Back near the end of last year, Destiny was in dire need of a revamp. The release had stagnated to a point where many players had simply stopped coming back to Bungie's sci-fi creation, with the game's first two expansions – The Dark Below and House of Wolves – doing little to reinvigorate the title or fix its ongoing issues. Thankfully, the Washington-based studio was able to shine a light through the darkness in the form of The Taken King, which really did manage to breathe new life into the stale shooter. The third expansion added a great new setting, a stronger campaign, and implemented countless small improvements to the general gameplay loop. Since then, Destiny has been a far better game.
With that in mind, it's safe to say that Rise of Iron isn't quite as crucial to Destiny's continued success as The Taken King was – but its overall goal is the same. This latest expansion once again aims to rejuvenate the property, tempting lapsed players back to the fray while proving to newcomers that this is the best time to get stuck in.
Sitting at a slightly lower price point than The Taken King, it's perhaps no surprise that Rise of Iron isn't quite as substantial as its predecessor. Its main story missions will take you around an hour and a half to complete, and as a whole, the expansion feels lesser: its narrative scope is smaller, much of its content relies on reused assets, and it's just not the grand adventure that was infiltrating a colossal alien dreadnought and bringing down an unstoppable intergalactic tyrant.
Having said all that, Rise of Iron does succeed in what it sets out to do. It's a solid slice of additional content that'll have existing fans diving back into the mix, complete with an abundance of new equipment to discover and a fresh light level cap to reach. If you've been eagerly awaiting more of the same – a reason to get back to the grind – then you can't really go wrong.
It helps that, while it lasts, the main set of story missions are enjoyable. They don't really add anything new to the shooter's established formula, but there are some nicely designed encounters to tear through, and the set pieces are some of Destiny's best. It's just a bit of a shame that outside of a couple of lovingly crafted cutscenes, the initially interesting plot isn't developed into something more meaningful – it largely gets forgotten as voices over the radio feed you typically vague lines of dialogue. Sadly, though, that's par for course when it comes to Destiny.
Still, as any veteran player will know, this is a game that's all about what happens after you've fought your way to the end of the story – and Rise of Iron is no different. The real meat of the expansion is split between various post-plot side quests and numerous activities that are designed to keep you playing well into the future. The Plaguelands – a whole new and very large patrol area on Earth – houses new bounties and a load of secrets to uncover, while both new and reworked Strikes have been added to two refreshed playlists. Again, it's more of the same, but Bungie knows that providing new content – no matter how familiar – is the best way to get Guardians glued to the progression system once more.
Indeed, because Destiny now consists of so much content spread across so many different modes of play, it's difficult not to get sucked back into its addictive shoot-and-loot loop all over again. If anything, Rise of Iron proves that Destiny's main problem is that there's simply never enough Destiny; we're certain that it won't be too long until players have exhausted what's on offer here and are eager to get their hands on whatever's coming next.
You can't quite say that you're done with Rise of Iron until you've at least tried the new Raid, though. Dubbed Wrath of the Machine, the latest six-player excursion is one of the most action-packed endgame adventures yet. Constantly flooding arenas with enemies and serving up some fantastic boss battles, the new Raid is testament to the developer's talent for creating incredibly memorable multiplayer experiences. The whole thing is dangerously hectic, and is easily one of the expansion's highlights.
Unlike The Taken King, Rise of Iron isn't an essential reincarnation of Destiny, but it is an expansion that delivers on its promise of rejuvenating Bungie's shooter – even if it does refuse to step outside of the game's well established comfort zone. A few fun story missions, a great new Raid, and a suite of fresh reasons to get back to the grind for better loot should be enough to keep the ever-present darkness at bay.
First! Nice review.
Oh noes, someone beat me to Firsties. Anyway. Yeah, I've been fairly underwhelmed so far, I've barely touched it all week. Lord Salad dip has been reduced to a shader and emblem kiosk. Meh.
If I bought just the vanilla version of Destiny how big would the update be to start playing. I only have a 500gb ps4 with no intentions of upgrading the hard drive.
I want to play through the single player aspect of the vanilla version just to experience this game but do not want to have to download a huge 20GB+ update just to play through the 10 hour campaign.
I have very slow internet and not really a lot of time to play console based videogames.
@Fall1313 Yeah, you're looking at a 20GB+ (I think it's closer to 30) update right off the bat if you're just starting Destiny.
Sounds like they just added story content this time unlike The Taken King where they overhauled the mechanics.
@Fall1313 I wouldn't even bother then the vanilla version. If you can't spare the space then I would just look up the story on YouTube, especially considering you will have a few plot holes without the DLC.
Ok thanks for that info. I will have to pass.
Well I am coming over from Xbox (although I am a Nintendo gamer first and foremost) I am a Halo fan so I was more interested in experiencing the game play of Destiny than the story. I am not planning on paying for PS+.
I switched to PS4 due to the atrocious game install times on the Xbox One. PS4 is so much better in that respect.
If the Xbox One S had improved the game install times and some other things horribly wrong with their system I would still be with team Xbox.
