voice in the Alpha seems to have been fixed.** Once you’re out of the tutorial it brings you to the Tower. The Tower is the main hub where you can buy new equipment, pick up quests (side and main story), and pick up bounties. Bounties are quests for multiplayer (example: Win 3 Multiplayer Games and get experience and other goodies). Then you can fly your ship down to Earth which is pretty much a wasteland now. The main area on Earth seems to be Russia (or what’s left of it). The game at first gives you the false sense of instanced quests, meaning that the landing zones for your ship are not linked in any way and you can only play in that single area. The world is actually completely open. What looks to be instanced mission areas turn out to be all connected. If you wanted to, you could walk from end to end of Russia without ever having to go back to your ship. I made the mistake of running off and exploring and I ended up in an area with level 10 enemies who swarmed me and destroyed me, a tiny level 4. That being said though, until I got swarmed, I was able to duck and weave well enough where I was actually killing them. That’s where the FPS side of the game shines through, if you can aim well enough, you can kill higher level enemies, it’s just going to take longer per kill since they have more health and armor at that level.
Just one more interesting gameplay tidbit. You have a bar that charges while you play. I believe kills make it charge faster but I wasn’t able to prove that 100% yet. When it charges you are “Supercharged” and can use a Special Attack. It makes for an interesting mechanic in multiplayer, see the second video below for an example.
So enough of me talking, check out the 2 videos below. The first one is an example of a “boss area” in a mission and the second video is me using a Supercharge to take out 2 guys trying to cap a point in multiplayer.
I will post some final thoughts once the beta is over in a week or so! Sound off in the comments or twitter about what you think about Destiny.