We’ll let you in on a secret: we had a wager running at Push Square Towers regarding when Sony would pull the plug on Destruction AllStars. This may prove difficult reading for the team at Lucid Games, so it’s important to stress that our internal book was entirely tongue-in-cheek – after all, we’d never purposefully want a game to fail. The point is that PlayStation has historically done a terrible job at continuing to invest in its online multiplayer games – in fact, this author believed the release would be done and dusted by Christmas last year!
We’re happy to be proven wrong, then, and in fact Destruction AllStars has gotten better and better since our original 6/10 review. We wrote earlier in the year about how crucial, pivotal gameplay improvements had completely resurrected the release’s fortunes, but there wasn’t enough content to support the developer’s live service ambitions. When you’re up against cross-platform juggernauts like Fortnite and Apex Legends, it’s almost impossible to have a content cadence that will keep players engaged. At least the studio is trying, though.
There are some really key structural improvements with Destruction AllStars’ latest update. Chief among these is seasonal content, supported by a tried-and-trusted Battle Pass, or this instance, AllStar Pass. We’re not sure how compelling cosmetics like Shouts – basically voice samples you can equip for your favourite characters – will ultimately prove to be, but with the Rise season now underway, the game actually has a sense of progression again. This is important for player retention.
In fact, developer Lucid Games is doing some smart things here. Throughout each week, it’s running a secondary set of challenges, which reward you with in-game currency and XP as you play. Complete all six of these and you unlock some additional cosmetics; you need to fulfil the fairly manageable requirements within the week, otherwise you’ll miss out forever. Again, retention. And this is all supplemented by a season-long community goal, where the entire playerbase must work together to fill a meter, with XP and in-game currency up for grabs.
New cosmetics actually give you a reason to want to raise your funds, too. You can now unlock and equip “glows” for your character, which add a tier of prestige and customisation on top of traditional skins – and allow you to properly show off when you reach the podium in a match. Moreover, the weekend-only competitive match type Blitz comes with its own sub-currency, allowing you to unlock and earn some of the rarest cosmetics in the game. Obviously gameplay comes above reward tracks and customisation options, but in this modern age of multiplayer, you need the carrot at the end of the stick to keep players engaged. Destruction AllStars has that now.
Blitz is pure concentrated chaos. It pits four teams of three against each other in a battle to the death. All of the key gameplay mechanics, like the supercharged Breaker vehicles, are much quicker to obtain, so there’s a breathless, relentless pace to destruction derbies. Your team needs to win two rounds to be victorious, but this means that if there’s an even playing field, you could be playing up to five rounds in total, which ups the intensity. You also can’t select the same AllStar twice, forcing you to master different characters.
Still, while the matchmaking has apparently been tweaked, playing solo with random partners we did find ourselves having to deal with uneven teams on a couple of occasions. We also kept coming up against a trio of pro players, and while we were competitive in one match, they generally steamrolled the competition every time. Still, there’s plenty of time to tweak this, and we really enjoy how there’s a separate set of unlocks attached specifically to this mode – many of them are extremely cool!
Even cooler, the developer is mixing things up later in the season, when it introduces an entirely new mode named Jumpshot. As this isn’t available yet, we’ve yet to grasp the gameplay loop and whether it will even be entertaining – but it gives players something to look forward to and another reason to come back next month. Destruction AllStars is a good game these days, and it finally has the reward loop to back that up.
We’re hopeful this is a sign that Sony is getting its act together, as it looks to release a multitude of live service games. There was always promise in Lucid Games’ initial release, but its gameplay wasn’t quite right. Now, as it gets included as a permanent addition to All PS Plus Games, it’s beginning to find its feet – and the content cadence it needs to succeed. Long-term, we’re not sure it’s ever going to have the broad appeal required to be an online multiplayer titan, but no one could ever say that the developer hasn’t tried – and it’s been refreshing to see this scrappy title slowly fulfil its potential.
Have you returned to Destruction AllStars following its PS5 launch, and what are your thoughts on the combative racer these days? Crash into the comments section below and let us know.
Always have so much fun coming back to this game!
God I hate live service games. I try not to just randomly come into gaming threads and spread negativity, after all, many people must like these things for them to be commercial products…but I really do hate live service games. So limiting, so lacking in respect for your time. Like an overly possessive friend, or a boss who doesn’t understand the concept of work life balance. Then they start asking for money…
I'm glad sony is still willing to support it, when compared to their previous multiplayer attempts like Hardware Rivals. I do hope they add more characters though. Hell, this could be a perfect time for them to do a twisted metal collaboration.
Still, I do wonder what's Sony doing with Predator Hunting Grounds too, another online multiplayer game from them. Is that game still getting supported or is it done and dusted?
@thefourfoldroot1 Well, you don't have to engage with the Battle Pass if you don't want to. You can just play for fun whenever you like. The monetisation obviously has to exist to support the ongoing development.
@SoulsBourne128 I believe they still supported it up until recently. I don't think they'll do a Twisted Metal collaboration because the rumour is Firesprite is making a new one.
