With the launch of the April update for Destiny, gamers are free to enjoy the largest content update since the last expansion Destiny: The Taken King refueled the series last September.
The Taken King brought content and much-needed changes to several of the games largest dynamics and improved the game considerably compared to House of Wolves and The Dark Below.
Today, we take a look at some of the things I felt the team at Bungie got right looking back at my favorite improvements The Taken King made. Counting down from the bottom to my favorite at number one, we kick things off with number 10!
10. Improved Quest/Bounty Structure
Sub-class and PVP based quests made considerable jumps in terms of steps, tracking, and function. Increased quest managing tools like adding added objectives to your HUD when you accessed your ghost made it easy to track progress and check in on goals. Bounties no longer required you to go back to the tower to turn them in after completion and provided you with rewards instantly through your menu.
9. UI and Menu Updates
The interface and menu were simplified and refined. The items tab was easy to manage and the drop down for your second tab of emblems, ships, and shaders made keeping your accessories and loot in order and easily organized. The combined bar that shows faction reputation also was a welcome addition.
8. Crucible Playlists/Maps
Being predominately a Crucible player, this was a huge one for me. The additions of Rift and Mayhem added some life to the short list of options Destiny multiplayer offers and brought with it new bounties and objectives for these modes. Maps were added that brought more variety to PVP specifically in the Control playlist. Mayhem was, by far, my favorite with super and abilities charging more quickly the matches were fast and filled with chaos.
7. The Dreadnought
Not only serving as an epic/disturbing setting for the majority of the main story in The Taken King’s main storyline, the Dreadnought (Oryx’s Flagship) also serves post story as a patrol/mission hub and the center of various PVE content including The Court of Oryx and also a Strike/Raid. The Dreadnought is immense and has a vast array of unique features in terms of action sequences and hidden secrets that make the environment feel alive and worth exploring. I spent hours on each of my characters delving through its secrets and absolutely loved every moment of it.
6. New Subclasses
The new subclasses in The Taken King bring with it more options to tailor your character to you and plenty of utility/power to PVP. The super abilities for each class (the Titan, Hunter, and Warlock) are powerful and each deal devastating damage in unique ways. Each one of the new subclasses instantly became my favorite over its predecessors and my predominant builds I felt most comfortable with in the Crucible.
5. Story Line and Added Character Depth
Arguably, the weakest areas in Destiny since launch The Taken King provided. They added the biggest and baddest antagonist the universe has seen to date, but also a comprehensive story to go along with it. They also expanded NPC characters roles within the story and added more depth to who they are and what their personalities are like. From Cayde’s squabbles with Commander Zavala to Eris Morn’s insight into the hive structure and hierarchy, the quests and missions had faces to back them and provided reasoning for what you are doing. Your character interacted with these individuals in meaningful ways and it made the tower feel more like an actual community than a rigid quest hub it had portrayed before.
4. Leveling System No Longer Based Off Light
To put it lightly (pun not intended), basing the end game leveling system off a predetermined stat on end-game gear was an annoyance and a bane of my Destiny experience. Apart from restricting players to use the highest light gear even if they hated the cosmetics, this function also diluted the individuality of players and their characters causing characters to look the same or similar and overall halting progress. The current light system still has weight but having your level function solely off experience feels natural and should have been implemented from the start.
3. Increased Strange Coins Drop
Once a rarity, the 3rd expansion increased the frequency you receive strange coins making it easier to purchase exotic items and engrams from the ever-elusive agent of the nine, Xur. These are now received in plenty from activity rewards and bounty completions which not only makes gearing up easier, but also adds to the fuzzy feeling of getting some really awesome and unique loot. I was astounded my first week of playing The Taken King by just how many I was receiving in comparison.
2. Infusing gear
The Taken King opened up a new perk for legendary and exotic items that allowes you to consume higher damage/armor items to improve existing items you have instead of being forced to drop the gun or helmet you like simply because you received something statistically superior. Providing you have the materials required to process the infusion, this adds another layer of choice and customization the game never had before. If you fell in love with a piece of gear or a weapon, you can keep the weapon with you even while getting better upgrades and can effectively make it stronger.
1. Loot System
If you have played Destiny for more than a few hours you know this pain all too well. Utilizing a random based loot system, the game would provide activity rewards and upgrades in gear at random making it arduous, difficult, and downright repetitive to attempt to gear up or get better items. Nowhere was this more prevalent than max level content especially because as stated in number 4, your level was based on your gear! Players experienced a feast or famine looting system in which you could go weeks without upgrades only to be given 3 or 4 items at once for something minor. Simply put, it made no sense and made the kills you got or your contribution meaningless. The Taken King resolved this and brought a natural progression looting system to the game that made it feel like you were getting upgrades more frequently and that your play time was improving your character steadily.
Thus concludes a look back at the journey Destiny fans have experienced thus far. With the new free update in full swing stay posted for my thoughts on the new features the April update brings!
What was your favorite improvement to Destiny thus far? Feel free to post your thoughts in the comments below!
Featured image found on popoptiq.com