What We Should Expect From Destiny 3
Is the third time a charm? While there is no concrete news concerning Destiny’s next move, there is always time for speculation. Destiny and Destiny 2’s launch and subsequent turnarounds are among the most legendary in gaming history for both positive and negative reasons. However, both were so close to being dead on arrival that if not for some clever restructuring, there would be no need to even be talking about the 3rd installment. So, what can Bungie do to ensure this ship launches smoothly?
Engaging the player from the get go- One thing Destiny 2 attempted was an epic beginning. Sapped of all your abilities and limping towards your destination, it was clear this was a far more serious tale than Destiny, but then just like that it was gone. The stage was set for a dark and gripping adventure, but the tone was quickly thrown away for more quippy side characters with zero interesting features and we were transported to yet another generic hub world, given another voiceless protagonist and told there were some bad guys that need killing. Destiny is a tricky game because it can be played both solo and with others, but it’s very clear that the heavy care was put into the multiplayer aspect above all else. As someone who enjoys single player games, I often would hop into Destiny 2 and hope for something akin to a Halo campaign. That would be enough, but starting out, it's just wave after wave of the same creatures per planet would flood my screen and then onto the next area where it would all happen again. I get this is the loop the game is built on, but a little bit of intrigue in between would do wonders. Mass Effect is a franchise Destiny should look to on how to make killing the same villains over and over interesting. The gameplay isn’t too different as is, but the one thing missing is player motivation. Choice could change everything here, give us some stakes from the start. How about in the first mission, an important character in the story’s life hangs in the balance and depending on what you do, they might live or die. It doesn’t have to change the story in any huge way, but I guarantee it’ll illicit the wow moment Destiny 2 was missing at launch and garner more of the reaction that The Forsaken DLC did.
Voiced Protagonist- You know what I love? When my main character has no voice and stands by like an emotionless zombie while several characters all emote and talk near him. It’s so immersive! Really though, the voiceless protagonist for online games has been a trend lately with both The Division series, the Dragonball Xenoverse series and Destiny as well. There’s nothing that makes a player feel less involved than turning his avatar into a mute. Even if it was just two voices to choose from, it would lend a world of gravitas and personality to what feels like a very dull way to tell a story as of now. So much amazing voice work has gone into other characters in the series (we won’t talk about Peter Dinklage) with the standout being Nathon Fillon’s Cayde 6, that it makes no sense to not have the main character voiced as well. The most taunting aspect of it all is having your Ghost talk for you. How about you take the great voice acting of Ghost, and throw that into the player’s character! What an idea! To think people might care more about the person they’re controlling compared to a floating chunk of metal.
Simplify the Raids- The Raids are the highlight of the Destiny experience, requiring tight strategy and constant communication (and hours of your time) to complete. The issue with the Raids is that they require 6-8 players to even start it. I don’t know about you, but I don’t have six friends that play Destiny. So where does that leave me? Usually stuck with three players with mics, two that speak strictly in insults, and one with no mic at all. What a team that was. Imagine going to war and as soon as the general doles out commands, two of your soldiers start throwing grenades at each other and another runs at fifty enemies with a shotgun. Then, your most skilled player gets yelled at over his walkie talkie to take the garbage out and your sniper was born without a voice. This is my raid experience. The answer to this is that Destiny 3 should offer the same type of high quality objectives that make the Raids so attractive and condense the player counts. Allow people who just want to play with a few friends to access the best content you have to offer. It’s ridiculous to expect six strangers to consistently be able to team up properly and the precision of the Raids demands just that.
Borderlands the loot- Destiny is one of the flagship looter shooters out there, but the godfather of the genre will always be Borderlands for one simple reason, the loot is fantastic and most of it feels unique. I’ll give you an example.
Here we have a random low-level gun from Borderlands. Look at all the effects it has; lighting enemies on fire, insanely enhanced melee damage and it’s only a level 2 weapon. Now check this out.
Here we have an exotic weapon from Destiny 2...Look at all the interesting gameplay changing features it has...faster firing...slightly decreased stability?? One of these things is not like the other. Now sure, some weapons in Destiny 2 have unique abilities that are genuinely different feeling from the other weapons, but a lot of it is just palette swaps and number chasing and it just feels like they could do more. You might be thinking “Well how hard is it to get The Last Word?” Well here’s a little breakdown of how you get it. 1. Find the Drifter in the Tower.
2. Defeat The Hive with Solar damage, collect 75(!!!!) Hive Tablets and defeat three Hive bosses. Um...Alright...What now?
3. Kill a certain amount of players in the Crucible.
4. Complete The Damnation on Titan.
5. Kill 15 Wanted escapees from Lost Sectors, earn 25 “revenge” medals in the Crucible, defeat 50 Hive with precision damage and complete three Witches' Ritual Heroic Public Events
6. Complete The Conversation in the Tangled Shore 7. Visit the Drifter again and The Last Word is yours. Yup, that’s all that’s needed to receive this thrilling little creation. What’s needed for the weapon in Borderlands? You can find it in the first area of the game.
Borderlands has an identical loot grind built into its’ gameplay formula, and yet you can come out of the first mission with a shotgun that's firing grenades or a rapid-fire pistol that turns enemies into acid. Destiny makes you go on a scavenger hunt from hell just to get a pistol that hits a little harder and fires a little faster. Be more like Borderlands, Destiny, it’s where you came from after all. Whether Destiny 3 ever becomes a reality has yet to be seen, but hopefully they save their best efforts for the launch this time and not the DLC.