This week’s “Now Loading…” segment will focus on the very recent controversy of Bungie’s upcoming title Destiny having one playable destination per planet. The PSLS staff invested a lot of time into the game’s beta, and decided to weigh in on the issue. Please note that each opinion should be attributed to the respective individual and not to the website as a whole.
Chandler: The Destiny beta brought with it many great things and left people with a few criticisms, however, for every complaint I hear, I have to respond with “It was a beta!!” People don’t seem to understand that we weren’t being fed the entire game. We weren’t even being given a quarter of the game! We were participating in tests so that Bungie can make the final release all that it can be. Bungie have already confirmed this to be the biggest game they have ever made, so I am in no way worried about only having one map per planet.
In fact, technically Skyrim is only one map. Grand Theft Auto V is only one map. Red Dead Redemption is only one map. Those games are huge! What I suspect is that we’ll be getting massive sized maps on each planets. Remember, it was a beta that we played, and yet I still got hours of enjoyment exploring every corner of Old Russia on Earth. With the amount of closed doors and blocked off areas, my guess is that the maps we got a chance to see aren’t even the full experience. They said that the moon is the smallest area, and I know people who spent the full two hours of its exclusive open time exploring just one part of it and finding new things. I have no fear regarding the final game. The areas will be vast, with plenty of content– more than we know what to do with, and tons of secrets and things that we aren’t even privy to at this time.
When we get the final game, go ahead and judge it, but we shouldn’t be making a big deal out of conjecture. Sure they’ve stated that content will be added after the fact, but nowhere have they said this will be paid content. Perhaps some of it will release as free updates? Even if some of the DLC is paid content, there will likely be tons of events, strikes, and other missions added to the game free of charge. If you are truly disappointed, speak with your money. Cancel your pre-orders, don’t buy the game, don’t buy any possible paid DLC. I, for one, am quite eager to see the expansiveness of the final game and won’t judge it until I’ve had an opportunity to play it in its entirety for myself.
Cameron: I can understand why people might be upset about this, but sadly, this is where the industry is going. Why should Bungie give you all the content up front when they can come in later and add it as DLC, thus, gaining far more profit to stick in their pockets? Personally, I have never purchased DLC for a game because in my opinion, it is usually worthless. But developers and publishers are having to do this to gain that money back that they are losing from used game sales and increased development costs. I truly believe that even with this news, the world is still going to be big enough to keep you busy for awhile.
Zarmena: I think the problem with saying that it was just a beta is the fact that it wasn’t just a beta. It was also a way of promoting the game and giving players a taste of what’s to come. As far as this issue is concerned, I’m split. I’m not a huge fan of multiplayer and ‘always-on,’ but was willing to purchase the game provided that the single-player campaign was good enough. Honestly, all I did in the beta was go there, shoot, come back, shoot, jump around, shoot. Unless Bungie was trying to test how well the shooting mechanics work, and wanted feedback on that aspect only, the campaign looks like it’s going to be incredibly average and repetitive. Having just one map to explore on each planet to top it off is bad news.
On the other hand, I am neither concerned about the length of the campaign nor the map sizes as long as there’s variety. I am the kind of person who doesn’t have the time to spend days exploring the same map. If you give me interesting and varied story missions to complete and not just an opportunity to dig for loot in every corner, I’m satisfied. Having played the beta, I’m not convinced that it’s worth splashing $60 on day one until reviews flow in, gameplay videos go up, and I can determine whether the campaign is any good or not. One destination per map will only be a problem if all we’re doing is exploring a few large areas and aimlessly shooting around.
That being said, Bungie should have been expecting strong opinions since it put the game out there for it to be played and tested. The judgment, albeit premature, comes with that territory. Complaints, criticisms and disappointments are inevitable. I find it strange for people say that Destiny is awesome after playing the beta, but if someone suggests that they don’t like it, they’re told that it was “just a beta” and that they’re silly for basing their opinions on it. If I was the developer, I’d look into the concerns people have as it can help shape the final product.
Alex: I agree with Chandler here. Fact of the matter is, we don’t know just how much content each planet will have in Destiny. Not only that, but we also don’t know how many planets there are in the final game, how many raids will be available, and tons more. People are way overreacting to this, I think. The base game is $60 and even if you don’t buy the DLC, you’re guaranteed a PvP component, Strikes (at least one for each planet), a single-player campaign that can be played via co-op, free roam and raids. That’s not bad and certainly a ton of content when compared to other games in the genre.
I do understand people want more; but in this day and age, people always want more. Whatever Bungie does, there will always be people who will think it’s not enough. I’d be happier if gamers just waited for the game to hit retail and decide then, or wait for reviews. It’s no use bitching about stuff that you don’t have control over, and especially for something as inconclusive as this. And Zar, the game is a shooter-RPG hybrid, which is like a more polished version of Borderlands. If you didn’t like it, then I don’t think the final game will change your mind since it will entail the same mechanics of shooting, going after loots, tackling PvP, going on Strikes, etc.
Going back to the topic, some people seem to be piling on negativity on Destiny and Bungie in general the past few weeks. Is it Xbox fans hurt by Bungie’s “betrayal?” Or maybe some people are getting sick of Destiny’s super positive response and want to off-set it? I get that people want more content, but maybe, y’know, let us play the damn game first before passing judgment like we know everything there is to each planet?
Dan O: I think people are hearing ‘one map per planet’ and fearing the worst, but it is too early to know if that is going to be any sort of an issue. The real question that needs to follow up this news is; how many planets are there going to be? And how big is each map?
The idea of only having a single location for every planet might not be so bad if there are a dozen or so planets, or if they are really big maps. Also, this could be a good thing as we might end up with a decent variety of locations, all with different enemies and looks to them. It could also leave some room for interesting DLC that could open up popular areas, which I am sure will piss people off as everyone wants everything for their initial $60 purchase. But, the reality of it is that Destiny does seem like it is going to have some serious legs to it, so I doubt many of us will be left really wanting when it comes to the amount of content it comes with. If anyone is really concerned about that, just wait for the reviews and stop complaining when all we have seen is a small slice from a free alpha/beta.
What’s your take on this whole ordeal? Should we be concerned about it or are you waiting for the final game before passing judgment?