Bungie Partners with NetEase to the Tune of $100 Million

The gaming community has been a buzz for the last few days over Bungie’s new partnership with NetEase, a Chinese tech and gaming company. In a post on Bungie’s official forum, the developer stated that they’ve entered into the partnership in order to move towards self-publishing smaller-scale games in the future.

Of course, this announcement has left many wondering what exactly this means for Destiny, Bungie’s blockbuster science fantasy series. In an effort to alleviate the concerns of Destiny fans, Bungie said the following:

“If you’re a player of Destiny, this news won’t impact the hobby you’ve come to know. Destiny is an experience that will grow for many years to come. We’ll continue to work with our partners at Activision to foster this global community and turn new players from all over the world into Guardians. Our commitment to that world is not diminished by this announcement. We have exciting plans for the future of the Destiny franchise, and you’ll learn more about the next steps we’ll take together in the weeks to come.”

So it seems that Destiny is still secure for the moment. However, there might be more to this than meets the eye. Rumors have started circulating that Bungie intends to abandon/sell the Destiny IP to Activision in order to pursue their goal of developing and self-publishing other, smaller games. Once sold, responsibility for the series will supposedly be transferred to the Activision-owned Vicarious Visions and High Moon studios. These are purely rumors and have no hard evidence to back them up. A self-proclaimed “Bungie Insider” on 4chan described what sounded like a plausible scenario regarding Dsetiny, but since they’re anonymous and on 4chan everything stated should be taken with a massive grain of salt. (This “leak” has, unsurprisingly, been proven false.) It wouldn’t be worth mentioning at all, but the idea they describe is actually rather interesting. What would happen to Destiny if Bungie was no longer at its helm?

There are many out there who feel that Bungie has either massively wasted the potential of Destiny or was never capable of delivering it in the first place. Personally, I think it’s something closer to the former. Destiny was never able to become the incredible experience we were promised all those years ago in the summer of 2013. However, Bungie did eventually manage to grow it into an enjoyable hobby nonetheless. With Destiny 2 though, all those years of improvements and advancements were summarily thrown out the window for no real discernible reason. Destiny grew into a good game. Destiny 2 took a good game and destroyed it.  Destiny 2’s most recent (and best received) piece of DLC, Warmind, wasn’t even developed by Bungie. Instead, it was Vicarious Visions. So yeah, while it might be kind of tragic if Bungie walked away from another big franchise, this time it might just be better for both it and them.

Bungie is in no way a bad developer. It just seems like they lost something important after they walked away from Halo. Whatever that something was, its absence has been keenly felt all throughout the Destiny saga. If they’ve truly lost interest in Destiny, if there really is no passion in it for them any longer, then walking away from it might just be the best thing they can do.

What do you think of all this? Do you see Bungie sticking it out with Destiny or is it more likely that they’ll sell it to Activision in order to move on to something new?

Lede image captured by Hatmonster