Destiny 2 Beta Impressions

• written by Krist Duro
Destiny 2 Beta Impressions

I wanna say that Destiny is back y'all, but that wouldn't be right. Destiny, the original one, never went away. Bungie continuously pushed out content and never ceased the support for the game and naturally, millions of players still play it. Destiny 2 is coming this September and from what I'm playing and seeing in the Closed Beta at the moment, I am really excited about it.

TL;DR: It's more Destiny, but kinda better in every way possible. The content in the Beta is very limited as you can play only the first story mission, there is a strike and two multiplayer modes. Destiny, the vanilla game, had a pretty lackluster story as Bungie admitted it. But with the DLC they released, they improved the story a lot.

What they learned from the DLCs and of course the tons of players feedback can be clearly seen in just the first story mission that is included in the Beta. The Red Legion, yes this time there are real bad guys to the story and not the unexplained "dark fart" Darkness, are after the Traveler and the game starts with them attacking the Tower and capturing/disabling the Traveler and its light. This event "explains" why you will start again with the leveling up and why you lost all of your previous gear, so kudos Bungie! Although I'm going to miss my black Gjallarhorn...

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The first mission is very atmospheric, The Tower, the place you spent a lot of time in, is now completely in ruins and there is a real sense of urgency. You want to protect your home, you want to fight for it even though the odds are not in your favor. The Vanguard Commanders/Captains are there with you, on the battlefield, fighting against the Cabal protecting the Tower inhabitants and that's amazing. We've never seen that in Destiny, all they did previously was stand around a table and talk. And the new main bad guy seems imposing and very menacing and I cannot wait to whoop his ass come September.

As for the strike that's included, it takes part on the new planet/moon Nessus where the end boss is a large Vex. The formula for the strike is mainly still the same, however, the boss now appears to have 3 different phases, at least this one does, with the final arena changing with each phase. Also, there are some "new" traversing mechanics and some micro "puzzles" that are more than welcome and help to break the pace a little.

Control is back in the multiplayer and it's still the same so if you loved it in Destiny, you'll love it here. If you didn't, probably you still won't. The other mode Countdown is a totally new mode for Destiny 2 if I am not mistaken, and it is basically like Counter Strike. There are 10 rounds and you'll alternate between attacking and defending bomb sites. When you are attacking, you have to plant a bomb in one of the two sites and defend it till it explodes or till you kill all of the 4 enemies. When you are defending you do the opposite. If you die, you'll have to wait 30 seconds before a teammate can revive you. Each round goes fast and is extremely intense and engaging. Yesterday during a round, I was the last standing in my team and managed to kill everyone with the Golden Gun and I defused the bomb with seconds on the timers. I just love this mode and the fact that you can ace a round.

And that's about everything you can play in the Beta. Now to address the elephant in the room. I've already seen people saying that this is not Destiny 2, but just a large expansion for the first game and all sorts of undermining bullsh*t. The gameplay, for the most part, has not changed, but why change something that was already perfect? The gunplay in the OG Destiny was fantastic, the weapons felt great, looked great and sounded great. The same could be said about the Supers and the abilities for each class.

However, Bungie has tweaked about everything crafting a more streamlined experience. The UI has received a new facelift. They changed how the weapons "work", meaning that we don't have Primary, Secondary and Heavy Weapons anymore. Now instead you have Kinetic, Elemental and Power Weapons slots. So in the Kinetic slot, you can equip simple "elemental-less" assault rifles, pulse rifles, scout rifles, the new SMGs, pistols etc. In the Elemental slot, you can equip only elemental guns. And in the Power slot, you can equip shotguns, sniper rifles, rockets, HMGs and the new grenade launchers.

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From what I saw, you can pretty much mod all the weapons, change the shaders, change the elemental mod and probably more, but being a Beta you are limited to what you can actually do. The same goes for the pieces of armor. They also tweaked the Subclasses and how the Supers work. Characters have now a third added ability apart from the grenade and melee attack. So the Titans can now deploy either a full shield or a half shield from which you can fire from, the Warlock can create a healing or empowering rift with the radius of the Titan's bubble and the Hunters can roll or shadow step fully reloading the equipped gun. The Supers have also been tweaked. The Titan can summon a shield and become Captain America for a while or he can still run around and demolish everything even after he does the ground pound Super. The Golden Gun of the Hunter has more bullets, but the time to use them is shorter and as the other Super he can summon an electrified staff and kick ass, so staffs are pretty much confirmed now. And the Warlock can shoot his Nova Bomb, but can also summon a fiery sword and light everything up on fire.

Again from what I saw you could customize the subclasses even further, but being a Beta everything was locked. I would not be surprised to see a new subclass for the game (maybe a Darkness based one?), but Bungie hasn't said anything about.

I am liking what I am seeing in the Beta and even though the amount of content is very limited, Destiny 2 looks very promising indeed. I cannot wait for September!

PS: Bungie, if you are reading this, space combat?

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