And Another Thing: Destiny PR feedback is an attack on game critics

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So the well received and much hyped Destiny launched a short while ago and since no media received early review copies the reviews took a while to filter out… but they are all pretty much out now.

So taking a look at the PlayStation 4 aggregate score and we can see that Destiny is sitting on a comfortable 77. But you wouldn’t think so with the amount of fuss being kicked up on social media networks and the veiled comments from numerous Activision PR reps across the world. Apparently anyone who reviewed the game with a score less than 80 are not understanding the full scope of the game and that it’s a title that will continue to grow over time with tons of content being added over time.

Which is all fair and well but you wouldn’t let us review it before the release because the game is dependent on being part of a living thriving world and as such we needed to wait. Then we waited and now we are being told we shouldn’t review it only on what we have but also what may come in the future. Whether what comes in the future will be charged for or not is brushed aside as not being important.

Well I hate to break it to you all but when I go out and buy a game for R700-R800 I want to know what I’m getting now, not what I may or may not get in the future. But even moving past that I am yet to see a review in the 70% range that criticises the game for anything that can realistically be expected to be fixed in the future content rollout: the rinse and repeat mission styles, the need to grind and the beautiful but in the end lifeless planets aren’t expected to be changed.

We have this great sandbox world to explore and play in but there is very little benefit to exploring. While the worlds are huge we are definitely funnelled down paths to complete missions and the bosses are far too predictable for my liking. We know that head shots count more; do we really need bright spots to aim at to remind us of this?

Now don’t get me wrong, I am absolutely loving Destiny when played with multiple people. The single player experience bores me, but heading into a fire team and taking on strike missions are easily some of the best gaming experiences I’ve had for years. This is the Destiny I want but in reality that part has become the odd exciting part. I have to hope that my friends are online, on the Xbox One, then if I choose to go random the other players are muted by default making the experience less than thrilling.

Destiny made a big deal about the clans they are offering so we created one with a bunch of people only to find out that you can’t see your clan mates in game. I mean the game is so multiplayer-dependent and then you miss out something so blatantly obvious?

And my last bug bear, the loot. Seriously for a game designed around rewarding players for loot this game sucks. I took out the keymaster (keyholder? whatever) all by my lonesome and you know what I got for my achievement? Nothing, not even some new ammo. I mean come on you don’t even have to give me something cool…but nothing? That’s a slap in the face.

Our own review gave it a solid 7.5 because as Geoff puts it,

It’s a confused game that doesn’t quite know what it wants to be; is it an MMO, a pure shooter, or a sprawling space epic? It tries to be all of them and misses the mark on most. As much fun as it can be – especially when played with friends – Destiny ultimately crumbles under its own ambition.

Destiny has been struggling to explain what it wants to be for well over a year now and even after release we are no closer to really understanding what the game is.

However in the end a review is just someone’s opinion. I don’t agree with any of the reviewers who gave it a score of over 80 and I definitely don’t agree with anything under 70.  But that is their choice and PR reps coming out and making snide comments about reviews and scores is uncalled for and wholly unprofessional.

andanotherthingThey know as well as we do that they are going to be asking us to review the DLC packs when they drop, and what if they suck? Are we going to be told that it’s a work in progress still? Should we be paying top dollar for a work in progress? At a time when every Tom, Dick and Harry on the Internet wants to take a swipe at games journalists it may be prudent for the journalists to take a step further back from the reps and make sure you are being entirely honest with your journalism.

Now if only Bungie has listened to me after the beta when I told you exactly what was wrong with it. I do like being that person who ways “I Told You So”

And Another Thing

Oh and the official PlayStation magazine of Australia gave Destiny a 10/10 score. Now if that isn’t reason to kick them off Metacritic then I don’t know what is. What a pathetic excuse for an objective review.

Now that I have that off my chest, who’s up for some strikes this weekend on Xbox One?

Oh and if there is nothing above to make you comment, how about letting us know what you think about the Xbox One metascore being higher than the PS4 one?

Last Updated: September 19, 2014

Gavin Mannion

I for one welcome our future robotic overlords

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