A Crack

Destiny, part 28

Imagine being in a dark room, perhaps a prison cell with no windows or doors.  Maybe even a deep, dark cave.  You’re there alone and all is silent, but miserable.  And quiet.  So very quiet.  Suddenly, off in the distance, or perhaps not so far, there is a crack.  It is small at first, and the light it emits is dim, but it is there none the less.  It is a sight that stings the eyes, for it is foreign and unfamiliar.

A crack in the darkness

It’s late at night and a couple members of the clan and I decided to play some Destiny 2 since the Bloodborne servers were down, probably thanks to the game being free this month for PlayStation Plus members.  I’m actually interested in playing Destiny 2 again now that the Nightfall isn’t a nightmare to complete anymore.  Last week, with the new system implemented, we tried it out and finished with a score around 20,000.  This week, we improved our score and got up to 26,000.

This week’s Nightfall is the Pyramidion again, but it’s at least not a total nightmare anymore.

What they’ve done – and should’ve done all along – is let you decide how hard you want to make Nightfall for yourself.  The non Prestige version has no modifiers, just a score and a clock that shows how long you’ve been at it.  The Prestige is where it gets interesting.  Now you can choose how hard you want to make the enemies you face and what burns you want to activate, if any.  Tonight we tried a Prestige run and managed to make it with minimal fuss.  Getting the Aura now is going to be just as difficult as before, and probably still not worth the effort.  Also, there’s specialized Emblems for each new Nightfall that can be customized assuming you hit the required score for each variant.  I’m happy with the way Nightfall works now and hopefully this means we as a clan will gather to do it each week now.

In other news, the latest Iron Banner is happening and I’m actually excited to participate because the Warlock armor is beautiful and looks very Asian inspired.  At least this time around I won’t be going in alone.

Now, let’s go get those treasure maps and head for Nessus…


Simulation Theory

Destiny, part 27

Time for the Curse of Osiris.  While I don’t find it to be as disappointing as some of the community, I do find it to be very grindy like The Dark Below was for Destiny 1.  It’s almost like Bungie didn’t learn a thing from the first game and feels like they’re making the same choices and mistakes all over again.  Meeting Osiris (finally) was cool as was getting to explore a bit of Mercury, I just wish it had been a larger play space with more to do.  I also don’t like that I can’t use my sparrow, yet I can capture and use enemy vehicles, because that makes sense.  The space isn’t big enough that you really need a vehicle anyway, but it would be nice to have that option.

Other than the Lighthouse behind me, that’s pretty much the entirety of the new space.

Don’t get me wrong, I like the new gear and cosmetic items, it just feels like it takes forever to get them unless you want to pay for in game currency (Bright Dust/Bright Engrams).  Not sure how I feel about the Masterwork weapons as I have yet to get one that I like.  I’ve so far dismantled every one of them since it’s a gun type I prefer not to use.  I do find it odd that in this expansion, the Region Chests don’t seem to be account bound but are instead character bound (for the expansion content only) and it’s pretty lame that there’s only one Lost Sector on the whole map.

I hope I get one of these for each of my characters.  I love my scout rifles.

Looks cozy and intimate, just wish it had stayed that way instead of opening the shutters.

It was also nice getting to see the revamped Lighthouse and using it as a quaint little social hub, but I’m sure in time it will be abandoned once the next expansion(s) hits.

It’s also annoying having to deal with Brother Fanboy over here.  I like the old version of him from Destiny 1 that didn’t speak as much.

As a tech junkie, I like that the Vex have a planet sized simulation machine called The Infinite Forest, I’m just disappointed that once the story quests for the expansion are over with you can’t go back in whenever you want and that it’s not used for anything else.  I feel like it’s a missed opportunity to turn the Infinite Forest into a play space similar to that of the Underground in The Division, where you could set up parameters for a mission (or in this case, a simulation) and go in and run it.  I mean, with a collectible called Simulation Seeds it seems like this would have been a no brainer.

