The long-awaited announcement of Bungie’s post-Halo epic has arrived, and it showcases a game that’s as ambitious as it is intriguing. According to the developer, it’s not an FPS, and it’s not an MMO, despite involving elements of each. However, given the fact that the game is experienced from the first-person, it’s what we’d call an FPS with online elements. But to describe it as such would be a disservice to the enormity of the project.
Like Halo, Destiny features a futuristic world with characters and weapons that any fan of Bungie’s previous flagship series should feel right at home with. First and foremost, the game is a shooter. You’re out to help save the world, but not as a lone hero. No – despite not being a true MMO, Destiny features persistent online elements, and the actions of the players is what helps decide the direction that the game will take. It’s not a new concept, but it’s an interesting one, because whenever the developer itself is unsure of what’s to come, that makes things pretty exciting.
It’s this mechanic that leads Bungie to call the game a “shared world shooter”. Similar to a game like Borderlands, you’ll be able to sync up with friends to go kick ass with, but you won’t simply find them lingering around in the world like you would with an MMO. Likewise, because of its online elements, it seems that the weather, time of day and other factors will remain the same across the game world for everyone at any given time – even if you’re off playing by yourself.
Bungie doesn’t want Destiny to simply remain a game that you turn on whenever you feel like playing. Rather, it wants you to become immersed in it. It’ll offer features to use online away from the game, and on your mobile phone. You can sync up with friends while on-the-go and then join forces when you get home and log in. Perhaps we’ll even see the ability to swap loot when out of game. If one thing’s for certain, Bungie wants you to be thinking about Destiny a lot.
Perhaps the most ambitious aspect of Destiny is the fact that Bungie claims its story would take 10 years to tell. If the interest in the series lasts that long, then it stands to reason that we would see the game (and expansions) last for 10 years. While not atypical for an MMO, it is for a game like this.
As interesting and exciting as Destiny is, though, it looks like PC gamers will be sitting on the side-lines once again. It’s a pity, too, given that this game seems perfect for the platform.
Destiny Developer Video Documentary
A release date has not been announced, but it’s expected that we’ll see the game launch at the end of the year, or early 2014. For further reading, I’d recommend checking out the coverage at Kotaku, Joystiq and Shacknews.