Destiny players are generally used to the concept of Strikes and their quick dive, dungeonesque approach to shooters. However, their replayability have always had more limited appeal due to no variation in encounters. Bungie is mixing it up with The Taken King and here’s what PlayStation and Xbox owners can look forward to.
Strikes in Destiny are inevitably something that players will repeat over and over again either with friends or match-made groups. One of Bungie’s big focuses, according to Game Informer, is to make the encounters replayable by introducing some degree of variability.
Less of the Same
Enemy encounters in Strikes can now be mixed up instead of the same enemy every time. One example given was a fight against Cabal in one run through a Strike followed by the Taken in the next.
While Game Informer did not give the name of which Strike this happened with, we do know there are four new strikes with three retooled existing strikes. The switch between enemies almost sounds like the Ceberus Vae III Strike is the one that switches between Cabal and Taken. It would make sense since the hunt for Valus Ta’aurc has always been one of the most abandoned Strikes in the game.
Another method used to introduce more variability to Strikes is by placing ammo crates and gun turrets at different places on the map in each run through. Nolan North, who replaced Peter Dinklage as Ghost, also recorded multiple lines for the Strikes so dialogue will be different through each encounter. It will also provide more bits of Destiny lore as another way Bungie is improving the story-telling in the game.
A welcome improvement is the changes to the new Strike bosses. Destiny players will no longer have their patience tried against bullet-sponge bosses. Bungie is giving them “Raid-like” mechanics instead. One example was a fight against the Vex Resorative Mind. It sounds similar to The Nexus boss at first glance with a rotating shield. However, that rotating shield will try to push players out of cover and one player on the fireteam will have to carry a relic called an arc core from pillar to pillar to make the boss vulnerable.
Bungie explained in the September issue of Game Informer it went heavy on the bullet-sponge bosses because it was unsure if match-made players, with no guarantee of communication, would be able to handle raid-like mechanics. Destiny players showed them otherwise over the past year so now boss encounters are can introduce new mechanics.
Strike playlists in Destiny will be divided up in new ways when The Taken King releases. The Vanguard Legacy playlist will feature all of the strikes from the launch of the game and the two DLC releases – The Dark Below and House of Wolves. Vanguard Ursa will consist of random Heroic Strikes that will award players Legendary Marks – the new currency replacing Vanguard and Crucible Marks – plus Legendary Engrams. Finally, Vanguard Marmoset will star The Taken King Strikes.
Matchmaking for these playlists will be based on player’s Light Level. As I covered here for Inquisitr, Light Levels are being separated from a character’s overall level and now are an indicator of power. So, the difficulty level of the Strike is no longer determined by the playlist, but instead by the characters’ level and the matchmaking that occurs behind the scenes.
The Nightfall Strikes are not being left untouched in all of the changes with Destiny: The Taken King. Today, the most difficult class of Strikes receives random modifiers to give Guardians more power or make enemies more difficult. These modifiers will be handcrafted from week to week starting with The Taken King. This should result in more interesting combinations and better replayability.
Destiny: The Taken King is set for a September 15 release. What do you think of these changes to Strikes with the expansion? Sound off in the comments below.
[Images via Bungie]
[Update: Clarified sentence about the Cerebus Vae strike. It is one of the remixed Strikes, but it is currently unknown if it is one that switches between Cabal and Taken, though it sounds likely.]