This week at Bungie, DeeJ is OOF, and I’m answering the questions.
I never thought I’d say it, but I really miss the time I used to spend with you scamps and all of your burning inquiries. Not enough to open an actual real life mail sack on our forums, mind you, but enough to spend at least four or five minutes hypothesizing about the questions you might want to ask us this week, and which questions our old and absent friend, DeeJ, would surely be forced to dodge.
Ready? Let’s dig in!
Q. Is Destiny the most expensive game ever made, clocking in at a whopping…wait for it and place your pinky gently between your upper and lower lip…five hundred million dollars?
For the answer, let’s summon Bungie Chief Operating Officer, Pete Parsons, who actually tackled this scintillating gem personally at E3 when he spoke with GameIndustry International.
Pete Parsons: For marketing you'd have to ask Activision people, but for development costs, not anything close to $500 million. I think that speaks a lot more to the long-term investment that we're making in the future of the product.
Well played, Pete. Wish I could say the same for your abysmal Crucible performance down in the lab on Tuesday. Sorry about your face!
We’re pouring everything it takes into Destiny to ensure it meets our fans' expectations, and our own. Activision is, too. But the budget for Destiny, including associated marketing costs and pizza Wednesdays, is nowhere near 500 million dollars.
Q. Hey, the Ghost dialog in the Alpha was totally final, right?
Hey, we read the same forums, my fictional, question formulating friend! In fact, the Ghost dialog has already been updated for Beta. It will be updated again for launch on September 9th, as well.
Funny thing about Alpha builds…they’re not done. Please pardon our Moon dust!
Q. I can still buy a commemorative Destiny Alpha T-shirt, though, right?
Oh, sure. I bought one myself, and so did a surprisingly large number of fans. We love that you can lean in and laugh with us, and even better, we love that you continue to blow us away with your generosity.
We’re going to allow additional orders for the next 24 hours, so if you’ve yet to snag one, now is the time.
Q. Are you guys ever going to announce the Destiny Sony PlayStation Trophies and Xbox Achievements?
I thought you’d never ask! Get ready to scroll.
Q. Hey, when does the Beta begin?
So, we’ve already noted that the Destiny Public Beta begins for PlayStation players on July 17th. Xbox platforms will open up very shortly thereafter. Everyone who plays will get some good quality time with our Beta build. The more the merrier.
There was some minor confusion earlier in the week around how players would gain access to the Beta. Nothing has changed. The only way to guarantee a spot in public beta is to pre-order Destiny at participating retailers.
You can find the full list, broken down by retailer here:
Q. How long will the Beta run for, and what do we get to play?
Truth be told, we’re still locking down the final details as we speak, dotting the t’s and cross-mapping the i’s. Most of the big rocks are in place, but if you have an eye for detail (and I am told that our community does) then you’ve likely already picked up on some of the clues “carefully hidden” away at http://www.destinythegame.com/beta.
Still sort of vague, I know. It’s almost as if we’re planning to drop all the information you need, and more, ahead of Beta on an auspicious date in the very near future.
Q. Will Destiny have a Collector’s Edition?
It’s almost as if we’re planning to drop all the information you need, and more, ahead of Beta on an auspicious date in the very near future. (Sort of vague, I know.)
Q. Has Destiny officially been rated T for Teen by the ESRB?
Yup! Destiny is officially rated T for Teen. Ben Kuchera over at Polygon did a quick opinion piece on the subject, and we shed a little light ourselves.
It’s a good read, but if you’re just looking for our statement, I’ll slap it in below.
“We’ve always set out to make games that lots of players can enjoy, and to build experiences that matter to people. For Destiny, we didn’t aggressively pursue one rating over another, though. We constructed foundational pillars that have guided development from start to finish. We wanted our worlds to be a place people felt good about spending time in. We wanted our worlds to be worthy of heroes. For us that meant Destiny would never be reprehensible, but rather bright, hopeful, and adventurous. That’s a world that resonates with us, and we hope it resonates with gamers, too.”
Q. Are the Groove Servos Online?
Q. Wait, where is DeeJ?
Far afield, but not so distant and disconnected that he could bear the thought of little old moi having his beloved community all to myself. I have to admit, I do take a small amount of pleasure knowing that revealing those trophies and cheevos will send him into a blind rage.
He works so hard to make sure you’re all well fed. After months and months under the shadow of my censorship, it’ll no doubt sting his bleary, jetlagged eyeballs to witness me serving up even a small morsel of previously-unreleased news.
I want you to know that he spent time away from the sun-soaked beaches in Cannes to send in an update. I imagine he penned it with the curtains of his posh hotel room drawn tightly to insulate his psyche from the intoxicating view of summer just outside his window. Eyes heavy, hands shaking, his delirium appears to have overtaken his good senses, and instead of indulging, he wrote.
“I’m feeling out of the loop,” he said. “Having spent all week long at this business convention, I’m at a bit of a loss as to what about it would be exciting to a fan.”
No worries, DeeJ. While you were busy wheeling and dealing in France, we had visitors of our own here at the studio, right here in sun-soaked downtown Bellevue. Fortunately, they left feeling very much in the loop and not at all at a loss as to what about Destiny will be exciting for our fans.
I suspect you’ll be hearing from them, and us, very soon.
Have a great weekend. Get out there and enjoy the weather. 74 days until launch.