crucible radio bungie interview

Crucible Radio #63 Highlights

Advice from DeeJ on how to get involved or find a clan as Rise of Iron launches:

Go to the place where you are most comfortable – this could be the Bungie forums, one of the many Destiny subreddits, forums on any number of other sites, or even the forums and LFG right here on Planet Destiny – and put yourself out there. In his words, have the courage to stand up and say, here is something that I like to do, and I would like people to do it with me.

The Destiny community – DeeJ continues here and is not wrong – is among the most inclusive, most welcoming, most positive, and most encouraging gaming communities on the planet, and there are a lot of great people out there making it better every day.

Regarding Private Matches, what are they looking forward to seeing the community do?

Derek fielded this one, and the answer is deceptively simple: they’re looking forward to being surprised.

As we all know, and Derek acknowledges, there are going to be tournaments, and sweaty matches and leagues, and there will also be some amazing, never-before-seen images captured, and lore dug out of these maps that once was hidden by the frenetic pace of constant combat. There will be people training, and teaching, and making movies and machinimas, playing No HUD hide and seek, and everything in between. They’re looking forward to it all.

Any map, any mode?

Well, they had to make sure everything was enabled on all maps during development, but yes, Derek did confirm: any map, any mode. You want to play Inferno Elimination with Vehicles and Light Level Enabled on Bastion at Night? You can do it.

1v1, bro!

DeeJ and Cozmo are looking to raise up a team of killers at Bungie to start challenging clans directly, since they matchmaking has limited many of the Bungie bounties so far to the Pacific Northwest. They’re very excited to be able to issue these challenges to clans across the country and around the world.

Will the playlists in normal matchmaking be affected by what people do in Private Matches?

Derek says yes, they’ll be watching the data on all of these lobbies to see what people are doing with them, and if something is very popular then they’ll look into it and support it.

Entering Private Matches – what is the actual process?

So you’ll enter the Crucible section of the Director, as usual, and select Private Matches from there. That makes you the Fireteam Leader, and takes you to a special Private Match Orbit screen. Your friends can join on you there, view options, switch teams, and so forth – but only the Leader can control the Match options. From there you can launch in, even if people haven’t joined yet, and they can join in progress if your fireteam is open.

Private Matches are not true Custom Matches. What was the reasoning behind that decision?

Destiny is more than the sum of it parts, Derek explains, and the more you pull apart, the less unique it becomes. They, as developers and game makers, aren’t interested in playing a version of Destiny without Supers, or without Heavy, at least not at this point. He also points out that creating a complicated interface like that is extremely time consuming and expensive, and they felt that the route they took was the best balance of time and money invested, features made available, and rewarding experiences for players.

It was also important to them to get something good done in a timely fashion so they could put it in front of us, as a community, and see what we did with it. As time goes on, the environment will evolve and change, and the Private Match options may change as well.

That all said, DeeJ went on to acknowledge that they know that people will play the way they want to way, and that there are “gentlemens’ and ladies’ clauses” where players may wave off Heavy or abide by other rules.

What does Bungie think of the common Sweaty Rules?

From Derek’s perspective, he doesn’t like to see a lot of blanket bans and widespread restrictions unless there is some kind of game-breaking strategy or bug that makes that the only way to play the game. And if there is something like that out there, then he wants to see it fixed rather than simply banned.

The discussion also covers the fact that the barrier to entry is going to be much lower soon, and that along with a wider population engaging in private matches, there will also be a huge variety of game modes brought into play. The current ruleset having been developed by a relatively small group of players around a single game mode, there are going to be huge debates over what makes for a good competitive game going forward.

With the release of Private Matches, Bungie also released a set of rules in the tournament license.

According to DeeJ, the rules were put out there as a baseline for interaction. Bungie is handing the keys to the Crucible to us as players and now potentially tournament organizers, and they see setting these basic expectations as part of their responsibility as a game developer.

They also want to work to create “brightly lit avenues” for players looking for tournaments, so that people can have a safe a reliable experience with tournament organizers who can be trusted. They are also looking to develop partnerships with organizations to expand the tournament culture.

Will Bungie host tournaments itself?

DeeJ didn’t make any confirmations or denials right now, except to say that Bungie will be paying close attention to what people do with Private Matches and that they will adapt based on that.

Were there any game modes that Bungie experimented with for Destiny that were really terrible?

Derek elaborates that game development is always full of dead ends and paths not followed, but that in general they have a pretty good sense for what they’re doing and rarely do their ideas turn out to be “flaming dumpster fires”. What happens more often is that while an idea may be good, there’s some obstacle, such as time, money, technology, or another resource that would be needed to really polish something that isn’t available and an idea or game mode may get sidelined for the time being.

Destiny being Destiny, such ideas are often recycled down the road when the resources are available, and game modes can be iterated upon – Iron Banner is a great example of this, with its many changes since launch before reaching the current iteration of damage scaling and rewards.

“What qualities do you look for in a Trials map, and have there been any surprises after a map went through a weekend of Trials?”

Derek replies, “Is it a Destiny map? Will it make people angry?” They mainly try to stay away from maps with doors, teleporters, man cannons, and, of course, vehicles. With Rise of Iron, the Elimination Game Mode and Trials is set up for all maps, so “it could be any map now. Probably won’t be, but it could be.”

Cauldron is one in particular that Derek noted as being too biased for Trials.

Have the changes between Year 1 Trials and Year 2 Trials been positive? Are they considering any changes in Rise of Iron?

Aside from new gear and new rewards, Trials will be unchanged in Rise of Iron, and it seems like Bungie is pretty happy with where it’s at. They see Destiny right now as being on a very stable foundation overall and are trying to build on it rather than continue to change things in big ways.

A huge thanks to Crucible Radio for conducting this interview, and to DeeJ and Derek for their frequent community outreach. Full podcast interview: