Bungie balances botched booty system
Imagine a desolate future: Our galaxy has been attacked by an alien force known as the Darkness, and it’s up to protectors called the Guardians to travel to other planets to defeat them.
But instead of doing that, dozens of Guardians are hanging out back on Earth, shooting at a cave located in the countryside of Russia. Why? It’s because players of the popular massively-multiplayer (massively multiplayer) game “Destiny,” have exploited a way to grind for legendary items and equipment.
In “Destiny,” a Guardian’s equipment dictates their level, and players can gain additional weapons and armor through enemy drop items called “engrams.” The reason hundreds of “Destiny” players have flocked to this specific cave is because, with the right execution, it spawns infinite enemies that can be killed and will possibly drop loot.
Players spend hours in this location, hoping that they will pick up an engram that will lead to equipment that can increase their level.
In September and October Bungie released two patches that dialed back respawn time for enemies in that area.
In addition to closing the “Treasure Cave,” one of the more heavily exploited equipment caves. In a post released on their official website, Bungie stated that (stated) “shooting at a black hole for hours on end isn’t our dream for how Destiny is played.”
The result of this patch has resulted in players leaving the infamous “Treasure Cave” in search of similar areas to farm for engrams.
Why was this a big deal? “Destiny’s” loot system is completely random, relying on players to grind for hours for a chance at acquiring a legendary engram.
This is a main factor in players’ decisions to farm for legendary engrams at the cave, because they did not want to risk playing through missions just to be rewarded with a common item.
This is a meticulous process that some may claim to be the downfall of “Destiny”.
Bungie has noted this, and in the same patch in which the respawn time for the cave was increased, Bungie addressed some issues players had with engrams. They instated a standardized and color-coded system of engram rarity in addition to adding better rewards for completed missions.
The popular video game blog “Kotaku” cites “Destiny” critic, Sparky Clarkson, in saying “in perhaps the biggest game of the year, one of the things players are spending a lot of time doing is shooting, for hours on end, into a cave.”
“They’re not doing it for fun; I’ve tried it for just a few minutes and I can confirm, it’s incredibly boring. But, it’s also productive, in the sense that it gets players more of what they want, what they in fact need, if they want to progress,” he said.
Though Bungie may have killed off the notorious “Treasure Cave,” it actually lives on in a humorous online version titled “Interactive Cave Shooting Simulator.” It was developed by developer Daniel Rosas and parodies the antics of the cave-shooters – the players shoot at a cave that occasionally spouts orbs that resemble engrams.
It’s a jab at “Destiny” that entertains and immortalizes the great “Treasure Cave” rush of 2014.
By Carlito Ricafort