How loot and weapons classes work in Destiny

Read our full Destiny review.

In their first Dev Diary video, the gunsmiths at Bungie have revealed new details about how equipment will work in Destiny, their upcoming spiritual successor to Halo. In short, it looks a lot more like Diablo.

Much like Blizzard’s iconic click-stravaganza for legendary pants, Destiny will feature private loot streams for every player. This means that anything dropped by enemies, from ammunition and power-ups to that svelte little two-piece power armor number will be yours and yours alone. Every player will see only their own drops, avoiding awkward accusations of theft and allowing the focus to remain squarely on continuous murder.

Also much like Diablo, the flashiest gear will only be available from the endgame content, like raids. Now a well-established means of sustaining motivation in multiplayer games, these flashy, leet duds will help high-level players stand out and “create jealousy” from all the cannon-fodder plebes.

Weapons will be divided into three broad categories:

  • Primary: These include standard workhorses like rifles and hand cannons
  • Special: More tactically-specific weapons like shotguns and sniper rifles
  • Heavy: For when you just want to tear apart a room with rockets and belt-fed machine guns

As you progress, you will be able to upgrade and season your favorite weapons to taste. Then all of your hard-earned, personalized arsenal will be shared between your characters (also much like Diablo). 

All this customization and progression seems to be a natural extension of the decade-long merger that has been joining shooters and RPGs, brokered by Borderlands on the one side and Fallout on the other. The RPG’s extended pleasure of becoming the biggest badass with the most legendary of all pants pairs well with the more visceral, immediate power fantasy of shooting noobs in the face. The real golden goose for publishers would be a game that can strike that balance in a package that evokes the sustained investment of World of Warcraft but with mechanics that are less number-crunchy. It remains to be seen whether Destiny will be the culminating zeitgeist for these maturing trends in gaming, or just an obvious cash-in on what the market dictates.

Get our Top Stories delivered to your inbox: