Destiny: House of Wolves

Game review by
Chad Sapieha, Common Sense Media
Destiny: House of Wolves Game Poster Image
Expansion has familiar sci-fi battles, new maps, missions.

Parents say

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Kids say

age 11+
Based on 2 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

Makes sci-fi violence seem fun. Enemies may be thoroughly alien, dehumanized, but player's constant slaughtering of them is a bit unsettling. Little conflict over right or wrong of it; story is very black-and-white.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Players can choose a male or female warrior, customize physical attributes such as skin color. But the avatar doesn't have much personality, seems primarily interested in war, killing aliens. 

Ease of Play

Controls same as in original game. Most expansion content only available to high-level characters, so players should be game veterans. Can still be very challenging, especially if you aren't playing cooperatively with friends.


Players use sci-fi weapons including pistols, rifles, rocket launchers, grenades against aliens, robots, and -- in competitive online play -- human, humanoid avatars. Enemies typically yell, squawk, and then vanish when defeated. Gunshot wounds sometimes emit small amounts of dark liquid.


Players must own the base game Destiny to purchase, play this expansion.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Destiny: House of Wolves is an expansion pack for Destiny, a sci-fi first-person shooter. As with the game it builds on, it's not as violent as many modern first-person shooters. Most enemies are aliens or robots (though players do go up against human avatars in online competitive play). Foes simply yell and disappear when defeated, only occasionally leaving bits of black, blood-like liquid behind. That said, play is built almost entirely around constant, intense, fast-paced firefights. There's little for players to do besides combat. Not much narrative time is given to the morality of the conflict; it's pretty much just assumed players are on the right side of the war. Parents also should note that this game supports open voice chat, which means players may be subjected to inappropriate language and subjects of discussion.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say

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Teen, 13 years old Written bySamuel Crosby December 27, 2019


If your child gets bored easily he will fall asleep this expansion is ok. I got really bored. but other than the mood it isn't any worse than the original... Continue reading
Kid, 11 years old December 1, 2015


I really enjoy this dlc. So far - it's my favorite. The bad stuff is the same as usual, just shooting stupid aliens that run around in pajamas. Yeah, that... Continue reading

What's it about?

DESTINY: HOUSE OF WOLVES is the second expansion for Destiny, a sci-fi first-person shooter set in a far future where Earth and much of the solar system is under attack by strange alien forces. The expansion's mini-campaign revolves around the Queen of the Awoken, ruler of the Reef, which is the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. She summons the guardians to a new social hub located in the Reef called the Vestian Outpost and asks them to help her stem an attack being led by a captain within the Fallen, an alien race of mercenaries plaguing the solar system. In addition to the new story missions are four new multiplayer maps, a new competitive mode called Trials of Osiris that pits two small teams against each other, a wave-based co-op mode called Prison of Elders, and a new cooperative strike mission dubbed the Shadow Thief. Players also can expect new armor and weapons (including an entirely new class of weapons called "sidearms"), along with changes to the game's complex, currency- and materials-based leveling system. Note that the base game is required to play and that much of the expansion's content requires a high-level character.

Is it any good?

Destiny's first expansion was a bit of a disappointment, seemingly designed to facilitate a nearly endless slog to earn precious materials required to level up your hero's gear and Light attribute level. In contrast, this expansion makes it a little easier to get what you want by subtly revamping the currency and gear upgrade systems. Players now have a much clearer picture of how to get the items they need to upgrade their stuff; they're no longer forced to simply wait until they stumble across them while playing. It speeds up and gives players much more control over their character's progression.

The fresh missions and modes, meanwhile, take players through a mix of new and repurposed environments. New multiplayer maps -- including one set in a decrepit gothic European town on Earth -- provide some much-needed variety in the competitive arena, while Prison of Elders offers a new way for teams of players to cooperate. Plus, the new additions to collectible armor and weapons -- such as a quickly earned pistol called the Vestian Dynasty that's super speedy and surprisingly powerful -- should give returning fans plenty of reason to dive back in for a few weeks. It feels perhaps a little low on truly original content (a new planet or moon to explore would have been nice), but Destiny: House of Wolves is a step in the right direction for Bungie's blockbuster shooter.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the impact of violence in media. Is there a significant difference between a sci-fi action game with aliens and robots set in space and one where players battle humans in familiar, earthly locations? Explain.

  • Discuss the importance of having the ability to customize avatars. Do you prefer to play characters that physically approximate who you are? Does it bother you if a hero's gender or skin color doesn't match yours? 

Game details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love action

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