Is Bungie’s Dedication to Destiny 2 Bad for Its New IP Matter?
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Ever since Bungie split from Activision, many have asked what’s next for the company, specifically Destiny 2. There’s been some growing pains, as with all adjustment periods, but Bungie answered that question strongly earlier this year. Destiny 2‘s Beyond Light expansion drops in just a few weeks but will be followed by The Witch Queen in 2021 and Lightfall in 2022. Bungie stated that it did not want to put another number on the box, and with such ambitions, there’s no need to.
Combine this with the new Destiny content vault storing away old stuff and re-vamping older stuff, other changes that are sure to occur, and far more, it’s clear that Bungie is taking the future of Destiny 2 very seriously. This can only bode well for the franchise’s future, but what about Bungie’s future? It’s been made clear that Bungie is interested in being more than a one-trick pony, and Destiny 2‘s future would seemingly have some implication for other Bungie games, notably Matter.
What is the New Bungie IP Matter?
In September 2019, Bungie made a strong announcement: “We need to build our publishing group, but part of our vision is also to become a multi-franchise entertainment company.” This Bungie statement makes it clear that it intends to grow beyond Destiny 2, even going so far as to say its next game (or games) could be out by 2025, which is still 5 years away. This corresponds with its trademarking of “Matter” a year before.
Matter has the above image going for it, as well as the aforementioned trademark, yet that’s all that’s known about the IP. It’s even possible that Matter isn’t the full name, as this could be changed. What little can be inferred about it comes from various job postings, one of which indicates that Matter will be like Destiny 2 in its business model. That’s not really a surprise, and the image could imply a colorful romp through space (or anything, for that matter) with a similar set up for monetization.
On the other hand, another job listing for an Incubation Art Director asks, “Would you like to work on something comedic with lighthearted and whimsical characters?” This stands in contrast to the more serious nature of Destiny 2, and it could be that, tone-wise, the two are worlds apart. Many who are aware of the trademark may ask what Destiny 2‘s future means for Matter, if the project has been abandoned or cancelled due to the lack of news. But the answer is much more nuanced and a lot more simple than that.
Does Destiny 2’s Future Impede on Matter?
Growth for Bungie does not mean leaving behind Destiny 2. While Bungie will likely always be synonymous with Destiny, there’s room for more under the Bungie umbrella. It may be worrying that something more concrete about Matter hasn’t been revealed, but the simple truth is, it shouldn’t. Many may be attuned to games like Final Fantasy 7 Remake and The Elder Scrolls 6 which get official announcements but don’t release for years afterward, but there’s no reason to show Matter before Bungie’s ready. And with it potentially coming out in 2025, there’s no need to rush when Destiny 2 has so much to offer in the meantime.
Furthermore, with games like The Elder Scrolls, those titles are often synonymous with their creators as well. Bethesda is known for Elder Scrolls and Fallout, BioWare is known for Dragon Age, Mass Effect, and more, and both companies are open to new things. Anthem may have not went over as intended, and Starfield isn’t out yet to pass judgment, but both studios are more than one trick ponies. There’s little reason to believe that Bungie, despite being its own publisher, couldn’t have more than one synonymous IP under its belt.
Even if many were concerned about Bungie’s ability to fund and publish another project, it’s worth mentioning that it signed a $100 million deal with NetEase to work on this new IP, which had no bearing at the time on its partnership with Activision. With that now being dissolved but NetEase’s investment still standing, both Destiny 2 and this new IP likely get the appropriate attention required.
The future of Destiny 2 seems bright, the future of Matter still stands, and as a result, Bungie is in a position to make a real splash in the next few years.