I’ve always loved the Destiny universe. Ever since Bungie revealed the game back in 2013, I knew it was the type of shooter I would be playing for a long time. Something about being a Not-A-Power-Ranger is space appealed to my primal instincts, and despite some of the broken promises during the game’s launch—I stuck around. The combat was fluid and flexible, experimenting with load outs and abilities was addicting, and participating in raids with strangers was some of the best fun I’ve ever had in a game. I ended up sinking over 1,000 hours into the original Destiny.
So, you can probably understand I was quite excited at the prospect of playing Destiny 2, and played it at launch, but something was off about it. The familiar and smooth combat was still there. As well as the core of the game I enjoyed so much was intact. Everything else, however, felt lacking. It was as though the 3 years of improving the original game never happened. I ended up quitting. I can’t exactly put my finger on the exact reason. Perhaps having a baby in the interim had something to do with it, or maybe it wasn’t as familiar a game as I’d hoped.
I continued following Destiny 2 news hoping for some updates that may grab me, and grab me eventually it did. Bungie’s most recent livestream outlining a Destiny 2 future minus Activision’s shackles struck a lot of positive chords. I jumped back in as soon as the Season of Arrivals began and then it hit me.
The amount of catching up I had to do was, to say the least—paralyzing. After picking up the new season content via Eververse, I figured I should hit up the new content. After all, it’s right there on my map pinging for my attention. That was a mistake. Upon landing on Io where the new public events were taking place I quickly realized I wasn’t just under-leveled; I wasn’t even so much as tickling the enemies in front of me. After several one-shot deaths, I knew I had to take a step back and do some leveling.
But where do I even begin with that? Reminding me where I had left off before my early retirement wasn’t something the game was willing to do. There were so many quests in my log with no idea which ones would give me the loot that I need to increase my…light level? Power level? Don’t get me started on the naming of stuff in Destiny 2. Frustration led to me going for the one thing I could always count on: Strike binging.
Ghost – Destiny
I queued up for the normal Strikes playlist and hoped for the best. Matchmaking came smoothly and I was sent off into a Strike I had never done before. What’s more, I was greeted by two teammates with shinier looking gear than mine. We blasted through that sucker in less than 15 minutes with the boss fight ending before I could even land a few good shots in.
The shower of loot that followed was glorious, though. All pieces that made my power jump several numbers. I knew I had hit the jackpot. After nearly 2 hours of doing Strike after Strike, my character not only had become more powerful but I had a lot of fun in the process. It was the same kind of fun I remember having during Year 3 Destiny 1 where you could do anything in the game and still be rewarded for it.
Destiny 2 had once again become a fun game for me. As an always tired adult who juggles between his day job, a family with a toddler, game writing and being a wannabe Twitch streamer, it’s the kind of casual fun I crave when the opportunity presents itself. I’m not shackled to do anything specific before granted the privilege of doing actual fun activities. If I feel like blasting other people in the face, I can head to the Crucible.
If I just want to mindlessly end waves of AI enemies, there are Strikes. And if I just want to torture myself by dying repeatedly, there’s Iron Banner and Gambit. Regardless of what I do, I’ll still be able to progress my character and that’s always been one of the best things about Destiny. Having a blast on your own terms.
Wish to play Destiny 2, especially with Beyond Light around the corner, give it a try? Click here, or check out titles that could be just as fun below.
Yannis is a veteran gamer with over 25 years of experience across the spectrum of genres. He enjoys spending time with his family, livestreaming on Twitch and occasionally dishing out unsolicited dad advice. Also catch him on IG.