It’s safe to say Destiny 3 won’t be coming next year, but what about a new expansion? Or new seasons? On this bonus E3 episode of Kotaku Splitscreen, we ask the people behind Destiny about that and a whole lot more. (Apologies for the background noise—I had to use backup audio!)
I sat down with Destiny creative chiefs Luke Smith and Mark Noseworthy for about an hour to probe them about Destiny’s RPG elements, story loose ends, technical challenges, cross-play (or lack thereof), whether there will ever be a Destiny 3, Stadia latency, and what 2020 looks like for this franchise.
Here’s a brief excerpt:
Jason: Thinking big picture here. We touched upon this a little bit, but I want to hear your answers. We know you guys have Shadowkeep announced. We know that if Destiny 3 ever happens, it won’t be for a while. Should people expect the same cadence of a fall big release and then smaller seasons over the rest of the year?
Luke Smith: It’s hard for us right now to predict what we’re going to do in 2020, because we’re changing a bunch of stuff in 2019, and part of being a live service game is: put something out, test it, learn from it. Our expand-alone model and a la carte model for seasons is different, and if those things go well and players like them, we get an opportunity to keep doing it.
So we’re taking another stab at learning this year, and the thing I’ve said to Mark a bunch is, we’re trying to make predictions right now about what’s going to happen, and in October we’ll have much better information than we have.
Jason: So you guys aren’t going to know what you’re doing? I’m sure you have ideas - you can’t make this stuff in less than a year.
Smith: There’s some stuff we know we’re going to do for Destiny. We know we’re going to add new worlds. So we can do things like put new worlds into flight, but after Shadowkeep this fall we’ll understand better about what the lay of the land can look like.
Mark Noseworthy: We try to plan for multiple future universes. And like, ‘Hey if this happens we go to the left, if this happens we go down the middle, if this happens we go to the right—what are the commonalities between all of those?’ That’s a burden that I think most of the senior leaders on the project have to carry, this incredible ambiguity. We try as much as we can to not infect the team with that kind of poison, because it’s just devastating to velocity and your understanding of, ‘Oh are we making an expansion next year or are we not? I dunno, what am I even working on?’
That’s one of the hardest parts of running a live game service like this is just not having that perfect crystal ball, and the team wants it. The more certainty and track we can lay down in front of them, the better the experiences they’re going to build... We have a plan and we think it’s pretty good and we’re going to find out from our players if it’s really good or if we need a new plan.