A new character would be great, though! Hopefully later in the year!
Give me socom you cowards 🤣🤣 I platinumed destruction allstars and didn't really hook me enough to keep me playing the best thing games can do is keep updating and adding too it to keep people interested, Rocket league, apex, siege and fortnite are perfect examples.
@Ssimsim Agreed, but as the article points out it's really hard to maintain that update cadence — those games you mentioned are absolute beasts.
I think they've taken good steps towards that with this update, though.
By the way, getting the Platinum in this is impressive!
Unfortunately, no one plays this game. The service must be shut down.
@thefourfoldroot1 You’re not wrong on the whole, but I enjoyed Destruction All Stars because it did manage to respect my time. It was my go to game for a quick 5 - 10 minute session for quite a while, and I still pop in now and then to see what’s new.
@get2sammyb I'm so genuinely happy players are starting to feel this games magic. I've been a big supporter since day one. Still can't get the Fuego or Ratu trophies. I'll try until I die
It's a free to play game that's not free to play lol this should've been dead on arrival
Sure. It’s the “ongoing” I don’t like though. Having to keep up with limited time events is a chore for adults with jobs and families (well, apart from game journalists for whom it can be considered part of their job I guess).
Not trying to hate on it generally, as i said there are many who must like it, just give the perspective of someone who hates this genre of game (and I think GaaS can be legitimately referred to as it’s own quickly spreading genre).
@thefourfoldroot1 Just don't keep up with it though is the point Sammy is making.
Play the game on your own time, whenever you want for fun and don't purchase the battle pass. Simply play it to enjoy the core game.
Games need to be monetized somehow to support further development, updates and content and to pay all the people working hard on it. And I far prefer this method over loot boxes which are actually predatory.
Who knows though, maybe a better form of monetization will come around, similar to live service saving us from loot boxes.
I still enjoy the game and come back from time to time. Really need the Gridfall mode to come back so I can try earn one more character trophy. It's also the most fun mode imo.
All this live service investing from Sony is set to fail miserably.
If not for the best single player games in the industry I wouldn't bother purchasing PS4 and PS5 in the first place.
And would stick to PC gaming.
But PS4 experience was so good I sold my gaming pc and currently using laptop for my work and PS5 for gaming exclusively.
And now Sony puts 60% of their investments into live service crap.
I feel deep regret with facepalm, similar to when I heard about Fallout 76.
Why even engage your precious resources for this kind of crap?
You can do so much more and better in single player games development...
But no, you cancel Days Gone 2 and instead you waste money on this crap no one bothers playing even for free.
I tried playing this a couple of months ago again and couldn’t find a game for love nor money.
It also seems to have done away with my favourite mode on release which was the one where the floor falls away and you have to knock your opponents off.
I might try again as the gameplay was pretty fun for a blast every now and again.
@get2sammyb Scoop, Lucid Games got the license to make a game based on a movie franchise 👀
Get your sources to confirm and there is your story.
@Blacksmith1985 They can and will do both.
@Hurblyburbly Yeah, you can only play that mode single player at the moment, but seems like they're going to rotate them.
Matchmaking has been faster than it's ever been for me this past week. Was able to find games in under 30 seconds last night.
@Jacko11 Interesting 👀
@get2sammyb hard to believe, but I shurely don't mind it being so.
@get2sammyb it's true that you don't have to, but everything about BP is clearly made to instill FOMO in people, in order to extort their money.
Otherwise, why show me things I've "unlocked", only to then tell me I have to upgrade in order to use them?
I've been playing Fall Guys recently and boy was it better when it was paid for. I'd rather pay 20€ for that game and have a store with in-game currency where I can just buy my Doomguy costume, instead of having a terrible-looking character over whose appearance I have little to no control, depending on the whims of the shop and the BP to decide for me what cosmetics can and cannot be earned.
I think I might need to try this again. Like many, I installed played a bit, uninstalled.
Its nice to see the commitment on display here, and I guess its good solid live information for what works or doesn't, so it has value for sony as they try and move into this market...
Hard to imagine they had the balls to initially charge full price for this game on release. Would have been dead/bomba for sure before going ftp. I don't know anyone who plays this and the one time I gave this a try, I was searching for 10 mins to find a game. Deleted promptly after
I think the game has MASSIVELY improved since launch. I’ve played it off and on since then.
The issue is… this point in time in the games history, with the revamped gameplay and progression… this is what it should have been at launch. If this current incarnation of the game had been available when it released and they billed it as a FTP game… I believe it would have been a great success. But it’s too little too late.
It’s a good fun multiplayer game now. But I feel like no matter what they do it’ll never be enough. I found matches easy enough last night (granted I’m pretty sure one of those matches connected me to a European server because the latency was appalling). But the other day it took me five to eight minutes to find matches.
@Legacy2K yawn... The game released for free and was then 20 quid.... Let it go...
@Blacksmith1985 @thefourfoldroot1 Yeah Sony has turned me back into a primarily Nintendo gamer again. If it weren't for Final Fantasy XIV I wouldn't play my PlayStation consoles much outside of retro games on PSOne/PS2/PS3/PSP.
