This Destiny 2 article contains no story spoilers and assumes the reader at least knows that characters from Destiny do not keep their levels and equipment in Destiny 2—it was mentioned in interviews and at least one official trailer, so it seems fair to talk about the loss of powers/equipment.
Destiny 2 came out earlier this month and it’s already a hit in our household. I’d planned to buy Battlefront 2 as my shooter of the holiday season, but my wife saw a trailer for Destiny 2 and thought the seven-year-old would like it, so we picked it up and gave it a try. He did not enjoy the opening segment, but now that he’s into the game he’s enjoying it a lot more. This article is for the parent of kids who don’t play a lot of shooters, or who aren’t old enough to enjoy a game for its story just yet.
1. Create their character for them.
The customization options can be daunting to a child who may not even realize the subtle differences between faces 1 and 4, or hairstyle 12 and 15. Once in the game they certainly won’t notice most of the customizations anyway, as your character wears a helmet/hood. I let my son have some input, but I held the controller during this stage of the game. Make sure they understand the difference between the three classes: Titan is beefy and slow (high hp, slow movement), Hunter is nimble and fragile (low hp, fast movement), and Warlock is quick to recover and loves flying (medium hp, medium movement, high recovery, floaty jump mechanics).
2. Play the tutorial for them.
Destiny 2 has fairly simple controls (have a look at Lawbreakers if you want to see a complicated control scheme), so anything learned in the tutorial can simply be taught after the fact. The tutorial has a lot of talking, walking without shooting, and one very slow, not-fun-at-all powerless sequence that lasts far too long. If their first impression of Destiny 2 is freeroam on Earth after the tutorial is finished, they will enjoy it a lot more.
3. Teach them how to revive other players.
Reviving other players requires walking over to a downed player and holding Square for a few seconds. During public events and, much later, strikes, this skill is absolutely necessary. Get them reviving earlier to make later experiences much more positive.
4. Make sure voice chat is set to “Manual.”
Voice chat is an unfiltered cesspool, especially in PvP. Destiny has always been a little less toxic than other shooters, but people still make a point of abusing the Internet’s anonymity, especially in competitive game modes. You can find this option by pressing Options, then go to Settings, and checking that Join Fireteam Chat is set to Manual. I believe it’s Manual by default, but it’s a good idea to check.
5. Play Destiny 2 with them
A game like Destiny 2 is best enjoyed with others, and who better than parents to sit and enjoy a game together? If you don’t have two PS4s, you can still sit on the couch, pass the controller back and forth, and be engaged in what’s happening on screen, no matter who has the controller in hand. This could be a tip for any game, really, but Destiny 2 has some really challenging parts for kids and being able to instantly get help ensures the game will leave a good impression and not fall to the pile of unplayed games that were too hard.