Destiny: The Rise of Iron | The Review
I’ve been playing Destiny since the beginning and was truly excited about the announcement of Rise of Iron. Bungie’s latest expansion offers the much-needed stability a lot of gamers have been requesting, but it feels a bit bland. This expansion had a great story, but it was very short, especially for the price Bungie charged for the expansion. An average gamer could complete the new campaign solo in under two hours easily, but there are a few extra quests to unlock in Felwinter’s Peak (new social space). There’s actually only one new strike which has a pretty unique boss fight, but the other two strikes are just revisions of The Devil’s Lair and The Summoning Pits from the vanilla version of Destiny. You can explore the Plaguelands and complete bounties from Shiro-4, who gives you a weekly quest that will yield one of the new Iron Lord artifacts. There is even a little secret if you climb all the way up to the top of the mountain found in Felwinter’s Peak. The new social area has most of the vendors that you will need, except the factions, Crucible and Vanguard. So, if you rank up in any of these, you still need to visit the tower to claim your packages.
Once you’ve completed everything mentioned above, you are faced with an incredibly high bar for enjoying the end-game content, but there isn’t enough content to fill the time gap required to level up. Those of us with responsibilities can’t afford to play for 8 to 12 hours a day grinding items to get to 370 just to play the new raid. So for the casual gamer, you will be left waiting until Iron Banner or Trials of Osiris launches to have better chances at end-game level gear. Players can get to 365 easily by playing the new SIVA Strike playlist, but from 365 to 370 you will have a very difficult time leveling up. The legendary engrams that drop after strikes in the playlist max out at 365, but exotic engrams can go up to 385. So, unless you have a ton of 3-of-coins or a skeleton key (which drop randomly ONLY in the SIVA strike playlists) to open up the new strike specific loot chests at the end of strikes, strikes after you reach 365 are a complete waste of time. The Challenge of Elders and Court of Oryx have been made irrelevant this expansion, due to the gear and engrams that drop are useless for leveling up to 370. On a side note, you do have a chance of getting higher light level items from packages given for leveling up with all the vendors. But, the time it takes to grind an entire level doing bounties with Eris Morn, Petra, Variks, The Factions, The Vanguard or Lord Shaxx (Crucible) seems to be a waste of time, especially if you don’t have 8 to 12 hours a day to commit to destiny alone.
the Archon’s Forge was probably meant to fill that gap between 365 and 370, but it is a complete failure. The Archon’s Forge has no way to team up with others beyond the three in your fireteam and the higher difficulties require groups of six or more. With no matchmaking system, you just have to sit and wait for people to show up in the Forge. The biggest frustration is starting a challenge in the Archon’s Forge because it requires a resource that you can only have one of in your inventory and once you and your fireteam run out, you have to leave and find more. Secondly, the reward system is broken in the Forge, you are more often rewarded with nothing at all for all of your time spent. To top it all off it’s not even fun, the Court of Oryx has more excitement and fun factor between the two. The Wrath of the Machine is the best part of this expansion and is by far the best Destiny raid to date. It still has an annoying jump puzzle, which is very similar to The Taken King’s raid; not sure why Bungie is so obsessed with adding platforming elements to a role-playing first-person shooter, because if I wanted a platformer, I’d play Super Mario Brothers on my Wii U.
The Rise of Iron also features a new crucible mode called Supremacy, which is Destiny’s version of a kill confirmed team deathmatch. It is really fun and makes crucible even better than before. I would like to see the iron banner use this game mode instead of Control or Clash in its playlist, or even a mix of the three would be fine instead of the same thing over and over again. There are also three new multiplayer maps in Crucible, some more fun than others, but nothing spectacular. The record book is finally given at the beginning of the expansion, so players can have an idea of what to focus on up front instead of at the last minute.
The Rise of Iron expansion wasn’t what it was hyped up to be and is definitely just a filler until the launch of Destiny 2. The campaign was conventional and the Archon’s Forge could have been left out of the game altogether, but the Wrath of the Machine raid is excellent and shows the potential of how great Destiny 2 may be…we hope.
New Supremacy Crucible Mode
New Armor Sets & Weapons
New SIVA infused enemies
Return of the best year one exotics
Lack of content between level 365 to 370
Length of Campaign
Skeleton Key Drop Rate
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