Destiny 2 Beta Impressions – A Promising Demo

Destiny 2 is now in the playable Beta phase (for all those who can actually connect, I should say). If you pre-ordered the sequel to Bungie’s Sci-Fi FPS/MMO, you should have received a code that you can now redeem on Destiny’s official website to gain access to the Beta on a platform of your choice (between Xbox One, and PS4 at the moment).

That said, only PS4 players can log onto the Beta right now. Xbox One players will get to join in tomorrow. This early access Beta portion will go until Thursday, July 20, where it will then be opened to all console players until July 23rd. After stumbling around online for a while, here are our biggest takeaways.

Destiny 2 will have some great set pieces. Man, do I love impressive action set-pieces, and Destiny 2 has them in spades. While the environments themselves are impressive, as are the ways in which you can traverse them, it’s the big moments that really sell the Beta. You’ll reach one area in particular that has a series of giant rotating buzz saws. They will reach your area at circular intervals, so you’ll have to run around them and hide behind rare pockets of safety all the while shooting enemies also doing the same. It’s a heart-pounding, intense moment that makes me wonder what else Destiny 2 has in store.

The multiplayer is strong with this one. When you first hop in the beta, you’ll play a brief solo segment for a bit, and then, without warning, you’ll likely find two other players have joined you – real people, too. The game won’t stop to matchmake, and it won’t have any noticeable lag or hang while that person loads in. They’ll just be there. This kind of seamlessness is sure to make Destiny 2 a solid launch *knock on wood.*

Loot is oh so satisfying. As is everyone’s priority, Loot is really the main attraction here. Playing through the game’s Strike mode in the Beta will reward you with legendary loot, for which Destiny as a whole is famous, and it ends up being a very satisfying reward indeed. This kind of progression will likely keep players coming back.

PvP is well … PvP. In fairness, Destiny 2 isn’t trying to re-invent the wheel or anything. Put eight players against each other in a 4v4 multiplayer match. Have each team try to capture different zones with the goal of getting the most points in a set amount of time. It’s an effective formula for sure, I just can’t help but feel I’ve played this before in … I don’t know … every other multiplayer shooting game.

It’s really more of a demo. It seems the word “Beta” is getting thrown around quite liberally nowadays, and Destiny 2 isn’t helping the problem. I can understand the desire to not want to show too much of your game before a sale, but there really isn’t enough here to actually test and give adequate feedback, you know, like you’re supposed to do in a Beta. You can play a level of the campaign, a co-op strike level, and multiplayer until the cows come home, but only two of those things are really representative of what Destiny 2 is all about, and they’re over about as soon as they begin, making this feel much more like an extended advertisement than anything else.