So it looks like this series on video gaming by your own rules is going to keep on getting bigger. Today’s edition is brought to you by the letter R and the number 2, as in “Playing Destiny keeps breaking my R2 button”. Or as in R2-D2 if you’re into that at the moment, which I most certainly am.
Here’s the introduction to the series if you’re joining us for the first time. You can also skip to any entry from the Series Contents page.
In the interests of fair disclosure, there is a ton of Destiny-specific jargon heading your way should you continue reading. Weapons, armour, perks, skill trees… now is your chance to click BACK and escape unscathed.
The first time my PS4 controller’s R2 button broke I ordered a set of replacement shoulder buttons from the great eBay in the sky. A week or so later they arrived and I was back to blowing away the alien hordes soon after. Then the all-important, press-to-fire-your-weapon R2 button died again. In an act of desperation I filed down a spare L2 and shoehorned it into R2’s place. My controller now features two L2’s, but who cares. From the front, everything looks shiny and fine.
Sadly, despite my impressive (read: shoddy) modding skills, the pretend R2 button still requires a bit of help to flick back into the ready position, relegating it to an ‘in case of emergency’ function until the next batch of replacement parts arrive. Rather than interpret this as the universe’s way of saying that I should curb my Destiny addiction, I took it as the inspiration for another Creative Quest!
Today’s challenge: creating a fully functional Guardian build using just three of the four crucial combat buttons.
STEP 1: Sort out the weaponry commands.
The main priority whilst waiting for a new trigger set to arrive is making it possible to ADS (Aim Down Sights) and fire weapons with ease. Destiny helpfully has this step covered with the in-game option of swapping the front and rear shoulder buttons’ functions. Perhaps Bungie anticipated people destroying their controllers playing this game? Or maybe this is for people coming straight from Super Nintendo to the current generation of consoles… Either way, playing Destiny with the attack buttons flipped reminds me of driving a car with the indicator lever on the opposite side; it does your head in for the first few days but eventually you’re only wiping your windscreen when you actually mean to.
STEP 2: Devise a Guardian build that never requires the melee button.
His name is Toccata-4C and he has a penchant for colour coordinated equipment and close range combat.
Regular Destiny players may also be familiar with the No Backup Plans gauntlets available to the Titan class. As you can see from the screenshot below, they come with a perk that allows you to activate the Defender Titan’s ‘Force Barrier’ over-shields with either shotgun kills or the standard melee kills. Their value in my current Creative Quest is obvious, and by granting access to the Force Barrier ability without the use of R2 melee attacks, No Backup Plans form the crux of this build.
Having succeeded in bypassing melee attacks completely, the rest of the build can now be pieced together. On the outfit side of things I’ve gone with leg armour that increases Toccata-4C’s shotgun ammo carrying capacity. Then there’s the Infinite Lines Helm that helpfully reduces Super cooldown with every special weapon kill, creating a pleasing harmony between this and the other shotgun-centric gear.
When it comes to the Guardian himself, maxing out Toccata-4C’s Armour and Recovery stats alleviates some of the risk inherent in a close combat strategy such as this. Equipping the exotic MIDA Multi-Tool scout rifle with its Agility boosting perks rounds things out for greater utility than the survivability focus would otherwise provide and has been particularly effective in PvP game modes. From the Force Barrier skill tree my preference is to maximises weapon reload speed when the shield is active. The MIDA Multi-Tool with its 100% reload stat may not benefit from the boost, but shotguns, machine guns and rocket launchers certainly do. Split second reload is a beautiful thing.
It would be possible to end this Creative Quest here and get back to playing, but there turns out to be one more piece to the puzzle.
STEP 3: The Monte Carlo Method
Behold the Monte Carlo exotic auto rifle!
Every kill with this exotic primary weapon not only reduces Force Barrier’s cooldown time but has a good chance of recharging it completely. The Monte Carlo also features decent stability and very long range for an auto rifle, making it a complementary partner for the short range shotgun and a very effective tool in PvE modes. The more trash mobs to eliminate, the better!
Equipping the Monte Carlo forgoes the Agility boosts offered by the MIDA Multi-Tool, but with this build’s emphasis on Force Barrier it seems more in keeping with the theme to be fully-charged and ready to shield up as often as possible.
My next set of replacement shoulder buttons should be arriving in the post any time now, and I made sure to get a five pack just in case. I suppose that reassessing my trigger technique would also be a good move so as to limit future repair jobs, but that seems like too much hard work. Illogical, I know.
For the meantime though, this build has seen me through some PvP, a bunch of strikes and my first Nightfall mission so I’m ready to say…