The gateway to madness

There are some amazing vistas in this expansion.  Something I’ve come to expect in every Bungie game.

These hallways are neat, but a bit too long.

Destiny 2: Minecraft Edition.  Or how about what Minecraft would look like in 4K?

I think I managed to plow through the story content in about 5 to 6 hours on launch day and have been playing off and on since then, doing the usual loot grind treadmill thing that I’ve come to expect from Destiny 2.  The rest of the clan doesn’t seem so hot on the game right now, especially the clan leader.  He makes it sound like he’s not coming back to the game at all and is very vocally negative about it and has even gone back to the first game because it feels more rewarding and fun to him.  This is also coming after his tirade a few weeks back about how most of the clan left in his absence from the game and he vowed to play it more, and planned on helping people level up and so on and so on.  If he and the others aren’t willing to continue playing then why do I bother to grind for Clan XP so everyone else can benefit from my work?  I might be the next to jump ship and join another clan or make my own, I haven’t decided yet.  I suppose it all depends on what happens with the next expansion in 2018.

Anyway, story wise I thought this expansion was interesting, but a bit short with overused tropes.  Like, why is it when we encounter a hive mind race in something, there’s always a “mastermind” at the center of it.

In this case, it’s this guy: Panoptes.

I’m also not too hot on the idea that instead of adding anything of substantial value to the game in the form of new strikes or even a new raid, they bolted on a new section to the already existing raid and called it a “raid lair” and turned a couple of the story missions into strikes which is a little disappointing and feels rather lazy to me.  I just wish I could get the clan to commit to and actually complete the raid (or the lair) and do it regularly, but at this point it’s whatever.  I feel that if I’m ever going to see that raid or the lair to completion I’m just going to have to turn to outside sources for help.

Overall, I think this expansion adds a nice little touch to the game in terms of lore and story, but I feel like it should have been given out for free or sold at a significantly lower price (like $5).  There are a few cosmetic items that I want, like a couple ships and ghost shells, but I’m not going to throw anymore money at the game hoping that I get them.  If I don’t get them through grinding the traditional way then I’m just not going to get them.  This will hopefully lead to me breaking the habit of playing this game/franchise altogether so I can move on to my backlog and play something else.

Until I decide what my relationship with this game is going to be, and whether or not the rest of the clan decides to come back, I guess I’ll be over here in the Lighthouse with Brother Stupid keeping the faith.

So We Did Prestige Nightfall…

Destiny, part 26

So tonight, I got one step closer to the Destiny 2 platinum.  Since the release of the game, we’ve had struggle after struggle trying to complete a Nightfall because the modifiers have rarely been in our favor and this week our modifiers were Attrition (health and shields only regenerate after picking up healing pools from defeated enemies) and Timewarp: Killing Time (killing enemies adds time to the clock) so I convinced the clan to give it a try seeing as these modifiers are easy to work with.  They agreed and we gave it a try and were successful.  So successful in fact that now everyone in the clan has Rat King except maybe 2 people.

So then I decided to be bold considering our successes and suggest trying this particular Nightfall on Prestige difficulty.  It took a little arm twisting but eventually we gave it a try and we met failure after failure.  We kept getting to the final boss (the Strike in question was Inverted Spire) with 3 minutes to spare and kept losing by fractions of a few seconds because of failure to control adds in the last room or general mistakes along the way (I kept missing jumps in the opening area again and again but now I’m getting to the point where I can damn near make the run without having to stop and compensate.)

