Having completed the story missions on the Moon, Carl & Matt decide to delve onto Destiny's second strike mission - The Summoning Pit - in our latest video dedicated to Bungie's latest. See how the duo (plus a random) get on against the hordes of the Hive, before taking on the end-of-level boss, Phogoth.
Be sure to check out the rest of our Destiny coverage, including our critical impressions vidcasts!
A week on from release and I'm still no closer to being able to answer what seems to be a simple question: is Destiny any good? Thankfully, I've exercised my power as editor and given the job of putting a score on the game to Carl, but I was at a gathering over the weekend and three people asked me variants of that very question, and I realised that I gave three completely different answers.
It's a game that still fills me with an enormous sense of ambivalence.
It's easy to see why Bungie warned everyone away from day one reviews. One of the most fun, and quite possibly reductive, activities of critically engaging with The Most Expensive Game Ever Made has been seeing which bits and bobs of gameplay have been borrowed from where. A healthy slab of Halo here, a dusting of Defiance there, left to marinade in a bunch of MMO conventions and practices. It's perhaps the aspects of that last one that have proven a little confusing for the console audience. Here in the land of PlayStations and Xboxes, we know little of power levelling. Endgame content is a term that is confusing and sounds suspicious.
Much has been made of Destiny's fairly bland story missions, most of which take you out of the even more bland expanses on Earth, the Moon, Venus and Mars, and funnel you into some sort of dungeon area. In my opinion, the bits of bespoke content (particularly the Strikes) have proven far more entertaining than the other solo/co-op content. It says much when the best bits of a seemingly expansive title such as this are actually the most narrow and focussed sections.
For console players who've shied away from MMOs, content gating will be a new experience -- the slow introduction to the game's systems and modes anathema to the regular slew of content shooters and action RPGs that deliver the whole package and tell you to run amok. Indeed, it's the primary excuse I've heard from people defending the practice: Destiny takes its cues from MMOs, you grind to level 20 and that's when the "real" game opens up!
My response to that thus far has been simple...
Why?Click here to read more...
We've already had a look at many of the modes the Crucible has to offer, but yesterday Bungie unlocked the Salvage game type in Destiny. As such, we sent in Carl & Matt to investigate the 3v3 action in our latest gameplay video from the launch week.
Be sure to check out the rest of our Destiny coverage, including our daily critical impressions vidcasts!
Probably the most fully-realised aspect of Destiny, today we turn out attention to the Crucible in this ongoing series of review impressions, taking a look at game modes, maps, and balancing.
We continue our in-game coverage of Destiny by following on from the recent Game Night, testing out more of the Crucible. Carl & Matt try their luck in two rounds of Clash, before going head-to-head in a Rumble match.
Stay tuned to the site for more of our on-going Destiny vidcasts, with the next episode focusing on the multiplayer modes of the Crucible.
Destiny reminds me of the original Assassin's Creed.
Wait, come back. Let me explain.
I remember when the original Assassin's Creed came out, and the hype train was a full speed for that particular title. I remember it being the game on everyone's lips, not least in part because one of the core aspects of the way that game handled felt so liberating and exciting. Running and climbing was fluid and intuitive and wildly freeing. I remember local multiplayer nights being replaced by us crowding round a single Xbox, swapping the controller back and forth every so often just as we had years before when the GTA series was in its infancy. This central mechanism, this seamless parkour and vertical freedom from which everything else seemed to derive, was incredibly exciting.
That might all seem a little daft now, but at the time it was extraordinarily exciting, coupled with open-ended assassination missions that gave you the run of the city and empowered you to make your own decisions. The core of the game was fresh and fun and brimmed with promise and potential.
That's the thing, though, it took Assassin's Creed II to take the franchise to the next level and really deliver on that potential, realising the promise hinted at in that first game. For all of its seemingly breathless originality and ambition at the time, the original Assassin's Creed was also repetitive, clunky, and fell far short of the grandiose ambitions underpinning its structure. Altair was a blank cipher, whose American voice sounded out of place amongst the heavily accented tones of every other character, and although the game around him had some nice ideas, it was mired in content that still had some way to go, its quality diminished by missions of an increasingly formulaic and repetitive nature, and a devolution into endless combat encounters the further along you got.
At the time of release, Electronic Gaming Monthly described it as "an incomplete template based on multiple other games" -- there were some unique flavours in the mix, but it took a sequel for Assassin's Creed to really find its feet and its complete identity.
That quote above could just as easily be applied to Destiny. In fact, it's even more pertinent here.Click here to read more...
