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eShopperReviews December Wrap-Up, with a bonus look back at the last decade
The other half of things is, in the last few weeks, I have been stepping things up into overdrive to review as many games from 2019 as possible, in preparation for the upcoming eShopper Reviews 2019 Game Awards, which I intend to start posting on January 6, 2020 (with a preview this Friday, January 3). As a result, I have reviewed 94 games in the month of December. So, as you can imagine, I have a lot of ground to cover here!
For those counting, that brings up my games reviewed to games owned ratio to 441/849.
It's not just reviews that have grown, either - I have made multiple additions to the indexing system to keep track of reviews here. I split The Best of the Best section into Part 1 and Part 2, expanded the Sort by Score section into four pages instead of three, split off Music-Rhythm and Misc. Games from Racing Games, Fighting Games, and Sports
Okay, now on to the highlights of games I reviewed this month! Again, these aren't necessarily all games that came out this month, and they're not necessarily the games I scored the highest, but they are the games I feel are most noteworthy.
Given the sheer number of games reviewed this month, I'm going to refrain from giving descriptions this time, as there's just too much. If you want to see what each game is about, please click on the link.
The BestOri and the Blind Forest
Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair
Sayonara Wild Hearts
Baba Is You
Killer Queen Black
My Friend Pedro
Cadence of Hyrule: The Crypt of the Necrodancer Featuring The Legend of Zelda
Castlevania Anniversary Collection
Collection of Mana
The WorstXtreme Club Racing
Akihabara Crash! 123Stage + 1
Hidden GemsThe Red Strings Club
Gems of War
Knock 'Em Down Bowling
Sky Force Reloaded
Bury Me, My Love
Laser Kitty Pow Pow
REKT! High Octane Stunts
Whew! A lot, right! Well, suffice it to say, that's me cutting out a lot of games I would have preferred to mention! Don't worry, odds are good we'll be returning to a more reasonable selection of games next month!
Now, as for that “look back at the last decade” thing I was talking about. I think it would be foolish to only look at the Nintendo Switch when judging the last decade, so I figured I'd do the trendy thing and state my Top 20 games of the last decade, with my reasoning for each. Why 20? Because 10 wasn't enough, dammit!
#20 – Towerfall - This little unassuming arena-based Action-Platformer was actually originally released as an Ouya-exclusive, but has since been ported to just about every major platform, with the Switch getting the definitive version of the game. However, right from the beginning, this was an amazing game that made for some intense multiplayer battles filled with fast-paced strategy. Very few games have made for such compelling multiplayer experiences as Towerfall.
#19 – The Stanley Parable - What, I told you this wasn't just going to be Nintendo Switch games! This PC game told a post-modernist fourth wall-breaking story in a way that only videogames can, and playing through it countless more times to see all the different possible endings and stories that could unfold as you frustrate the narrator was a unique experience few games have ever touched.
#18 - Portal 2 - While not as revolutionary as the first game, Portal 2 built on the framework of that game to produce some amazing puzzle gameplay, and a fantastic story with a silent protagonist, two off-kilter AI programs, and the voice recordings of the long-deceased and delightfully quotable Cave Johnson. All in all, this made for a complete experience that took the foundation of the first game and propelled it forward to new hights... with the lemons!
#17 - Pokemon Go - This game is every bit as much a technical marvel as it is a compelling game. While it wasn't the first of its kind (developer Niantic had previously released their own similar game, Ingress), and its initial release was plagued with problems, over time it became a huge cultural phenomenon, to the point where you would often find Pokemon Go-ers out in the same place as you were, hunting the same Pokemon you were trying to catch. I can't think of another time in the history of videogames they have managed to be social on quite the level this game has been.
#16 - Journey - Gah! Almost forgot about this one, and had to shuffle my choices around! Journey was an absolutely beautiful experience that was one of the finest examples of using game mechanics to tell a story, to the point where you don't even fully realize what's being done until it's over. I'd say more, but that would spoil it. Suffice it to say, this is a game that needs to be played to experience it fully, and it's a truly wonderful experience worth playing.
