I’ll be the first one to admit that the older I get, the less likely I am to spend much time in any sort of multiplayer mode for any video game genre. For a time in my twenties I lived in these modes online and forged some really awesome friendships with gamers across the globe, but as time passed and my age increased, I lost more than a few steps and just haven’t found any joy in getting my ass handed to me in today’s modern FPS multiplayer titles. Although, thanks to some hands-on time with Destiny 2’s new Gambit mode, I think Bungie has crafted a supremely unique and fun take on multiplayer that offers up less skilled players like myself a reason to get back online and dust off my trigger fingers.
Gambit is truly in a class of its own when it comes to the experience it offers. The latest Halo offered up a mode that featured both PvE and PvP elements, but Gambit truly takes the formula in a new and exciting direction. In Gambit, two teams square off in a race to summon a Primeval to vanquish, and the first team that summons this enemy type and beats them wins the day. Teams can summon the Primeval after collecting 75 motes, which are dropped by AI enemies that you face off against with your own team. As you kill enemies they drop motes, and then you must deposit them into a central container in order to summon the Primeval at 75 collected motes. The interesting aspect to mote collection though is that if you push your luck and don’t bank the motes you have on your person, you can lose all of them, or you can summon more powerful blocker enemies to screw with the opposing team. You always have to be aware of the motes, they’re the key to this mode, not your abilities as a FPS savant.
Here’s what makes this concept so fresh though, the opposing team never fully shares the map with you, rather both teams are on their own maps fighting AI enemies to secure motes and work towards the end game. Although, when you collect 25 and 50 total motes, a portal will open allowing one of your teammates to cross over to the opponent’s zone to wreak a little extra havoc. While your main focus always has to be on killing the AI controlled enemies, you must also watch out for enemy players who have snuck over to stall your team’s mote collection progress. At the same time you must also gamble a bit with your own mote collection, because if you choose to hold onto them to get a blocker unleashed on the opposing team’s map, you can risk losing a boatload if you get killed, effectively stalling your end game progress.
The Gambit formula sounds clunkier than it is, but I can tell you that it works, and it gives an average to below average FPS multiplayer gamer a chance to be productive and actually make an impact on their team’s performance. This mode isn’t about killing other enemy players in the least. It’s all about handling the increasingly difficult AI hordes, while also making sure you don’t get too greedy, or too lax with your mote collection and banking. While the PvE aspect makes up most of the mode’s objectives, the added bonus of having sneaky enemy players showing up on your map definitely keeps you on your toes. It also gives those who excel at and prefer PvP modes a chance to flex their skillset, while also being a potential game changer if they can effectively stall the mote collection of the opposing team.
Based on my experience this mode is all about communication and team work, because I had a few players on my squad that didn’t quite get the gist of the mode, so they tried to play it like a traditional FPS multiplayer mode. This didn’t pan out well for us as the other more organized team easily racked up the required 75 motes to summon their Primeval while we ran around like dopes not collecting motes because people were having more fun shooting enemy AI to pad their kill stats. Kill counts don’t mean a thing in Gambit, only banked motes, so you definitely have to change your strategy in this fun and unique mix of FPS PvE and PvP gameplay.
I can definitely see myself spending some time in this mode because I loved its challenge and balance. It’s more about team than personal glory, which is the type of multiplayer experience I can get behind at this point in my life and gaming career. If you’ve been wanting a new way to enjoy some FPS multiplayer action, then I highly suggest dropping into a Gambit match when Forsaken launches this September.
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