Game Opinions

Venture into Destiny – Part 10: Step Lightly and Carry a Large Gun

Destiny, Activision

If you’re positively bewildered by the madness you’re seeing here and would like some additional context, a link to previous parts in this series can be found at the end of the article.

You may recall that last time we were in a rush to hit Light level 280 from 209. This was to access the latest DLC: Rise of Iron. However, I took a week break upon hitting 254. Even climbing through the ranks as fast as I have been, which is surprising considering I’m almost gaining an extra 50% Light level within a month), has grown a bit time consuming. Anyway, it’s time to leap back into things.

Where to first? Well, people thought me a lunatic for trying to rush this process, so I guess it’s fitting to do a strike on the Moon. Namely, there is a prince who is trying to take the Taken King’s place. It seems the Hive are stable enough to exist without a ruler as long as they have, so I’m beginning to wonder why they’re looking for a leader. Could they not function independently? Oh well, since little has been learned about power vacuums, it’s off to shoot Prince Malok down.

This lead to a weird little game of putting fires out. If enough enemy spawners are about, then your health drips down bit by bit. So, not only do you have a boss with a lot of health and DPS, as well as creatures who are swarming you so heavily that it makes reaching the boss a pain, but then you have to put out fires that poison you. In the end, it makes the boss fight less enjoyable because you have 3+ factors to consider rather than one or two interesting puzzles to solve.

From this I got a sword, one that booted my level from 254 to 263. So that was nice.

(Destiny, Activision)

(Destiny, Activision)

Makes up for having to deal with Eris Morn.

Petra then asked me for a favor. After the Awoken had a showdown with the Taken and got their ships wrecked, the queen had gone missing. Petra knows she’s dead. There’s no body, and there’s just no way to survive such a disaster. Fortunately, the Awoken are like the Taken in the sense that they can still go on without a ruler. However, it seems Petra has a personal stake in the matter. I still don’t particularly like the queen, and hope her brother had a long agonizing death. Still, I like Petra. She is one of few people with personalities, personal investments, and emotions. So, I decided to have a quick look-see into what was what about the queen–for Petra’s sake.

In the end, all that was found was a tech-witch’s brooch–in one piece, mind you–carried by someone close to the queen. Perhaps the condition of the brooch was a cruel tease that raised Petra’s expectation. I probably should have told her that the queen was gone and it was time to move on.

Either way, I then set off to kill the Fallen. Rather than cutting to the source, Variks is just fine trying to cull the herd. But he doesn’t even do it in a significant manner like gassing or bombing a concentration of them. Instead, I’m sent to New Russia, The Moon, and Venus to shoot them. It seems akin to digging a trench with nothing but a child’s bucket and spade, but it pays. So I spent the next long while killing mindlessly.

(Destiny, Activision)

(Destiny, Activision)


(Destiny, Activision)

(Destiny, Activision)

With my invisible gun.

Up to 276.

I then gave a random strike a go. It seemed that a Cabal Psion Flayer was let loose on something Rasputin was related to, and this was bad because Rasputin was protecting it and . . . ugh. Perhaps we need to talk about stakes.

When you’re trying to make an event matter to an audience, you have to appeal to certain kinds of universal emotions. Some classics are human extinction, death, and ambition run amok. Once these appeals have been issued, you can then build on top of these age-old stakes or refine them.

For example, the desire to keep your grandmother alive is a relatable stake. The desire to keep a hospital’s power supply running, on its own, isn’t too relatable. The stakes are only made clear if it’s explained that the power to run the hospital determines whether or not your grandmother’s life support keeps her alive.

I bring this up because of the struggle the game has to make you feel compelled to protect Rasputin’s. Yet, honestly, I still have no idea what the hell it does. It’s hard to worry about Rasputin and what it protects when I don’t even know how well it does its duties. For all I know, it could be the technological equivalent of a muddy, shoeless child with a stick trying to beat off NATO troops. And I’m also not entirely sure what Rasputin’s motivations are, so I don’t know if Rasputin’s shielded object matters to me.

(Destiny, Activision)

(Destiny, Activision)

If it was any other game, I’d be suspecting a traitor, just like I suspect Eris Morn of being a betrayer a few parts back. At this point, I think that’s giving the writers too much credit. 

While Rasputin is meant to, in some way, protect us from the darkness, this sadly isn’t enough to create tension. We need to be able to imagine our doom, to then want to prevent it. We need to know what would happen if Rasputin disappeared or became captured. Something real to grab. Sadly, Rasputin is a relic of Destiny‘s original writing abilities, and we cannot muster care simply because we are asked to. Attachment and a sense of responsibility need to be earned through tension and empathy.

Now that we’ve cleared up that bit of sentiment, let’s get back in the game! I gave killing the source a second

I gave killing the source a second attempt and failed. It was still too hard for my 276 Light-powered peashooters. So I went and killed Malok a second time, and got my light level up to 279. One more. So I then went to kill the houseless Kell from Part 9, for a second time, and slithered my way up to 280.

Sorry for the rather short part, but figured it’d be best to launch into Rise of Iron after the new year. I’ll also be talking about the Christmas event, because, as you know, I never pass up on the opportunity for some side-tracked analyses. In the meanwhile, have a good Christmas and a happy New Year! See you on the 6th!

Past parts

[Part 1: Unfunny Little Robot] [Part 2: Absolute Lunacy] [Part 3: An Inspiration for Regicide] [Part 4: A Plague On Your Houses] [Part 5: Black Gardens on Red Planets]

[Part 6: A Wolf Amongst the Taken] [Part 7: Venturing Onwards as Sif] [Part 8: Taken for a Violent Walk] [Part 9: Let Us Light The Way]

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