As a franchise consisting of only two games, Destiny maintains a love-hate relationship with many, myself included. Since the first game launched in 2014, Destiny has experienced countless missteps that have left the community of loyal fans feeling taken advantage of, or at the very least, overwhelmingly disappointed. Unfortunately, the latest Season is no exception.
Yesterday, Bungie launched its 10th season of content, the ‘Season of the Worthy’, which initially, had many players hyped surrounding the return of Ana Bray and Rasputin to the storyline. Seeing Zavala in action in cutscenes was also exciting, and the return and inclusion of Trials of Osiris (Destiny 1’s signature weekend competitive PvP mode) to D2 seemed quite promising. However, fans quickly noticed within just a half-hour of playing the new season that Bungie had once again taken one step forward and about a dozen steps back.
“It honestly feels like Destiny has been in a slow (or not so slow decline) since they parted ways with Activision.“
Season of the Worthy supposedly featured a variety of new weapons, activities, and quality of life changes that were to add to the “evolving” world that Bungie promised they are constantly working hard to deliver. Instead, what fans got was a shock (that doesn’t surprise me, honestly) when they found that everything new was nothing more than just reskinned or recycled assets. But that’s not all. The community had been asking for a relatively simple feature that would allow players to toggle off and on the tracked stats that were found on emblems (such as how many medals earned, kills, difficult activities beat, materials donated, etc.). What players actually received was that the stats were wiped out completely with no way to get them back and thus having nothing to show for the countless devoted hours any given player dedicated to a certain activity (one player donated two million fractaline last season). But the disappointment doesn’t stop there as players were overwhelmed with disappoinment when they noticed a bunch of missing features, functions, items, and of course that new content wasn’t exactly “new”. Here is a rough summary of what this season has shown us thus far in just under 24 hours:
- Three years of trackers deleted. Despite Bungie’s ‘you had to be there’ philosophy, there is now nothing left to show that you were actually there.
- Perk synergy is impossible with the new activity weapons. The guns were designed intentionally so that you would not be able to roll a reload perk and a damage perk on the same gun, thus making ‘god rolls’ something that wouldn’t be possible on any of the guns.
- There are only four new guns with the new activity. Not that it matters, since you probably wouldn’t use any of these new weapons that much now that they can’t roll with synergizing perks. It just makes the new activity extra useless since there is nothing to chase after.
- The activity is a reskinned obelisk. This is pretty much my biggest gripe with the game. Everything new to a season is just a repackaged activity with a different name and coat of paint. And Destiny has always been this way. Even the Black Armory activity was nothing more than throwing charges, something that stands out as literally the only mechanic the game has ever had (besides slamming the charge, which is pretty much the same thing).
- Trials armor and weapons are also just reskinned from D1. This is the Bungie way. Deliver half-assed content in D2 that people hate, only to bring back D1 content that people loved to fill the holes and gaps where fresh, new content should be. Then reward us with the same weapons and cosmetics we already earned either in a previous season or the previous game.
- No new ritual weapons. Typically, a new season meant that there were pre-Masterworked weapons that players could grind for by playing a certain activity or doing an excessively long grind. Unfortunately, Bungie removed those in favor of… nothing. They took them away with no explanation and didn’t replace them with anything else.
- Strikes have not gotten a refresh, and there is no unique Strike loot to go after, even in the newer Strikes. Which is because…
- All the best cosmetic items are once again found only in Eververse. Seriously. This season has roughly $150 worth of new cosmetics that are Eververse-exclusive. On top of that, many of the items reflect activities that are already in the game, which appears to suggest that loot that should be earnable in a Strike or Nightfall can only be earned if you pay for it with real money.
- No Vendor Refresh. This is a serious problem. In D1, Vendors got refreshes every week with different perks on the guns they sold. Then with each DLC, they got new weapons entirely.
- Open-world armor, including the ones that Bungie abandoned and brought back for this season, can’t use seasonal mods, making them far less viable. Meaning that while it’s nice that they are in the game, they are essentially useless in many cases.
- SRL will never come back, according to Bungie.
- Factions are also likely never coming back, also according to Bungie.
- No New Raids or details on when we can expect another.
- Most of the season’s content is just excessive bounty farming. See below.
