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LONG BLOG

Destiny 2 Review (PC, Blizzard App) - Updated 11/6

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This game is finally out on PC!

EDIT: Until the automated ban system is fixed, I am changing the score of this game to a 0 because it would just make the game unplayable. Just stay away from the game. There's no point in risking $60 and praying you don't get banned. Some people are even getting banned before even finishing the tutorial now. That's literally $60 for less than 30 minutes of play time. Bungie is admitting no wrongdoing on their part and is actively defending the bans. Without an appeal system or explaining why you are banned, there's no reason to risk playing a game in which your account can be banned at any time without reason.

Instead, go buy Overwatch if you want a FPS with loot boxes. Drop $60 on Warframe to unlock all the frames from the very beginning instead. Both are better choices.

Story:

The game starts off with the Traveler, a large moon like object that hovers above Earth and grants all the Guardians their special powers is attacked and sealed by the Red Legion. The Red Legion is led by someone by the name of Ghaul who desires to acquire the Light for himself. As the Guardian (you) awakens on Earth, you find out that the Red Legion has already won and the survivors are forming a resistance. The Guardian discovers a shard of the Traveler, basically a chunk of it that was not sealed and uses it to restore the Light and gain new abilities to themself. Afterwards, the Guardian brings together Zavala and Cayde in order to attack the Almighty, a star destroying weapon used to wipe out solar systems by the Cabal. After destroying, it the Guardian enters one final showdown with Ghaul, who has now acquired the Light for himself (it is not shown or explained whether he acquired it artificially through the use of machinery or naturally as he was attempting to pursue it with the hints from the Speaker). After Ghaul is defeated, the Light is restored throughout the Milky Way, which draws the attention of strange triangular ships that begin to head towards Earth (System Lords?)

Cayde's side quests was somehow integrated into the main story as well. He is stuck in a teleportation loop and I felt like that segment took like a quarter of the length of the game. It felt like an absolute waste of time.

Graphics:

The graphics of Destiny 2 is mixed. There are not a lot of customization options and leaves a lot to be desired. The character models are detailed, but the backgrounds feel like they are drawn only as you approach and there are the same generic effects that are triggered as you approach. The most common one is that chicken on Earth that I remember on the winding road. The projectiles all look similar with different colored effects and different speeds. It would have been nice if there was something other than color to distinguish them. Even the bosses look like giant versions of normal enemies and the normal enemies have something like five or six varieties for each race and even between races, there are a lot of similarities in their behaviors.

For some reason, a lot of the world even feel similar to me. Each world has a few wide open areas connected by narrow roads along with a set of tunnels that are mainly there for the story. The only place that felt unique was the Almighty during the one segment where you have to hide around nearby panels as fragments of the sun rains down on the entire area. Other than that though, every world felt like the same with a different color scheme.

The characters also feel the same as the game. There's very little uniqueness and every guardian seems like the same helmeted and armored person. Its hard to even tell male and female characters apart since everyone has a robotic looking helmet on outside of the hub areas.

Gameplay:

The game is like a first person shooter with a few RPG elements. However, the RPG elements are vastly de-emphasized and you do not really feel like you are stronger until you are level 20 and can take out some of the weaker enemies with 3 bullets. At the same time, the random events that occur have a suggest equipment rating, but they always feel like they are the same difficulty whether you are level 5 with an equipment rating of 30 or level 20 with an equipment rating of 200.

Each class has a choice between three subclasses. The first one is unlocked immediately and becomes a subclass when you unlock a second one at level 11. By doing more events, you can return to the Traveler's shard to unlock your third subclass. However, you will only be able to max one of the subsets of skills for each class upon reaching 20. Considering that you can switch subclasses at any time, the inability to just redistribute your skill points (you can activate each of two subsets of skills whenver you want anyways) and the fact that you can continue to earn skill points AFTER level 20, just makes it feel like someone got lazy with the numbers.

You always have three types of weapons, a kinetic based weapon, an energy based weapon, and a heavy waepon. Kinetic based weapons are standard guns. There are hand cannons, which are basically pistols, semi-automatic, and automatic rifles. The energy based weapons are the same, but they are more effective against shields and are useful against enemies with low health and are close. They lose a lot of power over distance. The heavy weapons are generally long range weapons unless they are swords. They are things like sniper rifles and rocket launchers. You will need them to kill many of the bosses due to the sheer amount of health that the bosses have.

The biggest problem so far is the game's story mode. The game's story ends on a to be continued. The worst part is that the story feels like just the first act of a bigger story. The story is made to feel longer due to level requirements. You will have to grind once to reach level 11 and once more to reach 16 to trigger the final story events. However, the events in the story are very limited and most of the things you do have little to nothing to do with the actual story and feel like side quests. Once you actually defeat Ghaul, you are just wondering "Was that it? Where's the rest of it?" The side quests themselves appear after the end of the game, but offer very poor rewards. Doing randomly generated events gives vastly superior rewards. If the side quests somehow contributed to the overall story, it might make them interesting, but most of them feel misguided and and unrelated.

