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Solidus

Solidus

Edited: 7/25/2014 11:53:13 PM
After spending a good while experiencing the content available within the beta, I believe I'm prepared to give proper feedback and thoughts on what I experienced. [b]Player vs Environment [/b] I. Story Missions I've found the missions available in the beta to be slightly lacking in terms of their objectives and execution but the tight, well focused game play and worthy AI managed to ward off any possible boredom. From what I've experienced, the missions themselves seem to pretty much revolve around "go here", "go here, scan this", or "go here, scan this, oh look waves of enemies". Now I know this interpretation may seem a overly flippant but while the experience was enjoyable I just didn't get the sense of a properly choreographed encounter as I hopped on my Sparrow, occasionally stopping to deal with a clump of enemies I could have just as easily passed, eventually reaching the immediate area of my objective and then preforming said objective with little variance or fanfare unless a Public Event occurred. It almost felt like the first person, sci-fi equivalent of going into the forest to kill five boars. It just felt so...simple. I believe the fact that the story missions are set within the open world as opposed to uniquely designed levels is the reason for the lack of creativity in their execution, the missions and how they unfold must bend to fit within the predefined play space of the open world rather than have a play space built around their concepts and scenarios for maximum effect. With whats been presented I wouldn't call this an ideal scenario but later environments might allow for more creative lee way and thus more elaborate missions. II. Strike While one Strike isn't much to go on I feel the Devil's Lair at least is also hampered by being set in the open world rather being it own separate space other than the area beyond the Devil Walker. It feels unduly simplistic for what amounts to an assassination as you work your way into the refinery, "go here, scan this, oh look waves of enemies", face the Devil Walker, then make it to Sepiks Prime, a supposed machine god with TWO attacks and a lot of health, effectively a Servitor on steroids. While Strikes are designed to be more succinct than raids I have to hope that further strikes, much like missions, offer a less straight forward experience and the bosses involved are also more distinct in both design and action. III. Exploration Exploration seemed like kind of a mixed bag to me. Coming to terms with this new environment, looking off into the skyboxes, exploring for chests and ghosts or simply new areas, and bumping into powerful enemies signaling you will one day return and not forsake the area forever like many other games, it's all just great but it's the missions that are a sticking point. They just don't offer enough Vanguard reputation to make them really worth concentrating on beyond the "high value target" missions that provide both Glimmer and a large sum of materials that can be eventually traded in for reputation with the Vanguard or Crucible as well as experience and Glimmer. Really, you might as well get by on the bounties since you can effectively multitask and gain Vanguard reputation while in other modes of play. With this in mind though, the design of missions that actually have you explore cave systems and become acquainted with your movement ability through platforming are ingenious. IV. Public Event I enjoyed the much touted Public Events the few times they occurred with a Warsat event involving both high level Fallen and Hive being particularly memorable. I can think of nothing truly negative about temporary events that serve as a focal point for all in the area to engage in large confrontation for unique currency and teh phat meaningful lootz beyond the number of people in the world, and thus participants in said events, can be a tad iffy which was brought to the forefront of my experience why I successfully soloed a Devil Walker. In fact, I don't know what's up with my instances during Exploration but the world seems to be pretty empty most of the time. While the Player vs Environment content is a tad samey the sheer polish found within the combat and RPG elements overshadows the flaws to the point where you don't really mind. It's still fun to shoot things and get useful items even if the activity isn't as fleshed out as it could be. [b]Competitive Multiplayer[/b] I am nowhere near MLGEEEE L33T enough to properly discuss the finer points of multiplayer but I do know enough to say vehicles, particularly the Interceptor, are a little ridiculous right now with my best scores of the entire beta coming from riding in that [url=http://www.bungie.net/en/Legend/PGCR/2/4611686018428786358/2305843009215026785/8588665?_t]chariot of fire[/url].