So far I am liking the PS4. I only have Uncharted 4 which is a good game to start off playing.
I am looking forward to Transformers Devastation, TMNT Mutants in Manhattan, and Gravity Rush.
I will definitely be playing more of the kid friendly games on PS4 such as Little Big Planet 3, Ratchet and Clank, TearAway, and Knack.
I bought a PS3 in 2009 due to my anticipation of The Last Guardian. I got burned on that one pretty bad, got upset, and jumped to Team Xbox.
Now 7 years later I MAY actually get to play it : )
It gets a 6 from me not bad for a week or so.
@Fall1313 - Ratchet & Clank is great!, whether it's considered kid friendly or not. as for destiny, the taken alone was about 18gb of an update if i remember correctly. the total install at this point is about 51 or 52gb i think. still nowhere near BF4 though which is 73gb.
for me, TTK made the game much worse than it was, so i've skipped rise of iron since from what i've read, they don't seem to have changed most of the stuff i disliked about TTK. running about 50 strikes to get from light level 303 to 305 was just not a constructive way to make progress imo. with RoI, ok i could get to 340 pretty quickly, but by the time you hit 350, same old same old. and there's only 1 new strike on offer, which is really meagre.
@Fall1313 I can't stand the XB1 install times sooo slow but if you cam afford a 1Tb hard drive I would upgrade on the PS4 even if it's not your main platform. If I where you I would get Destiny just for the gameplay now that it's been patched, don't go so long and not upgrade otherwise you are missing out on Destiny and other grate 1st and 3rd party games. PS: welcome back to PlayStation
@Fall1313 I only actually moved to PlayStation very recently as well! I'm still mainly a Nintendo famer, especially handheld wise, but the Wii U had too few games for my liking, and so I invested in a PS4! If I could, I would really recommend you play the last of us remastered. There's a reason many people consider it one of the best games ever, and you really owe it to yourself to play it!
Thanks for the recommendation but the Last of Us does not appeal to me. I am definitely more into the kid friendly platformers.
While I am enjoying the Uncharted 4 gameplay, the content does not appeal to me. I am enjoying the ride as it is like an Indiana Jones movie but once I am through I am trading the game in. I only have it because it was bundled with the system.
I am more of an Animal Crossing and Donkey Kong Country type of gamer. I also like quirky type of games think Katamari Damacy or Culdcept. I actually know very little about Final Fantasy but I just bought Theaterhythm Final Fantasy Curtain Call on a whim and have been playing it alot.
I actually went out of my way to get the 500gb system to help prevent myself from accumulating a backlog. I have a problem buying games on sale especially during Black Friday knowing I will never have the time to play them.
My current plan is to play through a game completely before buying another one. Well I am not sure if that is my plan or my wife's plan for me LOL.
I have completely wasted some money on games in the past where I bought them with full intentions of playing them but never even tore the plastic off of them until I am in the parking lot of GameStop getting ready to trade them in like some type of junky.
If I wish to continue my hobby I must obey the play through a game before I get a new one rule. 😃
Thanks everybody for being so welcoming.
Even the raid is small you can fly through that within a hour if you know what your doing, i'm doing the raid again tonight to get the Exotic Outbreak Prime. Just waiting for heroic mode now really as i've already have all the raid weapons and some of the amour, its to easy to get to past raid gear.
@Fall1313 you can just still pay for PS plus for 1 month though and finish destiny. You'd also get a month of Resident Evil and Transformers Devastation
Its not as 'good' in my opinion as the Taken King. In size, it feels very brief from a story point of view - similar to the first 2 expansions in that respect. Story is similar to the TK in structure but its still possible to beat the story and finish the main quests (inc 2 Exotics) in a couple of hours. The Plaguelands though is a 'sizeable' area that's added onto the Cosmodrome.
The Raid is very reminiscent of the Vault if Glass and the final boss battle is an exercise in communication and co-ordination. Its certainly a lot of fun to play but only with a good team. I really like the exotic Pulse Rifle but the quest at points is not very 'interesting' or seems or 'game' related - lots of people using calculators to progress but it does require you to team up with others to progress through it (requires a team of 3 - 1 each of the 3 classes)
The new strikes are good and the reworked Sepiks is OK - adds a new mechanic but otherwise very similar. I haven't touched the PvP so can't comment on the new maps.
Overall I think its OK. Its probably better value than the first 2 Expansions as it adds a lot more to the game but I do feel (at the moment) that its not as 'big' as TTK. In just over a week I have beaten the Raid, got 3 out of the 4 Exotics (4th - Thorn - is Random and haven't been given it yet) and completed virtually all of the PvE progress in my RoI book.
Of course there could be other hidden content - like Black Spindle, No Time to Explain etc 'quests' but overall it still seems that the Story was brief (and not as exciting as TTK) and the content (things to do) was quite small but the new area itself is a sizeable addition. I just hope Bungie fill it with more 'content' over time and not these pathetic (SRL, Halloween etc) timed events...
The Raid alone boosts my overall score and would give it an 8 (its not bad value at £25 considering the 'hours' I have played so far but its not as content filled as the TTK.
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