Destiny to take Bungie through their next phase

The storied developer has finally announced its post-Halo plans.

The original Halo game will forever be marked in the annals of gaming history as a major breakout game. Created by Bungie for Microsoft’s original Xbox game console, Halo was the first first-person shooter to really take hold of the console market.

By chance or design (or more likely, a combination of the two) the game was perfectly positioned to take the lead. It was attractive, fluid, accessible, and dropped at just the right moment to take advantage of a growing console demographic. Starting as a rather small game from a small studio, Halo went on to become one of the most famous and successful gaming franchises ever, and the sole reason that many fans even own an Xbox, but Bungie mysteriously called it quits after Halo 3.

Microsoft took over the license, and commissioned a new studio to create Halo 4, which came out at the end of last year. No doubt work has already begun on Halo 5.

Today, Bungie finally announced what it is they’ve been working on. No longer tied to Microsoft, the now much larger studio has turned its attention to a new setting it calls Destiny. The plan is likely a new franchise of games.

The core story of the setting is a compelling one: In the far future, humanity finds itself trapped on a single world, in a single city, having long ago been only just barely saved from complete destruction by a mysterious alien entity. Now, the remaining dregs of the human race are under assault again, and a hero must rise up to save them.

From the little description we have so far, it sounds like the game is an open-world multi-player First-person RPG (like the Borderlands franchise, for example) which begins on this ruined planet, and continues out across the galaxy. The studio has released this short documentary explaining the nature of the setting, and a portion of their plans for it.

“Bungie defined first-person action games over a decade ago with Halo, and with Destiny they will evolve the genre once again,” said Eric Hirshberg, CEO of Activision Publishing.

Destiny is a world that evolves.  It is a world with wide boundaries that allows you to roam and explore. It is a world where, even in story mode, you could encounter other players on their own adventures.  And of course, it is a world that brings all of this together with the visceral, heart pounding immediacy of an expertly crafted first-person action title.  We are very excited to bring this ambitious, innovative and creative game to players around the world.”

Destiny has no announced release date, and the press release says only that it is not planned for 2013 (despite what the Amazon pre-order page says). So far only Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 versions have been announced.