A Year Of Destiny: Taking Stock

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There will come a time when the Destiny universe refreshes and every guardian’s quest for power begins anew. It may occur this year or it may be next, but in the same way that The Taken King expansion relegated Year One equipment to long-term storage, all of our current gear will eventually be deemed under-powered and largely unusable. With no new game content on the cards until Rise Of Iron drops in September, this feels like a good opportunity to cast an eye over the three guardians I’ve created since joining the Destiny community mid-2015 and show off the Year Two gear that makes them who they are.


Name: Toccata-4C     //     Race: Exo     //     Class: Titan

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Thematic Inspiration:

Toccata-4C was my first guardian in Destiny and as such his character traits came about organically. The yellow and blue shader appealed the most on the day I finally hit Level 20 and was able to start customising my guardian’s appearance. It was a happy coincidence that a matching ship and sparrow were available for purchase around the same time, and so the set was complete. Apart from the occasional change of look for special events like Iron Banner, Toccata-4C has stuck with his established style ever since.

Toccata-4C’s weapons of choice were simply my own weapons of choice on that first play through of Destiny’s campaign; pulse rifles, shotguns, sniper rifles and the occasional rocket launcher have all done their duty admirably.

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Functionality & Playstyle:

I enjoy the Titan’s Defender and Sunbreaker subclasses the most for a number of reasons. The Defender’s sticky grenade and ability to create an overshield on melee kills (or with shotgun kills as described here) are highlights in solo play. Throwing explosive, flaming hammers to rack up PvP multikills is immensely satisfying as well though, so in the competitive arena I tend towards the Sunbreaker.

The weapon loadout you see above emphasises the Third Eye perk which keeps your radar active when aiming down sights. Third Eye is up there with Firefly and Outlaw for utility in all game modes as far as I’m concerned, and Toccata-4C naturally shares this view.

Destiny_20160622155621Toccata-4C’s choice of armour comes down to two factors: Chroma (the ability to add that yellow glow effect) as well the item’s randomly rolled stats and perks. All of his chest and leg pieces synthesise with the Defender and Sunbreaker’s elemental types, allowing for a true maximum Armor value when the equipment and subclass types align.

Toccata-4C also possesses The Taikonaut exotic helmet (adds Third Eye and tracking to all rocket launchers), but it just doesn’t look as futuristic as the rest of his ensemble so rarely gets worn. One can never have too much radar awareness however, so it keeps its place in the kitbag just in case.

[UPDATE 19/10/16: Here’s a quick tour of the very different – but equally carefully designed – Striker Titan build I’ve been running lately]

Name: Sierra     //     Race: Human     //     Class: Warlock

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Thematic Inspiration:

Sierra was devised as an in-game representation of the heroine from Jo Spurrier’s Children Of The Black Sun fantasy trilogy. You can read all about that creative process here if interested. The TL;DR version is that Spurrier’s Sierra is a lightning mage and I thought it would be satisfying to recreate her in Destiny, complete with the electric superpowers of the Stormcaller Warlock subclass.

The snowladen country of Ricalan dictated that my guardian’s namesake spent a good deal of the story draped in white war coats for camouflage. The quasi-medieval setting of the novels also meant grinding PvP for the Iron Banner armour set with its touch of chainmail, as well as the Arc Blade sword for more authentic hack and slash action. Combining historical styling with Sierra’s lightning theme is the Zhalo Supercell exotic auto rifle, which chains electrical damage to groups of enemies and looks like it could belong in the upcoming WWI Battlefield title.

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The best bit about collecting all of these aesthetic treatments is that they should fit perfectly with the new, snowbound zones of Old Russia to be unveiled in the upcoming Rise Of Iron expansion. Here’s a sample of the Winter Line collection so far, not including the various primary and special weapons from the earlier Sierra post:

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If you’re still reading at this point you may be wondering “do you just play Destiny for the dress-up value?”. The answer is no, but this collection and customisation element sure adds value when the stream of new game content dries up.


Name: –     //     Race: Human     //     Class: Hunter

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Thematic Inspiration:

Who is this mysterious Hunter without a name?

Where did he come from?

What is his motivation?

Who knows. All I can tell is that he’s accrued some awesome looking gear and therefore deserves a place in this gallery.

Functionality & Playstyle:

When I finally got around to creating a third guardian, my expectation was to unlock and play the ninja-like Nightstalker subclass exclusively. But that was before I discovered the joy of the Gunslinger’s throwing knives. Between the Knife Juggler perk that provides you with a replacement knife after every precision kill and the Monte Carlo exotic auto rifle mentioned in previous posts this Hunter has throwing knives for days.

The non-exotic primary weapon options you see below all feature the new Chroma effect. Not surprisingly there are more pulse rifles to be had, with the Aegis Of The Reef well suited to PvP and the equally luminous Final Duty effective in PvE. Hand Cannons have never done it for me due to their lack of a proper sight or scope, but Her Revenge features the entertaining Outlaw (max reload speed after a precision kill) which makes for a pleasant change when out patrolling.

The Hunter’s choice of special and heavy weapon has always come down to fun factor, so the Zen Meteor sniper rifle and Lord Of Wolves flame-throwing shotgun get regular usage.

As he has seen the least number of minutes (/hours/days) played, there are a few armour perks that I’ll continue looking for in order to improve the overall build synergy. At the moment everything is set to boost sniper rifle ammo reserves and reload time, so it would be handy to have some other options. Not that you need to stress about such things when you look this good…

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