Tonight, however, lit a fire under Derrick’s ass.  After 2 attempts where we nearly killed Atheon’s wanna be replacement and not winning by mere seconds, Derrick and myself were determined to keep going until we were victorious.  A few minutes ago, we met victory face to face, but it was bittersweet.  We had hoped that we would get better gear or maybe another Engram from Hawthorne.  Nope, this was what we got:

Look how fabulous I am…

An Aura.  All the gear I got, and I mean all of it, was less than what I already had.  Oh, and we got a stupid fucking Emblem too that tracks how many Nightfalls you’ve completed but for some reason mine only says 1 even though I’ve completed it about 5 or 6 times this week.  Someone suggested that it’s probably counting the number of Prestige Nightfalls that I’ve completed, as though I’d be dumb enough to ever put myself through that kind of fucking misery again.  I literally wasted what free time I had tonight trying to get better gear for myself and my friends and that stupid Aura was all we got.  And an Emblem.  Oh, and even though the Faction Rally is over, one of my loot drops was a Future War Cult token.  Thanks RNGeezus, I fucking hate you too.

Oh, and the worst part is, after all that bullshit and misery that we went through, we don’t even get to keep the AuraIt disappears at weekly reset!  So now, I get to parade around the social spaces (and probably Crucible too, not that I’m going to bother finding out) showing off the fact that my e-penis is fucking huge to all the other scrubs that haven’t completed Prestige Nightfall yet.  But you know what?  They don’t really give a shit because they’re doing actual, useful, constructive things with their time like raiding or playing Iron Banner.

But at least I got my stupid trophy so that’s something, right?

It might be time for a nice, loooooong hiatus from Destiny 2.

Year Four, Month One

Destiny, part 25

Mixed emotions of aggravation, elation and boredom have begun to set in.  My path to the Destiny 2 platinum has hit something of an impasse.  I only have 3 trophies left to collect before the platinum is mine: The Prestige (Complete the Leviathan raid or Nightfall strike on Prestige difficulty)  Belly Of The Beast (Complete the Leviathan raid) and Lest Ye Be Judged (Encounter an Emissary from beyond).  The only one that I forsee actually being the problem is Lest Ye Be Judged since that requires you to win a fucking Trials of the Nine match.  The Prestige I know I’ll get at some point once everyone in the clan is comfortable with the Nightfall and all the associated modifiers (at the time of this writing, to my knowledge, Prestige difficulty for Leviathan hasn’t been added to the game) and obtaining Belly Of The Beast is coming closer and closer as time goes by.


This past week, we managed to learn the mechanics behind The Gauntlet room and The Bathhouse room and we got to the Pleasure Gardens and started to learn it, but, due to time we decided to give it a couple tries then just go for the treasure chests instead.

I was introduced to The Gauntlet after a long 9 hour shift (my first day back to work after being on vacation with Matty last week) and I wasn’t really feeling up to it but ultimately I’m glad I sucked it up and gave it a try.  I took over Matty’s role as one of the 2 runners and found it to be an enjoyable experience.  I volunteered to be a runner every time and the clan seems to like that idea since I picked up on it fairly quickly.  Basically I have to run an obstacle course with the other runner to charge an orb while the rest of the team fights off adds and opens gates as I approach.  Once the course is complete I dunk the orb in a fountain in the center of the room then we do that 2 more times.  The second and third time, however, there are parts of the floor in the obstacle course that are missing, so jumping must be precise and careful.  The third time through the course, the entire team is running and my task is to skip the second gate and only recharge my orb on gates 1, 3 and 4.  Once the team passes through  the finish line for that round the room is complete.  Easy peasy lemon squeezy, though I did die before reaching the third gate because I apparently wasn’t running fast enough but at least I know how this room works.

One of the many rooms in the “underground” of the Leviathan raid.

The next night, we were introduced to The Bathhouse and this was where my patience was tested.  Basically, there are 4 buttons in the room and they must remain pressed in order to raise lanterns in the central chamber and those lanterns must be destroyed in order to pass the room.  Sounds easy, right?  Never in my life (aside from that shit ass bomb level in Gears of War 2) have I ever wanted to punch people in the face so hard.  What you have to do is split up into 2 teams of 3 people and rotate out and keep a buff going (Psion somethingorother) on your character so you don’t die while submerged in a liquid that slowly kills you while you’re sitting on your button all while fighting off adds.  Once the alarm is sounded, everyone comes to the center chamber and stands on the button there and fires at the lanterns.  We died over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over for about 2 solid hours before we finally got it.  I was ready to ragequit after 45 minutes, but thanks to Claire and her girlfriend Michelle we persevered.  If I ever make it to the U.K. I’m buying those two whatever they want for dinner.  (This is the same Claire that taught us how to defeat Oryx in King’s Fall, so I definitely owe her one!)

