The thriving community behind Destiny has shown that Bungie still knows how to turn an online shooter into a phenomenon. They have outdone themselves yet again, as just hours after the game's expansion, The Dark Below, was released, the first group of players have already completed the newest Raid, Crota's End.
The task was completed by a group of 7 players - known as Invigorate Gaming - in just over 6 hours. Admittedly, the Raid was beaten on the standard difficulty (since the Hard version won't be coming until January). Even so, the feat is an impressive one, since it was Invigorate who previously captured the record of defeating The Vault of Glass first as well.
Veteran players may argue that the truly impressive record completion times and fire team size will come with the increase in difficulty to Crota's End (although the Raid is brutal in its current form), but if the record-setters have brought any fact to light, it's just how quickly dedicated Destiny players are burning through content faster than Bungie can produce it.
That isn't to say that Crota's End was the only major update brought with The Dark Below, and the completion time pays no mind to the increased emphasis on story Bungie is focusing on, beginning with the titular Crota, a godlike being revered by the Hive. With new weaponry and gear, it's safe to assume that players will be just as eager to play through Crota's End until the studio reveals the next planned expansion.
It's a difficult task ahead of the development team: keeping seasoned players engaged with new, more difficult content and overpowered weapons, but somehow continuing to keep Destiny friendly to newcomers (or making the more controversial decision of simply prioritizing the veterans over the beginners).
Whether the mysterious changes coming to Crota's End in January will address that problem, or more fun-focused gameplay like the rumored Racing Mode will help Destiny appeal to the swarms of new players receiving a home console or copy of the game in the coming weeks. And then there's the music lovers being courted by Bungie as well.
Have you tried your hand at Crota's End yet, or have you been kept busy by the other Strikes and loot unlocked with The Dark Below's arrival? Share your own impressions in the comments, and we'll keep you posted as more record-breaking achievements roll in.
Destiny: The Dark Below is available now for PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.
Follow me on Twitter @andrew_dyce.