Played on PS4

Bungie held an Alpha test for their highly anticipated game Destiny over the weekend, and I was fortunate to have gotten a beta invite from attending a Sony E3 event in Washington D.C. last week. I’ve played my fair share of Alpha and Beta tests over the years, and I have to say, this is the most impressed I’ve even been with a game at this state.

I’ve never really been the hugest Halo fan so when the next game from Halo’s creators looked eerily similar, my interest wasn’t peaked. Having access to the Alpha, I figured I would give it a shot and see what the game was all about. And it is fantastic. After a fairly simple character creation and class selection, the Alpha immediately drops you into a mission, as well as let’s you experience the worst part of the game: Peter Dinklage’s voice work. I won’t go to much into it, and will give Bungie the benefit of the doubt that this will be fixed, but it’s terrible. That being said, you instantly get the feeling of how great the first-person gameplay is, especially when you start seeing the damage numbers pop up as you hit enemies, and the XP build as you kill enemies and complete quests.

After the opening mission you’re free to walk about the “Tower”, which is the hub of the galaxy. Here you can upgrade weapons, gear, vehicles, and more. It’s a fun safe area to hang out with other players and take a breather. One of my favorite features of  the hub is that you can check your mail post-mission and collect items you miss picking up. The hub is especially cool since the area is in a 3rd-person format, allowing you to see all your awesome gear. And it all looks great. Destiny is a gorgeous game. Below is a screenshot I took during the beta in the hub area.




Another awesome element of the hub, and actually at any point during Destiny, is that you can send yourself into “Orbit”, which allows you to jettison off to another world. The beta only had one playable mission world – Earth – but gives you a few ways to experience what the game has to offer. You can replay the opening mission (with multiple difficulties), free-roam and pick up small quests along the way, or jump into a “Strike”, which are the raids of Destiny. I started up a Strike thinking it would be a quick mission, like the other modes, and boy was I wrong.

Starting the Strike I was matched up with a few other players and started our journey to find out what was going on deep within an area. As we progressed smaller goals appeared and we had to power through them before we could advance. Eventually we reached a mini-boss which took us nearly 40 minutes to defeat. At that moment I realized how dangerous Destiny will be this fall. I had spent 40 minutes doing one small thing, and I absolutely loved it. Pushing forward we came to another zone where we had to defeat waves upon waves of enemies while a door was unlocked, before finally reaching the end zone. Here we were met with large boss that moved around the arena, spawning additional enemies we had to battle whilst surviving the epic attacks of the boss.

Two hours after starting the Strike, we finally finished it. And I hopped into it again.

I can’t wait for Destiny. Bring on September.