When most gamers think of a massive multiplayer online (MMO) game, they picture in their minds a vast environment with almost endless quests and activities. As a result, when Bungie announced they were developing a sci-fi shooter MMO – Destiny – players were understandably excited for the prospect of welcoming a true MMO to consoles.
Unfortunately, when Destiny made it into players’ living rooms, they found the playable area was far smaller originally expected. Turns out it was also far smaller than Bungie had anticipated, at least according to Rob Adams, Destiny's Lead World Artist. In Bungie’s “ride along” video yesterday, DeeJ (Bungie's Community Manager) and Adams talked with the Dads of Destiny about many aspects of the game, including the amount of playable real estate.
During the discussion, Adams responded to a question about how the size of the Cosmodrome compares to what the team had originally envisioned.
“There’s a lot of stuff that didn’t make the cut. I think our original vision for this was something about five-to-ten times bigger, geographically, and our eyes were way bigger than our stomachs.”
According to DeeJ, it seems the original vision was also too much for the engine to handle – or at least as far as Bungie was able to stretch it at the time. Additionally, it's good to keep in mind that Bungie was making Destiny for both last-gen and next-gen consoles, which meant they had to take into account the limitations of the PS3 and Xbox 360 when developing the game. Of course it’s also possible that the cause wasn’t a software issue at all, but a business decision. As some gamers have suggested, publisher Activision may have pushed for a smaller world in order to reach their intended release date.
Whatever the reason, the good news is that bigger areas may still be in the cards for Destiny. During the ride along, Adams also confirmed that he and his team are looking for ways to expand the worlds closer to the original goal.
“There’s a part of me that wishes we could have five times as many players in a space, and have three-to-five times the real estate, it’s just a matter of working with the engine and working with the consoles over time to try to get closer to that dream.”
Even if the current areas of Destiny don’t reach the size Adams and the players would like, there’s still an opportunity for Bungie to make upcoming DLC areas larger and more discoverable. And if all else fails, we expect Bungie will make note of this for Destiny 2. Hopefully, though, we won’t have to wait that long to see bigger areas.
What do you think about the size of the Cosmodrome and the other areas of Destiny? Do you think we’ll see them get bigger, or will we have to wait for Destiny 2? Share your thoughts in the comments.