In a surprise announcement this afternoon, Bungie and Activision released a joint statement announcing plans for Bungie to assume full ownership of the Destiny IP. In the statement posted on Activision’s Twitter account, the publisher said in no uncertain terms that the fate of Destiny will soon lie solely in the hands of Bungie, while Activision focuses their attention on other games. Bungie said much of the same on their site’s new page, but contributed a couple of extra comments thanking Activision for making Destiny possible, and offering a couple of additional details regarding Destiny’s change in ownership.
According to the developer, the process of assuming control of Destiny is already underway. However, fans of the series need not worry about the game’s near future. “We’ll continue to deliver on the existing Destiny roadmap, and we’re looking forward to releasing more seasonal experiences in the coming months,” read the post. This statement was immediately followed by with a hint at more surprising announcements to come regarding what’s to come once these events have come and gone.
Very little if anything is offered as to why their agreement with Activision is ending sooner than expected. It was well known that Bungie was on the hook for three Destiny games, so this turn of events is quite surprising to say the least. That’s not to say that there weren’t obvious rifts between Bungie and Activision already though. The two companies’ differing opinions on Destiny 2: Forsaken certainly indicated a difference in values at the very least. Bungie might have alluded to this in their statement too, as they briefly mentioned that they learned quite a bit about what their players want with the launch of Forsaken. Given this turn of events, it’s likely that they’ve concluded that what their players want and what Activision wants is not the same thing. As for Activision, they’re probably just happy to be rid of an IP that has never lived up to their expectations.
The fan reaction has been largely positive so far, and it seems even the average Bungie developer is excited by the news. Noted game journalist Jason Schreier reported on Twitter that “Bungie staff cheered loudly” upon hearing the news during a meeting today. Destiny has had its problems over the past few years, and may still have some as Bungie transitions into self-publishing. However, given the reaction from both fan and developer, it’s very likely that this change will prove to be for the better.