Bungie recently sent out an invitation to players on the PS network and the Xbox Live service to have a taster of their forthcoming successor to the Halo franchise.I applied and waited with baited breath and I was luckily chosen to be one of the selected few.
Once the code was redeemed I dived in as quickly as I could to see what was on offer from the forthcoming title.The first thing that came to my attention was the choice of three character classes, the ability to customize their appearance and select their gender. Each class gives you a different load out and gear. There is a Titan class, which is an all-round warrior, assault type of class, a Warlock class, which utilize magic powers and a Hunter class, a scout/rogue class with stealth and long range weapon abilities.
No cut scene for this, just a loading screen and then wham, right into the action. You find yourself on an alien planet, where a research station has been conquered by invading aliens.I was impressed with the presentation of the setting. Lighting effects were spot on and textures looked darned good and considering this was not the official end product, I can only wonder how sharp the finished item will look.A tutorial section was started, but control wise, once you have played a first person shooter these days then you have played them all. That's NOT a criticism, it's a statement of fact. Left stick to move, right to look around, right trigger to fire etc. It means you do not have to struggle with control set ups at all and you'll soon be in the swing of things.
First contact with the enemy soon comes around, and again you will find yourself in familiar territory. Your shield will take damage first before you start taking physical damage, but the first thing you will notice though is that the Covenant are of course gone. Here we have a new enemy, and they are more efficient and ruthless than any Covenant squad.They will try to out flank you, fire from cover and evade grenades thrown their way.Whether or not you engage one on one or as part of a squad, you will find this a challenge.
Once you make your way into the compound you'll be introduced to and instructed as to how to use your electronic sidekick, the Ghost, which in part is similar to The Doctors Sonic Screwdriver and can hack terminals and unlock doors, amongst other things yet to be revealed.
Lighting inside the compound is suitably atmospheric, with shadows and dust particles being very well rendered. Sounds fill the air, distant clanks and thumps and creaks and groans almost give the place a 'haunted house' feel, and you know that the enemy are awaiting inside somewhere.
Our mission is on. We have to find something that is ominously called the Alien Wizard.And then the sensor warns you that the grunts are on the way, and they come thick and fast and then start spreading out and using cover/flanking tactics to keep you on your toes.The bullets and lasers fly thick and fast. Quick run for cover, shoot, and find a new place to attack from! Mind your flank! Thank God your team mate was watching your six then!
Collect dropped ammo and supplies, oh and what's this? A weapon upgrade template?Intriguing... alas no chance to do that on this preview, but a taste of things to come!
And then an ominous sound fills the air and there he/it is! Your objective, a floating alien that starts zapping you with energy bolts and then surrounds itself with a force field.So, you deplete it's energy with a few well aimed shots or well lobbed grenade and take the chance to nail it once those shields are down whilst seeking a new angle to attack it from.
Yes you will have your hands full even if you are part of a four man squad. Halo gave us the foundations for this game, but at the same time all that made Halo as cool as it was/is, has been stripped and rebuilt.It plays the same but does not feel the same, or look the same. The attention to detail present on this taster, bodes well for the full title release.
Bungie have sold off Halo so they can put their full effort into Destiny. Sure it's a first/third person shooter but it has a truly epic feel too it. I am excited by the taster and am looking forward to review it (I'll arm wrestle anyone for it, paper rocks scissors, whatever!) I want this title, I really really do. The countdown is on, your Destiny awaits. Embrace it.
Lock and load...