Is Destiny an MMO? Who cares!

As many of you have done, I’ve followed the development and process behind making Destiny with much anticipation; ever since I saw that first video detailing exactly what it was Bungie was planning. I didn’t bother worrying or debating about what type of game it was going to be. Was it an FPS? Was it an MMO? Was it an action game? Was it an RPG with FPS elements? These and other concerns never bothered me, but I was very surprised to see how much of a fuss was made by many people over exactly what it was they were going to be playing come September 9th.

For most of the life of video games they have been defined by their genre. Call of Duty is an FPS, Gran Turismo is a racing game, Tomb Raider is a third person action game, Elder Scrolls is an RPG, ARMA is a military sim, etc. This is still engrained in the media and most of the websites that we all read.

Screenshot from Borderlands
Screenshot from Borderlands

As humans we like categories, and we like to pigeon hole things into specific genres. It’s just what we do as a species, and something that I don’t think can ever be really changed about ourselves. However, one game that did bridge the gap between two different genres was Borderlands. Here was a game that had all the classic hallmarks of a shooter but also the loot hunting, character upgrading, and XP gathering elements of an RPG.

Here was a game that seemed to transcend genre types and in my opinion was much more fun because of this fact. I mean, who doesn’t want to earn XP for the things that they shoot and kill, and who doesn’t want to upgrade their gun, armour, ship, or special ability? Admittedly it is difficult to make a game that shares many traits of other genres, but Borderlands shows that it can be done, and it can be done well.

Destiny is what it is

In my opinion Bungie made a mistake by referring to Destiny as a shared world shooter. It obviously is a shared world shooter, but it is also a lot of other things as well. It is an RPG, in that you can earn experience and upgrade your character. It is role playing because you assume the identity of someone who you create. It is an FPS because that is the main point of the game; to go out there, kill aliens with awesome weapons and take back what once belonged to humanity. It is an exploration game because of the huge expanses of wilderness that are just waiting for you to traverse. It is a sci-fi action game because of the extraterrestrial worlds you can visit. It is an MMO because of the numerous real people you will run into during your quests. It is a single player game because of your own unique story, yet it is also a multiplayer game in every traditional sense of the word. And lastly, it is a social game because of the people you will meet and the impact they will have on your game, for good or for bad.

Less Boundaries

I think with this new generation of hardware, and the maturity and the expertise that the developers now have with the old hardware, that we have reached a point where genre boundaries will become less and less of a issue. You want a racing game that allows your character to progress and earn rewards? You got it. You want an action game to reward you for deep exploration and searching every nook and cranny for collectables? No problem. You want a simple space shooter that has worldwide online leaderboards and is free to play? It’s there for you.

Lastly, we want a game that you can be played for a decade, that has a deep and intricate story, that has a character that you can call your own, that will grow with you and progress, that has loot that brings out the most extreme virtual greed, that has both single player and multiplayer components, that has vastly differing locales and areas to seek out, that has a vibrant and thriving online community, all from a developer that has a track record of reinventing the wheel and producing groundbreaking titles?

In Destiny, I think that game may finally have arrived.

Check out if you'd like to talk to others about Destiny in a friendly and welcoming community! :)


  • Xenos

    I actually think calling it an MMO doesn’t make much sense because the structure is actually almost the inverse of an MMO. In Destiny you start in your own instanced world and join together with friends. It’s only in public events where you really join with a larger population. In an MMO you and all the people on your server share one world and when you want to go on a raid you join an instanced world. The structures are similar in implementation but almost opposite.

  • knownto noone

    Well, calling it an MMO would make sense because Destiny is an online game with your actions that you take being turned into your campaign. MMO does mean Massively Multiplayer Online game. Destiny is a multiplayer video game which is capable of supporting large numbers of players simultaneously.

    • Xenos

      RIght now the maximum number of players they have confirmed can play together (in public events) is 7, and from the way they discuss it in interviews we’re not talking about a massive amount of people playing together, we’re talking more like what we’re used to (personally I’m guessing at MOST 32, and probably not even that).

      • knownto noone

        Well that is true because Destiny has an automatic match-making system in which takes every player playing the game and matches them with a different party every few minutes so for example: say you are playing with a gamer named Titan_phoenix43 for one minute, within the next you’ll be on a whole other (for the lack of a better word) server, with a whole group of different characters.

  • Squatchmen

    But Destiny’s genre is “A Shared World Shooter” its a new and exciting genre, because the game has a blend of so many different genres, they needed to come up with a new one to at least pigeon hole Destiny into a selection

  • Sway Dawn

    I think the issue is more that it’s ONLINE ONLY. Not everyone has online,

    • Squatchmen

      It’s not online only….

      • Matt

        Actually, it is.

        • TwoTrout

          No, Bungie confirmed it. If you don’t believe me, ask the creator of the website, “TimAuthor”.

          • Matt

            I won’t believe it until I see a source, because Bungie has stated in the past that you can play alone, but still need a connection. “It’s a persistent, shared and connected world, so you will need to be connected [to the internet] to play Destiny” – Pete Parsons


          • Sway Dawn

            No, it does require online, Bungie has already said this multiple times. Hopefully they bring this up either through a launch comercial or interviews. because alot of people won’t be able to play it and they’ll go in accidently buying this game realizing they can’t access it.

          • Squatchmen

            Yeah, never mind, I think you’re right, it’s only online, I just did some research and it looks like that’s the case

      • Sway Dawn

        Yes it is, you have to have online to play this game.

  • Bubbais55

    destiny is basically the everything is awesome game

  • bmatt17

    Your stupid tweet/g+ popup that comes up on every page, making the article impossible to read because it blocks the damn text turns what may be a decent site, into a worthless pile of crap. You already have the share links at the bottom of the article, quit shoving it in my face. This is one of the worse designed webpage I’ve been to in years. Which is a shame, because you may actually have decent content, ruined by greed.