Destiny 2 Lead Says They're Trying To Fix The 'FOMO' Problem

Screenshot: Kotaku, Destiny 2

In a new Director’s Cut blog post over on Bungie’s website, Destiny 2 director Luke Smith wrote that the studio wants to change how the game’s three-month seasons filled with time-limited activities work in the future so players don’t feel like they’re constantly missing out on stuff when they’re not playing.

“This year’s version of Seasons has too much FOMO [fear of missing out] in them,” Smith wrote in the post. “We want to fix this, and next year’s Seasons will have less.”

Destiny 2’s current Season of Dawn includes exclusive armour sets and weapon mods that won’t be available once the season ends on March 9. It also centres around a quest to rescue Saint-14 some of which appears to be set to expire then as well. The previous season, which ended in December, had included an activity called Vex Offensive, which was then removed when the Season of Dawn began.

Saint-14 appeared in the Tower mid-season whether players rescued him in time or not. (Screenshot: Kotaku, Destiny 2)

He went on:

“Because we aren’t spending our development resources and time as well as we could, we’re talking about moving away from creating Season-bespoke private activities and instead using that time and effort to build themes that aren’t just represented by a marquee event that will fade away, but rather to inject these Seasonal themes into more of the game. Like we continue to evolve the world’s narrative, we could invest more in the evolving world of our public spaces and take further efforts to evolve Destiny 2’s core activities.”

Smith used Season of Dawn’s Sundial activity as one example. Currently, it’s one of the only modes that rewards players with new gear. Once this season ends it will be gone. As a result, some players feel discouraged from running activities outside of the Sundial while anyone who comes in after Season of Dawn ends will have missed out entirely.

One alternative Smith laid out was to focus more on evergreen story quests that players can complete at their own pace and return to even after being away from the game for some time. “Imagine instead that Seasonal questlines like ‘Save a Legend’ didn’t go away in the following Season, but instead existed until the next Expansion releases,” Smith wrote, referring to Season of Dawn quests involving the character Saint-14. “That way, as players drift in and out of the game, there’s a bunch of content building up for them to play when they return.”

Players who missed exploring the Corridors of Time last month no longer can. (Screenshot: Kotaku, Destiny 2)

For the last couple of months the Destiny subreddit has been littered with posts by players who say that FOMO has soured their relationship to the game. This season’s Corridors of Time puzzle was a good example of why. Immediately after players successfully worked together to solve one of the game’s biggest mysteries ever, Bungie made the resulting exotic weapon quest available to everyone whether or not they completed the puzzle themselves. The game was marching forward regardless if you played, giving many the feeling that they’d missed out on something they would have liked to experience for themselves. Then the studio announced the Corridors of Time location itself would disappear by the following week. Anyone who wasn’t around during that two week window would miss out on the event. Forbes writer Paul Tassi characterised it as “weaponised FOMO.” Making quests like these accessible to players across an entire year would certainly help open up some of Destiny 2’s best moments to more people and leave them feeling less like they need to treat the game like a part-time job.

While these larger shifts in the game aren’t due to arrive until it heads into its fourth year next summer, Smith did outline some more specific improvements players can expect as soon as Season 10 begins next month. First off, Bright Engrams, which grant players random cosmetics and cost TK, will no longer be purchasable. Players can still earn them by levelling up the season pass. Second, the game’s questlog which is currently a mess of old and new objectives, will get cleaned up and organised by task. And third, while the much requested Faction Rallies aren’t coming back, the loot from them will return to the legendary engram pool.

None of these things will do much to address Destiny 2’s struggles with FOMO in the nearterm but having an expanded wardrobe to grind toward is never a bad thing. I’m willing to dive back into grinding Ordeal strikes if they’ll get me that Sovereign Lion New Monarchy set I’ve long coveted. 


Comments

    Fear of Missing Out is a problem that needs to be addressed. Sometimes there isn't any point in going back to a live service game because you took a break, so you might as well never play it again.

      They won't remove it, though... it's intended to keep people on the hook. They WANT people to feel FOMO... just not be so overwhelmed by it that they decide the easiest option is to just stop logging in.

      FOMO falls within the 'Fun pain' design goal as the industry's monetization experts call it. And it's a fucking cancer on the industry.

      Man, I was away for over a year. Came back and there was SO much new stuff to play. It was absolutely worth coming back for. I missed very little, and what I did miss wasn't anything I was upset about.
      I don't understand how being worried about missing out is going to stop you playing. If nothing else, that means you definitely miss out?

    I've been hard back into Destiny 2 lately, and it's definitely the best its ever been right now. Finally delivering on the promise of all those years ago.

    Cleaning up the quest log would be great, though. While they're at it, they can remove the arbitrary limits on number of quests and bounties you can carry.

      RIGHT?! Just let me take all the quests and bounties already and do them all at once.

    One problem with the seasons is that they're trying to squeeze 4 "seasons" a year in, while having those "Seasonal Events" too. So the most recent "Season of Dawn" had barely started when suddenly the Xmas/Solstice seasonal event was on, and the Halloween event had just finished. So there's a flood of time limited activities, and instead of FOMO some players just can't be bothered.

    I don't think it would change their model much to go to 3 main story seasons a year lasting 4 months or so, and time them so the seasonal events happen either towards the middle/end of a story season, or as an interlude between seasons.

    I'll dive back in to see if there's any story to care about in the next week, but I pretty much skipped playing this season once I'd gone through most of the single player story to play Death Stranding and Cities: Skylines

      Saint XIV had been a lot of fun. This season ends in a little over though, so...

        I played the Saint-14 missions and unlocked the sundial and some of the planet links, did the exotic bow quest and enjoyed it, but after playing a lot during Shadowkeep and the halloween event, Sundial wasn't grabbing me. The Corridors of Time puzzle sounded great.

        The other issue is just about everyone I used to play with regularly has gone to PC once cross-save was enabled....

        Will jump back in to tidy up and see what happens next season. At least the easter/spring event will be a few weeks away.

    I mean, if you're afraid of missing out on stuff because the developers have bothered to make "too much" content (Are we actually come this far we're now upset about them giving us a lot to play?) then not playing kind of means you definitely miss out?

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