games / Previews

Destiny: The Dawning Gameplay Preview

December 8, 2016 | Posted by Jeffrey Harris
Sparrow Racing League

During the 2016 PlayStation Experience, I got the chance to play an early demo for the upcoming new winter event for Bungie’s Destiny in The Dawning. The Dawning is set to be a new three-week event for the game kicking off on December 13. The gameplay preview allowed players to take part in new Sparrow Racing League courses, and SRL has definitely been taken up a few notches.

For the purpose of the demo, gamers in attendance could try out the two new SRL courses. One is on Earth around the Cosmodrome. The other one is set on Mercury. The Sparrow races are definitely fun and have an eerie reminiscence to Mario Kart. There’s something that’s satisfying about pumping into your opponents to get ahead, or trying to get them bumped off the track entirely. The courses have some added obstacles in the form of various enemies, such as the Fallen or Hive aliens who populate the courses and try to cause mayhem during the race. My understanding based off of conversations with Activision reps is that Sparrow races will now be permanently available in Destiny through the private matches option.

Overall, the Sparrow races control really well. The racing matches are fun over the course of three laps. They aren’t too overcrowded with about six racers per match. That being said, I think there should be a way to use weapons on the Sparrows. I know Sparrows are designed to simply get guardians from one place to another, but why can’t they be weaponized? Giving a Sparrow some type of weapon or something other than a fancy horn could really add to their versatility.

Unfortunately, there wasn’t too much else to sample in terms of The Dawning at PSX. However, Bungie and Activision did confirm all the new material for the event. Also, the return of one of my most favorite weapons in the game, the Icebreaker, was revealed. The Icebreaker is really my favorite weapon in Destiny, so I’m very glad it’s back and been upgraded with new stats. After the expansion made the year one weapons and gear obsolete, having to give up weapons and gear I worked so hard for, such as the Icebreaker, was downright heartbreaking. Granted, any new weapons starting with year two could be upgraded, but the new Light Level system essentially making all the old exotics and high-level gear pretty much useless after a certain point was a very tough pill to swallow. To be perfectly honest, I’ve never been crazy about the new Light Level system that was implemented for the game later on. It didn’t really fix the grinding issue Destiny has either or the rather brutal RNG drops.

The Dawning looks like it will also include some unique Quests, new Bounties, a number of new customization options for Guardians and their gear, their Sparrows, and also new Ornaments, consumables, Shaders, Emblems, Emotes and more. The holiday events for Destiny are always a lot of fun. I enjoyed Festival of the Lost for what it was, along with some of its unique quests to get some fun helmet changes.

Destiny’s latest expansion, The Rise of Iron, is available now for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One for $29.99. If gamers are still waiting to play Destiny and are interested in trying it out, they can purchase Destiny: The Collection for $59.99. The Collection includes the base game, along with all the expansions that have been released for Destiny so far, including: Rise of Iron, The Taken King, House of Wolves, and The Dark Below. It’s also available now for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.

article topics :

Bungie, Destiny, Jeffrey Harris

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