Somebody posted a great wad of unedited Destiny footage today. We’ll shake our heads in approbation once we’re done gleefully digesting it for all possible facts.
Publishers get a bit narcy when you put up great swathes of B-roll, because they think it doesn’t look professional enough for public consumption; you’re supposed to edit it into interviews and that, with lots of context to explain what’s going on.
We’d never intentionally go against their wishes, but since somebody else has, let’s all gibber excitedly over what we learned from this three and a half minutes of glorious, glorious Destiny. The footage is so beautiful I rose from my sickbed to press my face against it, and contains plenty of content not featured in the recent alpha. Let’s get right to it.
The Vex look like robot triceratops
The Vex, according to the Destiny website, are a type of mass produced machine. Unlike the Fallen, which seem to be or have been some sort of organic creature under their techno-armour, they’re entirely robotic – think of them as the equivalent of Mass Effect’s geth. Although apparently without the charm.
In the B-roll, we see at least three kinds of Vex unit – the Harpy, Goblin and Hobgoblin. Judging by their size and the ease by which they’re taken down, I’d say the latter two are the basic grunt units, roughly equivalent to the Fallen Dreg and Vandal, or Hive Thrall and Acolyte.
The large Strike boss we see may well be a Vex unit also. They seem to come in all shapes and sizes – not just the Elder Scrolls Clannfear shape seen most often in the demo. I wonder how the Exo feel about this?
There are some beautiful environments yet to be seen
This is a bit of a no brainer, but if, like me, you’ve scoured every inch of Cosmo not guarded by ridiculously high level enemies, seeing new places and finding out they’re just as beautiful is wonderful. A fair bit of the action in the B-roll takes place on Cosmo, which you may not notice if you didn’t hang around to watch a day-night cycle, or stop to admire the view, but there are other sights on offer.
Outside of PvP – more on that later – we see a gorgeous space environment illuminated in purple. It’s likely this is a cutscene, unfortunately, as we haven’t heard anything about a space exploration mode. (That said, there is a mysterious unrevealed mode on the Destiny website – but I bet my second-best boots it’s just an explore map with PvP thrown in, or duelling.) Pretty, though.
We see several non-Earth environments. Some of them are clearly the moon, but I think we also get out first real look at Venus – it seems too lush for Mars, but Earth is undeniably hanging in the sky (probably in defiance of astronomy but shh, it looks so cool).
We also visit some sort of non-human structure, presumably built by the Vex, since they seem to be all over it. You can tell humans didn’t make it because it’s full of convenient pieces of cover. Level designers must love non-human architecture because it means they can scatter choke points and flanking positions everywhere and if anybody asks them to justify it they can just shrug and say “aliens, innit”. And more power to them.
In addition to the very clinical, hexagonal, pillared buildings we see some organic caves, apparently joining onto this Vex base. Do the Vex live underground? Interesting.
We also visit a new environment populated by the Hive – probably the moon.
One of the most intriguing environmental shots shows a dilapidated set of buildings. I think this is Earth; despite the merrily burbling river, you can see snow on the ground and I think the shuttle looms in the background. I expect this area is continuous with the Cosmo map, as it shares a few assets.
It looks like there’s a crashed alien ship of some kind amidst the human structures – probably a Hive vessel. If you explored the far reaches of Cosmo during the Alpha you may have come across a couple of Hive nests or ships, where you would have been instantly slaughtered for your pains.
Next: High-level skills, enemies and PvP.