Stefano’s E3 2014 Report Part 5: Destiny

Bungie is a developer that really needs no introduction. Thanks to their fantastic work on the Halo series, they have earned a spot on any list of premiere first person shooter developers. After leaving Microsoft, Bungie struck out on their own, and have finally taken the wraps off of their latest work, Destiny, an Action/FPS/RPG. I was given the chance to play 2 matches of one of Destiny’s 12 player modes, Zones on the PlayStation 4.

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After selecting the Hunter class, we were all shown a video introducing us to the world of Destiny, and setting the tone for the conflict to follow. The game is set in the future, and humans have expanded and colonized other planets and worlds in our Solar System. After a mysterious event known as “The Collapse,” humans are on the brink of extinction. They flee and regroup, and as they are beginning to recolonize, they discover that hostile aliens have taken up residence in their former colonies. And so, yeah, that’s not cool, and now they fight. Did you really think there’d be a truce?

After the intro video, we were finally loaded into our gameplay mode, Zones. As you may have guessed, Zones tasks players with taking over key spots on the map, and defending them from rival players. This was a 12 man match, 6v6. Our first match took place on the moon, which was richly detailed and sported sharp, 1080p graphics and a silky smooth, possibly 60fps framerate. The map was fairly open and expansive, with lots of opportunities to flank and surprise the enemy, as well as utilize vehicles and turrets to protect or take over zones. The gunplay is what you’d expect from a Bungie title: tight, intuitive, and responsive controls. And while it took a little bit to get used to, I was eventually running, double jumping, sprinting, and killing my foes as our team unsuccessfully attempted to take over the zones.

Defeat didn’t dampen our spirits, however, and we regrouped for round two. This time, we were no longer on the moon, but instead in what looked to be a run-down industrial area on Earth, and I’m assuming, the map Old Russia. This map felt smaller, more confined, with tunnels, run down buildings, and high and low ground to stage offensive and defensive tactics. We didn’t have headset support, so our team had to resort to non-verbal communication, perhaps telepathy, to work together and get the job done. Well, after our crushing defeat the game before, we marshaled our forces and came together, winning our next match.

To be perfectly honest, I’m not a big competitive multi-player gamer, but I do enjoy co-op, and working together with players to accomplish a goal beyond just killing the enemy. I went into the Destiny demo optimistic that I’d have a good time (it is a Bungie game, after all), and was not disappointed. The game is fast paced, beautiful to look at, and fun to play. I’m eagerly awaiting more hands on time with the game (there is currently a sneak peak Alpha available for the next few days for those lucky enough to register before June 11th), as well as the game’s September 9th release date on the PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, and Xbox ONE

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