Interconnected, heavily socialised games such as Destiny are asking questions of how the press reviews games.
That’s according to Bungie COO Pete Parsons who has told Games Industry that the current way in which games are reviewed doesn’t give titles like Destiny a fair crack of the whip.
I think it’s very difficult to it’s very difficult to sit down for nine hours, 11 hours, and write up a review of a game like Destiny right?” he said.
"If I were a reviewer it seems like a nearly impossible challenge to do because there’s just no way you can experience… you barely experience sort of the campaign side of it and just PvP and no way you can get into all of the end game activities, and so it really asks a great question which is ‘how are games like Destiny going to be reviewed in the future?’"
Destiny is one of a number of high-profile games this year whose review embargo was timed for after its release at retail. Assassin’s Creed: Unity proved to be somewhat of a breaking point, leading some sites to say they won’t review games with post-release embargoes in the future.
Ubisoft has told reviewers of The Crew that they can go live with their reviews from 11am on the day before release, but separately stated that anyone who reviews the game without investing significant time in it cannot be relied upon. And with review copies arriving just a day ahead of its December 2nd release, this leaves the press in a tricky situation.
But the boom in socially aware games doesn’t just ask questions of the press – it also leaves developers having to adapt to a brave new world of post-release support.
"We don’t get a break, and that’s also part of the bargain,” Parsons added. We knew what we signed up for and so at no time in the studio are there less than a few dozen people managing the world itself.
"It’s a whole new, really interesting aspect of running the business itself: making sure that people are getting right vacations, making sure that you’ve got teams that are focused on a specific topic. Our Destiny operations centre team works around the clock in shifts. If you walk in to that room it looks like a NASA control room."