#15 - P.T. - While the story surrounding this game's creation, and its subsequent murder at the hands of a malicious publisher, is nearly as compelling as the game itself, the reason this game endures so strongly in the minds of those who had the good fortune to play it while it was available is because even as just a demo for another game that would never see the light of day, this game revolutionized the Survival Horror genre, finding subtle ways to track the player and induce scares in a way that had people still discovering the nuances of for years afterward.
#14 - Shovel Knight - This was the decade that indie games exploded, and there are very few examples of this phenomenon better than Shovel Knight, which is still one of the best examples not only of a truly great indie title, but of the current trend of capturing the nostalgic feeling of 8- and 16-bit games, the important role Kickstarter would play in game development, and the impact of a developer supporting their game with mountains of post-release content. Oh yeah, and the game itself was amazing too, taking the best elements of old-school platformers and repackaging them for a modern audience.
#13 - Bioshock Infinite - While it may not have made the same impact as the first game in the series, I honestly prefer Infinite's story more, with its reality-bending plot twists and epic multi-dimensional stakes. Also, riding around on the rails while blasting enemies was just damn fun.
#12 - Bayonetta 2 - The first Bayonetta brought a degree of smooth fluidity to spectacle fighters that damn near perfected the genre, and its sequel somehow managed to improve on it, expanding the player's abilities while greatly improving the graphics. I strain to think of a time I felt more like a badass than when I was on a roll kicking ass in this game.
#11 - Mario Kart 8 Deluxe - If a game can be a perfect representation of its genre, surely Mario Kart 8 Deluxe has accomplished that. Gorgeous visuals, tons of content, fine-tuned gameplay, and easy accessibility paired with a good amount of depth buried underneath its cartoonish racing exterior. When the Wii U version of the game came out, many bemoaned its one glaring flaw – a terrible, broken battle mode. When Nintendo re-released the game on the Switch, they ensured this issue was addressed, leaving nothing but perfection remaining.
#10 - Horizon Zero Dawn - This is quite likely the prettiest game I have ever played, but it is also one with a fascinating world that compels players to explore more of it to discover more of the unique post-apocalyptic culture and learn more of the story of the outcast-turned-Seeker Aloy, all while playing cat-and-mouse games with monstrous machines. Few games brought me into a whole other world like Horizon Zero Dawn did.
#9 - Grand Theft Auto V - I hated GTA4, so I wasn't really looking forward to the fifth numbered game in the series. Yet once it came out and I saw that they somehow managed to emphasize fun while still creating a deep world with so much to do and so many detailed elements, it was like the best of both worlds for the series, and the result was a crazy fun world that always seemed to have more surprises around every corner.
#8 - Borderlands 2 - Where the first Borderlands took the progression mechanics of Diablo and popped them into a co-op FPS, this game refined the formula to create something absolutely delightful, balanced to please both fans of the collection and grinding, as well as fans of FPS games. This was one of the three games I played most frequently with my girlfriend in the last decade, and it's thanks to how delightfully compelling this game is.
#7 – Terraria - Here's the second of the three biggest co-op games in my household, and while many peg it as “2D Minecraft”, it's so much more than that, with a huge array of weapons and items to build and discover, and an overarching plot progression, along with a huge slew of hidden stuff that made this game feel like a Metroidvania even though you could go anywhere you wanted (as long as you had the right tools and could survive the trip). Plus, on top of that, this game still brings the huge element of creating your own home base that was a part of the joy of Minecraft. Suffice it to say, if you like Metroidvanias and/or Minecraft and haven't played this game yet, you're doing yourself a disservice.
#6 - Ori and the Blind Forest - This is, in my opinion, the single greatest 2D Metroidvania since Castlevania: Symphony of the Night. Not only does it have an absolutely gorgeous presentation, with arguably the best graphics of any 2D game ever made and deeply-moving music, but it does some inventive things with its platforming using the “bash” move, re-imagines challenge and saving with its custom saving system, and just overall feels amazing to play. Oh yeah, and the best version of the game is now the Switch version. Just sayin'.
#5 - Super Smash Bros. Ultimate - I know there are still some diehards who swear by Melee, but for me Ultimate truly is the ultimate game in the series, with gameplay that I feel perfectly finds the balance between appealing to those with skill and appealing to casual players, and the most comprehensive and absolutely bursting-at-the-seams array of content the series has ever seen, to the point where it's unlikely it will ever be matched again.
