I know everyone has probably seen the stories circulating today about how Destiny 2’s sales are not meeting Activision’s expectations in spite of the up tick created by Forsaken. So I’d like to take this opportunity to point out why I think that is, so here goes: [u]1) Destiny 2 is still not as good as Destiny 1. [/u] Destiny 2, like any good sequel, should’ve taken the solid foundation of Destiny 1, and built upon it to make a game that was bigger and better than its predecessor in every way. Instead Bungie opted to do a soft reboot and destroy everything fans loved about the first game, only to spend the next year slowly trying to fix the game. Forsaken is a major improvement over Destiny 2 year 1 in a lot of ways (but not all), but it’s still a shadow of Destiny 1. A lot of the things that were brought back don’t completely fit. Snipers still feel underused in spite of their return to the special slot (and addition to the primary slot). Bounties feel mostly pointless with the exception of the dreaming city bounties. The mods are still meh. Masterwork cores are far too rare and so having a fully masterworked piece of gear is rare and honestly doesn’t feel worth the amount of materials it takes to do so. [u]2) First impressions are everything. [/u] Anyone who paid attention to the lead up to the launch of the PS4 and Xbox One back in 2013 knows how bad word of mouth can completely destroy a product. Microsoft was set to release an Xbox One that featured an always online requirement, the inability to trade or loan games to friends or family and no used games. As we all know Microsoft eventually pulled a 180 on these things and shipped the Xbox One with none of those features in the final version of the console, but the damage was already done. I remember watching a video online of someone from IGN (I believe) going around campuses and on the street asking regular people if they knew anything about video games and if they’d heard of the Xbox One and the most common response was, “that’s the one that doesn’t play used games, right?”. This was AFTER Microsoft had reversed all of those decisions, but it didn’t matter, word of mouth had already spread and there was no going back. The same thing happened with Destiny 2. Once fans realized what Bungie had done to their beloved series and the backlash began, so did the word of mouth. I still come across people that say things that, “Destiny 2? Didn’t they screw the game up?”. Honestly there’s no going back at this point, they just need to make sure that Destiny 3 is a grand slam. [u]3) The raids just aren’t as good as Destiny 1[/u] All of Destiny 1’s raids are better than Destiny 2’s. You can say that this is opinion, and technically it is, but it’s an opinion shared by the numbers. Last Wish has the lowest completion rate of any Destiny raid and I believe it’s because people are intimidated by it (it took Redeem 24 hours to complete it). The raids in Destiny 2 are way too mechanics heavy. Too much time is spent trying to remember odd symbols or trying to make sure everyone is in a specific place. King’s Fall was a master stroke of raid design. The perfect balance of bosses, jumping, shooting things and puzzles. Same goes for VoG. Crota’s End and WotM were less puzzles and mechanics and more bosses and shooting guys in the face, but if you have to lean more one way than the other, leaning more into the action is always the better bet. At the end of the day the Destiny 2 raids just aren’t as inviting or fun as Destiny 1’s. [u]4) The gear isn’t as good[/u] I had high hopes for the exotics in Forsaken and while some are really great, many leave us reminiscing on the amazing exotics of Destiny 1. First off, rocket launchers are trash in Destiny 2. There’s no other way to say it. Even the Two Tailed Fox was a major letdown. Tracking sucks. They all hold 1 rocket before needing to reload. They just aren’t fun. And why is it that to this day, the majority of the best exotics to ever appear in Destiny were in the base game? The Taken King has a few good ones, but if you ask someone to make a list of their top ten favorite weapons or armor from Destiny 1 or 2, chances are good that most will be Destiny 1 launch items. And I think this is because before the game came out Bungie wasn’t afraid to make gear that was amazing and super fun to use and worth grinding for. It was when they decided to start nerfing everything that things started going down hill. It really says something when all of the best exotics in Destiny 2 are returning Destiny 1 exotics. [u]5) Destiny 2 should never have been made.[/u] Destiny should’ve been like WoW. No new numbered games, just expansions that build upon the foundation of the original game. Bungie’s reluctance to simply go back to the systems that everyone loved in Destiny 1 is a problem. I can understand not wanting to revisit what’s already been done from a design standpoint, but it’s also important to be able to realize when you made a mistake by changing something, and recognizing that maybe you need to to reset back to that original system In order to properly improve upon it. The weapon slot system is a good example of this. In Destiny 1 it was a perfect system that made sense. But while Forsaken’s system is a major improvement over Destiny 2’s horrible system, Bungie’s unwillingness to fully revert to Destiny 1 leaves this weird system that that tries to be everything to everyone but ultimately feels out of place. In Destiny 1 having the one off exotic that was a special but sat in the primary slot or elemental primaries felt really special and fun. I know I went long on this but Destiny is my favorite game series and Bungie my favorite game developer and so I really want to see Destiny succeed. But there have been a lot of disappointing mistakes made in recent years to Destiny that I really hope Bungie is able to learn from. I quit playing Destiny 2 a few weeks ago once I hit 600 because the only thing I had left to pursue were the Forsaken exotics and considering that since Forsaken’s launch I’ve had maybe 10 exotics drop and not a single one was a Forsaken exotic, I didn’t see any point in wasting time grinding for them any longer. And that really sucks to say. At this point Bungie is going to have to learn how to fix Destiny themselves.
Is anyone surprised about this? They made a technically superior sequel that was inferior to it's predecessor in every way except technically. When we told them it was an extreme downgrade from the original, they told us they'd never change it. They only listened to us when the daily player count got so laughably low that they couldn't ignore us anymore. When a Developer/Publisher acts as cavalier as these two did, it's going to take a long time and a lot of money to fix the fandom. Forsaken deserves to be played by every current and former Destiny player. But Bungie/Activision does not deserve to have these customers back yet. I expect that D3 will also be a huge disappointment. If you treat customers like they're stupid, they won't buy your product. The fandom is broken. Bungie broke it. Only time and money can fix it now.