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Old 01-31-2019, 08:01 AM   #1
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The Evil Avatar Destiny 2 Black Armory Review

Title: Destiny 2: Black Armoury DLC
Platform: PS4,Xbox One, PC
Platform Reviewed: PS4
Developer: Bungie
Publisher: Activision
MSRP: $34.99 (part of annual pass)
Writer: Aaron Birch

Destiny 2: Black Armoury Review

Hardcore need only apply

With Destiny 2 quickly coming under fire from the veteran players out there for being far too easy and too casual on release (amongst many other things), Bungie has slowly been adding in the more complex and challenging features experienced players missed from the first game.



As the months rolled on, and two very meagre DLCs rolled by, we finally made it to Forsaken, which upped the ante in the form of adding in many of the features Bungie removed from the first game, as well as a couple of new modes, and some genuine endgame content. This content, primarily the new patrol area of the Dreaming City, along with the Well of Radiance, and The Last Wish raid, finally gave those looking for a bit more of a challenge something to do. Light levels were raised, and rewards were made more desirable. Even the raid had some sweet loot, something the previous raids of Destiny 2 lacked.

The increased light level cap of 600 became quite the mountain to scale, with a hefty grind being introduced for those who wished to reach the maximum light level, and this grind was required, as the raid, and some other endgame activities imposed higher light level requirements in order to be taken on. Some found this grind to be a little steep, and others left the game, not able to keep up with other players, missing out on a lot of the content.

Well, if you think the grind was heavy before, and light levels were high for some activities, you ain't seen nothing yet. Enter Black Armoury, the first part of the Annual Pass, and DLC that unapologetically caters for the highest tier of hardcore players. Are you more casual, and still have to get to 550, let alone 650? You'll find little new content worth noting here at least not until you've put many, many more hours into the grind.



You see, the Black Armoury is total endgame, and nothing more. There's nothing here for anyone under 600 to do really. Yes, you can start the new storyline, and go for the new machine gun frame, but eventually you’ll hit the wall, a 610 (or 605 after the most recent patch) light level requirement to take on the very first forge, the main new activity of this DLC. If you're under this light level, then don't even think about it, as you'll be wrecked in no time. And, when I say story, I mean that in the most generous sense. Other than finding the Black Armoury, run by Guardian-hating Exo, Ada-1, who somehow managed to set up an elaborate shop only a few hundred meters away from the Vanguard right in the Tower itself, there's nothing else here of note, other than high-level shooting.

Indeed, Bungie doesn't want less hardcore players taking on this DLC, so steep are the requirements, and so difficult are the enemies (read: bullet sponge). Even the new enemies introduced in the open, patrol areas, the saboteurs, are over levelled for all but the most advanced players.



Now, some may see this as a gamble, and a brave choice by Bungie to give back to the hardcore that helped make the game what it is today. In some respect, this is true, it's nice to see the long-time, and heavily dedicated players rewarded with content tailored to them, but at the same time, for those out there with jobs, families, and other commitments that just make it impossible for people to put in the hours required, it's a DLC that's pretty pointless, and a total waste of time. There, just no balance here, and no thought has gone into making the game accessible to all. Yes, vanilla Destiny 2 was too easy, but instead of trying to equalise things and cater for all, Bungie has gone from one extreme to the other.

When you have put in the time, and do finally get to take on the new game modes, and the raid, what's there isn't all that great either. The games vaunted forges are little more than yet another horde mode with a new skin, and the raid, whilst it's interesting and has some decent moments, just don't really have that wow factor. Quite how Bungie thinks re-painting horde modes over and over will fool anyone, it's hard to say, but Escalation Protocol, Well of Radiance, and now, Forges as little more than glorified horde modes. The imagination just isn't here, and we expect more creativity, especially when we're once again paying even more for more content. Hell, although it's a bit different, even Gambit is a horde mode with benefits. Come on Bungie, you're not fooling anyone. It's time to put in some actual effort.



The Black Armoury DLC isn't all bad, and it does bring some new exotics and other weapons and items with it, plenty of which are available to all players, not just owners of the Annual Pass, but the meat is locked behind the Annual Pass and steep requirements, and unless you're able to put in some serious time to grind, you'll find the Black Armoury has little to offer, and even when it does guess what the rewards are? Yep, re-skinned assets from Destiny 1 and 2. Wait, did you actually think you'd get actual, new cotnent? Don't be silly!

