If you didn’t read the first part of my review, it’s here. Now let’s start where I left off:
Destiny has a lot of different game modes. Nowadays shooters are basically multiplayer focused, and Destiny is no different: the funnest part of the game is tackling a mission with your friends, but Destiny has a large focus on story. Most of the activities that you do has something to do with the main story of the game. You start of the story campaign on Earth, in a place that used to be Russia, in a few missions learning the ropes and meeting some of your enemies. The story continues through there, bringing you to Earth’s Moon, Venus, and Mars. Additional locations are available to go and fight tough AI enemies by getting expansion packs, but that won’t be discussed here. Each planet has a main open world that the missions take place in, although in certain levels there are new elements that are unique to that level. You can also freely explore the environment and complete mini-missions via patrol mode, which usually unlocks in a location after the first one or two levels.
Let’s get down to the cooperative game modes. Destiny features no local co-op, but makes up for it in the online co-op (and PvP). You can invite your Xbox Live friends to play with you, or you can invite a random stranger, or you can just let matchmaking do the work in most cooperative options. You can play almost all story missions with your friends, and you can also play Strikes and Raids. Strikes are basically overextended story missions that have one or two bosses at the end of it. Strikes also feature matchmaking, but if you can’t find any teammates, you can do the strike solo, which can be very hard because strikes are designed to be done cooperatively. New strikes are available with the purchase of expansion packs, and you usually can’t play them unless you have that expansion pack. (I found that I was able to play strikes that I shouldn’t have been able to play by selecting an option in a section labeled Vanguard on your galactic map once your character reaches level 20 and selecting Vanguard Legacy Playlist. This makes you and two other players do a random strike, which could potentially be a strike you can’t play without the purchase of an expansion pack.)
Raids are overly extended strikes that feature the vaguest of instructions, hardcore combat and puzzles, and no matchmaking, so you have to get a bunch of people to do the Raid with you, or else you will die instantly.
Then there’s PvP. In the PvP mode, called Crucible in Destiny, you (usually) team up with some friends or strangers, and then have an all out war with the opposing team. Without the latest expansion, you can only play a certain type of game mode of crucible that changes every so often. There’s several PvP modes; some involve capturing a point, some involve killing the other team, and so on. There’s an accurate description of the game mode, so you usually won’t have any trouble knowing what you’re doing. All the PvP maps are areas that you can’t go to unless you are doing a special type of mission sometimes. Most of the time in PvP game modes level advantages are disabled, so a level 40 can’t wreck a level 3 or something. Although, this doesn’t stop someone from using a super powerful gun against you.
You may have noticed that I mention expansion packs a lot. Destiny has four expansion packs, each with its own bonus content, just like most normal games. But unlike normal games, I felt like one expansion pack called Taken King was basically required in order to enjoy the full Destiny experience. Without Taken King, you can’t use most Exotic or Legendary weapons (I talked about those in Part One), which doesn’t sound like that much of a drawback, but you start to notice the disadvantages if you play Destiny without it. If you want to get Destiny, I recommend getting Destiny: Taken King Legendary Edition or Destiny: The Collection, so that you have the full experience. I’m not trying to advertise here, but without the expansions Destiny is pretty empty.
For you people reading this who don’t have an Xbox or have no idea what Xbox Live is, let me explain. Xbox Live is the service provided by Microsoft that lets Xbox One users play in multiplayer game modes. And it costs money. Lots of money. Unlike the Nintendo service, which only costs a one time very small, Xbox Live costs a large yearly fee. And guess what? Since Destiny is a game built on multiplayer, it almost requires Xbox Live.
Destiny is a fun sci-fi shooter, and the cooperative gameplay is superb. But unlike other games, Destiny almost requires you to get a certain expansion pack and Xbox Live.