Destiny doesn’t offer matchmaking for raids or other end-game content like Nightfall strikes. How do you find Guardians to play with when your mates are offline, low level, or annoying?
Destiny is designed to be played in groups. You can solo much of the content – hell, some people have conquered the new raid alone, of all things – but in general it’s easier, more rewarding and more fun to take on challenges with a couple of buddies by your side.
If you have an extensive friends list, regular gaming habits and good communication skills it’s not too hard to get groups together, but for whatever reason even the best-connected Guardian will sometimes find themselves without a group when they want one. What’s the solution?
There are loads of third-party sites and communities that offer to hook you up with other Guardians for whatever activity you fancy, but in terms of popularity and success rate there are three places that stand out: DestinyLFG.net (the original), DestinyLFG.com (featured by Bungie) and Reddit’s /r/Fireteams (fondly known as Dregslist).
Which of these three – or any other – site you use, getting together a Weekly Heroic, Nightfall, Raid or Hard Mode Raid group together isn’t hard. Each site has its own posting and formatting rules, but you’ll have much better luck on all of them if you follow our suggestions:
01: Actually post
Have you ever read someone’s online dating profile and they say they’re looking for a six foot green eyed polyamorous Romanian with washboard abs, a tattoo of an elephant, and an income above $150,000 per year? That’s what LFG posts feel like sometimes. Everyone has to be level 32 with maxed out Gjallahorns, available yesterday, and have at least two solo Crota runs under their belts.
Don’t worry about it. For everyone out there posting that kind of thing, there are half a dozen just looking for someone to have a nice time with. Put up your post and collect all the Guardians staring at the other groups in equal dismay.
02: Broaden your parameters
Yeah, Vault of Glass goes by much faster when everyone’s already got a full set of level 30 gear and Vision of Confluence, but insisting that your raid friends need to have specific gear will just leave you waiting for ages.
There are level 26 players out there who are on their third alt and know the raid ten times better than you. There are level 28s who can sharpshoot so finely they’ll be reviving your sorry level 31 ass multiple times. There are raid newbs who grasp the mechanics immediately and need no direction – and there are veterans who will screw the group over again and again showboating and wasting time. All you need is somebody who wants to do what you’re doing.
03: Tell ’em you’re looking for members
Newsflash: there really aren’t that many groups of five Guardians sitting in orbit waiting for just one more player who isn’t on their friends lists. What there are are huge numbers of solo Guardians browsing for someone to play with. Collect five of them at once by posting as an existing group. Label your post “LFM” – looking for members.
This relates to my first point – posting – in that there are way more people out there browsing than you’d expect. At peak periods, you’ll have your team of three or six in no time at all.
04: Make them come to you
If you follow the guidelines above you’re likely to receive a whole bunch of applicants, and you’ll have your pick of ’em. Ideally, you want to be able to make your choices, set up a Party Chat and extend your in-game invites – no hassle.
As such, make sure your post asks your volunteers to give their PSN ID or Gamertag as well as anything else you want to know like level, experience and kit. Don’t give your details out to them if you can avoid it. Not only does this speed everything up and give you control over who’s in and who’s out, it avoids the confusing annoyance of a flood of invites and friend requests – which can go on for weeks.
05: Be honest
Don’t jerk your fellow Guardians around. If you’re brand new, say so. If you’re under-levelled, say so. If you only have limited time, say so. Don’t worry about putting people off – there are so many Guardians out there who just want to play, no matter under what conditions, that you’ll get replies. Many Guardians enjoy teaching or even just carrying lower levelled characters through, out of the goodness of their hearts. Really.
On the other hand, there are loads of wankers out there who try to manipulate others into carrying them when they’re not willing. Word gets around, and you won’t get as many replies next time.
06: Be friendly
You know how I said word gets around? It really does. A lot of Guardians will name and shame. There are always more suckers to lure in, of course, but it’s much better just to be a good person to play with – and certainly more efficient if you’re trying to get groups together fast. Cultivate a reputation for being a good Guardian, or at least avoid a reputation for being awful.
What does that mean? Basic etiquette. Make sure your mic works properly, without crackle and white noise, if you use one. Don’t yak your head off if your fireteam is more taciturn; it’s distracting. Don’t go rushing ahead needing revives all the time. Don’t go AFK. Revive your fallen teammates. Don’t berate others for their performance, or shout and swear when you yourself get overwhelmed. Don’t drop out if you don’t like how things are going. It’s basic stuff: be fun, not a jerk.
07: Make friends
You only need to LFG a few times and you’ll start to populate your friends list. Keep track of the Guardians you like, and notice those who tend to be online at the same time as you. Eventually you might not even need LFG sites to get your fix on.
Many a regular raid group has been formed with weekly play times and offline social events as a result of strangers getting to know each other. It’s one of the oldest and most beautiful stories in online gaming. Get on that shizzle, even if you’re shy; this is how we meet people we might actually want to leave the house for.
08: Use your second screen
Seriously, typing out messages on your smartphone or tablet is way quicker than using your control pad – and adding a simple message to your party invite or friend request (“Hey, ([username] from [LFG website] here!”) makes things happen much more quickly and smoothly. Get it hooked up; you’ll be glad you did when you’re messaging your new friends in a few weeks all “Nightfall????”