Can Bungie sustain Destiny's (alleged) 10 year plan?

Like it or not, Bungie's Destiny has made a lot of money. But can Bungie keep up the momentum for future games?

Many years and one generation of consoles ago, a developer called Bungie set out on one of the most ambitious projects of all time. Though people were anxious, they had faith that Bungie would bring about a new franchise that would last for years, the same way that Halo has become one of the biggest gaming franchises ever. And at first, there was faith that Destiny was the next big thing: people loved it, played it constantly, and couldn't stop talking about it. 

But one by one, people saw the flaws in Destiny. And one by one, they turned away disgusted, angry, or apathetic. Eventually, even some of the most loyal fans lost faith in Bungie and Destiny, and no one can really blame them. 

What happened? 

Bungie simply handled Destiny in a way that many felt unsatisfied with. To this day, a sizable portion of Destiny's audience can agree that multiple layers of RNG on loot, the lack of fresh content, and questionable multiplayer design are some of the biggest setbacks in what could have been a great game. 

Take a look at the Destiny subreddit (or if you're brave, the Bungie forums). On an almost daily basis, people are voicing their (mostly legitimate) concerns regarding the game. This is not to mention the countless number of times that people have accused Bungie of outright manipulative, incompetent, and deceitful behavior. Some of the more mild comments tell tales of how friends that bonded over the game just don't care anymore and have left for bigger and better things.

But whatever the reason, a good portion of Bungie's most active audience has become cynical and uninterested, though one can only guess at what the more casual audience feels. 

What about the future of Destiny?

It is hard to say what might happen next, but Destiny simply cannot exist in the state that it is in now and hope to have a future. Currently, Bungie has a cycle where they drum up hype for a new content pack, everyone plays it and says it's the best thing ever for a month or so, and then they go back to hating how little has changed or how everything has changed for the worse.

But when there is no substantial content planned (or at least no new content that the general public is aware of), the hype goes away and people move on, perhaps forever. This is especially true, considering how so much existing content was made obsolete with the release of The Taken King.

A new hope?

If there is any silver lining in all of this, it's that the Destiny franchise isn't entirely doomed. A good start would be to communicate more effectively with the audience that still exists. According to DestinyTracker.com, there are just over 1 million people that have played enough to reach level 40, the highest level you can get in the game (disregarding equipment levels). 

Bungie does take community feedback, which has resulted in things like Sparrow racing and infusion, but lately they have failed to actively engage with the audience. For example, if the Bungie Weekly Updates are mocked for being overly cryptic and full of fluff, then Bungie needs to be more open and direct. Take a page out of 343 Industries' updates and give a teasing picture of what's to come rather than basically saying "stuff is coming". Treat people with the respect they deserve rather than treating them like numbers, and they'll do the same. 

In the same vein, why not add in some features that were highly requested in Destiny 2?

Optional Raid matchmaking, custom PvP lobbies, less grinding and nonsensical mechanics that are clearly designed to keep you chasing a carrot on a stick, more fulfilling content that isn't taken away every time a major DLC release rolls out, these are all things that people want, so why not give it to them? 

Maybe it is too late for Destiny 1, but Destiny 2 can at least build upon what failed in Destiny 1 and maybe, just maybe, people will return to a game franchise that they were once very passionate about.

Published Jan. 17th 2016
View Comments
  • topher339
    I honestly don't know how they'll even make another game. For all the hype and hope they built up, it was little better than Titanfall.

    Great in theory, flawed in design.

    The only thing that makes the game decent is Taken King (assuming you by Taken King and did not purchase the original Destiny). Even that is fairly bare bones and has it's issues.

    They had us expect a grand, engaging plot-line akin to Halo and didn't even come close to delivering.

    When it comes down to it, that is the reason the game failed. It wasn't a terrible game per se, they just had us expecting a whole world more than they gave us.
  • Engela Snyman
    Featured Contributor
    I think the project was far too ambitious. if players aren't passionate about something then it simply won't be able to keep itself up. WoW kept going for so long because people loved it and Blizzard just kept building fueled by that passion.

    They first need to get people to love something before they think about a 10 year plan :\
  • Ryan_7211
    PC designed game not on PC .. Meh
  • Pierre Fouquet
    Associate Editor
    Thing is, there was never any 10 year plan to start with... well in terms of after sales. It was 10 years including all dev time. It took 4 years to make in active development, but there was a year of planning, and has been out for a year now? So that's 4 more years of the game. If they keep going how they are, they will sell 2 more 'large' expansions, and about 10 more small ones and then done... it's easily possible for them to do.
  • shox_reboot
    The only way Destiny 2 redeems itself in my eyes is if it sends us all a message saying 'haha! gotcha, you guys were playing the beta version, here's the real game free of charge'.

    Honest opinion? (I was only half kidding up there though) they cannot sustain the game for 10 years. They can't be like WoW. The difference between WoW and Destiny is that WoW actually made their players happy for a good few years when it first came out, only beginning its downward spiral after WoTLK. Destiny started off by pissing a good amount of its players off.

    Sure, there are people playing it still and swearing by it, but that's because it's the only console RPG of its caliber out there. For now. Destiny can't claim that title for long especially if other games like the Division proves itself to be a better investment and you can bet we will see more MMO's on consoles in the future.

    If they really want to redeem themselves they need to think much bigger. Don't limit the game to an fps. Add vehicular combat to the main stream, add open world combat, add factions that players can give allegiance to and integrate themselves to the story their own way, add space battles (you already have ships)...tl:dr, add more stuff to do other than go here and shoot here.

    Does that make me sound entitled? Yeah, but Destiny screwed around enough. Heck, I spent over a $100 on the game and still didn't feel bad when I traded it in for $15.

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