I'm sure Destruction Allstars was Lucids chance to make it into Sony's spending spree. Unfortunately for them, the game was doomed from the beginning, should have charged it as a 39.99$ game, they'd have been more successful.
@clvr You have 100% control over what your character looks like.
Don't want to spend money or think a cosmetic isn't worth it? Don't.
It's literally that simple, it won't fly out of your wallet, I promise.
@Gunnerzaurus "depending on the whims of the shop and the BP to decide for me what cosmetics can and cannot be earned."
You might've missed this sentence.
Could do with fixing some of the trophies tbh.... I'll be back once that's done. Just one left (hanu?)
All live service games should be F2P, period. You can't convince me otherwise. And no, making this free for a month on release doesn't count.
Rocket League, R6 Siege, Division, Destiny, this, that dodgeball game EA made, Fall Guys... the list goes on. All should have been free from the get go. Sure, some transitioned eventually, but some are still holding on, claiming they're premium experiences, when in reality they should have been free either a long time ago or way sooner.
@OrtadragoonX I agree the game should have had some extra work before it released because its good a game now. The problem is you only get one chance with a first impression.
@Blacksmith1985 I dont know why every is crying about Days Gone it didnt sell enough. It was the worst firstparty release ever and it took ages to make.
Yes it may have sold a lot of copies after a massive pricedrop but it still has to make back the money invested.
I totally agree on liveservice the less its around the more happy i am but in the end money has to be made bigger games bigger budgets.
The new generation has the attention span of goldfish and wants everything for next to nothing so you have to have a backup to make money.
Not that free to play (free to pay) games are cheaper you just need a few addicted people to make money such a pity.
Not my cup of tea unfortunately.
Maybe release it on Steam and allow. Cross play to increase numbers?
Is it available for PS4 owners?
@clvr And it all goes back to "Don't want to spend the money? Don't buy it"
The problem you're listing only applies to people who want to pay the $20 for skins, which as you stated earlier, is not someone like you.
@MFTWrecks Why? A lot of people worked hard on those games that millions love. They deserve to get paid.
Most of the games you had listed didn't even have the same monetization practices at launch as they do when going F2P
@Flaming_Kaiser This "a few whales fund the whole game" is the biggest myth in history that everyone's latched onto based on what a single sketchy youtuber had said.
I'll add with zero evidence or data, just perception.
**Millions** of people play these games. Do you reaaaally think only a few are funding the whole entire operation? Or do you think it's more likely it's 100, 200, 300, 400,000 each making maybe $25-$30 in shop purchases once a month, all adding to a large sum?
@Flaming_Kaiser Days Gone had a rough start, but eventually sold around 5 million copies, which is not bad at all. Especially for a new IP.
It is obvious that sequel could be made better and could sold more.
@Gunnerzaurus Free games are the most successful money makers in the world right now. They're getting paid, trust.
Putting a premium price up front for access to what is then operated like a free game is just anti-consumer and shoots the devs in the foot by curtailing the number of people who would ever try it and maybe spend some money.
@Gunnerzaurus dude it's not hard to understand, you can do it.
I said I'd rather spend 20€ on the game and earn my cosmetics in-game, than have it free to play with tons of monetization, so where do you take it that I'm not interested in cosmetics? What are you even going on about?
I just pointed out how the rotation of cosmetics is a direct result of a monetization method I despise, and that I preferred the game when it was paid for.
@Blacksmith1985 I believe they didnt have a good enough pitch otherwise it would be greenlit. It was expensive took a long time to make and bit had a bad release the worst firstparty title in a long time.
Its a pity it didnt sell and Sony gave them quite a few chances with a pushed back release. And did the sales come after or before the pricedrop then its probably even worse for them. Because at a €20 its quite a lot less revenue.
@Gunnerzaurus Thats probably why they have seminars how to push the buttons of addicted people its just a myth.
@Flaming_Kaiser for me Days Gone is one of the best Sony games.
It has its downsides, but also it has its own identity and spirit.
@Flaming_Kaiser Anyone can have a seminar on anything, that doesn't lend it any credence.
But this is too often used as an excuse by people to not see the real picture at play. "Oh it's just whales funding the whole thing, not thousands of every day people.
It is both, and I promise you that the thousands of people spending $10-$20 weekly outweigh the dozen whales giving $1000 once or twice a year.
It's simple mathematics.
@Gunnerzaurus Check some simple movies on youTube and how predatory these companies are. A dozen whales €1000 once or twice? And lets be honest you know its more then this for some people. Its families that get ruïned because its made that childeren dont even notice it.
Yeah your excuse is ***** to me im sorry. Its like selling alcohol where people go to AA. Its gambling in a game for all ages.
I see it in so many free play games the push to buy this, limited available, timed stuff.
@Blacksmith1985 For me its Legend of Dragoon but that wont happen either. I believe that it didnt make enough money with the high costs and thats it. I rather see a new Syphon Filter game. 🤪
Tap here to load 47 comments
Leave A Comment
Hold on there, you need to login to post a comment...