Destiny: anatomy of a raid team

By Paul Davies, Friday, 15 January 2016 08:17 GMT

The types of players Destiny regulars and casuals know very well.


They’re your pals way past midnight, your bros through thick and thin. You’ve cried tears of joy and anguish, cussing in collaboration through hundreds of hours in the same damn rooms. Atheon, Crota and Oryx have all gazed enquiringly at your attempts to get organised before eating each other alive. You think your raid brothers and sisters are unique. They’re not. Anyone here seem familiar?


“Can anyone help me? I just want to get this done.” The most common complaint in Destiny is that finding a raid team that’ll suffer your inexperienced low Light crap is quite difficult. But until you get those first few raids under your belt, nothing will change. So, be nice to the guy that needs carrying through the raid. We’ve all been there, although probably not as clueless, no way – nope, not you.

Twenty Four

No matter what time you log in to Destiny – 8am, 12pm, 4pm, 9pm… 2am – this guy is always online, going for flawless in the Trials, as part of an eerily unfamiliar raid team, else on Patrol waiting for inevitable invites. When you speak to them they sound like shit, but their skills are beyond compare. You ought to be recommending that they seek some kind of medical help. But, you need a sixth.


In any FPS, younger players are notoriously faster thinking and ballsy than the very best of the older generation. What’s initially kind of weird about a raid is that you might be taking orders from a guy that needs to be up for school in the morning and has their friend farting on their head all evening, laughing their ass off while you’re trying to slay The Taken King at last (they did it five times earlier).

Oryx_first sighting

Drive Time

It’s the most explosive (insert favourite subject) show on the raid. Is this thing on? Put a mic in front of their face, and some guys think they’re live on air, here to entertain. Some of them can be funny, especially if they’re regaling a group of close friends. It’s a good vibe when things are kind of relaxed. But it can also be like: “One is up.” “Twooo is up.” “…and I said, ‘really!?’ Well, haha, so then…” Ugh.


The raid isn’t going well. You’ve been running the same strategy for approximately nine hours, and the only guy that isn’t dying is the damn boss. It’s likely 5am, and you can barely function. Motor skills are the only thing keeping you conscious. Your brain is flat as a pancake. Somebody on the team chooses this point to suggest the new hot-shit alternate strat that sounds like ancient Latin.

The Father

This guy is awesome. He has a full-time job, runs a family and still finds about seven hours a day to grind in Destiny. He also sired God’s gift to Destiny, who’s likely to be on the same raid team if you just joined so be careful who you’re calling an irritating kid via PMs to the rest of the group. “If you’re on later, I’ll get my lad in to help. He’s brilliant, much better than I am. He’s a little bastard though.”

The Son

It isn’t always true what their dad says about them. They’re not always bastards. Some of them even get on with their dad, which is lovely to hear. Ages tend to range from eight to 18, with the upper end sounding like a four-star army general, effortlessly marshalling the troops and taking the place of anyone that died to ensure completion. The younger they get, the more they swear at their dad.


Who Died?

It’s a fair question. Depends on how it’s asked though, and who’s asking. A strong team leader is asking because they are thinking of how to patch up the current attempt at Oryx Challenge Mode, and will clearly communicate a reallocation of roles. Some guys like to hurl this out as a form of accusation: “You know what you’re doing!?” “Tell me if you need help over there!”… “FUCK! I died.”

I Died!

Here’s a great barometer of raid atmospheric pressure. Announce that you died, every time that you die, and wait for the response. If somebody is quick to say “don’t worry about it, we’re good” there’s likely another few hours left in this team yet. If there’s a pause before some American asks “what happened that time?” you’re on thin ice. If nobody says anything, please stop fucking dying.


“We choose to go to the Moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard.” “10, 9, ignition sequence start, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, zero. All engines running.” “3… 2… 1. Fire rockets at Crota. 3… 2… 1. Fire Rockets at Crota.” You’ve got to hand it to these guys; they have the whole raid routine down to the second on their stopwatch. But, you know, seriously?

destiny_the_taken_king_bannerfal_etc_gamescom (4)

No Heavy

Now, to anyone unfamiliar with Destiny that little headline there won’t mean a thing. You, though, instantly recognised the dread implications of that simple statement. This is a plea to the guilty ones: Stop wasting Strange Coins on Three of Coins and stock up on some Heavy Ammo Synth, for the love of God. This is right up there with “Just got to go to the tower real quick to sort out my guns. Be five minutes.”

Anger Management

In a way, these guys can be helpful because everyone needs something to stay awake at ungodly hours. The unshakeable urge to murder somebody is probably the strongest adrenaline shot there is. Being yelled at is no fun at all. You should not have to put up with this, ever. Here’s an idea though: next time you’re on a raid with a freaking out douche bag, just let them have it. You’ll be a hero.

The Pope

You have six people, total, to complete this raid. You’ve been running it a fair bit, and everybody is familiar with their roles. Your star players have turned up for the show. This is getting done tonight. Somehow, things aren’t happening like they did the other night. Your runner is missing platforms. The gaze grabber is missing their shots. Why don’t we let somebody else have a go? Well, you could.


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