As with most seasons, and literally why I stopped playing the game, 90% of the new season’s content is just replaying old stuff and bounty farming. Over and over and over again, I get the same bounties with the same mundane, mindless task of killing x with x weapon, possibly on x planet. Over and over again I have to go to the Tower, pick up more bounties, find out I ran out of Glimmer to pick up more, then head back to a planet that I have been to hundreds of times with no changes or nuance from season to season to farm more Glimmer just to go back to the Tower and do it all again and again.
I get that Destiny 2 is free to play now. But it wasn’t always that way. I am still super raw over the fact that players like myself stupidly and naively purchased the collector’s edition of the game along with the season pass, and four additional seasons only for the game to go F2P (though Seasons still cost and so do major DLCs, which I also bought because I am a moron) and nothing to show for it. There is literally no way to differentiate between me, a paid player, and a player who picked up the game last week. And while this is long since past its relevancy, it still annoys me now that all my progress has been wiped out and Bungie is over here pushing the ‘you had to be there’ bullshit.
The guy behind the scenes pushing all this is lead Luke Smith, and many are sick and tired of his philosophies and appearing in ViDocs looking all high and mighty talking about how much he values player feedback and ‘is listening’ to what we have to say, only to constantly show that he truly mustn’t be when the next season or DLC comes out showing that they ignored us completely.
“I never felt like he had the grasp of what the game needs and honestly i feel it’s a ‘i wont admit i messed up i know best situation ‘ and this is EXACTLY how y1 of d2 cane [sic] to be.“
Destiny ViDocs are always beautifully shot and edited with such perfect timing that it makes you feel like you are watching the next iPhone reveal video or something. But the problem now is that it is starting to look like an act. Luke Smith doesn’t strike me as someone who prefers the quality of the game and keeping players happy over how much money he can squeeze out them and Season of the Worthy feels among the worst examples of this yet.
| Related: Gone are the good old days…
Things have gotten so bad with the game, that the community used to occasionally (but now frequently) points out that things were better under big bad Activision. As it turns out, Bungie departing from them did nothing to serve the greater good of the game, but presumably just stuffed Bungie’s wallets. There have been numerous examples, including the Season of the Worthy, that highlight that Bungie was behind a lot of the ‘greed’ in terms of pricing, heavy cosmetic pushing, and low quality and minimum content for a premium price.
I skipped out the last few seasons because the game didn’t have the magic that D1 had and I thought that it would after all the community feedback. But with the new seasonal model of recycling the same activity over and over but reskinned and referred to by a different name, I just can’t see spending any more money on this franchise. And considering that outside of a reskinned activity, 90% of your time each season is replaying the same old boring content and repeat bounty grinding, I can’t imagine this being sustainable in retaining player retention. I will admit that I logged in last night for the first time in months because I was genuinely interested in seeing what I have missed out on, but since the activity is pretty much the same as previous seasons, and all I could do to level up was repeat bounties constantly, I logged off almost immediately. And it looks like I am not the only one…
At this point, my beloved Destiny is truly dead. The game has taken so many turns away from the direction that was promised and I, like so many others, do not have the time to dedicate to a game that removes new content at the start of each and every season. The fear of missing out is something that Bungie expects of the playerbase, but I don’t mind. There are so many other great games coming and even more great games that are already out that I have put off playing that I really feel as if the only thing I am truly missing out on is being constantly mislead and let down by Bungie. Or, whatever Bungie has become these days.
If you want to get a decent gauge on how the community is feeling about it, you should head over to the official subreddit /r/DestinyTheGame. Then there are the official Bungie Forums, but you would probably be better off staying away from that dumpster fire. As for the subreddit, here are a handful of posts that may interest you, each with well over 1,000 upvotes.
- I hate that I miss Activision.
- Bungie, I hope you’re noticing this season didn’t even have a honeymoon period
- I can’t help but wonder if some underling or even manager at Bungie who actually plays the game is sitting there looking at this sub trying not to get mad at their coworkers and thinking, “I tried to warn you guys.”
- I for one have no faith in Luke Smith at the helm anymore. His vision is consistently the opposite of what the players ask for.
- What the hell is Eververse income funding, Bungie?
- Gone are the good old days…
- Destiny feels like a f2p Mobile game I have to pay for
- I’d happily go back to the old DLC prices if it means higher quality content
- Season of the Worthy? Try season of Minimum Viable Product.
- I went from ‘yoooo new season hype’ to ‘I feel like quitting the game’ in 15 minutes after logging in…