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When Bungie announced layoffs in October, it spelled trouble for the Destiny 2. At first, it left many in the dark regarding the number of employees affected by the layoff. However, it was later revealed that no fewer than 100 staff were affected. The way the layoff was handled was more criticized with reports saying that some of the employee benefits only lasted till the end of October.

More Questions About Destiny 2’s Future As Player Count Hits All-Time Low

Earlier this month, Bungie released a blog titled “Our Path Forward” where the developer acknowledged that Destiny has not done enough to “surprise and delight” players. However, the developer said “that’s going to change”. In the post, Bungie also said “We know we have lost a lot of your trust”, a sentence that made headlines on several blogs.

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Perhaps, that loss of trust that Bungie mentioned is now manifesting in the form of the colossal slump in the number of Destiny 2 players. The game hit an all-time low in the number of concurrent Steam players since its launch on the platform in October 2019.

A glance at Steam Charts showed how the player count drastically declined in October before hitting an all-time low in the last 30 days with an average of 33,687 players and a peak player count of 57,551. Prior to now, the other time that Destiny 2 had a really low number of concurrent players was in November last year.

More Questions About Destiny 2’s Future As Player Count Hits All-Time Low

Curious about the numbers, we took a deeper glimpse at the figures going all the way down to the time the game was launched on Steam. One thing that we discovered was that, with the exception of November 2020, Destiny 2 usually records its lowest player count for the year in November.

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In 2022, the peak player count dropped to 60,854 which was the lowest for the year too. A similar scenario played out in 2021. However, with the layoffs and loss of trust, this time may be different. The trajectory the game will go will largely depend on the reception from the launch of its next installment and expansion.

Bungie has delayed Destiny 2’s expansion and Marathon

Amid layoffs, Bungie has also delayed the upcoming title Marathon and Destiny 2’s expansion titled The Final Shape. While Destiny 2: The Final Shape is now expected to be launched in June 2024, the next installment in the series will be pushed back to 2025.

More Questions About Destiny 2’s Future As Player Count Hits All-Time Low

The Final Shape is Destiny 2’s ambitious expansion pack that will give a befitting end to most of the franchise’s storylines. It was previously expected to be released on PlayStation and Xbox in February 2024.

On the other hand, Marathon is based on the first-person shooter released by Bungie on macOS in 1994. The game is expected to be a PvP “extraction” game. Although Bungie never expressly said that it would be released in 2024, the studio hinted at that timeline.

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There seems to be a growing concern about live service games. Nathan Birch of WCCFtech claimed that “games as a service bubble is bursting”. Birch made the claim after a Wonder Woman advert mentioned that the candidate should have “experience in helping to maintain a live software product or game”.

Also, Warner Bros. CEO David Zaslav mentioned in the company’s earnings call that they will double down on live service games. However, the studio has denied the news that Wonder Woman would be a live-service game.

Live service games like Destiny 2 are updated regularly and the studio uses different strategies including cosmetics and micro-transactions to ensure a steady stream of revenue. However, Bungie has been accused of focusing more on revenue rather than player experience. The layoff in October was blamed on revenue shortfall.

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Categories: News