Destiny: Rise of Iron Impressions – Hands-On With New Crucible Maps

With only a week to go until Rise of Iron, we’re bringing you our hands-on impressions of each facet in Destiny’s latest expansion. Yesterday was our time to show off the first mission, new strikes, and our thoughts on where the story is going and overall design of the expansion based on that initial mission. Next up we played the new Crucible game mode Supremacy on two of the new maps, and the competitive side of Destiny is where we’re putting our focus today.

About a month ago we were able to get an in depth look at the Supremacy game mode itself, as well of two of the new maps, Icarus (the PlayStation exclusive) and Floating Gardens. If you want to get a better look at the mode in general or those two maps, head over there. Today we’re talking about the maps Last Exit and Skyline, rounding out the selection of Crucible maps that will be coming with Rise of Iron

Last Exit

Last Exit is a subway station on Venus that provides both outdoor and indoor gameplay. Tight, narrow passages give way to wide open courtyards. Verticality is central to the experience with ramps and escalators leading into the subway’s depths, and abandoned subway cars requiring players to make sure they are looking up as well as left and right when navigating the winding tunnels. Supremacy is an interesting proposition on a map like this, as crests can tumble down the ramps, off the subway cars, and generally lure a careless guardian or two (me) into traps that will lead to them dropping their own crests. There are interesting little touches, like how the lighting and signage in the subway cars will come to life as you run through the middle of each one. Perhaps it’s something to do with the guardian’s light? It will be interesting to see if there is anything in the grimoire that pertains to that little detail. 

While we only had time to play Supremacy on Last Exit, but I’m intrigued by how the map will play with a variety of other objective based game modes. Game types like Rift, Control, and even Salvage are bound to have their own specific areas of engagement. Where Supremacy was largely focused on the central areas and tight corners, the objective based modes will likely pull combat focus to the more open areas. It’s all conjecture based on a couple of runs through Venus’ subway system, but I’m eager to see how the meta of this map evolves on release.


Skyline is an abandoned Clovis Bray facility on Mars. While it’s not visually much different from other Mars maps, holding the same tan sand and gray futuristic industrial setup, it’s somehow a more interesting map than any of the other Mars locations in PvP. It’s open design is littered with obstacles and curving walls that make checking your corners more difficult than other arenas. Perhaps it’s just the newness, being something I hadn’t played before, or maybe it’s the layout and design of facility being far better than the likes of Blind Watch, Firebase Delphi, and Black Shield. It’s the extremely symmetrical nature of these maps that make them less than interesting, not to mention the sea of doors that each holds. Skyline does have the doors that slow the flow, but the asymmetrical nature makes for much more intriguing engagements throughout. 

Much like Last Exit, we didn’t get a chance to play anything other than Supremacy on Skyline, but with a much more open setup, Skyline seems more fit to the objective type game modes that will see 12 players scrambling for individual points, but again, it will be up to the community how these get played and the strategies that everyone discovers. As with my take on the first mission, my final review of Rise of Iron will offer more insight once I’ve had a chance to play more of the game when it’s released. Stay tuned tomorrow though, because we’re closing out our week of Destiny: Rise of Iron impressions with a tour of the Plaguelands, Felwinter Peak, and the Archon Forge.

Destiny Rise of Iron was played at a preview event in the Bungie studios. Travel was accommodated by Activision for this event.