Destiny, the long awaited new IP from Halo creators Bungie, was finally released yesterday. In Destiny you are a Guardian of Earth. One of the last hopes for saving not only humanity, but all things that live in the light. Along with your trusty Ghost sidekick you must use whatever weapons, powers, and strategies at your disposal to push back the enemy.
Destiny is a first person, shared world shooter. This means you’ll need your FPS skills if you want to make it through. That’s not all you’ll need, however. Understanding how RPGs and MMOs work will definitely give you the leg up. Here are a couple of tips that will help you get through the campaign and exploration as you prepare yourself for what’s to come. There are mild spoilers about enemy types so beware.
1. Choose The Class That Suits You Best
This will be your first act in Destiny. For some of you it will be the most difficult decision you will have ever made. Well, maybe not the most difficult…but it will be little hard if you don’t know the main differences. There are a few factors you may consider in making your decision.
The classes that comprise your options are Titan, Hunter, and Warlock. Each has its own unique aesthetic. The Titan lives up to its namesake as it is a rather bulky looking class with a heavy focus on armor. The hunter appears to be a bit more lithe, with a long flowing cloak and knife in hand. The Warlock is the most mysterious of the bunch with its glowing void energy and long embroidered robes. Of course, if you want to get to the nitty gritty, gameplay style is also important.
While all of the classes control relatively the same, there are subtle differences that may help you lock in your first choice. The Titan is raw brute force, boasting special abilities that put it front and center during large battles. With a high armor and toughness rating the Titan serves perfectly as any team’s tank. It is able to take massive amounts of punishment and the ability to deliver devastating physical blows to any enemy in close proximity.
The Hunter, on the other hand, is perfect for those who want to keep a distance. Fast and agile, this class will get you in and out of the fray with ease. With special abilities focused on lightning fast precision kills this is the perfect class to take out strategic enemies. It also has the ability to use its melee ability at a distance after some time, making for excellent one-on-one battles with tough enemies.
Rounding the group out is the Warlock who seems to be the most balanced of the bunch. With a slew of crowd-managing abilities, your Warlock can be a major asset to whomever you team up with. Grenades that spread over a large area and a Super that leaves a deadly pool of void light are great techniques to give an edge. The Warlock also has great resource management skills, keeping you armed with special abilities. If you’re not sure which play style suits you best, this class is great for beginners.
2. Bring the Right Gun
There might have been a collective “duh” after reading the name of this tip, but I can’t stress how important weapon selection is. Destiny isn’t only about having the weapon with the highest damage stat (though that does help). Some weapons fare better against particular enemies. Also, your comfort with a weapon is much more important than the amount of damage it can do. Having a weapon that can decimate any enemy is useless if you can’t hit your mark. Knowing the main differences within your armory is crucial.
Like in any FPS each weapon has its own perks and drawbacks. For instance, the shotgun is powerful at mid-to-close range but takes a long time to reload. Some weapons, like the fusion rifles, are great against armored enemies. Captains of enemy squads are always armored and extremely powerful, so keeping a weapon specifically for them is wise. Another potential drawback to most weapons is their precision kill capability.
Critical hits are great for managing enemy numbers. Not only that but they also help in your ammunition preservation efforts. Ammo drops come in white, green, and purple for primary, special, and heavy respectively. The rate of the drop decreases from primary to heavy so always keep an eye on the count. During some brutal fights it may not always be safe to run across the field to pick up ammo so make every shot count.
One other thing to always consider when setting up your loadout is to make sure all three of your weapons compliment one another. You are allowed to equip one primary, one special, and one heavy. If your primary is fast and excellent at close to mid range, consider a sniper for your special to pick off enemies from afar. Your heavy weapon is your damage dealer for when you’re in a pinch. They are almost always slow to load so make sure one of your weapons can exchange clips easily in case you get cornered.
You can change your equipped weapon at any time in Destiny provided that it’s safe enough to do so. If you don’t like how your weapon is performing, find a safe corner and swap it out.
3. Know Your Enemy
This one is simple but it can make the difference between life and death while you’re out in the wild. There are four different enemy factions each with their own hierarchy. The four are the Fallen, Hive, Vex, and Cabal. The Fallen and Hive are the most common so you’ll have ample opportunity to learn their ways before the later missions. But the Vex and Cabal don’t rear their ugly heads until the difficulty starts to ramp up.
