A Destiny group finder is blowing up today. Find out why Bungie's shooter will never be the same.
Destiny has changed forever.
I love Destiny, despite the many stumbles we've experienced on the extended beta test of Year One. But lately I haven't been playing much.
The problem for me is that I can't find anyone to play with. A lot of my friends still play, and my clan (we're called "Destiny, Ladies! POP POP POP") is still pretty active, especially on our Facebook Group. But nobody is ever available right when I want to play, or as often as I want to; nobody's keen to do the things I want to do, at the levels I feel comfortable with.
In the absence of that, my play has really tailed off. If I can't do it properly, I don't want to do it at all. What I need is a huge pool of friends, who play at the same time as me, so I can always find someone who wants to do the Nightfall, a raid or Prison of Elders.
Enter The 100. Nothing will ever be the same.
The 100 has been around for some time, but is blowing up today thanks to a Reddit post by one matthewdubya.
"I'm going to be honest, if it weren't for u/muhuhaha and his creation of the100.io, I would have quit Destiny six months ago," they wrote.
According to the post, muhuhaha - otherwise known as Mike LaPeter - took stock of the deficiencies of existing Destiny LFG groups, and had one simple idea:
"Why not create a place that people with similar normal play times can join up with other people with the same play times and play things that they want to play? Pure genius," the post continued.
"To make it even better, schedule games in advance. So you can game around your real life. People join if the time works for them, and if not, they find another game more suited to their needs."
Wait, so, you find a regular pool of players with similar goals and play habits? A pool big enough that you're almost always going to find a raid group? You don't have to wait hours for a LFG bite, assuming it ever comes? You avoid all the "got Gjallarhorn" snobbery, insist on microphones, and can get to know the members of your closed group buddies so as to weed out those with annoying behaviours?
Sign me the heck up. I immediately rushed off and joined, providing my age, my approach and my preferred play time, and was made a member of Bravo Company 639 - a group of grown ups, including many parents - within minutes of starting the process. Seconds later, I volunteered for the last slot of a Vault of Glass Hard run scheduled for my lunch break.
It was that easy.
I took an extended lunch break today and ran that raid. There was one last minute cancellation, which was rapidly filled (The 100 has a points system allowing you to down vote no shows, along with other useful tool like chat), and we would have started on time if the PSN hadn't been having one of its regular friend search freak outs (Sony, what's up with that?).
Already this story is practically unique among video game war stories: five out of six raiders turning up on time? Almost unprecedented.
You don't need to be PSN friends to form groups in Destiny, by the way; on The 100 the preferred method for PS4 is for the activity host to invite players to a Party. From there, they can opt to join the game sessions by pressing the Options key while highlighting the host's name in the Party window.
It was kind of weird joining up with five strangers. I said "hello" and braced for horror. "Hello," came chorusing back.
Then silence. Silence. Nobody's obnoxious music. No feedback from mics. (No screeching about my extremely female voice, either, and that was a great relief.) It wasn't the silence of an awkward social situation, although I'm sure we were all a bit inhibited; it was the silence of natural solo players focusing on the task at hand.
The raid did not proceed in total silence of course, and not just because we barked out directions and strategies at each other; there were jokes and laughter, too. The crew were very patient when, partway through the Templar battle, I had to answer the door and accept a package (I took down about six Harpies while doing this; the postie was very understanding and signed off for me). Nobody seemed to mind when others had to put their kids to bed, or rushed off for a snack or bio break. Nobody went AFK at a bad time, or for an extended period.
About 90 minutes later, I think, we were done; the Vault of Glass had been raided. Someone got Praedyth's Timepiece and Mythoclast. I got the XV0 Timebreaker Sparrow, which I'd never had before. Atheon went down on our second go at him, in a beautifully smooth three-warp run - even though at least 60% of us did not want anything to do with the Relic if at all possible.
I just want to reiterate: today I played a video game online with five total strangers and none of them turned out to be a massive shithead. In fact, they were all perfectly pleasant people! And quite good at the game! And not suffering technical difficulties! And they wanted to play the video game with me.
I'm not alone in this experience. Just this afternoon multiple Guardians have mentioned the good experiences they've had with The 100 - some groups grow to become in-game clans, friendships are formed, randos are completely avoided for the rest of time.
Bungie always said it would leave it to the community to make community tools, because they'd be better at it. Until I met The 100, I didn't believe it. But this is the best community tool, for any game, I have ever seen. Bungie should bring it in-house and integrate it directly, and pay LaPeter a lot of money.
I cannot overstate what a delight all this is to me. This has rescued Destiny for me. This afternoon I wrote out a Destiny wishlist, showing all the things I might want to do in a given week, but generally don't because I can't face the horrors of getting a team together when all my mates have such busy schedule. I stuck it on my wall, and then drew some cartoons on it. And then I gave it a little pat of satisfaction.
Watch out, Oryx; we're going to be ready for you.