The end game also has issues of its own. Once you reach level 20, you can start trading in the earned tokens from chests and events on planets. Each planet has its own unique currency and there is a unique NPC that sells legendary and exotic weapons for Legendary Shards. Exotic gear has higher stats than legendary gear, but you can only equip one exotic weapon and one exotic armor and this is where the problems of the end game starts to show. The smart drop system utilized by the game ensures that you have to slowly work your way up from level 16 to level 20 gear post game (I only made it to level 19 gear at the moment). This will make the game suddenly feel grindy. Exotic gear suddenly becomes trash because you can only equip one piece of it. Due to the way the game scales, you will basically be forced to open loot boxes one at a time for a chance to improve your equipment by a few points. Slowly, you will make your way to 230, which is the first end game goal as it unlocks the more difficult Nightstrikes that you can complete once a week for some nice rewards. After that, there are just weekly quests from some of the NPCs and getting lucky to fuse your old gear with new ones of the same name to increase its item level. This is very unlikely, so do not count on it.

Once you get enough experience, you unlock a loot crate that generally contains a weapon, a mod, and a dye. Dyes only appear in sets of 3 while you have 4 pieces of equipment to dye. You can also trade in 50 Bright, a currency you get from dismantling gear acquired from the loot boxes, in order to buy a change to any color dye, emoticons, or a special looking ship. You can also trade in tokens from the events you earn on every planet for reputation to get another loot box. This will be the main thing you do in the post game. While it gives you something to do, the lack of rotation makes it even less interesting, especially since there is little else to do at the moment. Yet, you have to do this in order to acquire mods for your end game gear once you get them and they are pretty much the only way to increase your power by a tiny amount at a time. There is PvP for those that love it, but even that has its own issues. The PvE equivalent is strikes, which are essentially matchmade random events

Once you hit 240 though, you start to experience some problems in progression. At this point, the only way to make progress is to open Ingrams, the equivalent of loot boxes. Legendary Ingrams will grant you the items you need to make it past this point. However, you quickly notice that your progression suddenly slows down immensely. The faction tokens are suddenly giving a lot less. The experience you need to earn a Bright Ingram suddenly goes way up. You stop finding Rare Gear that has a higher rating than the gear you have on. The only way to make progress is opening Ingrams, or more accurately, loot boxes.

The problem here is that your experience gains are capped. Let me repeat that one more time. Experience is capped. You can only earn a fixed amount of experience in a given time period, like how a free to play game restricts the amount of currency you can earn in a game in a day. Destiny 2 does this though it is in a smaller time period. The reason for this seems to be public events normally grant a good amount of experience, much more than their Strikes would give. Their way of combating this is just to nerf all of the other content to make it suck and unrewarding. Even in Marvel Heroes, the drop limit is not as obvious and shows up often enough to be semi-rare. But here, they literally stop your experience gains and even halves them once you kill some enemies.

Overall: 0/10

Destiny 2 feels like an incomplete game. At $60 for that short of a story, it feels like they just added a few unrelated events to a demo and called it a complete game. While the gameplay is good for a shooter, I still feel like there is a lot missing. This is a full priced game and there's very little to do once you complete the main story. The end game is just grinding randomly generated events until you can prepare for the next raid that is out and hope that the gear there will enough to surpass your current gear. However, even that is only an option for people who chose to fork over $100 for the season pass and the game.

EDIT: Normally, these issues could be passable as a $100 game. The problem right now is the game's automated ban filter. People are being randomly banned for no apparent reason or explanation. This week, it is the second time it has happened on PC since launch with no explanation by Bungie or Activision. Until this issue is addressed, just stay away from the game unless you want to gamble $60 and pray that their auto ban net doesn't catch you.

This is the first and probably only time I've ever given a game a 0 rating. Why? Because under the current conditions, the game is essentially unplayable for many people. It's the same as a gamebreaking bug that prevents the game from being finished and any game that cannot be finished deserves a 0 because it is broken.

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About Blanchimontone of us since 10:18 PM on 09.14.2008

I studied to be a teacher, but I only have a tutoring job right now that has very few hours. When I'm not busy, I'm trying out random games that get my interest and writing reviews about them. Keep in mind that these reviews are based on my own opinion and what I think about the game. I generally dislike F2P features that exclude players by making the top items only obtainable with real money or are absurdly expensive and P2P games that limit a player's ability to play with something like fatigue or stamina systems. I also tend to be late with reviews as I only purchase games when I have the time to actually play them.