Mixed feelings so far (Destiny)

by CruelLEGACEY @, Toronto, Wednesday, February 10, 2021, 15:27 (14 days ago) @ cheapLEY

The new Battlegrounds activity is... fine, I guess. But boy does it feel like a misuse of resources in a way. After completing the intro quest (which involves running a couple Battleground activities), I jumped into a fireteam with a couple clan mates who had started playing about an hour earlier than me, and they both commented on how sick of the battlegrounds they already were. Later that night, I was playing with Korny and Claude, and they too both commented on how uninterested they were on doing more of this activity. It’s the first day, and this activity is already feeling worn out after a handful of completions. I think it’s fine as a little diversion to jump into on occasion with friends, but as the primary activity of the season it really falls flat IMO. There just isn’t enough to it.

That’s been the case since day one with the seasonal model. Vex Offensive was boring after three runs. So was the Sundial. I’m not sure I even did three runs of Warmind basketball. The Public Event from two seasons ago was surprisingly fun, but that might just be because it had been like six months since I’d really played Destiny at that point. The Wrathborn Hunts were boring the first time, I can’t even imagine playing enough to do all those Triumphs.

Even going back to Black Armory or Menagerie . . . they’re miles better than the current offerings, but even they’re not strong enough to base an entire season around.

Yeah, I agree. I think for me the big difference back then was that the Forges, Reckoning, and Menagerie were never the primary endgame activities for me. They were fun diversions that I did in between the stuff I was really invested in.

Unlike you, I loved Beyond Light. It was a really fun loop. I look forward to playing the new expansion in the fall and doing it again with some real new content instead of these three month grinds for no reason. I understand why they are doing the seasonal thing, and I don’t hate them for it. It just sucks all of the fun out of the game. Turning off the power grind would make all of the other faults with the game not matter for me, and I’d jump right back in. I should not have to decide between playing whatever activity my friends are currently doing or playing the activity Bungie has dictated I need to do that I can power up. Until they fix that, the seasonal model is fundamentally broken.

I should clarify that there is stuff within Beyond Light that I really enjoy. It’s just that for me, the parts it got right are narrow in scale or singular activities (I love the Raid, for example). But IMO, the problems that were introduced alongside Beyond Light are the kind of sweeping, ever-present issues that tarnish the entire game. Specifically Sunsetting, Stasis, and the DCV. The Beyond Light campaign was a kind of microcosm for that overall trend for me. There were plenty of little things I really liked, but that stuff was largely overshadowed by big, sweeping downsides, such as the fact that a huge portion of the “campaign” is really just completing patrol bounty objectives, or the fact that the majority of my playtime was spent travelling from the landing zone to my next objective way up north.

IMO, this is a continuation of poor high-level decision making that has been consistently in the forefront since Shadowkeep. That expansion included a change to PvE damage scaling which immediately impacted all PvE combat in a negative way (again, IMO). The implementation of the artifact mods and champions made gear selection for endgame content feel overly restrictive, rather than empowering the “build your personal monster-killing machine the way you want” idea which Bungie claims to care about (and sunsetting has only made this issue worse). The pattern of nerfing any and all gear that sees lots of usage, without properly understanding WHY that gear is being used so often, really kicked into gear during Season of Opulance and has not slowed down since then. And so on.

Long story short, I’m not going to get worked up about a seasonal activity which I don’t enjoy (EG wrathborn hunts) because that stuff is inconsequential enough that I can simply ignore it if I don’t like it. But I do feel a bit starved for content I can really sink my teeth into. It exists, but it is either a non-trivial task to arrange (like putting together a raid group) or the activities have been artificially buried into obscurity thanks to sunsetting and reward power issues. According to DungeonReport, I’ve completed the Hawkmoon mission 72 times in the past 3 weeks. I love that mission, but not so much that I’d run it 72 times in a vacuum. I keep running it because I keep wanting to play Destiny, staring at the director for 5 minutes, then deciding the Harbinger mission is just about my only option if I want something that is still exciting and challenging but relatively easy to get a group together, and is nicely rewarding on top of that.

I saw a thread on twitter the other day. One of the UI guys at Bungie said he thought it was funny that he keeps seeing people online theorizing that the game is being supported by a skeleton crew because there’s more people on it now than there has been for a long time. I was confused, because he said that proudly, whereas it actually seems like that would be fucking embarrassing, given the state of the game. For me, it encapsulated the entire relationship between Bungie, the game, and the players. It feels like they fundamentally misunderstand just about everything about the game they’re making and what the players of that game actually want.

Now this is absolutely shocking to me. I’m blown away. If this is accurate, then Claude should be laughing out loud at me, because I was just saying to him last week that Bungie is CLEARLY trying to keep Destiny running with the smallest team they can get away with, while the true focus of the studio is shifted towards future projects. To be fair, I wasn’t exactly saying that the team working on Destiny is “small”, just that it seems obvious to me that Bungie wants to have as few people working on D2 as they can get away with while maintaining its profitability. But the idea that Bungie has more people working on Destiny right now than ever before just blows me away (and yes, I do realize that whoever said so was probably not factoring in the support teams that used to work on D2 through activision, VV, and High Moon). I completely agree with your comment about how off-the-mark Bungie appears to be when it comes to judging the relationship players have with their game at the moment.

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