After this, we tried the Pleasure Gardens and I think this room is going to take a while to complete…

Faction Rally

Last week, we were introduced to Destiny’s first Faction Rally.  This time around, instead of just picking a faction and grinding ranks with them in order to get more loot, they sort of had a purpose.  Whichever faction gained the most ranks (support) they would sell whatever weapon they had on offer.  Dead Orbit had a scout rifle, New Monarchy had a shitty sidearm and Future War Cult had something in hideous colors.  In order to appease the clan I went with Future War Cult on my Titan but I went with (and secretly rooted for) Dead Orbit with my warlock.  I honestly didn’t care who won the rally because I didn’t find any of the weapons on offer to be anything particularly spectacular.

New Monarchy a.k.a. The Republican Party

Future War Cult.  I still can’t deal with their hideous color scheme.

Dead Orbit.  Bitches love Dead Orbit.

I find it a little odd that Dead Orbit and Future War Cult are literally next door neighbors in the hangar and New Monarchy is all the way across the tower away from both of them.  I wonder why that is?  Come to think of it, it was like that in the first Destiny game as well.  Either way, I went with Dead Orbit and Future War Cult on my characters and did things here and there even though I was (ahem) a little preoccupied last week with someone special.  Anyway, I logged in tonight after work and was greeted with this:


So now came the realization of what happened which certainly cleared up all the confusion that was going around about what would happen when one of the factions won.  You see, at first there was talk among the clan that the faction that lost the rally would still have their weapon on offer, but at a cost of 5,000 glimmer while the winning faction would be selling their weapon at a cost of 1,000 glimmer.  I thought this sounded a bit strange from the beginning but decided to just let it play out and see what was what once the dust had settled.  It turns out that the winning faction did indeed sell their weapon for 1,000 glimmer – but only to their supporters.  Non Dead Orbit players had to pony up 50,000 glimmer if they wanted the gun – not 5,000.  Also, both the losing factions have nothing for sale for their supporters.  Nothing at 1,000 glimmer, nothing at 5,000 glimmer, just nothing at all.  I kinda feel like this whole thing was just a dumb waste of time over all (I have the Dead Orbit gun but I haven’t tried it out yet to see if it’s even worth a shit) and if I had known that my clan mates would get shit out of their faction’s weapon I would have devoted to Future War Cult on both characters instead of just one.

I also don’t like the fact that, now that the event is over, you don’t seem to be able to switch factions if you want.  I don’t really care for my characters to look like corporate shills in any way, because my viewpoint on Destiny is that we’re trying to rebuild everything and reclaim our planet and the only thing the factions want to do is just argue and nitpick over dumb shit.  I don’t care if New Monarchy thinks we need better leadership.  The Speaker is dead now so I hope you fuckers are happy.  I don’t care if Dead Orbit thinks we should just turn tail and run.  I can sort of support that idea, but at the same time our enemies will get Earth (and the Traveler) over my dead body.  As for Future War Cult, I can get behind that ideology too, I just can’t stand the color scheme.  I can’t.  I really, really can’t.  The only faction shaders I like (this time around) is New Monarchy.

I mean just look at that!  Unf!  But, whatever.  I was told by clan mates that I’ll be able to change factions once this event is over.  I don’t know that I’ll participate in the next (or subsequent) faction rallies since this one was so disappointing.

Oh and I finally got this thing too.  It’s weird.

