We’ve spoken a lot about incentives in Destiny 2, minimal incentives to do certain activities, we know the problems. The strike playlist is desolate, despite the fact that some of the best strikes that have ever been made are in Destiny 2. People are collecting tokens at record rates, with nothing to spend them on. 6000 Strange Coins later in Destiny 1, I had nothing to show for it other than my rank going up, no unique emblem, nothing.
Ranks don’t even exist anymore, we have regressed that much. The raid emblem doesn’t even track how many raids you’ve done or how many times you’ve killed Calus. There’s not even a raid sparrow or ship. And with the hot button gaming issue being microtransactions lately, thanks in part to Battlefront 2’s launch controversy, I figure it’s a good time to a video I never got around to doing. Incentives, incentives, incentives, reasons to play. Having my time respected. Always progressing towards a goal, these are the things I’m looking for in Destiny or in larger part, a long term investment game. And to me, one of the, if not the biggest reason as to why we have minimal incentives is due to the Eververse store. I’m sure this doesn’t come as a surprise to anyone. The big drama surrounding the Eververse Store originally was the fact that you could get rare mods and then yeah, the whole shader thing, which we’ll talk about. I think at this point, we’ve come to learn that rare mods coming from Bright Engrams basically has close to zero gameplay impact, it might technically be a pay-to-win element, but considering you’re showered in mods all the time and the main glimmer burn consists of buying mods, I think the fuss over rare mods has gone away.
20 shaders, 30 ships, 27 sparrows, 25 ghost shells. None of these things are earnable outside of bright engrams and yet in Destiny 1, all of these things came from activities, although only a handful were truly sought after, not gonna pretend that everything was amazing. Now, I don’t have any sort of issue with cosmetic microtransactions for the most part. They’re optional, fine. My issue is that it feels like anything remotely cool or unique looking in the game that could’ve potentially been a reward for doing things in the end-game has been thrown into the Eververse store. The end game is waiting to fill up that XP bar to see what potentially cool item you can get from the Eververse. That’s the only time I can get excited for items now, although to be fair, when you already have all of the raid armor, or Trials armor or whatever weapons you want, that makes sense. Things that could’ve been used to incentivize doing other activities. No raid ship or sparrow? Guess where that probably is.
But if you think about it, this trend isn’t really any different from the main game: do anything and increase your power level. This is literally the same thing: do anything and get rewarded and there are SOME merits to that method, but not to people who are looking for something more. And with the news that there is potentially an in game either bug, issue or actual deceptive tactic with gaining XP, in which the game allegedly slows down experience gains if you gain too much experience too quickly, that makes it feel even worse. I say allegedly because I have not done my own research on it, but quite a few others have. Bungie has yet to comment on this particular topic as far as I know. We have people with thousands of pieces of currency, Vanguard, Crucible, Raid tokens, Gunsmith parts, legendary shards, with nothing to spend them on. And this is gonna sound like a really stupid question, but what is the harm of placing some of these Eververse store items in the game at really high (token) prices? The obvious answer is: to make more money.
If you hide this stuff behind a paywall, that makes money and an RNG paywall is even more money. And I will say that at LEAST there is bright dust with a small selection of stuff to buy each week, sure as hell better than nothing, not to mention you get rewarded with them every time you level, there are free ways to hit those items. That is where the good ends.\par I seem to remember a quote about shaders, saying that Bungie wanted to incentivize people to grind activities to get said shaders: you want more raid shaders, you go do the raid.
Well, I want the cool looking, Eververse Vanguard shaders, how about you let me grind the strike playlist and buy a legendary Vanguard shader for X amount of tokens per shader? How about selling the legendary weapon foundry shaders at the gunsmith for 100 gunsmith parts for 1 shader or something? Something I’d like to see as well is the option to actually use all of these raid tokens that I get, how about being able to buy a raid shader with my tokens? Or even allowing me to buy prestige packages for 40 or 50 tokens if I have the prestige aura? I realize this adjustment alone isn’t really going to do a whole lot to incentivize running activities as a whole, nor would it be enough to get old players to return to the game, but it’s something small that I wouldn’t mind seeing thrown into the game at some point as a token dump. Not to mention, I imagine as time goes on and players keep playing, something like shaders will be negligible as a reward since people will have so many, something I think Bungie banked on happening to negate some of the initial outrage.
Having some way of dumping tokens into unique collectable items would be cool, but again, I dunno if that does a lot for people in terms of incentive. It’s more of a short term solution, but I just wanted to acknowledge it because I’ve seen a lot of other people do so. Now look, I get that businesses gotta business, right? The price of a video game hasn’t gone up in years, but people are trying to build bigger and bigger gaming experiences, Bungie has probably massively expanded since launching Destiny in order to try to keep up with player demand. You gotta pay these people somehow, right? So, yeah, I get the plight of the developer/publisher, not that every business practice is for the benefit of keeping your development studios happy, let’s not pretend that EVERY microtransaction is pure in intentions. But I can be sympathetic towards that issue and also be not sympathetic as an actual player because the average person cares for only one thing: how good is my gaming experience playing this game? As a person, I am sympathetic to that problem. As a player, it sucks seeing all of the coolest items in the game hidden behind a paywall or an RNG loot box when some of those things used to be earned in game.
If we’re going to talk about microtransactions in Destiny vs. other games, Destiny is pretty tame. *laugh* We’ve walked that pay to win line a couple of times, everything we thought might’ve been pay to win didn’t end up being pay to win, so that’s good. The thing that feels so bad about Destiny micros though, is that we have an incentive problem in the game and all of the things that could maybe be used as incentives are instead used in a store. That is the main point I want to get across in this video. I mentioned this in the podcast I did with Slayerage, but I honestly thought that cosmetic rewards for end game activities was the way to go.
Bungie doesn’t want Prestige Mode activities giving the highest level loot anymore, so the only way to really reward people for doing that stuff is through cosmetic rewards, purely cosmetic. Prestige mode for the raid comes out, the raid armor is the same but it has a purple glow on it and for some people, that’s enough to at least grind out a full set, for some people, that’s not a good reason at all.
I imagine a good chunk of people only care about being max power. I think if there was another set of gear for Prestige or it had raid bonuses on it, especially considering that we’ll be in the Leviathan for the next year in some form, then maybe people would want to run it more, but if you could become a higher power level, people would be a little more incentivized to run it, although that still doesn’t solve the problem of max power not having a lot of meaning because of a variety of things I’ve already said 100 times over.
I also think a big incentive is the ability to show off your accomplishments and while stat tracking emblems can do that to an extent, you watch RealKraftyy do Trials with his emblem at over 500 wins, you’re gonna be impressed, the biggest way of showing off in Destiny right now from a visual perspective IS to have a cool shader set equipped. The way I show off right now is by having a fully Monochromatic armor set on my Warlock, although some might argue the purple glow of the prestige armor is a little show-offy as well, which it is. Honestly, I think one of the biggest problems with incentives is that if you’re an active player or an avid player, the game just moves you too quickly through the power rankings, especially if you’re leveling efficiently. If you wanna look at other MMO-like, investment-like games, they move a lot slower.
They take a lot more time to max out. But I don’t know if intentionally slowing down the power leveling process in Destiny would really do much for the game, at least if they JUST did that. It would take a much more significant revamp to adjust for the slower rates of gear or powering and considering how much loot is dumped on you now, I don’t think people would take kindly to lower drop rates or power gains. So I ask you, Youtube comments, what’s it going to take to incentivize you? What will it take to keep you playing day in and day out? Let me know. Thanks for watching, I’ll see you next time..
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