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    Solidus

    Solidus

    7/29/2014 11:05:36 PM Permalink
    http://www.bungie.net/en/Forum/Post/67033742/0/0/1 I kinda reposted this a while ago with a more direct title in hopes of getting more attention but this one seems to be receiving a small resurgence in interest somehow. It's pretty much the same thing but I removed the Interceptor part after Bungie announced the nerf and laughed at how the Moon mission was even more "go here, scan this". You did that literally three times.
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    NMStrou

    NMStrou

    7/29/2014 10:37:26 PM Permalink
    loved reading this and a few of the comments omw to work! you're spot on with all your points, so I'll leave it at that, except to say I hope they cut a lot of the story out (felt that way, since your whole existence is glossed over) so the missions may flesh out when we get the full copy. if not, as you said, the elements that work, the combat specifically, are so good, it makes up for what the beta lacked. We'll have to wait and see! thank you for the excellent post!
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      Stone_Soldier

      Stone_Soldier

      7/29/2014 10:26:49 PM Permalink
      I'll comment on Story Missions here only because I think you putting a lot of stock in the Beta for these items. I think the Beta is going to be least polished in these areas. Firstly because of the advanced XP progression of the Beta and second, because the Beta was such an early build. Personally I found the Story missions satisfactory, if a little short. I agree with you that I would prefer the Story missions to have their own instance. To often I found myself following other Guardians around and having little or nothing to do except pot shot a few roaming bands of Fallen.
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        bentrick

        bentrick

        7/27/2014 4:36:10 AM Permalink
        How can you be sure the story missions weren't built THEN put together on the same map? You seem to be assuming it was done the other way around..
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          jayrican214

          jayrican214

          7/25/2014 5:53:09 AM Permalink
          I've said some of these things on a few post but glad someone was able to capture it all in one well thought out post. I agree with this.... I was expecting a little more of an mmorpg rather then more shooter... I'm definitely not trying to make this game fit what I'm use to but I was hoping it would really change the whole gaming industry... Like for one in think levels should go well beyond 30 maybe even sword art online-ish and go to 1000(yes I know thats extreme and a dreamers dream lol) but I mean didn't they say they've been working in this game 10 years or so... I've played DCUO, Borderlands, Defiance, and even tryed WOW on PC and I was looking forward to Destiny being the game that brought all the best of those games and add the mutliper and co-op aspects and blow my mind... All in all the game play itself is good and I'll take this over COD and its campers any day but my mind is still intact so I'm disappointed...
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            juggernot42

            juggernot42

            7/25/2014 6:22:46 AM Permalink
            If this is how the game will be in the end, i will have the biggest disappointment in my life
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              Solidus

              Solidus

              7/25/2014 12:18:03 AM Permalink
              Guys, if you like it, post a message or add your own thoughts so more people can see this and legitimate feedback can rise above the sea of "x is op" and "crossbows would be cool" threads.
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              Afromaniac420

              Afromaniac420

              7/24/2014 5:08:39 AM Permalink
              Great review of the beta so far, I hope there are more cutsences with the people around the tower and access to the city itself. Really want more explanation in the game about whats going on but still having fun fighting both surprisingly interesting enemies. The big thing I wanted bungie to add was space combat but that seems a tad hopeless for now. I think the multiplayer will develop better over time after the games full release but I am having fun with it most of the time. I hope someone for the studio reads this feedback, excellent work Guardian.
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                Worthy300
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                  ELITEcookie119

                  ELITEcookie119

                  7/24/2014 9:14:43 AM Permalink
                  that interceptor NEEDS to be removed and i also think that supers need a serious nerf i mean like they need to be removed or u only get one per game, other than that i love the game
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                    HankTheYank27
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                      Solidus

