The Story Behind Destiny's Biggest Star: The Sky

The Story Behind Destiny's Biggest Star: The Sky

Look, Destiny has some cool space wizards and fancy lighting, but as anyone who played the beta can vouch for, the main attraction of the game's visuals was that sky.

It's not that it's realistic. It's hyper-realistic. It's every postcard and Western movie and motivational poster with the sky on it rolled into one.

Realising this, Bungie's website has an interview up with Mark Goldsworthy, an artist at the studio whose job title is Image Architect. Which sounds a bit naff until you consider what he (and his team) do.

Their work isn't just art, it's engineering. Sure, the skies look beautiful thanks to the colours and imagery, but they're so breathtaking because of the way they seamlessly blend into the game's levels.

The Story Behind Destiny's Biggest Star: The Sky

"We work closely with the world environment art team, iterating and evolving the skies and landscapes alongside the playable areas", Goldsworthy says. "As the worlds develop, so do the skies. We can bounce ideas off one another and react to new work that enters each build. We prefer to hand-craft the landscape and cloud arrangements rather than use large, static photo wraps."

Being hand-crafted, and not just a single huge image, means that the sky can shift and transition just like a real one. "Sky and atmosphere really help establish the mood. The sky needs to be dynamic. It's made of many individual components that move and change as celestial bodies travel from horizon to horizon."

That all takes a lot of work, work you'd probably never appreciate were it not given a shout-out like this, so if you're into how pretty the skies are and want to learn how they were actually made, be sure to read the full interview.

To see the larger pics in all their glory (or, if they're big enough, so you can save them as wallpaper), click on the "expand" button in the top-left corner.

Fine Art is a celebration of the work of video game artists, showcasing the best of both their professional and personal portfolios. If you're in the business and have some concept, environment, promotional or character art you'd like to share, drop us a line!

The Story Behind Destiny's Biggest Star: The Sky
The Story Behind Destiny's Biggest Star: The Sky
The Story Behind Destiny's Biggest Star: The Sky


    The only bits I had a bit of an issue with were the Hive & Fallen ships appearing (out of warp or something?). They looked a bit out of place, but then I guess I don't know how it should look :D

      I actually found those ships to be quite interesting, and can't wait to learn the whole story behind them. They weren't exactly coming out of warp, they were passing through greenish singularity-looking portals, as if they were bending space itself. Kinda like Nero's ship in Abrams' Star Trek.

    Absolutely beautiful! I am forward to play this game, just wish they can get rid of the friends mandatory raids...

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