For all its success and for all its fans, Destiny is missing so many pieces that could transform it from just a very good, Destiny power leveling give you a better game, very popular game into something truly great. At this point, I don’t think Destiny is going to implement the changes I’m hoping to see. In some ways, the following list should be seen as changes the game’s developer, Bungie, and publisher, Activision, should consider for Destiny 2.
1. Go Beyond Shooting
When Bungie was promoting Destiny months before release, they described it as an action title first, and a roleplaying game second. And while there is some character customization and some typical RPG busy-work, the game sticks mainly to shooting.
Even though we have Sparrows to fly on, strange planets to explore, and spaceships to race across the stars with, we mostly just keep shooting aliens. And gathering obscure currencies and crafting materials.
Why not have some other hallmarks of MMO and sandbox gaming come spruce things up a bit? Sparrow racing, space battles, soccer. Destiny (and Destiny 2) would benefit from more activities and more ways to improve your character.
2. Diversify the Grind
By the end-game (the meat of Destiny,) the endless shooting becomes little more than an extended grind. You play Strikes and do battle in the Crucible and fulfill Bounties all with the sole intent of gaining more powerful gear. That gear then boosts your Light and you gain post-campaign levels which allow you to play harder missions, then finally Raids. So then you grind the Raids out, looking for better loot, and it amazes me sometimes that Bungie didn’t include a cash-shop filled with ways to do all of this more quickly, if only you part with more of your real-world loot.
All of this takes an enormous amount of time, you see. For those players who really like to test themselves against a great deal of repetitive content, that’s fine. For a lot of us, it’d be nice if there were more to the end-game. Bungie needs to find ways to make this content less repetitive and more satisfying for different tiers of players.
3. Quit Recycling Levels
Then again, much of my own problem with this game’s grind boils down to level regurgitation. The grind can be truly satisfying at times, especially during the game’s more challenging bits. Playing harder and harder Strikes as you level and gear up your Guardian can be a lot of fun.
But the levels are all recycled. You start to realize this even before you finish the campaign, and it only gets worse during end-game. Sure, it’s interesting to approach the same level from different angles with different enemies—but only up to a point. That “aha, I’ve been here!” moment grows stale quickly.
4. Streamline the End-Game
The end-game is a bit of a confusing, jumbled mess to anyone not 100% invested. Bungie could at least attempt to make this content more transparent, and make leveling a bit less of an opaque, time-consuming chore.
So much of the end-game is about earning various rare currencies, grinding your way up to better loot, and so forth, I find it actually detracts from the action. Unless you’re pretty invested in it, all of these systems become badly convoluted. That may not be a problem for the super invested, but it seems pointless to many others.
Making everything in the end-game more streamlined, from leveling to matchmaking could go a long way toward making this rather huge chunk of Destiny more accessible.
5. Flesh Out the Story and the Universe
We’re all aware now how flimsy Destiny’s story was. I’m not sure Bungie needs to really focus on story too much to make the game’s lore more interesting. But they can certainly do better than this.
Bungie simply needs to flesh out some of the lore, add more story throughout the game and beyond the campaign, and maybe give players some actual choices here and there. It’s not a game that needs to be thick with narrative elements. But the super generic space fantasy we’ve been given is pretty absurd.
I don’t think anyone was expecting a Mass Effect game, but many of us were at least hoping for something as compelling as Halo. But Destiny’s story isn’t just bare-bones, it feels practically tacked-on. The Dark Below did virtually nothing to change this.
6. More Customization
More customization options within classes and races both when creating a character, and later in the game, could go a long way toward making me feel invested in my character and the game.
There’s no reason we shouldn’t have some sort of aesthetic options in the Tower beyond costume changes. Spruce up the hair-cut, wash away a tattoo, chisel out the jawline just a bit.
Maybe I’m just spoiled by pretty much every other open-world game, but given how much Destiny focuses on cool capes and customized Guardians, I can’t imagine why more character customization options aren’t available.
7. More Classes, More Meaningful Races
I’d definitely like to see more class variety and more consequences or repercussions from choosing one race over another. For instance, why even let us play as Awoken if, when we encounter this strange, arrogant race in the game, nobody even acknowledges that these are members of our kind?
Having at least some social, gameplay, or story-based impact from choosing your race would just be interesting. The same applies to more options in general when making your character. More classes, more options, more consequences for your choices.
Another way to handle the “more classes” bit would be the Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn method, which encourages players to level each of the available classes and learn their skills. An open-ended progression system could work really well for Destiny.
8. Third-Person Mode, Helmet-Free Mode
I like that at times in Destiny we switch into third-person mode. This happens when we ride on our Sparrow or other vehicles. And it happens at the Tower. I’d like the option for third-person play to be available anywhere. Then, at least we’d be to see our snazzy armor and capes.
Add in a helmet-free option, in-game character customization, etc. and you have plenty of reasons to want to at least move in and out of third person—if only to admire your character from afar. And hey, if Rockstar can do the reverse and add first-person to Grand Theft Auto V, there’s no reason Bungie can’t do it for Destiny.
9. Better Solo Options
I really like playing MMOs with either very streamlined co-op (which in some respects, Destiny has) or solo. Maybe that’s weird, but it’s also the way I play. I have limited time to spend in these games. I don’t want to rely on, or be relied on, for multiplayer all that often.
So it’s nice when games include lots of solo stuff, and I know that’s not just me. Lots of players enjoy games like Destiny even if a great deal of the time we aren’t online with friends. More solo options during the end-game would be amazing. Even adding more Patrol missions (and difficulty settings for these) would help.
10. Make New Content Regular and Cheap
Any MMO worth its salt has fairly regular updates to content. Some then sprinkle in major expansions every few months or maybe every year or two. Destiny released a major expansion within weeks of its release, and the expansion itself didn’t have all that much new content to begin with.
Going forward, Destiny—and certainly Destiny 2—needs to find ways to offer up new content without jumping the gun on big expansions. DLC in general should be cheap and worth the asking price. Big expansions should cost more, but also justify the price by having a great deal more content and, perhaps just as important, more game-changing content. That could be an awesome new story, a new planet, or new game modes like space battles! Or racing!