                      Solidus

                      Edited: 7/24/2014 12:29:56 AM Permalink
                      I'm concerned with Destiny's approach to narrative and characterization. This fits under the Presentation section. [b]Characterization[/b] It doesn't really exist, both antagonists and supporting characters are equally lacking in much needed definition. Other than the Speaker who will obviously be getting more screen time, character interaction between yourself and the inhabitants of the Tower, the few NPCs you'll interact with in the game space is nonexistent beyond buying stuff. The Vanguard are seasoned veterans and also guides to your rebirth as a Guardian but even as you meet them for the VERY FIRST TIME no scene or dialogue surrounding what it means to be your chosen class or what your role in the coming conflict is occurs even though you're a [i]a freshly reanimated corpse[/i] and things of this nature would be of interest to character and player as well as the previous exploits of your handlers. Instead, you get a care package and are then told to get more care packages with the exact same flaw repeating itself over and over. You go about the Tower, meeting the factional leaders, a source of disharmony while humanity breathes it's last breath, yet learn nothing about them beyond the vaguest of ideas of their stances from the gear they sell, You go to the Shipwright, Outfitter, and Cryptarch, non-guardians who can put a vulnerable, human face to the conflict to contrast your space-time altering demi godhood and again, no attempt is made to connect the player to these characters and thus strengthen their knowledge and connection to the world. It's a very odd omission for a game that takes it's story so seriously for there to be so few avenues for it. I'm not asking for extensive dialog trees or even dialog trees but there really should have been introductory cutscenes and short scenes that occur as you reach story milestones. When it comes to enemies, they too are sorely in need of more definition. As soon you are reborn you encounter the Fallen, a race of nobility and serfs fallen from grace and cursed to pillage the stars in shame, but Tyrion feels no need to give you even the briefest introduction to them even though you are, again, [i]a freshly reanimated corpse[/i]. In fact, no one ever bothers to tell you who the Fallen are or what they want, this massive gap in background knowledge would remain if not for pre release material and blurbs from Grimoire cards gained hours if not days later with both being sources of information outside the game. This issue is further compounded when you consider there doesn't seem to be any clear antagonists at this point. Sure we've seen bosses so far but they have no dialogue or narrative significance. Who are the leaders of the respective armies against us? What do they gain from this? What is their take on each other given Hive troops attack Fallen troops? Do they serve the Darkness willingly or out of fear? As they stand now the Fallen are just "the Fallen" and the Hive are just "the Hive", mere obstacles with seemingly no greater purpose or machinations as well as a distinct lack of notable leadership for the player to use as a reference for the whole. [b]Narrative[/b] Destiny does a lot of setting up with references to battles and calamities, heroes and secret orders, but never follows through and tells you what happened or what they are. At a glance, I would suppose this is endemic of the same issues facing characters which is Bungie seems to believe off loading lore and background information from it actual source and into the Grimoire is somehow a good idea. When it comes to the actual story of the game I don't have enough to properly assess it but from what little there is It might have been better to have your character go through a proper dialogue, asking questions and giving statements, on what your doing and your current objective rather than have Tyrion talk [i]at[/i] you in order to more organically relay to the player how his actions work into the greater conflict. As it stands now I differently get it but it just seems so curt and to the point. I don't really understand why such vagueness exists within the game when your character is a person revived after dying a number of years prior to current events. It pretty much the equivalent of Amnesia in the sense it gives you a easy out for explaining all the things in the world around the character for the sake of the viewer without it being clunky or inorganic but the fact that your character was dead seems to be just an ancillary detail and not a tool to introduce you into the world. It's an odd choice to make.
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                        Solidus

