A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Destiny: Curse of Osiris is a downloadable expansion to Destiny 2, a first-person online sci-fi shooter with fast and nearly constant gun combat. Players take on the role of a defender of humanity fighting aliens, robots, and humans (the latter only during competitive play) using a variety of sci-fi weapons including rifles, pistols, shotguns, submachine guns, swords, and grenade launchers. The sensationalized gunfights are fast-paced and nearly constant, but they stop short of the gore and grittiness seen in many other modern shooters. Defeated aliens bleed black blood, while robots explode and disappear. Portions of the game make teamwork an absolute necessity, potentially creating a sense of camaraderie and friendship among players. Note that the base game -- sold separately or as part of a bundle -- is required to play this expansion.
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What's it about?
DESTINY 2: CURSE OF OSIRIS is an expansion to Destiny 2 (the base game is required to play) that delivers fresh content to grow the existing experience. New narrative quests send players to Mercury to investigate the Infinite Forest, a series of possible realities being studied by the robotic Vex in order to find and bring about one in which humanity is destroyed. Players must explore the Forest, connect with Osiris -- the most powerful Guardian of all time, who has been adventuring within these realities for a long time -- and take down the Vex boss trying to bring about the end of humans. The new story missions unlock a new explorable area on Mercury, where players can find new adventure quests, public events, and a small social space. Other expansion additions include a pair of new cooperative Strikes, a couple of new competitive multiplayer maps for the Crucible, and fresh Raid content designed for six-player teams set in Destiny 2's existing Leviathan destination. The expansion also raises the avatar power cap from 300 to 330, and introduces several new weapons, pieces of armor, mods, cosmetic options, and ongoing challenges.
Is it any good?
It's not exactly ground-breaking, but this expansion to Bungie's popular sci-fi shooter delivers plenty of new stuff to keep players busy. Destiny 2: Curse of Osiris' four-hour story is completely separate from the original game, provides interesting and beautiful new locations to explore in both Mercury and the Infinite Forest, and introduces a fun new character in the overly confident Sagira, Osiris' longtime ghost, who gets separated from him at the story's outset. The two new cooperative Strikes follow the familiar cooperative mission formula, providing a series of straightforward objectives and boss fights for groups of up to three players to tackle as a team, and the two new Crucible maps fit nicely within the existing roster, providing a little more diversity while rotating through multiplayer matches. And through it all, players will gradually grow their avatar's power level and earn better weapons and gear either through random loot drops or by completing challenge and milestones for various non-player characters.
Where Curse of Osiris falls a bit short, though, is in delivering anything truly new to the Destiny formula. It throws a few more locations, missions, weapons, and characters onto the pile, but stops short of introducing any fresh modes, features, mechanics, or functions. Players aren't able to grow their character's class-based abilities beyond what they did in the original game or learn any new ones, and there aren't really any new types of multiplayer modes. It's just more of what players already had. That ought to be enough to satisfy some fans of Destiny 2, but players hoping for something a little different might want to hold off a bit and see what the next expansion has in store. Keep in mind, too, that those who don't buy into this first expansion will begin to be left behind as others continue to grow their characters and gain access to power level-restricted content, including prestige Raids and Strikes.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about violence in the media. Destiny 2's violence is carried out against aliens that mean to destroy humanity and spends little time exploring who these clearly intelligent creatures are. Would it be better if players were given a better chance to understand these invaders?
Talk about teamwork. Do you enjoy the parts of the game -- Strikes and Raids -- that encourage players to team up with others and cooperate in order to succeed, or do you prefer going solo?
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