Busy collecting Grimoire cards and Emblems in Destiny this week? Well, allow us to help you out. Through promotional trading cards for the game, affiliate websites, and the emergence of limited edition codes, 26 codes have been uncovered that can be used multiple times and redeemed on Bungie.net for rewards.
All you have to do is register on the site (sign up the Dealspwn Destiny clan while you're at it), link up you PSN/Xbox LIVE accounts to ensure maximum benefit, and then enter in the codes by clicking "Redeem Code" in the drop-down menu from your account name.
You can see your Grimoire cards immediately on Bungie.net once you've unlocked them, but you'll need to take a trip to the Tower and visit the Postmaster to nab your Emblems and Shaders. Don't expect to be able to to use the latter until level 20.Hit the jump for the free list of Destiny codes >>
Hello there Traveller! Welcome to Day Two of our ongoing series of critical vidcasts regarding Destiny. Yesterday, Carl and I shared our initial thoughts on the retail version of the game, delighting in the game's exquisite gunplay and lamenting the empty feeling of the game worlds. Today, it's all about customisation. We talk about character creation and classes before moving onto equipment, upgrading gear and the economies present in the game, and also assessing Destiny's approach to dispensing loot.
This week's Game Night sees Carl and Matt dive into the Crucible multiplayer of Destiny, testing their skills again other Guardians in the Control game type.
Be sure to check out the rest of our Destiny coverage, including our on-going impressions on the game in the run up to our final review.
It's finally here - Destiny has arrived and it's in the hands of gamers everywhere. The Dealspwn team have been getting stuck into the action as well, and so we kick off our video coverage of Destiny's launch with Carl & Matt taking on the first mission on the Moon. Highlights include Carl's delight in discovering the Pike for the first time, and Matt demonstrates why he loves the Warlock's power glove.
If you haven't already, be sure to check out our Critical Impression video in which Carl and Matt discuss their initial thoughts on Bungie's latest.
Bungie basically laughed in the face of conventional review-making earlier this week, surfing into town on a swagalicious wave of money and hype. So, given that conventional reviews are sort of out of the window for this action-RPG-FPS-MMO hybrid, we thought we'd bring you a running commentary of our impressions and critical thoughts over the next few days by way of a daily vidcast.
Today we take a look at the basic gunplay, the exemplary sound design, the oddly empty worlds, and the awesomeness of the Tower and ask why the hell does a new-gen game have loading times that are longer than GTA Online's.
Also, does Carl have PS4 buyer's remorse having bought a new console for this game? Or are all of his generational dreams coming true?
Let us know how you're getting on in the box below.
Destiny is upon us, and we'll be bringing you a number of impressions pieces from various perspectives over the next week or so as we get to grips with the Most Expensive Game Ever Made.
But, along with the Starter Guide we published earlier in the week, here's another helpful little article to help you get the most out of the vast PvE experiences to be had across the Solar System, and some tips regarding levelling, loot, and combat.
Save your Glimmer
Glimmer is the main form of currency in Destiny, and you'll earn enough in the first hour or two to buy some more powerful weapons back at the Tower. Don't do it. Although the game doesn't shower you in loot, completing the Story missions will see you gifted weapons and armour, and you'll gradually uncover a host of loadout options out in the open world and on Patrol. Comb areas thoroughly for chests, and be sure to mop up any dropped items after a firefight. You'll want to save your Glimmer for rarer things.Click here to read more...
It's so very close now. Bungie have announced that "Destiny servers will admit Guardians as soon as it is September 9th somewhere in the world. When you play is between you and your retailer."
With the year's most anticipated game only hours away, we've assembled a little starter guide for interested parties who've yet to get stuck into the game or maybe just want a little clarification on what the hell is going on.
Here's a little all-in-one article to give you the fast-fire lowdown on everything you need to get started in Destiny when the servers go live later.
The Darkness forced humanity back to Earth whereupon The Traveller sacrificed itself in a last stand designed to salvage the pockets of humanity that remained. The Traveller now lies dormant, its aura protecting the last human City.
But before it succumbed to The Darkness, The Traveller delivered one last boon to humanity in the form of the A.I. Ghosts -- sent forth to seek out worthy warriors to become Guardians of the City and defend Earth against attack.
You (and indeed I) are one of those Guardians.
Platform: PS4 | Xbox One (reviewed)
Developer: Blizzard Entertainment
Here we go again. I reviewed Diablo III on PC... then the last-gen console version... then the Reaper Of Souls expansion pack... and finally we come to this. The Ultimate Evil Edition. The final showdown. It's time for the last dance with the devil -- that is, unless Blizzard brings out another expansion.
