Destiny 2's best bits are swallowed by the yawning void of the grind

Destiny 2

We all know someone who almost exclusively plays FIFA or Call of Duty, right? Sitting there, year after year, buying each iteration for its tiny improvements, just to sink hundreds more hours into the same, familiar loop, like a hamster spinning in a wheel. To be fair to those people, it’s often not just a game to them - that’s where their friends are.

Sometimes I use games as an escape from real people, to a place where I can exist without some pipsqueak shouting slurs in my ear. You’re either wired one way or the other. While I enjoy multiplayer games, I never spend too long dedicated to a single experience - I’m always looking for a new wheel.

If you are looking to play more Destiny 2 after the campaign then check out our raid guide.

That’s partly why I am done with Destiny 2 already. I finished most of the game in solo, marvelling at its gorgeous landscapes and revelling in its immediate, satisfying shooting and looting. Now the story is done, all that’s left is other people. Not that I have anything against humans, even if they are largely awful. In fact, I’ve had some great times completing the game’s Strikes with the PCGuardiansN clan. They are nice folk. I’ve even enjoyed playing some co-op with my kid. He’s alright. It’s just that there’s not enough there to keep me playing now the story is over.

Destiny 2

It’s not all down to my anti-social leanings, either. Destiny 2 runs out of steam fast after the credits roll. As soon as you’ve floored the last boss, you’re left with only throwaway activities that you have to tackle repeatedly to get better gear. Better gear slowly increases your Power Level, with the end goal being to get it high enough to take part in a raid. As good as the core shooting is, this grind is a boring chore. Your cool Exotic gear soon becomes irrelevant, and you end up wearing some lower-tier Rare stuff that has better stats, even though it makes you look like a knob. It’s very mechanical.

Currently, the most efficient way to get better loot is to take part in public events. You drop onto a planet, select an event, speed over to it on your Sparrow hover bike, then shoot some aliens until they’re dead. Each event has a secret objective where, if you shoot certain stuff first, it triggers a ‘heroic’ version of that event, potentially dishing out better loot. So you just fast-travel around maps to events and repeat these four or five activities over and over until your eyeballs fall out of your head. With each new helmet, gun, or piece of armour, your Power Level ticks up one - if you’re lucky. Then you head to a hub and trade in parts you don’t need, hoping for another drop of loot. Then you’re back at it again, wearing your new, more powerful, shit-looking helmet.

Destiny 2

Bungie have tried to alleviate this repetition by giving us weekly challenges to complete for some guaranteed loot drops, but once you are done with them you’re straight back at the grind again. Yes, the PvP Crucible battles are much better than they were in the first game - delivering a more focused, tactical effort - but eventually you will find yourself questioning why you are not just playing Overwatch instead. The endgame is disappointing, but everyone is chasing it compulsively because the numbers tell them to. You wouldn’t chase your own endgame, would you? There’s not much you can do when you are dead in the back of a bin lorry, you know.

I get that the raid is the big objective, the thing we are all working towards, but what do you do after the raid? You do the raid again. You keep doing the raid until there’s a new raid, a higher level cap, and more grind. You do the raid until you are dead. In real life. Spending nine hours in the rich world of Dishonored: Death of the Outsider has sapped all my enthusiasm to return to Destiny 2’s shallow-but-pretty galaxy. When Destiny 2 had its story running through its veins, it felt alive. Now, I fear, the reaper is reaching out his hands and Bungie are going to need to offer him more than a slightly better hood to barter with him.

Paladins
Sign in to Commentlogin to comment
nu1mlock avatar
nu1mlock Avatar
734
1 Month ago

I'm assuming you don't enjoy Warframe either? I've never played any version of Destiny except the beta on PC (which felt nice but the beta itself didn't make me want it more). I'm currently (again) playing Warframe and based by this article, it feels like they're alike, at least in the grind aspect. You grind for gear (or mods/resources in Warframe) rinse and repeat.

1