If you’re positively bewildered by what madness you’re spotting here, links to the prior parts can be found at the bottom.
For you, hopefully, it has only been a week. However, time is a strange force when you’re able to make things and then not release them. Since my last dabble in Destiny, a month has passed. While many things have occurred, perhaps the main relevant thing is Rise of Iron was released onto the masses. So that will be a nice treat when we finally hit level 40. We still have quite a bit of a journey to go though.
If you are able to dig your memory out, you may recall that a random person teased us into perhaps visiting Venus for a nice hunting holiday. That, no really, this time we’ll be fighting the main threat there. What this main force is, the one looking to topple over the last sanctuary in the universe, would be discovered when we meet her there.
However, if there is one thing that hasn’t changed since my Venture into the Borderlands series, it is my poor attention span. So, deciding the world can wait, I decide to go do something else. That’s right, I’m going to go save the world from something else.
As well as swinging a sword around again.
I guess this is a good time to bring up another narrative part that bugs me about Destiny. Since the start of the game, I’ve had “the fate of the universe” hanging over my head. Always that indistinct wave coming to crush humanity into a paste that The Traveller once saved us from but no longer can.
So the question is: How is it possible to raise the stakes higher? You can’t exterminate the human race harder than total eradication. They’ve even somewhat written themselves in a corner by announcing The Tower as the last bastion of humans. Bungie can’t have the threat of a few thousand of the dwindling last people in danger of being stomped all over. Once the singular last stronghold is made into a crater, there is no more.
They’ve used the biggest motivation on me, with no indication of deviation (e.g. money, resources or personal love/friend interest). Even chasing up a different threat doesn’t feel like, what professionals would call: “smug-inducing faffing about”. Instead it is just putting another fire out as a volunteer fire fighter armed with just a bucket. As every threat is equal from beginning to end, sadly all the antagonists blur together into something vague, ambiguous and indistinct.
With the personality of a plank of wood, it is hard to want to do anything for her. It’s great that she pays for tolerance of her evil Sam Fisher eyes with loot.
Getting back to my misadventures, do you remember last week where I took down the Temple of Crota? Well, it apparently turns out I didn’t entirely do so and there are some left-overs to go shoot in the face. To be precise, Crota had many disciples. The first of which, Sardon, is trying to bring Crota back by waking his soul. Although they did warn me about The Fist of Crota, so I shouldn’t really be surprised.
After a good few minutes of playing “chase me around the cave while I shoot you”, The Fist of Crota was deknuckled and I went on my merry way. “Wait!” Eris Morn shouted just as I turned to leave with my new reward “The threat still remains!”. I nearly told her to shove it and that THE THREAT ALWAYS REMAINS, but I think my character had given up long ago. She is no longer in it to save humanity, but rather to put food on the table. So, after a weary defeated sigh, I asked: “Okay, who is next?”.
Rather than “who”, it is “where”. Apparently Rasputin was not the program I originally thought it was, but rather a physical entity of computers in a bunker. A Wrist Mourns tells me Crota’s devout followers wants to burgle Rasputin, with fears of them breaking it or, worse, controlling it. It’s never quite clear what both could mean, but it seems too late to ask now.
Turning up to the bunker, classical music starts playing through the intercom. At first, foolish me thought that it was giving a greeting. A Wrist Mourns corrects me: “No no, this is like Metal Gear Solid Peacewalker where it sings when it is distressed”. Turns out the bunker was absolutely riddled with The Hive, and I would act like ballistic-using pest-control.
Once that was wrapped up, I found out that killing Sardon stopped absolutely nothing and the soul was still being woken up. “For realsies this time, can you destroy the soul which lies in a crystal akin to Zordon’s tube?”. “What, like this?” I say, spraying the crystal with enough bullets you’d think I’d go find a bigger gun. With the soul then floating off free, I had this awkward feeling that’d come to haunt me later.
Wouldn’t it have been better to just store his captured spirit somewhere rather than free it? Maybe use it as a street light?