To be honest, I'm still in two minds about whether Diablo III really works on consoles. Despite pretending to be a glorious last stand against the forces of hell, all it really involves is holding the A button (X on PS4) until all the enemies are dead or you've passed out from boredom. The leap from mice to controllers removed an entire dimension of precision priority targeting, so instead you'll just mash that button and then mash it a few more times to pick up all the loot in the vicinity. Then roll. Then hold down A for another five minutes.
This shouldn't be fun. It should be torture. But ultimately, somehow, Diablo III's Ultimate Evil Edition ends up being enjoyable and annoyingly addictive to the point where I'd rather be playing it than leaving my den -- let alone writing this review.
Basically, Just Add Mates.Click here to read more...
"Here we go again," I yawned as my first multiplayer match in this year's Call Of Duty started to count down. "Business as usual." Right before I leapt a full storey-and-a-half into the air, airboosted onto a roof, slammed into the ground and shredded two opponents into chunky kibbles with a pair of high-tech miniguns.
I cackled like a madman. Then, perhaps deservedly, my celebration was cut short by a terminal dose of laser to the face.
When it comes to teaching an old dog new tricks, you can't go far wrong by strapping your mutt into an insanely mobile exoseleton and arming it with exotic future boomsticks [don't try that at home, kids - DARPA]. It's still the same beast, only more... awesome. Sledgehammer Games promised to shake up the Call Of Duty formula this time, and I'm delighted to report that Advanced Warfare feels comfortably familiar yet entirely, brilliantly different.
And no, I can't believe I just wrote that either. We still can't make a value judgement, and they might still cock it right up, but let me explain.Click here to read more...
The exoskeleton is out of the bag folks, Activision has finally shown off the eagerly awaited multiplayer for Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. Carl and Jon will be fighting their way through the masses at Gamescom this week to bring you a hands-on report, but for now it’s time to take a look at the five most exciting things unveiled by today’s live stream. As ever, we’d love to hear your thoughts on the new-look multiplayer too.
Forget about those fears that all the cool exo abilities were going to be limited to set pieces in the single-player, the multiplayer looks set to be given a huge boost thanks to the new skills on offer. Hardly a sluggish FPS to begin with, the speed of the game will be hurtling forwards with sharper reactions set to play a critical role in staying on top. All movements are now able to have additional boosts. So being able to side-strafe or air-dash in any direction will give you an unprecedented level of movement compared to past entries in the series. There’s a lot to learn yet about the new perks, but one entitled Gung Ho allows you to sprint and shoot. This is going to be insane.Click here to read more...
Oh Activision, you big teases.
All we have to go on currently is a teaser website and a painfully brief video that recently went live, but it looks like Activision are preparing to announce something with regard to Sierra Entertainment -- the developer and publisher best known for games like Gabriel Knight, King's Quest, Space Quest, Homeworld, and Phantasmagoria.Click here to read more...
The Destiny beta is over (BOOO!) but there are still things to be done in order to get ready for the game's launch in September. One thing we found was that the game becomes so much more enjoyable when playing with a couple of chums, and thankfully Bungie have set up a cracking initiative to help like-minded Destiny mini-communities to come together, chat and link up with like-minded people, and fill out that Fireteam.
To that end, the Dealspwn Destiny clan is live. Thanks to everyone who got stuck into the naming debate. You can join up here:
All you have to do is jump on over to the clan page, log in with your Facebook/Google/PSN/Xbox Live account and click "Request Join". We'll be checking in regularly to expedite approvals as well as launch the occasional poll and get stuck into some discussions regarding the game as well as crying over the fact that September 9th seems so damn far away.
Still, at least we'll have each other while we wait. Misery loves company and all that. You can catch up on all of our Destiny coverage so far right here.
In this week's episode of Game Night, Brendan and I climb upon our Dealspwnies of war and ride into battle against super-powerful spider tanks and a spawn-camping purple eye of belligerence. Yes, we're back in Old Russia for this one, as we take on the Level 6 "Strike" Mission in the Destiny beta, and I die a lot and get a bit hysterical.
So, does Destiny warrant a next-gen console purchase? It certainly looks better on PS4 out of all four consoles we tried, but does it warrant that £300-400 upgrade? You know what... we're not actually that certain it does.
The video above takes a little look at the PS4 and Xbox 360 versions of the Destiny beta and places them side by side for you to judge.