With Fire-Team’s limited to only 3 players, it’s Bungie’s hope that these randomly occurring instances will help the world at large seem brimming with life, as fellow Guardians join a shared-world for a brief time in order to help you complete an objective. It can get lonely out there fighting evil, and whether you’re content to run it alone or are part of a trio of well-versed Guardians, Public Events bring your allies right to your doorstep so that you can fight and fall together in bigger numbers.
The Fights Ahead
As of writing this, only two types of Public Events have been revealed. The first is an assault on enemy forces dropped onto your location via a hulking drop-ship, whilst the second tasks you with eliminating a Fallen drill crew sent to your location for the purpose of mining Glimmer. The first seems like a simple wave-based attack with no ulterior objective aside from simply eliminating all enemies in the area. The second though seems like an inverted take on Halo: Reach game-mode ‘Generator Defense’, with players this time assaulting generators, or in this case drill platforms, whilst having to stave off a Fallen assault as you go.
So, based on these two distinct examples, there’s already a sense of disparity between both instances. Hopefully, this will remain the case for the plethora of Public Events yet to be revealed, with variation allowing the Public Event mechanic to stand on its own and remain a strong pillar of the Destiny experience, rather than being something you’ll try once and then avoid thereafter.
A further third Public Event has been teased by those at Polygon, with writer Colin Campbell stating “I spotted a glowing portal leading to a Public Event with a clock counting down to when the fight would begin. It was just an example, but it showed how me and my team could have popped through that portal into an intergalactic cluster-fight featuring multiple teams against a powerful baddie.”
To The Victor Go The Spoils
As the above quote may have suggested, you can avoid Public Events if you so choose. If you’ve just come out of a huge battle with your armour damaged and your weapons in need of an upgrade, you can instead dart right back to The City for some well needed rest instead of putting yourself in harm’s way unnecessarily.
Those who do choose to stay and fight though will be glad they did, with bountiful riches at stake for each and every individual involved in the fight. The personal loot mechanic, which is intrinsic to the cooperative campaign, even extends to Public Events, with each player being guaranteed a tailored loot-drop following a successful brawl.
According to Bungie’s lead engineer Chris Butcher “If you fly to Mars and just plant yourself in one of the public areas, you’ll see people streaming in. You’ll see monsters dropping from the sky. You’ll maybe even see a monster that shows up once a month, that people have only told you rumours about on forums. But that stuff just happens in our world, and it’s pretty magical.”
This leads me to believe that it’s not just about the size of the enemies you’re fighting, but also their significance. Are Bungie gearing up to release a host of rare creatures unto the world accessible only via Public Events? I imagine the reward for killing such a white rhino would be fittingly glorious.
And should you ever decide to embroil yourself solely in the world of Public Events without ever advancing the story or joining the PvP onslaught in Destiny’s Skirmsh mode, then you absolutely can. One of the game’s most telling traits is the freedom of choice, so should you choose to jump from place to place, helping out showers of Guardians in all manner of bloody battles, you’re fully within your rights to do so. This is your world after all, Guardian.