Crucible School by yetieater

The following is applicable to all first-person shooters, but is written specifically with Destiny in mind. Hopefully this primer gives you something to think about as you continue to enjoy the Destiny experience.

The Fundamentals

The OODA Loop

Observe – Orient – Decide – Act

Know it, live it. The OODA serves as a useful framework for competitive interaction and, by extension, applies to all games.

Individuals who are able to iterate through the OODA loop faster are more likely to experience positive outcomes. The same applies to teams.

Read more: OODA Loop on Wikipedia

Individual Competence

Learn to read the radar

Mastery over Destiny’s radar will give you the upper hand against novice players, and is a must when hunting tougher adversaries. Deep red? Your opponent is on the same plane as you. Light red? They’re not. Run the more detailed radar if you need it, but recognize that you won’t always have that available to you.

Always keep one eye on your radar

If you know how to read the radar but don’t keep a close tab on it, you’re effectively flying blind. In a world of unknowns, it is your best friend and constant companion (almost like Ghost!)

Know your maps

Which lanes are dangerous to push due to waiting snipers? Which corners are shotgunners likely to lurk behind?

Learn your weapons, and pick the right tool for the job

Each weapon has an effective range. Whatever loadout you choose to run, it’s your duty to know which of your weapons will provide you the greatest utility in any given scenario.

Learn your class and subclass

By the time that you enter the Crucible in earnest, you should have a solid grasp of the unique strengths offered by your subclass. Certain abilities lend themselves well in laying the groundwork for a push, while others are better when employed during a retreat.


  • Don’t use a double-jump where a single jump will suffice
  • Move between cover
  • Stay mobile
  • Utilize crouching and sliding, especially when entering sniper lanes


Keep that thing pointed in the right direction, guardian!

In Destiny, as in most first-person shooters, the advantage goes to the player who is able to land the first shot on target. Winning your fights becomes exponentially easier when your aim is already directed at your adversary.

Don’t shoot until you see the whites of their eyes!

Blind firing gives away your position and leaves you with fewer rounds for the real engagement.


Your goal is to minimize exposure whilst maintaining a clear line of sight to your target. The further you are from your target, the fewer steps you have to take to retreat behind cover

Know what utility you have at your disposal

You should know the state of your abilities and your weapons at all times.

Make effective use of utility

Your grenades are worthless if they never reach their intended target. Melee abilities that proc on kills are worthless if your gut reaction is to swing a punch at a fully-armored opponent.

Shoot before you swing

Oftentimes, you can bag a quick kill with one or two shots on target and a follow-up melee strike.

Your melee is strong, but avoid getting into punching matches. Destiny is a first-person shooter, not a fighting game. Additionally, you’ll burn your melee ability charge with the first strike, and an ability on cooldown lacks oomph.

Keep up the aggression

You’ve won the game when your opponent is afraid to face you head-to-head, and you can trump their attempts at guerilla warfare.

Word to the wise: know when enough is enough.

Don’t get caught with your pants down

You can’t shoot and throw a grenade or a punch at the same time. If your opponent is already landing shots on you, and you’re out in the open, your first move should be to retreat and prepare for a re-engagement, unless you know that you can outgun your adversary.

Exceptions apply for sticky grenades, which can be used to punish warriors.


Aim for too much over too little. Make effective callouts. Note especially patterns in behavior that you observe – this allows your teammates to adjust accordingly based upon their own observations.

Learn to read your opponents

Know what loadouts they are running, their habits, their strengths and weaknesses.

You can spot whether your enemy has their super – just look for the pulsating golden border around their nameplate when they’re in your crosshairs.

Maintain situational awareness

Your brain responds to auditory stimulus faster than visual stimulus. See to it that you pay attention to cues as they come.


Work together to take down the adversary

If you play lone wolf, be in position to quickly rotate in the event that your team needs your support. Teamshot is huge. Take the optimum TTK of top-tier PvP weapons and cut them in half or a third. Your fireteam can take out opponents before they can react.

Take advantage of chaos

Chaos creates openings.

Support roaming supers

Roaming supers incite chaos. The worst thing that a team can do is allow their roaming super to get picked before it’s had the opportunity to take a bite out of the enemy team.

Aid your fallen comrades

Leave no man behind

Keep each other’s heads in the game

Tilt affects even the most-seasoned players.

Give your opponents a good fight

Even when defeat seems inevitable, make your opponents work for the win. Winners don’t quit, and quitters don’t win.

Additional Reading

Sun Tzu’s The Art of War
Playing to Win by David Sirlin
Why Mouse and Keyboard? I use a XIM4 and can’t recommend it highly enough.
How to Design a Dedicated Gaming Setup

Finally, play more Rumble!