Knowing the quickest method to dispatch groups or remove any stat boosting enemies will help out in the long run. Critical hit points are an important factor. For the standard Fallen, Hive, and Cabal, headshots are key. They will do bonus damage and get these guys out of your way quickly. For the lower level Vex, goblins and hobgoblins, the glowing white center is where you want to aim if you want to get rid of them quickly. Shooting them in their heads causes them to make a suicide dash towards you and any buddies leading to a quick and explosive death.
The habits of the ranks will also help you to survive. Despite the differences in weapons and weak points between the various enemies, each group acts pretty much the same. The lowest levels like the Fallen Dregs and Hive Thralls like to rush you. They’ll hide if you look in their direction and try to sneak up behind you. They also die with a single hit 90% of the time. Don’t panic when they rush you. Just pick them off to expose any captain or booster that may be in their presence.
Captains such as the Hive Wizards and the Cabal Colossus hide and move around a lot. They will avoid direct confrontation if possible and use the terrain to their advantage. They are also always armored so pull out your special weapon to get these guys out of your way. Fallen Servitors and Vex Minotaurs are what I like to call boosters. You’ll know when they’re around because the other enemy types will glow. Be aware of them and take them out first.
There are also much more powerful, boss type enemies from each group, but I’ll leave you to discover them. Keep in mind these tips will help you dominate any foe no matter how difficult the task may seem.
Each area of Destiny is pretty large and has many nooks and crannies to explore. Knowing the terrain of each area gives you a great advantage during campaign missions and strikes. Being knowledgable of an area also makes you an asset to your team. Use the patrol missions to your advantage to learn every in and out of every room and area.
During exploration use that time to complete side activities and bounties. Bounties and the occasional activity provide lots of experience and other prizes that will help get your Guardian powered up and ready to take on the darkness. There is also no limit to how long you can stay and how many enemies you can kill.
Use this time to not only learn the land, but to also search for loot and the hidden golden chests. It’s a good idea to choose a patrol mission whenever you come across a mission in Destiny that is much too difficult for you. There is no shame in admitting that you need to get strong. Exploration provides the perfect avenue for achieving this goal.
5. Fireteam is Life
The fireteam is probably the most beneficial tool available to you in the worlds of Destiny. If you’re reading these tips without knowing about the game, a fireteam is a team of three Guardians. You can form a team with your friends, or even join other games if you see someone roaming around if they permit it. While playing alone is an enjoyable experience, playing in a group is much more rewarding.
First the obvious: Having someone to watch your back in Destiny makes life easier. Just knowing that there is someone who will take out the sniper that’s got you pinned down, or is able to revive you when downed is a good thing. This makes for a more manageable experience, especially in dark zones. If you die in a dark zone you must restart the area, but if you have a team member or two you can be revived and have the opportunity to respawn.
Playing in a fireteam is mandatory for all strike missions due to the difficulty levels but it is also beneficial during the regular story missions as well. Having a full fireteam provides more options and strategic advantages, particularly in the later levels when the difficulty increases. Three players allows you to mix things up on a larger scale.
Being able to use all three of the classes Destiny has to offer grants you the ability to take advantage of all of their unique benefits. Put the Titan out front to draw attacks, have your hunter somewhere up in the rafters, and a warlock to take care of the small groups. Coordinate your loadouts so someone always has the right weapon for the task and you’ll be crushing all opposition. Of course you can just have a team of three of the same and see who’s the best with the class. It’s all up to you.
6. Don’t Forget to Upgrade Your Skills
It’s easy to forget that Destiny isn’t your everyday FPS. There are RPG elements permeating every aspect of the game to help immerse you in the experience. One of the ways Destiny aims to make your relationship with your Guardian more personal is with the skill tree.
As you fight through the missions and travel from planet to planet you will earn experience for your efforts. This experience steadily unlocks new abilities and boons to your stats. Make sure that you keep on top of it so that you are best situated for your adventure. Also keep in mind that at level 15 you unlock a whole new subclass for your Guardian.
These new subclasses give you a whole new way to use your selected Guardian in Destiny. Providing deeper customization and more options for attack, leveling up both class trees for your Guardian will make you a force to be reckoned with.
With these tips you should be able to save life with ease. Remember to take your time and observe and you’ll become legend soon enough.
Safe travels, Guardians.