Long before Destiny hit the market to strong sales, many were unsure what type of game Bungie was making. Gamers had heard the pitch, seen the screenshots, and watched trailers, but many still had questions.
Lucky for Bungie, their Destiny Alpha and Beta tests helped clear up any confusion about what type of experience the game offered and actually helped buzz for the game prior to release. In essence, the Beta did exactly what Activision hoped it would do.
Now that Destiny is available on store shelves, however, Bungie no longer has a beta to help them "sell" their game. That is, they didn't up until today, when the developer revealed their new Demo and Free Trial programs.
Starting today, gamers will be able to download and play a demo (on last-gen platforms) or trial (on current-gen platforms) version of Destiny that will function almost exactly like the Beta. Players will be able to experience all of Earth's content, including the handful of story missions and the Devil's Lair Strike.
Then, if those demo or trial participants want to they can upgrade directly to a digital (or retail on last-gen) version of Destiny without any progress lost. For the PS4 and Xbox One trials, upgrading is as simple as a few button presses, whereas for last-gen it requires some extra steps. Either way, though, gamers should be able to transition to a full digital copy of Destiny with as little resistance as possible. The only real qualification is that players have enough space free on their hard drive.
The Destiny Trial on PlayStation 4 requires 20 GB of disk spaceThe Destiny Trial on Xbox One requires 20 GB of disk spaceThe Destiny Demo on PlayStation 3 requires 6 GB of disk spaceThe Destiny Demo on Xbox 360 requires 6 GB of disk space
All in all, the demo and trial programs sound like good ways for Bungie to draw more gamers Destiny's way. That being said, now that the game is out they might also have an opposite reaction. With the true Beta, for example, many gamers were intrigued by what they saw, but operated under the impression that the content was only a small slice of a larger pie. Then when it turned out that the Beta encapsulated about a fifth of the finished game, disappointment set in.
As a result, we wouldn't be surprised to see the trial have an opposite effect. It might convince some that the game is fun to play but maybe not worth the $60 price tag. Hey, there are always Black Friday sales to look forward to.
Do you think a demo or trial version of Destiny is a good idea? If you had been able to play the Earth portions would that have changed your decision to buy the game?