#4 - The Last of Us - This is probably the best-told story I have ever seen in a videogame, with truly memorable characters in a deep, emotional story that puts to shame just about every zombie movie I've ever seen. It doesn't hurt that the game is stunningly beautiful as well, in the sad sort of way that comes with seeing the entirety of human civilization slowly eroding away to nothingness. When I was finished, I absolutely wanted to see more of this story, even while recognizing that it felt so complete that I couldn't imagine what you could follow it with. Well, I guess we'll find out when the sequel releases next year...
#3 - The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild - Oh snap, I put Breath of the Wild in the third slot... on a Switch subreddit! Don't at me, guys! It's not due to any flaw in this game, so much as the enduring quality of the next two. That's not to say that Breath of the Wild is perfect – everyone by now is well aware of the game's frustrating breaking weapons and its repetitive dungeon motifs, but none of that really matters when a game is this deeply compelling to explore to see every tiny nook and cranny and find the secrets buried there. This game is proof that a videogame doesn't need to be perfect to be one of the greatest games of all time.
#2 - The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim - People bemoan that Bethesda keeps porting this game to new platforms (even Amazon Alexa!) instead of working on Elder Scrolls VI, but given their track record as of late, I'm perfectly content to keep playing this game, since it is so deep, with so much to explore, that you could easily log a thousand hours into it and still not see everything there is to see. I like to point out that this game is one of the most satisfying stealth games ever made, despite that stealth here is completely optional and only comprises a tiny fraction of this game. What this game does with its most minor features puts to shame entire libraries of games, and it is still to this day one of the greatest accomplishments in videogames... bugs and all...
#1 – Minecraft - It started out as this little indie project one guy made, at a time when people wrote off the idea that one guy could design a videogame. But what resulted was in my opinion the biggest videogame phenomenon of the last decades. Teachers use this game in class to teach (there's actually a version made specifically for that purpose). I don't doubt that some teachers teach about this game. It's a game with one of the most powerful creation tool sets of any videogame... and also a game with infinite exploration. It found a way to craft impressive graphics using laughably primitive methods. And it was filled with enough of its own unique personality that even its absurdly low-fidelity characters have become iconic. Little kids love this game, adults love this game, adults and kids love watching people play this game. Oh yeah, another way this game was influential – it was a focal point of the growing phenomenon of Let's Plays, well before PUBG or Fortnite were even a thought in their designers' minds. And yet, it's still a game that players will keep coming back to time and again, because there's no end to this game, no end to the creative potential, or the new lands to explore. No end to the fun co-op possibilities... simply put, I cannot imagine any other game to be better-suited to the #1 spot in a “Best of the Decade” list than Minecraft, period.
Anyway, those are my picks! And... no doubt I missed some of your favorites. So if you want to complain that I didn't include Dark Souls, Fortnite, Overwatch, God of War, or even a Mario game... well, these are my picks. I'm free to have mine, and you're free to have yours. :-P
Perspective on the State of Destiny and What it can do to Improve, written with care by a longtime hardcore fan of the games
I'm gonna start off by saying, I am not trying to bash bungie with this post, nor am I trying to defend their every action with it, and even though this post is gonna probably die in new, here's some food for thought. Destiny 1 Launched in a fairly rough state in terms of content quantity, but theres a good reason that many of the core playerbase, myself included, chose to stick around. Why was Destiny 1, which was at the time devoid of much in the way of content, stick around and build a fanbase, while games such as Anthem, which had similar issues, were unable to? (I'm aware that Anthem had other issues as well, but even then I would expect it to build a following of people who just love the game for one reason or another, like Destiny did).
I think the answer to this question lies in the fact that Destiny 1 had some potentially very engaging content that the playerbase latched on to, and as far as I am aware, no other shooter games at the time outside of the Borderlands franchise and potentially Warframe provided similar experiences, but Destiny, which plays very different from both of those games, naturally attracted people who became fans of it.
