Ever since its release I’ve had mixed feelings about Destiny. I played the beta, enjoyed it and couldn’t wait for the game to release. Once release day came I was incredibly disappointed in the way the ‘story’ of Destiny was handled. There seemed to be no plot, or no overarching reason why I was going on any of the missions at all. There were blurbs of dialogue delivered with so little effort I didn’t even bother listening to them. Every mission seemed isolated from the one before and playing Destiny felt like playing a sort of random mission generator.
Despite the lack of story, I still immensely enjoyed the shooter aspect of Destiny. The shooting was rock solid and all of the weapons were exciting to use, at least for awhile. Before long most of the weapons ended up feeling the same, and I was never blown away by any of the loot drops. In games like Diablo there’s a constant drive to keep hacking away at enemies because some of the rare weapons that drop are significantly different than everything else and wielding those weapons makes you feel more powerful. Destiny never allows you to experience that feeling.
Again, despite another negative aspect of the game, I’ve still been occasionally drawn to Destiny. There’s something enjoyable about jumping into a strike with two other people and working together to run through hordes of enemies before facing a bullet sponge boss. Unfortunately, like the story missions, there is very little variety in the strike missions. You’ll fight through easy to kill enemies until you face off against a predictable boss that will soak up thousands of bullets for anywhere between five and 15 minutes until it inevitably falls.
Even realizing all of Destiny’s negatives (and I’ve only scratched the surface), I’m still tempted to purchase the first two expansions: The Dark Below and House of Wolves ($19.99 each, or $34.99 with the expansion pass). I’d like to see the additional content (I’m only level 24 currently), but there’s one thing keeping me from investing the time and money: achievements. There are no achievements in either The Dark Below or House of Wolves. $40 worth of content offers up zero achievements. This might sound silly, but if I pay for additional content I expect to be able to earn some additional achievements. I can’t think of any downloadable content in the modern era of video games that hasn’t offered an additional set of achievements for the player to earn.
The forthcoming major Destiny expansion, The Taken King ($39.99, or $79.99 via a complicated pricing structure) will feature achievements. The question is, do I really want to play through hours and hours of content that is likely to be very similar to what I’ve already played just to get to a point where I can start earning achievements again? I’m not so sure that I do. Sure the first two expansions may be worth playing for the experience alone, but more often than not I hear Destiny spoken of negatively, even from the mouths of seasoned players.
Have you played the Destiny expansions? Were they worth it? Do you think they’re worth playing as a casual Destiny player?