2014’s release of Destiny came after years of development, following Bungie’s Halo: Reach in 2010, culminating in what many thought was a technically sound but ultimately flawed game. Reports of the story being scrapped and revamped in the summer of 2013 turned out to be true, as publisher Activision delayed the game to its eventual release date on September 9th.
Even with criticism of the game, and many disappointed fans scratching their heads over how such an acclaimed developer released a game that had little story, the game was still a financial success. After court documents leaked following Bungie composer Martin O’Donnell’s lawsuit, it was revealed the title sold a staggering 6.3 million copies in its first month – which is especially impressive for a new IP. Now, following other leaked documents from 2012 that confirmed Activision planned to release a Destiny sequel two years after the original, it looks like the plan may have changed.
According to a report from Kotaku, citing individuals familiar with company happenings, higher-ups at Bungie have chosen to delay Destiny 2 from its initial September 2016 release – into 2017. Added to the initial delay of Destiny, news of Destiny 2‘s delay certainly calls into question whether Bungie is still on a “ten-year plan” (e.g. a rumored breakdown of when fans could expect subsequent Destiny sequels and expansions). The report also suggests that this delay news is a relatively recent development – as some employees did not know of the delay until yesterday (from the time of this writing).
Assuming Destiny 2 isn’t arriving until 2017, which is still unverified for now, the effects of a delay on future content will be the most pressing issue the developer will have to solve. Since the next full game release was scheduled for fall 2016, now Bungie has to fill this year with enough content to keep players happy until 2017 (and beyond). With High Moon Studios reportedly helping to develop Mars content for the next game, Bungie might have enough manpower to inject smaller expansions into The Taken King platform through the current year. After all, the developer has made-good on their promise of regular updates from the live team – which, as recently as this week, announced a Valentine’s Day event – and a larger content drop sometime in the next few months.
Lastly, Kotaku also indicated that the game would eventually see Halo-esque custom game types coming as well – called “Dares of the Nine” (a reference to Destiny‘s mysterious firstborn Awoken “The Nine”). If Destiny 2 is delayed, players will certainly hope regular updates are ongoing – as previous content gaps undercut fans’ activity and enthusiasm. With over 20 million players, Activision will likely be putting a lot of pressure on Bungie to keep the content flowing; hopefully, the studio is up to the challenge and doesn’t cut corners with incomplete or half-baked stopgaps.
Destiny launched in 2014 on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One – followed by The Taken King expansion in September 2015.