This isn't a great start to the Annual Pass content, and as a genuine long-time Destiny fan, I really hope the next content drops are better. For now, though, there's just the grind.



Score: 3 out of 5




The Good
  • Hardcore content for hardcore players
  • New weapons and armour to quest for
The Bad
  • Nothing for more casual players
  • Minuscule new story content
The Ugly
  • Forges are just another dull, repetitive horde mode
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Old 01-31-2019, 09:35 AM   #2
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Nice write up Aaron!
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Old 01-31-2019, 02:26 PM   #3
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Good review....enough for me to make a hard pass. I bought Destiny 2 on PC once forsaken came out and loved it right up until I hit that wall where you had to ubergrind addtional light levels. It was a real bummer because I was enjoying the bounty missions where you had to track down so and so and assassinate him. I had quite a few of those left that became absolutely pointless once I hit the light point wall as they gave me zero rewards for completing them.

Strange game....it builds a ton of momentum and then BAM! you are stuck in a meaningless grind for hours at a time just for a point or two of light. Thanks but no thanks...I've gassed out my enthusiasm for this kinda shit after all of the MMO's I've played since EQ.
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Old 01-31-2019, 02:53 PM   #4
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I've played every week (at least 10 hrs a week), and I'm still not even light level 600. So far I haven't gotten any content out of the Black Amory DLC that I paid for (season pass). It would have been nice to know in advance that some of the DLC was for hard-core grinders only. Thanks, Bungie!
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Old 01-31-2019, 03:04 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wunshot View Post
Strange game....it builds a ton of momentum and then BAM! you are stuck in a meaningless grind for hours at a time just for a point or two of light.
Indeed, the grind after hitting the soft cap is brutal. The only way you can go up is through weekly quests or getting bosses to drop a Prime Engram, and I swear Bungie said they increased the drop rate of those for people pre-600 but I haven't seen it.

The game is fun to jump in and play from time to time, but if you have aspirations to get to any of the end game content (which includes new DLC apparently) then you had better be ready to put in some major time.
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Old 01-31-2019, 08:07 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wunshot View Post
Strange game....it builds a ton of momentum and then BAM! you are stuck in a meaningless grind for hours at a time just for a point or two of light. Thanks but no thanks...I've gassed out my enthusiasm for this kinda shit after all of the MMO's I've played since EQ.
It is kinda funny you say that because you pretty much describe the way I play Destiny. I play the single player content and play some of the multiplayer for some variety and for gear and the second I hit that wall where you have to grind, grind, grind... that is when I stop playing until the next expansion comes out.

The gear in Destiny 2 isn't that great looking so there isn't any point in grinding to get that one special item you want -- they ALL look like ass so you don't need to bother and knowing that whatever you were grinding for is going to be invalidated the second the next expansion comes out makes it a big "Why bother?"

I think that is their biggest problem. I saw tons of people grinding to get that special set of gear they had before Forsaken came out that was like Level 400 or 500... and now that Forsaken is out I'm getting item drops of like 505 - 520 all the time.

They don't grasp that they are their own worst enemies for gear. They have a pretty crappy artist for gear and the level of the new stuff always has to be above whatever the highest level was of the previous expansion. If you just wait till the new expansion drops, you can get all the old stuff without barely trying.

I think they have tried to fix that by letting you level up your items, but until they kick their current artist to the curb and get in some decent people there isn't much point in saving any of your old stuff.
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Old 02-01-2019, 06:47 AM   #7
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Review is spot on. I'm enjoying the game but late game content requires clan activity. Some things are just hard to do in the game and even though im in a active clan due to the hours i play i can rarely get anyone to do simple things co-op like escalation protocol etc.

Still i find it a enjoyable shooter
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Old 02-01-2019, 12:48 PM   #8
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I can't play any game any more that requires social interaction. Too much skill required, not enough time. Destiny 1 Vault of Glass was the hardest most stressful thing I've ever done in gaming and I never did a raid again. At least we finished it.
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