Bungie’s “Destiny” was the most anticipated game of last year, but it fell short of its immense expectations. But, critics might need to visit their initial reviews.
After several updates, including the biggest one arriving this week in the 1.1.1 patch, Destiny is now a much different game than it was when it launched in September.
Not only is the game significantly better, it might be one of the best games I’ve ever played. It’s heart-pounding and utterly addicting. And the reason “Destiny” is so much better is why I’m incredibly optimistic for the future for all video games.
Think back a decade or two — maybe you had a Nintendo 64, or a PlayStation, or an Xbox. When you bought a new game, unless it was a physically defective disc or cartridge, any bugs or glitches in the game were there forever. There were no over-the-air updates, no downloadable content, and no bug fixes.
These days, it’s a much different story. Since mobile games have come along, offering the ability to push updates to all players at once, game makers now realise their games aren’t set in stone anymore. And Bungie’s “Destiny” is the best example I’ve seen yet of this concept coming to living room games.
“Destiny” wasn’t a bad game when I first played it — when I first dove in, I played the game for five straight hours, proclaiming it was one of the best games I’d ever played. But my love affair ended quickly: I started noticing more omissions, issues, and inconsistencies. At times, due to the game’s mechanics, I felt like I’d been cheated, though it was no fault of my own. It wasn’t fun.
But then, around early January, I returned to “Destiny” after urging from my older brother, who insisted the game had changed for the better after the latest update with new content and a few fixes.
Since that time, I’ve paid attention to Bungie’s weekly blog posts, and the Reddit community’s “DestinyTheGame” subreddit, where people share their exploits, their foibles, complaints, and ideas. Thanks to all of these resources, Bungie’s developer team has been keenly aware of the game’s issues, and as a result, they have been able to update “Destiny” to accommodate fans’ wishes and alleviate some of the game’s biggest gripes through game updates.
And you know what? This system really works.
Most “Destiny” players on Reddit, for instance, have been singing Bungie’s praises this week after the company’s major 1.1.1 patch, which balanced out weapons and even introduced a vault system that lets you easily exchange gear between all of your characters without even opening the game — you can do it all on a smartphone or computer.
It’s easily one of the game’s most useful features, and it didn’t exist before this past Wednesday.
Personally, I’ve never been so addicted to a game as I am with “Destiny.” It’s not a perfect game, not just yet, but I know it has the potential to be — regular updates and blog posts from the company constantly keep the game feeling fresh, and there’s a whole timetable for new content on the horizon.
“Destiny” proves this isn’t the age of static video games anymore: Like mobile game makers, console game developers can now actually have a say in how their games evolve over time, to attract new users and accommodate veteran players. Hopefully other game makers follow Bungie’s lead in this regard.