PS4 Review: Destiny – The Taken King

Can The Taken King breathe fresh life into Destiny?

I enjoyed Destiny when it first came out a year ago, however it wasn’t perfect…the story was so dire that most joked “Destiny had a storyline?” and as great an actor as Peter Dinklage is, his performance as Ghost wasn’t one of his best, often scrutinised and as a result is now replaced by…you guessed it, none other than Nolan North. One thing I can see while diving into Year 2 of Destiny is that Bungie has listened to the community and responded with this expansion, but is it too little too late?
If you are new to Destiny, you are best off playing through the original game and gather loot for your characters, but I was surprised to be given a token that levelled up my characters to Level 25, which is the level needed to access The Taken King content, which was good for me since I wasn’t anywhere near that. I’ve spent the past week or so tackling the new content and as a result have reached the level cap of 40.

Story-wise, The Taken King is so much better than the past attempts and actually builds a convincing bit of sci-fi for the community. Your enemy is named Oryx and he is out for revenge as you all kinda killed his son Crota in one of the original expansions, you’ll spend most of your time on a massive spaceship called the Dreadnaught, which is full of quests and collectables to scavenge. Even after finishing the main quest, there are side quests that will take up a large portion of your time, as well as promises of future content. The good news is that The Taken King comes with all previous DLC, so you can defeat Crota before if you wish.

One year on and it seems that Bungie has really listened to what gamers want. Gone are Crucible/Vanguard Marks, replaced by a single currency known as Legendary Marks and even trophy requirements have been changed as a result. No longer do you need to earn the maximum amount of Marks for each faction in a week, instead you just need to level up your reputation with them to Level 1 and there’s no time limit, which is great news in my book. It makes the game more accessible to newcomers that may have felt put off beforehand.
As you would expect, there are more than just missions and multiplayer additions. There are also new raids to try, all of which are done brilliantly. I didn’t know what to expect diving back into Destiny after last year and I can say I was genuinely surprised, it feels like the game it should have been back then. Part of me wished they just waited till this year to launch, but The Taken King is proof that things can change for the better, if we give it a chance. If it can improve this much over a year, just imagine how much it can in the next 12 months?

I remember hearing that Bungie had a 10 year plan with Destiny, so don’t expect it to disappear anytime soon, we’ll probably be getting yearly expansions like this for a long time and that’s no bad thing. I’m actually excited about Destiny for once, something I would have scoffed at thinking little over a year ago. Visually, the game was always outstanding and it’s no different here. The Dreadnaught is breathtaking to see and new enemies are well thought out.

The Verdict

It’s amazing how far a game can change in just a year. It began with a mixed response, but Bungie listened and changed the game for the better, making it more accessible and more importantly, more fun for the player. I hope this is the start of something special, it feels like it could be…I just hope I’m not wrong. The Taken King is how expansions should be and hats off to Bungie for turning me around on the game, let’s hope they can do it for years to come.

Score: 9.0