Bungie called this week “one of the most difficult” in its history in its first address to Destiny 2 players since news broke of mass layoffs and delays at the studio. The statement went on to double-down on Bungie’s commitment to the upcoming The Final Shape expansion, but left many more questions unanswered.
As many as 100 employees were laid off from the 1,200 person studio this week after it missed revenue projections by 45 percent, Bloomberg reported. The Final Shape and recently announced extraction shooter Marathon were also both reportedly delayed, stoking concerns about the quality of the Destiny 2 expansion following a disappointing reception to 2023’s Lightfall in February.
Instead of its normal This Week at Bungie blog post, the studio released a brief statement that began by acknowledging the layoffs and “friends and colleagues” supporting one another, but quickly pivoted to reassuring fans about the future of Destiny 2. “We want to acknowledge the feedback and concerns you have about Lightfall and recent Seasons, as well as your responses to the reveal of The Final Shape,” the studio wrote. “We know we have lost a lot of your trust. Destiny needs to surprise and delight. We haven’t done this enough and that’s going to change.”
Read More: Destiny 2 Fans Worry About The Future After Cuts And Delays
Bungie said it’s working to “exceed expectations” with the upcoming expansion that’s set to conclude 10 years of storytelling in the Destiny universe. The studio pointed to past expansions like Forsaken (considered by many the high-water mark for the sci-fi shooter MMO) as the goal, and touted a development team of 650 people working on the content that was reportedly delayed from February 2024 to June. The post did not address the delay.
While Bungie promised to share more about where Destiny 2 is headed in the months ahead, the blog post did little to address concerns about the health and management of the studio, or frustration with the recent layoffs which included star veterans like Destiny lead composer Michael Salvatori. Bloomberg reported that laid off staff would lose out on unvested shares from Sony’s $3.6 billion acquisition of Bungie in 2022.
IGN reported that developers had been “begging” for necessary changes to Destiny 2 to win players back prior to the cuts and were frustrated that “decisions leading to the company’s apparent money struggles were out of their hands, and that those who were laid off were being punished for a problem they largely did not cause.”
The full blog post is copied below:
OUR PATH FORWARD
This has been one of the most difficult weeks in our studio’s history, as we’ve parted ways with people we respect and admire. We’ve spent this week supporting one another, including those who are at the studio, as well as friends and colleagues who no longer are.
We want to acknowledge the feedback and concerns you have about Lightfall and recent Seasons, as well as your responses to the reveal of The Final Shape. We know we have lost a lot of your trust. Destiny needs to surprise and delight. We haven’t done this enough and that’s going to change.
To us the path forward is clear: We need to make The Final Shape an unforgettable Destiny experience. We want to build something that will be regarded alongside the best games we’ve ever made – a fitting culmination that honors the journey we’ve been on together for the past ten years. Forsaken, The Witch Queen, and The Taken King – these are the standard bearers we aim to live up to.
We are intensely focused on exceeding your expectations for The Final Shape. Destiny 2 has more than 650 dedicated teammates pouring all their energy and expertise into delivering this epic moment and its subsequent Episodes.
In the weeks ahead, you’ll be hearing more from us about what’s next on the short-term horizon, beginning with our next Season in late November. Afterwards, we’ll begin to unpack our team’s bigger, bolder, and brighter vision for The Final Shape, as well as the bridge we plan to build to take us all out of this Darkness and into the Light.
See you starside,
The Destiny 2 Dev Team