When I mention potentially engaging experiences, I am talking things such as the Vault of Glass Raid, as well as the nightfall strikes which rotated weekly with some potentially very crazy modifiers on it. In addition, there were reasons to chase these activities, even in D1 Year 1. Nightfalls were generally seen as the best way to get most of the game's exotics, as well as being strikes but cranked up to 11. Raids were the ultimate thing to chase however, with many of the Raid weapons competing for the title of "Best in Slot" (Such as Fatebringer, Black Hammer, and Hunger of Crota, if we are leaving exotics out of the question. Sorry Gjallarhorn and Ice Breaker) for their respective slots during the time of their release. Much of this can be seen in how many of the legendary raid weapons are remembered fondly by the Veteran players still playing Destiny 2. In my opinion, this factor, combined with both the fact that the game's max level could not be reached without raid armor, and the fairly chill community of PvE players at launch, made it fairly easy for me to find a team for these aspirational activities that I could never have run. I even ended up joining a raid team back on Xbox One with the LFG group that helped me finish VoG for the first time, and I made friends that I still play games with 6 years later. Basically, Destiny 1 Year 1 was, for me at least, some of the most fun times to have been playing Destiny. (Small note, I think its not a good thing for the Raid armor to be the only way to reach the max light level but its part of what fueled engagement in Year 1 raiding compared to
So what makes me see Destiny 1 Year 1 as a much more competent time in the game's lifespan than Destiny 2 Year 3, which has far and away more content, but little player interest in that content? I would start with the Core Activities. Bungie considers the Core Activities to be the Crucible, Strikes, and Gambit. Oddly enough, I would argue that Destiny 2 has more engaging strikes than Destiny 1, with more complex bossfight mechanics and arenas designed to create a more engaging experience for the player, while most Destiny 1 strike bosses were essentially "Big Captain/ServitoHydra/Colossus/Ogre with tons of health." So why do so many people I know argue that Destiny 1 had better strikes?
I believe the reason lies in the fact that strikes actually gave good rewards in Destiny 1, even in Year 1. Heroic Strikes in Year 1 were the game's primary source of Strange Coins, which were the only currency which Xur accepted. Therefore, when you logged in and played 3 Heroic strikes to get your 27 weekly coins per character, you would, upon Xur's visit that weekend, feel the reward of your work in those strikes. Even if Xur came and didn't have something you wanted, you could save your Coins and visit Xur again the next week and purchase both a Weapon and an Armor piece, since you didn't spend last week's coins. It also incentivized playing on multiple characters, as the coin drops were not account based, but character based. In my opinion, part of when Exotics stopped feeling "Exotic" was when Destiny 2 launched and streamlined Xur's currency into legendary shards, which most players have a large enough number of that they can spend them like they're monopoly money. (As a small side note on strikes, with the addition of the Taken King expansion at the start of Year 2, a lot of strike specific loot was added to the game which further incentivized running playlist strikes compared to their seemingly small incentive to play in Destiny 2).
I feel it is helpful to take a step back and look at a big picture of the game and how it is played. In Destiny as a whole, there is not an overwhelming amount of loot, just a few pages of each type of gun. Compare this to a game like Borderlands, where there are tons of different guns and there are a much larger variety of weapons when you take into account the unique foundries. When comparing it to Warframe, which has a much bigger focus on Abilities and Stats, you will find that the Armor in this game provides a different angle for how the game is played and therefore more of a diversity in how the game can be played. In Warframe, I can choose to be a tanky juggernaut, or a support, or a stealthy assassin. The classes in Destiny, by comparison, do not provide as big of a difference in gameplay (this isn't a bad thing, but it IS a part of how the game is played and how it feels to play the game.) Combine this with the fact that the Guardian arsenal is much more limited in scope than games like Warframe, where the different types of weapons and even the individual weapons in one type vary extremely wildly from one another.
