Destiny Will Overtake Call of Duty As the FPS King

Destiny has a legitimate chance to dethrone Call of Duty as the undisputed king of the FPS genre.

Yeah, I know. People have short memories.

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They don’t remember that at one time, Call of Duty was not the dominant franchise it is now. Entering the previous generation, the idea that CoD would become the dominant FPS on the market would’ve met with widespread skepticism and derision. After all, Call of Duty 3 – a launch title for the PlayStation 3 – hardly qualified as a blockbuster, either critically or financially.

Not long after, people scoffed at the idea of the multi-billion-dollar music/rhythm genre tanking. Guitar Hero and Rock Band were simply too big, they’d say. And yet, in a mere matter of a few years, what was once valued at a couple billion a year fell to a comparatively miniscule few hundred million. Then, it basically disappeared altogether.

It’s a mistake to assume that anything is immune in this industry.

Perhaps it’s Call of Duty’s time to slide

There’s no doubt that Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare will sell a ton of copies. But we’ve been seeing the cracks in this franchise’s seemingly impenetrable armor for some time now, and there’s no guarantee that rookie Sledgehammer Games can turn things around. Bear in mind that last year’s Ghosts entry didn’t fare nearly as well with critics, and overall lifetime sales haven’t set new records. I applaud Activision for taking a new approach to the series, and basically attempting to produce another Modern Warfare. The latter title is what rocketed this IP to fame and fortune, after all.

Still, they’re up against it. Even core cans of the series are calling for something special; something relatively fresh. Can Sledgehammer deliver? I don’t know, but I do know that for the first time since CoD3, it seems like this franchise is on the dangerous “I have to prove myself” train. Sure, Battlefield: Hardline is no longer competition for the holidays, but another hugely anticipated shooter will have been on store shelves for nearly two full months before Advanced Warfare launches…

Destiny is the logical evolution of the old-fashioned CoD multiplayer structure

The entire video game world is going open-ended and freedom-oriented. The days of corridor-like shooters with individual maps will likely start to die this generation. Shared world entertainment is the wave of the future – like it or not – and that holds true for both single-player and multiplayer action. Look at the other major titles for the holidays: Assassin’s Creed: Unity and Far Cry 4 will utilize open world settings for all their game modes, and so will Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel.

This shared-world format will eventually dominate. The fans want more and more of it, and it offers publishers multiple opportunities to monetize the entertainment. There are those who believe that throughout the course of Destiny‘s reported ten-year lifespan that we’ll never see a subscription fee or microtransactions. That’s naivete at its finest. This game is clearly designed specifically to take advantage of such business methods, and one or the other is going to happen. Either that, or you’ll see a continual flood of premium-priced DLC.

Destiny will keep players playing due to its more engaging (addictive?) structure

It’s also true that those who actively participate in open-world MMO-like settings tend to play much longer than those who don’t. That’ s merely by default, as the MMO experience doesn’t ever end, and the linear one does. On top of which, I think it’s painfully obvious that when you play with others, you tend to spend a lot more time with the game. That’s merely a personal observation but I think anyone with eyes has seen the same thing.

Now, we know that core CoD fans love to play a new entry for a full year, up until the time of a new launch. But if they get involved with Destiny, how much time will they actually have? And why bother with CoD when Destiny simply offers that much more in terms of content and endless growth possibilities? You get a few new maps with CoD; what you’ll see in Destiny over the next decade easily trumps those maps.

In all honesty, I think it might be Activision’s plan to replace CoD as their prime moneymaker, as they can’t monetize the online action (a move many analysts thought the publisher would make). With Destiny, they can. Perhaps Activision sees CoD’s downturn and has no desire to stop it…at least, not really. They’ve got a new cash cow, and they know it.


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Fathoms_4209
A gaming journalism veteran of 14 years, a confirmed gamer for over 30 years, and a lover of fine literature and ridiculously sweet desserts.