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14 September, 2014

Bungie's Destiny Companion App - Is It Any Good?


With the arrival of next-gen consoles in 2013, you were hard-pressed to find an article about an upcoming triple-A release without being told about its accompanying "second-screen" experience, and how these were going to revolutionise gaming. Whilst there have been some nice ideas brought forward - with apps released alongside Call of Duty: Ghosts and Watch Dogs - none have yet garnered a reputation as a must-have companion. 

With last week's release of Bungie's much-hyped Halo follow up Destiny, we've seen yet another companion app find its way to the App Store. So what does it do? And is it any good?

Thankfully Bungie has steered clear of trying to provide any sort of second-screen experience that requires gamers to evolve a third arm before it becomes manageable. Instead, The Destiny Companion sits as a non-essential, but useful and thoughtfully designed, addition to the main game. 

Visually it captures the hard sci-fi feel of the game with its subdued, but not bland colour palette, and clean, easy to manage menu system. Within the app players have access to regular news from Bungie, regarding in-game events, updates, patch notes and easy access to the game's forums.

There is a fantastic Grimoire, presented as a collectible card set with great art work on one side, and flipping over to reveal informative blurbs about Destiny's lore, tips and general knowledge. It's beautifully presented, providing great incentive to explore and collect. 

Functionally, players have hands-on access to their weapons and equipment, with the ability to change your set-up, which then reflects within the game itself the next time you load it up on your console. How often you would really use this function I'm not sure, as it is quicker and easier to manage your equipment within the game proper, but it is a nice way to be able to consider and compare weapons and armour in your downtime.

There is a tonne of stats that tell the story of your successes and failures in numbers. All your story missions and competitive runs in the Crucible are displayed such as kills, deaths, assists, scores etc. Again all of this is presented in a very easy to read, clean style and accompanied by some great art work depicting where the mission was carried out. It's a great way to measure up your adventure with friends in the real world.

Whilst the Destiny Companion doesn't really add anything essential to the game, it is a nice accompaniment, tastefully designed and a joy to navigate. The collectible card system of the Grimoire alone is definitely worth the 27MB download.

The app is free and you can grab it right here.

Garry Balogh

   - Destiny Companion
   - Call of Duty Companion
   - Watch_Dogs Companion: ctOS Mobile

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