Details of New Bungie MMO “Destiny” Emerge Via Activision Contract

 

Bellevue, WA developers Bungie, Inc. spent a great deal of energy in 2011 insisting that it was not working on a new MMO franchise. Now, thanks to contract documents revealed by the L.A. Times, we learn that Bungie was just being coy. It is hard at work on a new game — indeed, a series of games, as the contract reveals.

Codenamed “Destiny,” this ambitious series will hit shelves in Fall 2013, with further installments released every two years. In between, Bungie will release four “major DLC packs,” codenamed “Comet.” The company is also at work on a follow-up to its antiquated Marathon series, although, as the contract stipulates, Destiny is the main focus.

Described as “massively multiplayer style…sci-fantasy action-shooter games,” the franchise will feature “client-based mission structures with persistent elements” and be pegged to a Teen rating. The developers plan to maintain servers and provide “in-game game masters” for real-time customer support, as you would expect with any massively multiplayer title.

According to the contract, Destiny games are to be developed for Xbox 360, PC, and Microsoft’s forthcoming successor to the 360, known as “Durango,” or more commonly as the “Xbox 720.” The game will also be ported to the Playstation 3 and it’s successor, the hypothetical “Playstation 4,” providing this proves feasible.

Also included in the contract are a number of very specific performance incentives; Bungie stands to gain millions if the game remains on schedule and if Activision’s operating budget for the franchise reaches $1 billion. While this is presumably standard operating procedure, it’s a fascinating look at the high stakes and big numbers involved in the modern video game business.

All this information is available thanks to the high-profile lawsuit filed against Activision by Infinity Ward founders Vince Zampella and Jason West. The L.A. Times has published legal documents and e-mails related to the case, which have recently become public domain.

h/t Edge Online

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