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Can Bungie create its own 'Destiny'?

By Alex Sferrazza
On February 19, 2013

 

No single game series has exerted more influence on the video game industry in the last decade than "Halo."  Its numerous gameplay innovations and robust multiplayer mode have stood as the gold standard for which all modern shooters are judged.  The second game in the series, "Halo 2," laid the groundwork for the modern online console multiplayer experience, years before "Call of Duty" would go on to dominate the genre.

Suffice to say, when the creators of "Halo" start to unveil their first non-"Halo" game in over a decade, you'd damn well better pay attention.

"Destiny" is the title of Bungie Studios' next game franchise. The studio began to pull back the curtain on their secretive project this week. Published by Activision, "Destiny" is to be comprised of four full games and four downloadable expansions released over the span of a decade. The plan is to release the main games every other year and the expansions during the years in between. The first "Destiny" game will be released on Playstation 3, Xbox 360, and "next generation systems" sometime after the end of the calendar year 2013.

The project will be a sci-fi oriented first person shooter (surprise!). Set centuries into the Earth's future, aliens have annihilated nearly the entire human race. As humanity made its last stand, a mysterious giant sphere/moon entity known as "the traveler" appeared and saved humanity.  Following the battle, "the traveler" became dormant and the remaining humans built a city under it.  Under the protection of the traveler, humanity begins to take its first steps back into the final frontier. 

Gameplay-wise, "Destiny" is not "Halo." A "shared world shooter," the game is a first of its kind, a quasi-MMO open-world first person shooter.  Now while the game bears similar features to traditional MMO games, as the world of "Destiny" is large and open to explore, players can play with friends or random strangers, there is a lot of self customization available and the game requires a constant internet connection, don't be fooled: this is still a shooter.  Unlike most MMO games, "Destiny" requires no subscription fee to play, can be completely and totally enjoyed by a single player and has a separate competitive multiplayer suite from the main game.  It is safer to label the game not as an MMO, but rather the next evolution of co-operative gameplay.  

The score for the game will of course be provided by Bungie's own Martin O'Donnell who of course provided the breathtaking music for the Halo series through "Halo: Reach."  Also contributing music for the game is Sir Paul McCartney. Yes, THAT Paul McCartney.  

Bungie has already re-invented the industry once.  We'll have to wait a while longer to see, but lightning might just strike twice when "Destiny" is released. 


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