Developed by:Bungie Published by:Activision Genre(s):
  • FPS
  • Platform:
  • Microsoft
  • Sony
  • Cost:$59.99 ESRB Rating:TEEN Players:1 (2-12 Online) Release date:September 9, 2014 Reviewed on:XBox One Expansion Release Date:September 15, 2015

    Destiny: The Taken King

    There aren’t too many games that frustrate me as much as Destiny does, yet I’m still willing to give two years of my life to. Upon its release, I felt that I was robbed of an experience I waited months for – especially when I consider that it was presented in such a glorious manner at conventions. At the same time, for some reason Destiny has had an odd grip on my gaming mind no matter how much I tried to pull away from it…at least that was the case just recently. Now in year two, I was reluctant to believe that this expansion, The Take King, would be enough for me go back to my addiction. Is it possible for The Taken King to hold our attention and make us cough up more money for an experience we were promised from day one? The short answer is yes!

    Editor’s Note: Because of the size of this expansion, we decided to review it like normal games. Click on The Dark Below and House of Wolves If you’d like to read what we thought of those smaller expansions.

    A major gripe with gamers when Destiny launched a year ago was the lack of a real story. We knew who we were in the grand scheme of things, but had no idea why we were traveling from planet to planet destroying “The Darkness” spreading across the galaxy; obviously this entity was bad but what was up with all the other races out there? Not all of them were working for the Darkness. And yes, you could collect grimoire cards across the game that would tell specific stories about the weapons, Guardians and enemies but they seemed like an afterthought – you can’t even read them in game. With the Taken King though, Bungie made sure to give us a real reason to blast our “Bad Juju’s”.

    The story sees Oryx, father to the slain Crota from the previous DLC, out for blood. Like any dad, he plays zero games about his kids and immediately begins taking over the souls of The Fallen, Hive, and other enemies, transforming them into The Taken. He then forces them to seek out his vengeance against everyone across the galaxy. They easily tear through…well, I won’t spoil the opening cinematic (yes, Bungie took this seriously). What I will say is that the Taken are much stronger than any of the previously updated enemies we’ve seen over the year; they are much more than color changes as they have abilities and weapons unlike anything our guardians have had to face before. This requires the attention of every guardian in the tower as the waring alien factions mentioned above. Become a slave of Oryx or die are the only options presented by the enemy. Oh course there’s a third option…

    Having a new powerful group of enemies makes Destiny fun again. Even patrolling planets for resources is more interesting with the Taken randomly warping into existence. But of course, a new story and baddies aren’t the only things we were impatiently waiting for with this expansion. If you are anything like me, you were stoked to see what the new Guardian subclasses were capable of. The moment I loaded up Destiny year one, I noticed that there was a third opening in subclasses section of the character screen. After unlocking the second subclass with each guardian, I began to wonder what could possibly be their third. Fast forward past Bungie revealing the new subclasses, I wondered how these classes would be introduced into the game. Let me tell you, it was done in such a great fashion that I felt like the first time I saw Goku attain Super Saiyan. Sent on a solo mission to destroy an enemy to obtain this power – it felt like a scene from a movie in which the protagonist went soul searching and came back to save the day. If you think you knew how the powers worked from the trailer, you don’t. Not all of them are exceptionally offensive, but when combined with the right teamwork of other guardians they can be a force to be reckoned with.

    Once you’ve unlocked your third subclass, the game really begins. What I loved about this expansion is how much easier it is to progress your characters (another major gripe), and yet, there is still challenge to leveling up. Initially, the light system was solely based on armor drops that are picked up in different game modes across Destiny. This would be great if the drops came at a consistent basis. Don’t get me wrong, I understand that exotic and legendary drops are meant to be rare. But after completing high level strikes and missions multiple times and receiving the same head gear, things got frustrating. Can you imagine spending over an hour to complete a difficult mission with nothing to show for it in return? At least you can now level your character to 40 the old fashioned way with gained xp. You’ll still have light, but instead of it being needed to level up, it acts as a representation of your gear. The better your gear, the higher your light rating. Basically, this update normalized Destiny’s RPG elements so that you don’t have to do weekly raids in hopes of getting that one drop that’ll raise your character’s overall level.

    Speaking of raids…MY GOD! The latest raid is by far the most difficult I’ve experienced. It took me and five of my other friends almost 3 hours to complete it. It’s far more than just running and gunning. In order to successfully complete this raid, you need near flawless teamwork. Communication and timing is key in taking down the soul of Oryx, which would be much easier if you could speak to people outside of missions. Yes, with Destiny still lacking to give gamers the ability to meet new guardians by allowing chats in the social areas and in the crucible, it is still missing an opportunity to build diverse groups of guardians around the world. Forums and apps are great, but there should be a way for players to meet in game. As it stands it’s exceptionally difficult to even get into the raids unless you personally know five other high leveled people you can get online at the exact same time. Who’s life is that synchronized?

    I can’t talk about this expansion without commending Bungie for the outstanding soundtrack and voice acting. By adding quests that actually delve more into not just the story but the other characters, we get to fall in love with people that were nothing more than destinations to turn in quests before. And though it sucks that Peter Dinklage was replaced with Nolan North (I still say his lackluster performance wasn’t his fault), it’s great to hear him as the player’s Ghost. Other actors like Nathan Dillon, offer up a more comedic feeling to gloom and darkness surrounding Oryx.  Its outstanding how, by just adding some dialogue to some characters, one can tremendously increase how much fun a player can have. Reasons to care about the world seem to have that effect I guess. Throw in an awesome musical score that can actually change your emotions in missions, and this game has the sound factor nailed to a T.

    Needless to say, The Taken King is what we should have been given the first time we dove into Destiny. Beyond a frustrating armor and weapon drop system, a non-existent communication system, and no way to pair up for raids, this game has the potential to keep its grip on the gaming community for another year. And that’s before you add in the four new strikes, two new competitive modes, and eight new maps.

    PS: If you are looking to raid with The United Front, add me on Xbox Live (Houseofareom) and/or the boss man himself, Kenneth Seward Jr. (XEVirtue) and join us to save the universe! See you in the tower, Guardians!



    We finally have a decent campaign. Updates to the leveling system and tons of extra content also help to make The Taken King a memorable experience.



    A few graphical changes but still as great as the main game.



    An outstanding musical score and great voice acting made it an enjoyable experience with a splash of fun missing from year one!

    Replay Value:


    It’s an addiction in itself…HELP!

    Final Score:


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