The Destiny Diaries – Day 5: No More Worlds to Conquer

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Published by GameFront.com 8 years ago , last updated 3 years ago

Posted on September 16, 2014, Phil Hornshaw The Destiny Diaries – Day 5: No More Worlds to Conquer

The Destiny Diaries is a daily retelling of the experiences of GameFront’s days in Destiny, imparting our impressions as we work through the game for the first time. Check back each day for a new episode, and stay tuned for a full review tomorrow.

Don’t miss The Destiny Diaries – Day 1: Dinklage the Inscrutable, The Destiny Diaries – Day 2: Hell is Other People in the Crucible, The Destiny Diaries – Day 3: Saving Private Heaney, The Destiny Dairies – Day 4: In Which I Read All Those Grimoire Cards, and The Destiny Diaries – Day 6: D-Day Minus One.

You’ve laid waste to your enemies, devastated entire family lineages of aliens, liberated countries and celestial bodies.

And thus, the age-old question: What are you going to do now?

Alas, there’s no Disneyland waiting in the shadow of The Traveler in Destiny, and no checks from the company behind it when you talk about how excited you are to go there in your post-conquest revelry. All Destiny has for you at the end of your campaign of extraterrestrial destruction is the Guardian Tower and more families to ruin and multi-armed children to orphan. Destiny’s endgame is this: you forever repeat its missions with your buddies, always attempting to gather new and more powerful equipment.

It’s the sad existence of a Guardian that your hands will only ever know the stock of a rifle, and never the tenderness of a warm embrace.

Once your character hits the “soft” level cap at 20, you’re no longer able to gather experience points to further grow your strength by completing missions and killing guys. You can continue to unlock new abilities, of course, and experience also goes toward upgrading your equipment with spiffy little add-ons. But after 20, it’s all about the clothes, not the man (or woman) — in order to be stronger, you need better stuff.

It’s the ultimate capitalist hamster wheel (and where does all that money you’re spending on clothes go? To line the Speaker’s pockets, just like I said yesterday), and one common to many massively multiplayer games. You keep playing the same levels in order to get better stuff so you can play the same levels. In Destiny, the trouble is that those missions get kind of dull, and it’s rare that you’re rewarded with cool new gear.

In the case of my now-supposedly-legendary Hunter, the Czarina*, it’s a bit of a bummer to have smashed all the faces of robotic and xenomorphic creatures alike. After campaigns to retake Russia, retake the Moon, undermine a weirdo Skynet plot on Venus and humiliate some Warhammer 40,000 look-alikes on Mars, it feels like her prime hours in Destiny are behind her. What now, with so many planets conquered, liberated, or otherwise marked with the indelible craters of battle and smoldering husks of those too stupid to flee before me?

That’s potentially 200 losing multiplayer matches. Per level. To buy one stupid helmet.

The Czarina occasionally will saunter into the Crucible and mow down a few other players. The Crucible remains the most fun I’ve had in Destiny, even with its anemic multiplayer mode offerings and its character class balancing that feels like an afterthought, and if Bungie were to put more attention into the PvP mode, it could well sustain the game beyond the soft cap.

Battling against other players lets you collect bags full of pogs (Crucible Marks) that supposedly can be traded for great new gear. But before you can do that, you need to increase your Crucible reputation to level 2. That takes 2,000 Crucible reputation points per level. For some perspective, you get 25 for each match you win; 10 for each match you lose.

That’s potentially 200 losing multiplayer matches. Per level. To buy one stupid helmet.

*The Hunter formerly known as The Czaress has since changed her name, after GameFront contributor Ben Richardson informed me that that’s not a word in either English or Russian.

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