                        Solidus

                        Edited: 7/23/2014 10:42:02 PM Permalink
                        [b]Presentation[/b] I. The Grimoire The Grimoire , in it's form of a set trading cards, is an interesting take on the tried and true codex of innumerable RPGs past. The method of how you [i]gain[/i] entries in it, however, is simply horrific. Never in all my years of gaming have I experienced a system so staunchly, unimaginably unforthcoming as the Grimoire in it's current form where it dangles basic pieces of lore behind arbitrary kill counts so high you would think they were inspired by a Rwandan genocide or other unnecessary requirements. Now I can see how setting up the lore as a "game" where the player has to earn bits and pieces might sound positive on the outset but really there is no sane reason to lock out basic information about the world around the player behind massive kill requirements or any arduous requirements beyond actually interacting with a previous unknown subject. Now this system might make some sense if the information you gained started off as a basic preamble and became more and more intricate and detailed, reflecting your character becoming more familiar with the things around him through sheer experience, as you met increasingly higher requirements but as it stand now the middling paragraphs, if that, simply are not worth the piles of corpses necessary or other acts to unlock them and the values should be adjusted accordingly. I don't wish to harp unnecessarily but I just cannot fathom the kind of logic the Grimoire represents. Why do I need hundreds of kills with an Auto Rifle to gain something as basic as the game's definition of an Auto Rifle? Why do I need to make an Awoken character for the sole purpose of finding out why blue people are running around here? Every other game I've ever experienced had the sole requirement of simply interacting with a subject to gain knowledge about it and right fully so. What good reason is there to [i]not[/i] give the player information on something as soon as it is encountered or at the very least shortly there after? [b]Items[/b] I. Gaining Items On the whole, the system behind Destiny's loot system seems to work just fine but could use some fine tuning when it comes to the Crucible. I, like many others, brought my A game to the Iron Banner and was [i]eventually[/i] awarded Timur's Lash and some Glass Shards, gained after arriving in third and first place after a hand full of victories with people also receiving the Hand Cannon after equally scattered performances. In short, it seemed as if I gained these rewards much like equipment in the Crucible proper, out of pure dumb luck with none of the metrics on how many matches I played or where I placed score wise being a noticeable factor. While this is merely an oddity in the normal mode it becomes an issue when talking about limited time events and unique awards. It goes without saying that inundating consistent PvP top scorers with loot runs counter to good balance but what ever algorithms are used to determine who gets what when need to be adjusted for the sake of the Iron Banner so rewards are both timely and consistent. There are few frustrations greater than having something dangled in front of with no real way of knowing when or even if you'll ever receive it even though you're doing all you can. This is a completely arbitrary suggestion but I was thinking if you can win ten matches, nearly regardless of you personal performance, you receive the limited reward. When it comes to items available for purchase I'm not entirely sure what to think. With the Vanguard Armory trailer showing the return of low level Vanguard weapons and the addition of low level Vanguard armor the player seems to have enough avenues to find the proper equipment they need if they're having a stint of bad drops but I'm not sure what other changes will be made before release. In a slightly related note, I reached rank 3 with the Cryptarch and got engrams for the "Creation's Wind" bond and the Zombie Apocalypse WF47. While the bond required me to be level 10 which is acceptable the Machine Gun required me to be level 20, I enjoyed the sentiment of the rewards but I would probably be better served with items that are in my characters ball park. II. Shaders I can't really find a good reason why basic shaders from the Guardian Outfitter should be level locked. It would be one thing if they were super unique schemes gained from raids or other accomplishments but should I really need to reach the max level for my character to not look like a sci fi circus clown? Honestly, c'mon. The choice is especially odd given factional colors only had a crucible rank requirement in the alpha. Also on the topic of shaders, there needs to be an ability to preview them. I'll finish by posting my thoughts on Destiny's narrative shortly.
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                          Solidus
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                            BlooDShot

                            BlooDShot

                            7/22/2014 11:32:30 PM Permalink
                            I think this game just has soo much potential to where we all want more of an mmorpg type of game out of destiny. I too also hate how linear the story mode seems. I feel like we should get our missions from the tower and then have to navigate and battle waves of enmeys and sub bosses to get to wherever we have to get to. along with required items from other areas that are a mission to get in it of itself. (but again this would be still leaning more towards the mmorpg side of things). I am just really anxious to see the direction Bungi decides to move forward with this game. but for now the story mode just seems like something i will run through just to stay i did it and i will live in the crucible unless there is some OP weapon i can get from killing a certain monster. All in all i feel like your post was well thought out and very insightful. Good Work Guardian!
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