The Destiny 2 Beta offer Guardians the chance to pay the very first mission in the game, one of the early Strike missions, and experience two Crucible modes. The first mode is one we’re used to and the one that’s pegged as easy, Control. The second mode is much more hardcore and is brand new for Destiny 2, Countdown.
In a match of Countdown players are split into two teams of four, which is actually the case for all Crucible matches now anyway. Each round teams switch roles, with one team attempting to plant bombs to destroy the opposition’s bases, while the other makes every effort possible to stop the enemy from planting their bombs and disarm them if necessary.
While most Crucible matches are fast paced and over in the blink of an eye, Countdown is different. The score limit is six, but in order to win a team needs to be good at both attacking and defending, and that’s not easy.
When I was first playing the game mode I found that defending against a team planting bombs was easier than planting the bombs themselves. The levels are built to make it easy for the team attacking to hide and sneak around the defenders, while the defenders have two exposed points where they need to be focusing their attention, and sometimes that means they’re flanked easily.
As an attacker it can be equally hard to reach the points you need to plant the bombs on. Defenders have a lot of cover in and around the bomb points which makes it easy for them to take pot shots at anyone moving in and then move back into cover to heal up.
However, both round types became far easier as I played the map more and more. I can say with total confidence that the more you know your arena, the better you’ll play in this game mode. Even though I wasn’t communicating with other players, we were figuring out which way we were going to take on the points based on which routes we took to them. As defenders this was easy because you followed the one player who went in the opposite direction of the other two to defend that point. But as attackers, the clues are more subtle. For example, on the way to one particular point there are two small differences to the end of the route, one round a corner and one over a small obstacle. I would always move the opposite way to the other player heading down my route because it provided a flanking position against the enemy.
As you can imagine there are loads of little side routes to take, and each one will help you win the round if you learn the map well enough, which is a major part of what this new game mode is all about.
Image Source: CriticalHit