Ill admit, I was expecting way more from the Destiny franchise than what it delivered. When the first games trailers started to surface and details on what type of game it was going to be materialized I started filling in the blanks and created my own vision as to what I was going to experience when the game went live.
My vision was a game where I could create my own hero and hop on a custom star ship traveling the galaxy fighting monsters and evil forces all the while staying connected with friends in full co op. I was expecting a full open galaxy game where I had complete freedom to go where II wanted and do what I wanted. Well we all know how that turned out in the end.
Destiny was an enjoyable experience for the time that I did put in but I think the point that I jumped off was hen I started to see seems in the unrealistic expectations that I had set for the game and when the initial content ran dry and Bungie prompted me to re play the existing meager amount of missions until I died; I left.
What happened next however gave me a deeper appreciation for Destiny.
I left to play a game that I was equally anticipating; The Division.
While this article isn't about the Division ( rest assured I will be tackling that game in a future article) it is mentioned because my time in The Division made me respect and appreciate Destiny much more.
Destiny wasn't built to be a complete free roam space Opera like I had hoped. It was created to be a specific thing and the only fault was that I didn't pay attention to that.
Of the many things Destiny did wrong when it launched the one thing it did do well was establish the roots of what is becoming and hopefully will continue to be a fully realized universe complete with lore ( lets not start about how that lore was delivered in the first game) and sprawling epic stories across many planets and settings.
Destiny is a RPG in shooter clothing not the other way around. Granted your primary way of interacting with things in Destiny is to shoot them but it is in the other moments that I am truly starting to fall in love with the game.
In Destiny 2 Bungie has set out to correct ( ...make amends) for the grievances in the first game and have actual done a lot of things right. Story is at the forefront , game play systems have been tweaked and refined for a smoother experience both when the fighting is at its thickest and when it is calm. Graphics have been improved and the environments that you travel in are bigger and more fleshed out. In short Destiny 2 is a great follow up to the first game.
I did not purchased Destiny 2 at launch and really what prompted me was a sudden price drop. I was skeptical right up until the first cut scene opened and from that point on it was evident that Bungie was intent on winning me back.
Knowing that a massive loot grind was going to be the evil lurking I was bracing myself for the " Beer Goggles" to come off...but they haven't. I am still early in the game but based on where I am and how much I am enjoying it I don't suspect they will. Having said that my past experiences since the last time I played Destiny with loot based shooters ( Borderlands and the Division) I have learned to look past the Gold Rush for new gear and take in the beauty if the game world around me.
Cut scenes, sprawling vistas, character Dialogue, NPC banter, all of this is part of my re-framed mindset on how to enjoy a game like Destiny 2. Here are some of my tips for new players or even long standing players who have fallen into a negative mindset about Destiny.
Tips on how to re-frame Destiny 2 in your mind
1: Look at the world around you
Whenever possible stop sprinting! Take some time to walk from point A to B and take in the sights and sounds. The sandboxes in Destiny 2 are amazing and all it takes is a few minutes of admiring them and you will stop focusing on trying to get the next purple drop from an enemy and get transported away to a game world unlike any other.
2: Listen to the characters speak
While you may find the background noise and chit chat of the various AI in the game to be distracting on your way to doing your next Strike I can tell you that it is in these snippets that Destiny really starts t o feel like a living and breathing world. Again they serve to enhance your experience of this game versus helping your game play but if you are like me and appreciate the work put into developing a game like this then you owe it to yourself and the Devs to stop and listen to a NPC chat you up sometimes.
3: Its not a rush
The treason why I was able to keep coming back to the Division was because my brother and I didn't try and reach end game within a month of owning the game. IN fact we still haven't completed any of the end game content in The Division. Likewise in Destiny.
With Destiny 2 we have decided that we don't need to rush to the end and are simply going to play at our own pace. This was we can enjoy the content and not get burned out n it. We made the mistake of partnering up with players who wanted to see all and be all as soon as possible last time. We wont make that mistake again.
4: Its a Role Playing Game
The most entertaining aspects of an open world multi player game is the stories you can imagine within the game itself. Everything you do in the game should be a part of your story and treated like a big deal. A night in Crucible should be worth talking about. Exploring a lost sector should be a big deal in itself, heck I would even recommend framing it as an " adventure unto itself" when you are talking to your clan mates ( If you haven't joined or made a clan yet, what the heck are you doing?)
In closing what I am trying to say is go have some fun live in the world of Destiny and don't get caught up in trying to max out your character so much as enjoy the journey.