Now that we've established the fact that Destiny provides its players with less tools than similar games in the genre, (again, not a bad thing, but a fact of the game that must be addressed in its design process) we can look at what makes the current state of the game and its content feel less engaging. Guardians, with their limited arsenal, must have engaging playgrounds in which to push these limited arsenals to the test. Destiny 1 had only one raid at launch, but many of the encounters in the raid could be tackled in a few different ways, allowing for players to have tested their potential with different loadouts. A potential counterargument to this is the idea that the optimum loadout was not set in stone like it has been in the past few seasons, but even in D1Y1, there was the "god tier" loadout of fatebringer, black hammer, and gjallarhorn that destroyed encounters, but people still raided every week because there was good loot to chase that could be used in the strikes that they had to run in order to buy their weekly exotic from Xur. Currently, the only raid that is viewed as worth completing is Garden of Salvation, and the guns from that raid have no chance at being "Best in Slot", due to the fact that many other guns, namely the pinnacle weapons, have taken over those titles. This creates little incentive for the average player to run Garden of Salvation again aside from getting Pinnacle Gear to use as Infusion Fodder, but this can be acquired much easier from other sources. From the looks of it, Bungie SEEMS to think that sunsetting gear will fix this problem, but if the loot simply isn't good, people won't chase it due to the fact that the raid itself isn't incredibly popular, unlike the Destiny 1 raids, which provided compelling environments for the player to use their weapons in. Basically, games like Warframe can afford to have repetitive content with little compelling loot in the content, due to the massive variety of tools the player is given to complete that content, since the content itself simply exists to push the limits of the player's equipment. However, games like Destiny cannot afford to have repetitive content or uncompelling loot, since the player's tools are limited much more, and are merely tools for completing the content, with the content itself being the main attraction.
A good explanation of this difference can be found in the fact that in games such as Warframe, as the player grinds with their equipment in order to hone its stats and make it able to slot more mods, therefore making individual pieces of equipment, be them weapons or armor, stronger through the grind. Destiny does not have this (another obligatory "Not a bad thing, just the nature of Destiny as a game") as I can grind a million strikes with the same loadout equipped, but aside from the overall power level of my character, those weapons have not improved at all in terms of strength. Basically, Destiny's power level system does not actually make the players STRONGER, but instead tweaks the damage that you will deal in content close to your power level. This is fine if it is handled correctly, but recently, it has felt as though Bungie has looked at boss design the wrong way, and therefore it feels as though the fights are less challenging, aside from whatever mechanics the encounter may employ. In the Vault of Glass, not only are the trash mobs and exploding harpies threatening, but so is Atheon as well. Atheon provides a threatening presence in the arena that players cannot easily go near for danger of getting killed. Even during damage phase, Atheon continues firing splash damage blasts at the players, and while this can be counteracted by using the Aegis relic's bubble shield mode, that strategy causes players to lose potential DPS with the trade off being increased safety, since the Shieldbearer could easily use the super of the shield on repeat to add damage to Atheon. Contrast this to Garden of Salvation, which provides a similar fight as well as a boss that fires at the team. However, during what should be the most tense part of the fight, Damage Phase, the boss sits still and floats into the air for no obvious reason. This makes the fight simply a sequence of Complete Mechanic, followed by a DPS check, and then repeat if you didn't kill the boss. Crown of Sorrow is another example, as Gahlran simply sits still during DPS, but ends up being worse than the Sanctified Mind in that he also is never the primary threat on the field. The primary threat is always a yellow bar enemy or his deception, but this doesn't make the players feel like they're fighting a massive boss that's been possessed by Hive magic, but rather makes them feel like they're clearing trash mobs, waiting for a bather(which is a mechanic from a different raid might I add) to spawn, then punching it to clear it, all while playing a minigame of the Witch's Blessing and crystals, only to then get to shoot a big boss that they aren't really fighting against, but rather waiting to shoot. Granted Gahlran shoots fireballs but those fireballs do very little damage and are extremely slow. Compare this to Atheon or Oryx, who are actively fighting the player during all parts of the raid. Even in the Oryx encounter, he will keep shooting despite the players having their immortality buff. This at least makes the player feel as if Oryx is fighting back at the player fireteam instead of simply channeling an attack before getting stunned. Essentially, the raid bosses need to fight back against the player somehow so that they are forced to stay on their toes even in damage phase. If strike bosses can shoot at me while I'm trying to damage them, then I would expect raid bosses to attempt to do so as well. Calus is the last example of this kind of design I can think of in a main raid (The raid lair bosses do shoot rockets at the players so they get credit but I don't count those as full raids with a comprehensive loot pool, rather as additions to the Leviathan's loot set, they do not count in terms of "main" raids. Sorry Argos and Val Ca'Uor). Calus will occasionally detonate an explosive on the plates required for damage. This at least allows the players to make a decision between staying on the plate longer for maximum DPS, and bailing to the next plate earlier for maximum safety, similar to the decision in the Atheon fight between shielding with the Aegis or attacking with it. This kind of boss design is important to making raids feel like the apex of our work in PvE, rather than the odd state they seem to find themselves in now.
