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Feedback and suggestions for Destiny 2.
7/31/2014 6:52:54 PM

Question and Constructive Suggestions Re: Player Count

Please could someone from Bungie clarify whether Raids will be playable with 4-6 players, or whether a mandatory number of 6 will be required? In either case, would Bungie please consider at least adding an option to allow two Fireteams of 2-3 people to join the same instance of the Explore game type at the same time, so that average-sized groups of 4-6 friends could at least have some other, more flexible way of interacting within the PVE world? It seems to me that this could easily be accomplished by adding a simple menu option, when clicking on a player's name, to 'Link Fireteams' (or wording to this effect), with the understanding that the leader of either Fireteam could take both Fireteams into orbit and set destinations. That way, when finding an instance/server to join, the game could look for one with the correct number of player slots reserved. Even if this meant that a group of 6 friends wouldn't meet any other players within an instance, or that the explorable zones may at times be too easy with 6 players co-ordinating together, then so be it - you only have to glance around the forums to see that the paramount concern of those cancelling their preorders is that average-sized groups of friends currently have to jump through far too many hoops to even be able to interact with one another within the game world, let alone play through PVE missions together. The big issue raised by the recent article is that Raids have always been marketed as the PVE solution for groups of friends larger than 3 who wish to play together in the same squad, but every new bit of information makes this look increasingly unworkable. For casual gamers who play together more for the friendly banter of a Skype call than for the sake of powergaming, the entire premise of befriending 'randoms', coupled with the improbability of gathering 6 friends of precisely the same (high-end) level together at the same time, may mean that Raids become largely unfeasible in all but rare circumstances. This will make many people who are accustomed to playing in larger squads question whether Destiny is a worthwhile investment of money or time. I feel there is a real danger here of Bungie alienating precisely their core demographic - namely, the casual/social, 'pick-up-and-play' kind of gamer for whom the immediacy of the FPS genre is a better fit, in terms of time constraints, than the deeper investment of time required by most MMOs, and who value above all else being able to play with their real-life friends within the same game. The beautiful premise of Destiny was that it seemed to have the potential to marry the best of these two genres together, allowing groups of friends to swap between traditional FPS multiplayer and a scaled-up PVE experience as an MMO-style party. However, if Raids are strictly endgame, max-level content, then there are many gamers for whom playing PVE with more than two friends will probably never be an option. Based on the level cap within the beta, I'm unclear (perhaps others here have a better idea) whether there was even any kind of 'sidekicking' system in place when friends of different levels were playing PVE together, but it seemed to me that there wasn't. If this is indeed the case, then it will only become more and more impractical for real-life friends to play PVE together, since work and life commitments will inevitably mean that some level up more rapidly than others. This, in turn, would potentially mean that many people quickly stop playing Destiny altogether, since the PVE world is the game's big draw and there will be little appeal to the game for a group of friends if they cannot play it together without somehow keeping all their characters at approximately the same level. Ironically, the kind of communication-based, co-ordinated teamwork that Luke Smith talks about encouraging in the recent article is precisely the kind of gameplay that I feel most people are most looking forward to about Destiny's PVE, and which the superb gameplay mechanics and beautifully immersive world of the beta demonstrated in abundance. However, as Bungie love to remind us, the big USP of Destiny is that 'it's better with friends' - so please, please Bungie, add a simple option to allow friends to join the same Explore mode together. (And preferably I'm sure most would love to see larger Fireteams in the campaign mode, even if this came at the expense of game balancing.) Thanks, and congrats on creating a really beautiful game, whatever number of people are able to play it!

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