Year Four, Week Three

Destiny, part 24

I fucking hate this game.  I.  Fucking.  Hate.  This.  Game.  Right now I feel like the most pathetic Destiny 2 player on Earth.  Out of all possible opportunities I’ve had since launch to complete Nightfall, I’ve only managed to get it once.  On top of that, I’ve picked up the notorious Rat King exotic quest, which, at first I thought was going to be as annoying as the Outbreak Prime quest was back in Destiny since you have to complete parts of the quest with other players who also have the gun/quest, but this time everything was fairly easy to do until getting to the final step:  complete Nightfall with 5 minutes left on the clock.  At first I didn’t think this was going to be that difficult, but at the rate we’ve been going I think I’d have better luck learning how to read and write in Madarin Chinese.

We also haven’t made a lick of progress in the Leviathan raid and considering the people that I’m playing with, I doubt that we’ll ever clear it at this rate.  We got as far as the first puzzle/room on Monday and this is going to take a lot of practice and more patience than I think this group has.

I’ll get you next time Gadget!

Also this week, I thought I was having a breakthrough in my absolute hatred of Crucible.  There’s a couple of trophies on the list – Show Me What You Got and Lest Ye Be Judged – that once I learned the truth behind them I had a feeling were going to be trouble.  I was right.  Monday night after the raid group fell apart, I decided to start working on Show Me What You Got which requires you to complete Lord Shaxx’s Call to Arms Milestone for the first time.  I was having a good time and I even managed to accomplish this:

The only reason I didn’t get the trophy that night was because I stopped playing about 5 minutes before weekly reset happened thinking I could just pick it up in a little while and continue from where I stopped (which was at 95%) but much to my horror, as reset occurred, I lost all my progress.  There went about an hour’s worth of work right down the toilet.  Frustrated and defeated, I decided to call it a night and go to bed.  Next day (today) my clan mates said they’d help me out.  Well, that was all well and good until my PS4 decided it was going to be an uncooperative bitch and tell me five times that my Destiny 2 data was corrupted and that I’d have to take the disc out, delete the game and reinstall it.  No fucking way was I going to do that, not while my friends were on.  So I kept taking the disc out and putting it right back in, but my PS4 decided it was just not going to do what I wanted.  I took the advice of a clan mate and rebuilt the PS4 database to see if that would fix the problem (it didn’t) only to watch as alllllllllll the fucking games that were nice and neat and organized into folders were now strewn helter-skelter across my god damn cross media bar in a long, continuous, mockery of ogranization.

Fuck my life.  Fuck it hard.

As everyone decided to call it a night, I pressed on and continued to have a shit day in the Crucible losing match after match but watching that infernal percentage slowly creep it’s way to 100%.  Around the 95% mark, I get the data corruption error again and I decide I’ve had enough at this point.  I remove the disc, disconnect the external drive, took a deep breath and screamed at the top of my lungs (no I didn’t say what’s going on) as I deleted the game and then reinstalled it on the PS4 internal drive.  I sat in silent, miserable contemplation and wondered what it was that I did that was so awful that the universe decided that it was just going to shit in my corn flakes today.  I read an article about ‘messy games’ on Polygon as the 6GB patch re-downloaded to my PS4.  Once it was done, I returned to the misery of the Crucible and I kept going until the bloody Milestone was complete.

I finally got my god damned trophy.

After that was finally over, I called it a night.  I also decided that I still fucking hate Crucible.  Which brings me back to the other trophy I mentioned earlier…

Lest Ye Be Judged is, unfortunately, not about Xur like I had hoped.  It’s about meeting an Emissary of The Nine which you can only do by completing Trials of the Nine (the Destiny 2 replacement for Trials of Osiris) and you can only access Trials of the Nine after you’ve completed Shaxx’s Call to Arms at least once.  Now that that Milestone is done I have access to Trials and I’m going to keep putting myself through hell until I get the trophy for meeting the Emissary then I’m never doing Crucible or Trials again as long as the servers live.

