On September 17th, 2019 Bungie made the bold decision for Destiny to go to a more free-to-play style franchise. Destiny was restructured with the core game to include all expansions until Forsaken as “free.” This allowed players to purchase the further expansions and season pass at their leisure if they wanted more story, loot, and activities.
At first, this was highly celebrated by the community and in my opinion, is still a great aspect of the franchise. But after Trials Of Osiris relaunched in Destiny an obvious loophole was shown. Players found they could take advantage of the “free-to-play’ aspect of the game to create burner accounts when they wanted to manipulate the game in their favor without risking their years of work.
I am not here to debate on if competitive game modes should be locked behind a cost of entry though, I am here to focus on what will be the point of playing Destiny on November 10th if you don’t want to spend a penny.
With the upcoming expansion, Bungie has stated they will be vaulting all content that we have come to know as the “core game” into the Destiny Content Vault. And though we have been promised that parts of the game will reemerge from the DCV with a freshened approach, we do not know what the more casual Guardians will be able to do while all the missions, Raids, and activities they were granted as free disappear.
In last weeks' This Week At Bungie we were granted an inside look at what the New Light starting experience will bring. Shaw Han, a Guardian patrolling the Cosmodrome, will give you a rundown on the controls, loot system, and interface of Destiny while battling through the Plaguelands.
This is all set to occur before players step foot in the tower and will hopefully bring a more simplistic approach to players looking to start their quest as a Guardian. A ten-minute mission however will not be enough to keep players interested and invested in the game that has captured thousands of others’ hearts.
Scouring through the information we have currently been given I have found that Free-To-Play Guardians will be able to do the following:
-New Player Experience Mission
-Strikes that have already been released
-Patrols and Missions on currently accessible planets and areas
If we go off the current seasonal calendar and assume the activities will stay consistent, we can also assume free players will be able to participate in seasonal events like Festival of the Lost and The Dawning. This is clearly not enough to sustain and grow the free-to-play fan base and will no doubt turn the coin conscious gamers away from Destiny.
It makes some wonder why Destiny went all in last year on this model to then suddenly retreat backward towards a more paid approach. I have a hunch that this could be related to Trials and we may see this as one of the many approaches they soon take to secure the game mode. I also feel that as Bungie is allowing for more Eververse items to be obtained organically in the game they may be pushing for the monetary gain of the game to come from the actual content of the game itself.
Whatever the reasoning may be, we will all have to wait for more information on what our free friends will be capable of as November 10th is less than a month away.
What are your thoughts on Destiny being free-to-play? Let me know in the comments below or @Suttledge on Twitter!