Over the weekend, I tried out “Destiny,” the new game from the makers of “Halo” that’s coming out in September during an alpha demo for PlayStation 4 users.
If you don’t know much about the game, you play as one of the last defenders of Earth hundreds of years in the future. The planet has since been raided by different alien races that you’re tasked to clear out. You have the option to play by yourself or with a group of people in a type of massive multiplayer online (MMO) world.
In the alpha, gamers were dropped onto a large open map of a futuristic Earth.
By far, one of the best experiences is the ability to organically play with other people, and not just other gamers you may know but total strangers who could be living anywhere else in the world (or at least if you were in one of the 39 participating countries for the alpha).
Players could come in and out to fight off aliens, called the Fallen, if you need a helping hand.
I spent a lot of time on Earth in what’s referred to as Old Russia.
While I had no problem taking down the Fallen on my own, there was one section of the map I found that was absolutely impossible to beat when going it alone. I headed down to this dark, dank underground hanger where there were a group of stronger sword-wielding foes.
I thought if I could get a few players to follow me down there we might be successful in taking them down, but since you’re in a pretty large map there aren’t always a lot of other players hanging around.
One time I started out, I had another gamer start following me around. This is pretty normal. Often, other players will linger around you for a while. If they get bored, they will walk away and do their own thing. If I don’t want to play with them anymore, I simply head out. No big deal.
I thought I’d head back over to the dungeon-like area. We both headed down, and it was game on. Soon someone else joined, and it was awesome.
We didn’t really seem to be getting anywhere in lowering the health of the giant creatures, but the thrill received was more than any rush I would get from pairing multiples of three in a mobile app.
It wasn’t only great that three strangers were working together to fight for the same cause, but we all had each other’s backs.
Anytime someone gets killed in the game there’s a prompt on the screen for others to “revive” them. There was never any question whether to bring someone back to life. It’s just what you do. Otherwise, we would regenerate pretty far from the hanger, and that wasn’t helpful to anyone.
The other time teamwork was extremely useful was during event gameplay. Every hour or so “Destiny” offered gamers a chance to play a special event in which anyone on a map could join together and try to take down a group of Fallen.
If you weren’t participating in one of these event missions, you were missing out. They were incredibly tough to beat, but were probably the most fun I had in the entire game. During one of the events, players had to protect a giant spherical object from predators.
It was just two of us, and we did pretty well.
… until the end when we were getting completely clobbered. (We probably could have used a few more Guardians on our side.)
And I think that’s one of the points that the developer, Bungie, is trying to get across with “Destiny.” Sure, you can play the game on your own, but if you want to be really successful, you’re only as strong as the team beside you.
That’s something you can’t get from most mobile apps, which, while fun, mostly provide a nice distraction during a work commute. I don’t need to work on a team to play “Dots,” “Threes,” “Flappy Bird,” “Angry Bird,” or “Candy Crush.”
Of course teamwork in games is nothing new. People play on teams in just about any console or PC game out there. Most of the time, you’re usually grouped together for a particular mission or to play a battle match against another team.
“Destiny” reminded me that this is why we play games on the PlayStation, Xbox, Wii, or Steam.
This is one experience you can never get out of a game on your phone.
NOW WATCH: Briefing videos
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.