June 13, 2014 by Paul Curtin
With Destiny so close to release, getting in to Activision’s hand-on multiplayer demo was a hot ticket at this year’s E3. We saw how the multiplayer co-op gameplay works with some dungeon-raiding action at last year’s E3, but it wasn’t until this year that we were finally able to see some sweet competitive multiplayer action.
Destiny’s massive multiplayer PvE combat might be its unique new feature that Bungie has never been able to do in a game before, but it’s the competitive multiplayer that’s likely going to make or break the franchise as Activision’s new IP tries to convert hardcore Halo fans. If there’s one thing that will be able to convert Halo fans, it’s a kick-ass multiplayer experience, and after getting our hands on the game at E3, we can confirm that Destiny looks like it’s going to give gamers exactly what they want.
After spending some time playing on the demo’s two competitive Crucible mode maps, First Light and Rusted Lands, the Halo feeling instantly comes to mind. Everything in the game looks and feels just like the Halo universe. First Light is a map based on the moon and allows for a more open gameplay experience with vehicles that felt taken straight out of Halo and helped create frantic combat situations that we’ve come to know and love in Big Team Battles. Rusted Lands is a smaller map on Earth and the second map we played the game’s new capture-and-hold mode on. Rusted Lands had no vehicles and was focused more on tight fighting in more confined smaller spaces, which gave the multiplayer a nice variety of differing ways to play and should help it catch on in the competitive gaming scene.
Bungie started experimenting with class systems in their later Halo games, and Destiny is clearly the evolution of that idea. Not only are players able to select from three different classes that all use unique special abilities, but players can also obtain loot that can be used to completely customize their characters’ looks and styles of play.
While guns and armor can help your character in multiplayer, other enhancements that help improve your PvE experience will be set on an equal playing field to not let anybody get too overpowered in PvP. There are power weapons that can be equipped before matches like rocket launchers, but in order to actually use them, players must first locate and retrieve special ammo crates that randomly spawn around the map. Other ammo crates can also be found around the map that offer other unique buffs like increased damage done with weapons.
With special powers and abilities, Destiny feels like a much more chaotic and faster paced Halo. Factor in armor, weapons, and other various loot, and Bungie and Activision have the formula for a highly addictive game that might not surpass Halo in its debut, but will certainly be able to please a large audience and convert a lot of Halo fans into believers. Destiny’s beta begins July 17 with the full retail launch on September 9, 2014, on PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.