I have been pretty open and honest about my complete lack of engagement with Destiny PVP from very early on. Trials of Osiris received more criticism from me as I saw their intentions but ultimately think it failed to pull in and deliver a good experience for everyone. When The Taken King was detailed and new PVP game modes were outlined and described I could tell they were trying to convince players like myself to tip our toes back into the pool. After just one day in the two new games, Rift and Mayhem, I can honestly say that I’m incredibly excited to play PVP in Destiny which is something I never thought I would say or feel.
When the first footage and details emerged about Rift I was pretty skeptical. The rhythm of classic CTF can get a bit tedious and the thought of running into the enemy base when they know I’m charging in to slam dunk a glowing basketball just seemed like it would be ripe for frustration. While I can say that playing without a team can yield pretty irritating results, when I played with a full team of 6 players who were communicating we had an absolute blast. The spawn delays are just long enough and the maps are just small enough to enable a full court press to work very well. I was worried that having to kill enemies to just run into the enemy spawn would create a feeling of futility as each player killed would get a second chance to defend his base. Bungie has done an excellent job with map creation and spawns because only a few times felt like spawns weren’t working quite right, but that honestly seemed more related to a cheap player camping our spawn than anything.
A quick tip of strategy is… Grab the spark! Seriously, don’t stand around waiting for your team mates or the perfect strategy, just grab it and go. You get points for grabbing it and more points the further you travel. You also prevent the other team from snagging the spark and some easy points. Obviously slamming it home gets you more points and doing a backwards dunk earns you even more, but once we employed the strategy of always defending and grabbing it as soon as possible we won every game. And honestly a good portion of the time you will fail to deliver the spark to the enemy’s rift, but if you keep faithfully grabbing it your team will get such a regular injection of points it will make you pretty hard to beat.
Mayhem is mayhem
This was the game mode that really solidified my theory that Bungie was targeting casual PVP players, new-comers, and those of us who haven’t really played PVP since the launch. I could tell from early footage and details that this game mode would be a pretty raucous time, but I was concerned and still am that the hardcore PVP fans won’t like it all that much. After just two games, one where we got obliterated and another where we rallied and made a strong comeback for victory, I have to say this is the most fun I have ever had in Destiny. I know to some that might seem unfortunate, but the game mode takes all of the bigness and grandness of what you can do as a guardian and it condenses it down into a high point yielding insanely fun time. With both Rift and Mayhem offering accessible and fun injections into PVP I can see the other game modes dropping off significantly, and I can especially see Trials of Osiris and the Iron Banner struggling to pull players in if they don’t include at least one of these modes.
A strategy tip in Mayhem for you… Monitor, guard, and get the heavy ammo. The difference between the game where we got shredded and the game where we controlled the flow was heavy ammo. I immediately picked up on our flaw in the first game and we made simple adjustments which lead to a thrilling victory.
Hopefully this helps
I honestly hope this helps the future of Destiny and brings about healthy and diverse player engagement. To me, this is the future of PVP for Destiny because after you grind and fight challenging bosses the last thing you want to do is go up against the grueling and frustrating experience of Trials of Osiris or the Iron Banner against seasoned players. Rift offers enough challenge and strategy to keep a large portion of PVP fans content, and Mayhem is basically the let it all hang out party game. To the players who keep asking for competitive aspects like leader boards and private lobbies, I’m sorry to say, I don’t think you will ever get it. These new game modes send a loud and clear message that the PVE side of Destiny isn’t the only thing getting significantly overhauled. Buckle up, Guardians, it’s about to get rocky.
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