A Wrist Mourns then gave me my final mission with her: Fell the champion of Crota, so thus putting out that religion-infused fire. This is the part where I’d examine what makes a boss fight interesting and what makes a boss fight frustrating, but Destiny is somewhat legendary for their approach. I can confirm that, yes, Bungie has grabbed one of the main criticisms with JRPGs and ran with it. After all, making meaningful interesting puzzles to solve is too hard and giving an enemy a lot of health and damage is just so easy. Even with three people it took a good ten minutes of spraying to put the laughably-named Omnigul (like a seagul, but isn’t limited to the sea) into the floor.
So, with that done, Eris gave me the Destiny equivalent of a high-five by saying that work was finished and I was to go on my merry little way along with a legendary weapon. So that was nice.
Finally, I went to Venus to seek out the information on my next fire to put out. Apparently it is a collection of not-terminators/geth called Vex who are, mysteriously, all named after fantasy creatures. I honestly had to do a double-take as Goblins, Hobgoblins and Minotaurs surrounded me. While at first I wanted to grumble of “same thing, really?”, an after-thought came. They are actually different in the sense of shambling towards you boldly with some mild teleportation/invisibility properties. So I had to give some credit for remembering to mix things up a bit with the Vex.
While kicking through the colossal body build-up, I finally got to meet my friendly stalker. In true Destiny form, she told me next to nothing. Not who she was, who she was sent from and what her position is in this big space drama. In fact, she uttered this frustrating phrase:
Ugh. All I got was that I need to go find out about the Black Garden and destroy what’s in it because it’s making these Vex creatures. Seems a bit of a humdrum solution when reprogramming could work (while creating an interesting question of the philosophy of overwriting someone’s personality), but hey ho.
So off I go to speak to The Awoken at the edges of space to find out where is this Dark Vineyard is. For whatever reason, they decided I was important enough to speak to the queen (since it is the only way to further the plot). Although not important enough to not treat me like dirt (because Destiny is against regicide as an option).
Finally, they send me off to go slay a Gate Lord, with the smug look of “betcha can’t even find one, let alone kill one”. Determined to wipe that smirk off that brother’s face, I shuffle off with my Ghost. Although Dingle-bot makes sure to chastise me for not checking with him before promising to kill a Gate Lord, despite having every opportunity to interject.
So, the good news is not-Claptrap found out where one is. The bad news is he decided to do that by redirecting their transfer gates to one place. So I have to fight through swarms to get to the lord.
GOD DAMN IT CLAPTRAP 2.0.
One by one I shut down the gates by the highly technical process of shooting them. Finally I arrive at a colossal one that creepingly reminds me of the end of Borderlands. So the Gate Lord come through, confused. Looking left and right, he eyes up this little human who has begun to fire upon him. Oddly, rather than shrugging and going home, he decides to crush me. Although I guess this particular lord was very unpopular due to robotic antics as a very limited force comes to reinforce this assassination attempt.
A couple of of magazines of LMG later, I drag a lofty head back to the queen. Her brother acts tempted to perhaps not fulfil his end of the deal. Maybe get the key I need and keep it to himself with a blatant “oh, it’s broken” lie. I guess the queen quickly realises my patience was running on fumes and I was close to recreating the lift scene from Drive on her head, as she tells her brother to just hand the key over. Finally key in hand, she reminds me that she may call for my assistance (one that I’ll have to decline for my sanity’s sake) and sends me on my way.
I then get dumped in a new outpost where its leader, Petra, shares a bit of a joke about how The Queen thinks highly of me. I share a joke back about how I totally know what she’s talking about concerning the House of Wolves. I think in the next coming parts she’s going to be my pillar of sanity in this cold cruel outpost.
As I ponder if to kill time with the side-missions or leap into tearing down the vexing Vex’s factory, I thought this would be a good time to take a bit of a break. You’ll have to come back next to see if I end up snapping and attempt to see if the royal siblings can breath in space.