|System: Xbox One, PS4, Xbox 360, PS3|
|Release: September 15, 2015|
|Players: Massively Multiplayer|
|Screen Resolution: 480p-1080i||Animated Blood, Violence|
PvP players have a fair bit to look forward to, with eight new PvP maps and the new Rift and Mayhem PvP modes. Rift matches, which are basically capture the flag games, work best on larger maps, while Mayhem caters to players who want maximum carnage in their PvP. My favorite new PvP map is Memento, set in a gorgeous fallen European city with tons of hidden nooks that serve well as sniper nests. Though I admit to not being a huge PvPer myself, it seems like the new subclasses should help PvP balance a bit, with the Stormcaller and the Titan able to match the Gunslinger’s massive damage Supers.
Will all players love everything about The Taken King? There are certainly elements to the expansion that will make some folks cranky. All that hard-earned raid gear will be replaced pretty quickly, if not by early greens, than certainly by blues found in the latter part of the story campaign. Some players will love having new gear goals to meet, while others will feel that their hard (former) endgame work has been too quickly invalidated. Anybody looking for a huge narrative step forward will also be disappointed. The quest log does help tell a more coherent story, but the tale of Oryx is hardly Shakespeare. He lends himself well to in-game moments of creepiness and panic, but narratively he’s little more than one more powerful bad guy you have to kill.
Overall, though, Destiny: The Taken King is a love letter to Destiny fans and an apology to critics who felt let down by previous expansions. Systemically, this is the game Destiny should have been from the beginning. Content-wise, it lives up to the hype, with huge additions to solo, group, and PvP gameplay. I strongly encourage anybody who has ever enjoyed Destiny to give this expansion a look, and I encourage newcomers to take this opportunity to jump into the game. Destiny: The Taken King is fun to play and irons out the rough edges that poked at the game during its first year.
Providing that the upcoming raid is strong and we see good support and content-rich expansion during Destiny’s second year, we could see this MMO-shooter go from a game beloved by a dedicated core of fans to one that excites the mass market for years to come. It got this RPG fanatic invested in a shooter for the first time since Hexen, and it might just hook you, too.
Date: September 15, 2015