I am one of those players who gets it. I have wanted what Destiny primarily is for years and years. A co-op multiplayer FPS with the highest quality graphics and mechanics where I and my friends get to be the hero. Almost every day for a year I have been telling my wife that I'm done with work, now I'm going to go shoot some bad guys. Destiny is deeply satisfying in that way. I used to play Halo & Assassin's Creed. I still play Splinter Cell and I'm looking forward to The Division. But in terms of weapons and capabilities, no avatar in existence compares to my guardians. And now with a third subclass, it gets even better. Everything else feels slow, constricted, flat and retro. I wanted you to know that I put in 1700 hours last year because nothing else compares. Destiny gets 90% of my gaming attention. I've reduced my Gamefly from three to one rental.
I also want you to know that I have quit this forum early on. I understand and respect your patience with your customers. You have to deal with it. I don't. As a software developer, I sympathize with you and I have enormous respect for your ability to execute on the core and deliver all kinds of features and fluff as well. But listening to the whinging about fluff is more than I can stand. Today I see thousands of posts about exploits. If Bungie were a business plan, this room would be full of the managers chirping with glee about how to cheat the customer out of unlimited money. I made an ass of myself here over a year ago explaining how ridiculous it would be for Destiny to have Forge or Split Screen. The hating never stopped. Thanks for backing me up on that (heh). But hey, I game with my friends, and I smack the rest down in the Crucible, even when they use the Last Word I get mine in. (A new weapon should be called Edgewise) So in that way I am happy to have millions of gamers to play with even if I couldn't stand them in person. You're keeping the critical mass high and Destiny has never gone dark (although it has gone beaver and marionberry). Keep it up.
The pivot of The Taken King is testament to how well you are running the company in terms of pure, balls out execution. Nobody can really know all of the decisions you all must take, but I know the tradeoffs must be mind-melting. But you stuck the landing here fellows. No matter what the press says (Forbes, really?) and how often they keep the whining alive, you have stuck to the core and delivered. I am exceedingly pleased with the new Crucible maps I'm getting, the new character dynamics within the Vanguard, the cutscenes and even the music, as monothematic as it is this go round. Special kudos for the questification.
I wanted to make a special note as an FPS guy who also has played a lot of RPG but not MMO. Your decision not to clutter up my screen with text and use voiceover that doesn't interrupt my avatar movement is a strength I really appreciate. I didn't know how much until I took a break and played Elder Scrolls Online this summer. I'm even wondering if I will be able to appreciate Fallout 4. I like being boss man in the Destiny world, and not stopping to talk to NPCs who want me to find their lost uncle. Although it would be super cool if within a raid, the game picked the weakest player and made the other five do an escort mission. Just saying. It's what made the randomization change to Atheon superb. My point is that the risk taken to recast the ghost, I'm sure you've heard before, was gutsy and as I read the availability story, necessary. Good for the scanning adds too in TTK. I really, really like the interactive voice work of the Vanguard during my story missions. And by the way, I don't think people who get into the North vs Dinklage debate appreciate how little that matters to the rest of the world you serve in languages other than English. So long as it's not text. I recall back during the beta, how annoyed I was getting stomped on that moon map and Lord Shaxx yelling at me. You won me over. I love more Shaxx in TTK. Thanks for that.
I have nothing much to say in the gun balance meta wars. But something occurred to me yesterday as I was contemplating your need to keep level 1 enemies in the Cosmodrome where there will be level 40 guardians (and beyond in the future). There must be some interesting curves in the game somewhere as you escalate the guardian powers or provide the illusion of ever increasing power for weapons and armor. At the release of TTK, 170 was the new 365, but surely these must be relative scales and not absolute ones. Anyway, you know what I'm talking about, having changed the sponginess of Valus Ta'aurc. That, to me, is a much more interesting problem for the entire game rather than which particular gun does what. As far as I can see, you've finessed it. But I'm wondering exactly how.
I am impressed with how you have tweaked your economies and currencies several times and various ways. I would really be fascinated to see some of the metrics on that stuff and understand the theory of that particular kind of economy in which players cannot exchange or set their own prices. It works, and please don't change it. But the theory must be fascinating.
All this is to say that there are some of us out here who appreciate the hard thinking that must of necessity go into the design and maintenance of this extraordinarily complex creation that you have made. I happen to think that for some fraction of the post-industrial world will depend upon what you have learned in making Destiny work. You might be as theoretically advanced as the architects of the Matrix, but I'm sure you don't let that overwhelm your egos, because you clearly do not toy with or abuse us. I intuit your purposes and principles and I am, as I said, deeply satisfied by the core and impressed with your delivery and execution. You have my investment of time and my admiration. Starside is a pretty good place becauas ultimately, my guardians are badass.