Furthermore, Bungie seems to be trying to shift the PvE sandbox around with certain changes that they have made in order to force diversity into the raid encounters. This becomes problematic as it simply makes the DPS check stage of bossfights harder instead of encouraging the players to find their optimal method of strategy. If the boss is going to sit still 20 feet in the air while exposing his crit spot, and also being in the middle of a damaging pool of Vex fluid makes Izanagi's Burden, a high damage, long range precision weapon, should be a natural choice for players, similar to how Touch of Malice was the optimal choice for fighting Oryx due to the immortality buff during damage phase. This is the reason that the data for Garden of Salvation showed an overwhelming use of Izanagi's Burden in the boss encounters. It made sense to use such a precise, but powerful, weapon. Nerfing snipers due to their overwhelming use in Garden caused such outrage not due to snipers being overpowered, but due to the fact that they were the most viable option in this encounter. If snipers were truly overtuned then they would have been the weapon of choice for encounters such as Shuro Chi, another stationary boss, but they weren't, since this fight can be tackled more easily with a shotgun. Shotguns are simply more viable for fighting Shuro Chi, and so they are used for this. I will point now to Aksis, the final boss of Wrath of the Machine's raid. I remember when swords were first added to Destiny in The Taken King, and they were considered something of a neat novelty, but not all that viable. The reason for this was due to the fact that the raid encounters of the time usually demanded something along the lines of a rocket launcher or machine gun in the heavy slot, which provided similar potential stopping power to a sword while also being able to hit bosses in a pinch for big damage compared to other primaries, partly due to the fact that the special slot was usually taken up by a sniper rifle. This changed when Rise of Iron and Wrath of the Machine dropped. Now, swords, specifically the Dark Drinker, were the optimum choice for parts of this raid. Why? The encounter fit the sword well. A tool in our arsenal, which had previously not had a use, was now the top tier. This won't happen if bungie continues their trend of boss designs, since making long range, precision based encounters will only push us towards snipers. Gutting them back to their pre-Shadowkeep values only hurts the number of people that will be willing to attempt these encounters since now they take much longer and require much more of the same loadout instead of pushing players to try new weapons, even if they're still sniper rifles. After these nerfs, Whisper of the Worm is now far and away the best sniper for fighting the Sanctified and Consecrated minds, but Izanagi's Burden has been left to rot after having very limited time to shine. Before, we had a true decision to make in terms of which toys we wanted to play with, but now, Whisper is the best and everything else feels much worse.
