Destiny 2: an improvement on every aspect

  Tristan Reyes

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New subclasses including the Hunter’s Arcstrider, the Warlock’s Dawnblade, and the Titan’s Sentinel skills will allow you to completely devastate your enemies.

Destiny 2 is by all means an improvement over its predecessor.

The story goes as follows: The Guardian (you) comes home to the Traveler, only to find it under attack by a group called the Red Legion. So it’s up to you to defeat them, along with the three Vanguard Leaders consisting of the stoic Titan Commander Zavala, the wise Warlock Ikora Rey, and the wildcard Hunter Cayde-6 who is arguably one of the best characters of the series. The plan initially fails, as the Vanguard and all of the other Guardians, including you, have lost your powers as the Red Legion leader, Dominus Ghaul, has found a way to suppress the Traveler’s light and attempts to take it as his own.

After being almost utterly defeated, the Vanguard have fled Earth and the player goes through a sequence of events where the Guardian struggles to survive without their powers. Eventually you encounter Suraya Hawthorne, the leader of The Farm, your new hub world for most of the game near the warring European Dead Zone. After doing some missions for her, you finally get some new abilities by finding a shard of the Traveler and must get the Vanguard leaders back together to defeat the Red Legion.

Honestly, the story can get predictable here, but still manages to be fun. In the first Destiny, the story always seemed to not catch your attention and was well, not fun to play. It got tiring visiting new areas and planets and not being told why you were fighting some of these enemies. Here, developer Bungie fixed that. It’s the fact that characters actually tell you what’s going on that makes Destiny 2 more enjoyable. I like hearing Ghaul’s motivations for specifically attacking the Traveler through Destiny’s almost movie-like cutscenes. In fact, Ghaul is one of the most interesting villains in the series, since the first game had no real central villain (there was but that’s assuming you were motivated to play the expansions) except for the darkness that was threatening the Traveler.

As you explore the solar system, you will earn tokens which you can use to increase your reputation with the planet’s questgiver to get powerful loot.

There’s no doubt that Destiny 2 looks fantastic. From the rustic European Dead Zone on earth, to the abandoned ships of Titan, and the vibrant planet of Nessus that’s full of ancient technology, there will be something to be to seen. It’s clear that Bungie spent a lot of time creating the environments in this game. In some levels, like the very beginning of the game, it’s amazing how detailed the skybox looks. It’s simply eye-candy. Since the game has a heavy emphasis on exploration, the locations you visit will have several surprises and loot for the player to plunder.

The gameplay seems to be more refined this time around. Each class has different abilities and three subclasses that the player can mess around with. In the main story, the player can simply destroy countless amounts of enemies by themselves in the story and their abilities can easily back them up. The story itself just feels rather too easy. The game will try to mix it up by sending an almost unreasonable amount of enemies at you.

Outside of the main story, there is plenty to do. In strikes, you and two other players play through a sort of mini-raid where you fight through some powerful enemies to defeat the boss at the end to mainly get stronger weapons or armor.  There are also weekly nightfall variants where you do a strike mission, except with different modifiers added to it, like timed missions, enemies with different shields are only affected by certain power elements, fun stuff like that.

If you ever get tired of fighting hordes of enemies with friends, you can go to the Crucible where you can compete in 4v4 combat to get rewards and complete challenges.

You can also fight other guardians in PvP combat in the Crucible where you and your team goes up against another group of players in some good old-fashioned 4v4 multiplayer combat. There’s team deathmatch, control points, king of the hill, some of the PvP essentials. There is currently no Free-For-All mode yet, but since the first game had several game modes, Bungie will more than likely add more content later on.

The game, published by Activision, is available for PC, Xbox One and Playstation 4.

What these game modes all have in common is that they all heavily reward you. In the first game, it was a chore to get weapons or armor to fight the next boss. Now Destiny 2 makes earning legendary or exotic items more fun. You can do anything to get loot now, after every strike or crucible match, the game gives you equipment that’s usually a higher light level than what you have. There’s a reason to explore the planets this time around since questgivers can frequently reward players with legendary engrams by doing public events, or by finding a Lost Sector on a planet. You can even get engrams by just dismantling old gear and giving it to a weapons dealer. There’s no more randomly getting a weapon for no reason, you just get rewarded. If you’re not into constantly doing missions to get better items, then this game probably isn’t for you.

Sails: 4/5

Release Date: September 5, 2017

Reviewed on Xbox One

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