Once that’s over with all I need to do is complete the raid (somehow) and complete a Nightfall on Prestige difficulty (kill me now) and get all the Hunter subclasses and I’ll have the Destiny 2 platinum.  I’m glad I’m taking a break from this fucking game while I’m on vacation next week.

Year Four, Week Two

Destiny, part 23

I think I’m beginning to either get burned out or overwhelmed or perhaps both.  Every waking moment that I’m not at work (which has been every day since the game released thanks to hurricane Irma) has been spent playing Destiny 2 and learning the game inside and out like I did the first one.  What I’ve learned so far:

Upon Weekly Rest

  1. All the Milestones in your Director reset (Challenges, Raid Completion, Nightfall Completion, Flashpoint Completion.  I suppose Crucible does as well though I’ve avoided doing any Crucible for the time being as I hate PvP)
  2. Eververse has new inventory items (yay for rotating inventory!)
  3. Ikora’s Meditations reset (though you only have to do them once and not once for each character)
  4. Cayde-6 has new treasure maps (these are supposed to coincide with whatever planet is chosen as the Flashpoint for the week, but we shall see if the pattern holds.)
  5. Any Auras you have equipped on your character are removed (currently the only way I know to get one is to do Nightfall on Prestige Difficulty a.k.a. fucking hard mode.)

That’s a lot of shit to do.  Granted that you can complete Cayde’s treasure maps and Ikora’s Meditations with just one character, but then there’s still the laundry list of Milestones left for all three of your characters to do.  Just the thought of having to repeat this week after week already has me tired and rushing to my bed to throw the blanket over my head and shout NO! at the top of my lungs.

Add to this the fact that we still have a new raid – The Leviathan – to learn and complete.  Year Four is shaping up to be a very busy one indeed.  I was afraid of running out of things to do like Year One, but at this time, there’s so much to do it will likely keep me busy until the first expansion is released.

I can already hear my backlog silently judging me.


I’ve been internally debating back and forth over how to tackle this.  I want to continue to help my clan level up (we just reached level 2 tonight!) but I don’t want to have to be stuck with a laundry list every Tuesday.  My debate is this:

  • Constrain my list to 2 characters (Warlock and Titan) and pick and choose what to do each night after work, and still have other games in rotation so as not to hit Destiny burnout.  OR:
  • Keep all 3 characters (Warlock, Titan, Hunter) and only play the Hunter if it’s absolutely necessary once I level it up completely.  OR:
  • Play the Hunter just long enough to get the Trophy for Hunter subclasses then delete it so as not to be tempted to even think about playing it.

It’s pretty likely that I’ll only keep the Hunter long enough to get the trophy then delete it as I was never good at playing then in the first game.  This way, I can keep the amount of shit I have to do to a somewhat minimum.  I’m now only 6 trophies away from the Platinum and one of them really has me perplexed:

Is it Xur?

Who the hell could this Emissary be?  The fact that ZERO percent of the community has me thinking that it’s going to be Xur since the first Friday that he’s supposed to arrive hasn’t happened just yet (he’ll be here in like 2 hours) and if it’s not Xur…then who?

What’s up you big bitch?


Destiny 2 By The Numbers

Destiny, part 22

  • Number of hours played so far: about 40
  • Main story quest was finished in about 16 hours
  • Current Kills according to Kill Tracker Ghost: 6,645
  • Current Number of Kills as a Voidwalker: 1,137
  • Current Number of Kills as a Stormcaller: 1,844
  • Current Number of Kills as a Dawnblade: 915
  • Current amount of Glimmer: 97,610
  • Current amount of Legendary Shards: 28
  • Current amount of Bright Dust: 1,642
  • Warlock current Light Level: 255
  • Total number of Exotics: 8
  • Total number of Weapon/Armor Mods: 37
  • Heroic Public Events completed: 8
  • Number of Trophies obtained: 4

And what is this strange Vex structure?