On another note, I didn't want to talk about Sunsetting, seeing as its a very controversial topic, but I guess I will since it seems like its relevant to my thoughts on the content and engaging. I do not want to defend sunsetting, as I am very much a believer of the "play your own way" style (if you want to call the versions of the game "sandboxes" then give us the freedom of a sandbox and don't make us play the way you want us to Bungie). However, I agree with certain aspects of sunsetting while disagreeing with others. Currently, certain guns like the Recluse are just simply put the optimal options for much of this game's content. This is nothing new, however, as I previously mentioned the Fatebringer, Black Hammer, and Gjallarhorn, all of which dominated Year 1 Destiny 1. However, these weapons were all sunset when the Taken King came out. But don't people love the Taken King? Yes, they do, myself included, but there is a VERY good reason that we do. The content was engaging. Essentially having to start from the beginning didn't feel bad since I was excited to do the content. Replacing my Fatebringer with a Doom of Chelchis scout rifle from King's Fall felt good, since I loved that scout. I loved Fatebringer too, but it was fine to put it down and chase new guns, as long as chasing those guns was fun. Kind of a "its the journey not the destination that matters" feeling. The problem with sunsetting as Bungie has proposed us is this: they haven't shown us (recently) that they can make compelling content to get those weapons from. I have no problem retiring my Recluse, or my Luna's Howl, as long as whatever I have to do to get my next great gun is engaging content. This, like Bungie has stated, also avoids power creep, while also giving the players an opportunity to continue playing the game they love in new ways. The biggest problem with that, however, comes from two factors. The seasonal model of content, and the lack of new things being added into the game at a rate that players can explore what new items they like. Seasonal style content has given us thus far: one ok season(undying) one pretty good season(dawn) and one pretty bad season(worthy). Part of the problem is that each season adds a few guns, and to get them, players must grind a horde mode or some similar event to get the new gear. This is boring and repetitive for a game like Destiny, which has such a limited amount of gear to play with, and the enjoyment is in the gameplay. For a game like Warframe, horde modes are fine since players are trying to push the limits of their gear, whereas in Destiny, I want the gameplay to push the limits of my ability to play the game, given that much of the gear is at least decent at conquering what the game throws my way. The second problem combines the issues with the seasonal model and the issues of gear not being added at a good enough rate. Every season, guns are added, and at the end of that season, will be removed from being obtainable. This pushes players with a fear of missing out to play, but it will NOT make them enjoy the content provided. Players will enjoy good content because it is good and engaging, not because they got to play the same horde mode again to get a new round of good weapons. Sunsetting becomes an issue in this context. Bungie, with their transition to a la carte seasons, have stated "don't pay for any content you don't want, you can play whatever interests you" but if they decide to sunset mass amounts of good gear people like to use, then they create a problem should players set the game down for a season or two, then come back later and find they have nothing to work with, and a very limited number of available options to obtain at the time of their return. In truth, weapon sunsetting would be fine if Bungie gave us a large enough loot pool every season that we could enjoy, but if you only like a small variety of weapons, and then sunsetting takes away the old guns you liked, yet the new seasons don't provide good replacements of the same type, you're out of luck. If the loot pool was much deeper, this issue wouldn't be as big due to the fact that each season players are given the opportunity to try several different things, but currently this simply is not the case. A deeper loot pool, combined with good content each season, would make a much better experience.
I understand that Bungie has stated that D2Y2 took a lot out of their team, and I wholeheartedly believe that they are trying to give us at least some content we like. The hard truth is, they no longer have the resources that Activision provided to them in order to make content and keep it coming out. In the off chance Bungie ever sees this post, my number one piece of advice to the team is to just slow down. When it comes to games, quality over quantity is important. I don't care if there's a new season every 90 days if the seasons themselves provide little engagement. The point of an interactive experience is that the player should be able to be engaged in the experience, not feel like they are simply doing chores (like 9 million seraph towers). The game's technical state has also declined quite a bit. This game worked on my old PC before I built a new one, and I was impressed since that thing never ran well on most games. However, I have noticed, in addition to the server and bug related issues, the game just doesn't run as well anymore(at least on PC). I truly love Destiny, it's honestly my favorite game that I have played in recent years, and the Destiny community has provided me with many of my closest friends from gaming, and if you guys at Bungie are struggling to make content at the pace you think you should, just slow it down. You guys can make some truly amazing things from your game. I know you can, I've seen and played it for myself. I am willing to wait longer for more engaging content drops. For more of the old days looking for secrets in the Vault of Glass, for more attempts at decoding binary since I was the only programmer amongst my old Raid team on Xbox One. Even Destiny 2 has shown it can shine. Forsaken was fantastic, but the game has flaws that need some addressing, and I feel that this post is already long enough, so I'd like to just say to Bungie if they somehow see any of these points: learn from your old content what people like and do not like about Destiny. Stop attempting to make Destiny something that it is not with all of the MMORPG style mechanics. Just make Destiny like it has been before. I know it'll never be perfect, but it will always be improving, and that's what's important in evolving a game.
Current content is too bland and repetitive and Bungie keeps trying to make the game into something it isn't, but it isn't working and the game should go back to doing what it does well
EDIT: added TLDR