Famed game developer Bungie and publisher Activision are divorcing, and in the process of the split Bungie is taking full custody of their biggest kid together – the “Destiny” franchise.
Bungie, the studio that created the “HALO” series and has led development on the “Destiny” franchise, reportedly told employees during a team meeting in Thursday afternoon that it has long grown sick of dealing with its publisher. That news was met with “cheers and popped champagne”.
In an official post, Bungie says: “We have enjoyed a successful eight-year run and would like to thank Activision for their partnership on Destiny. Looking ahead, we’re excited to announce plans for Activision to transfer publishing rights for Destiny to Bungie. With our remarkable Destiny community, we are ready to publish on our own, while Activision will increase their focus on owned IP projects.”
Destiny launched in September 2014 and has met with multiple problems along the way, even as its formula has become the go-to online-only and microtransaction-centric model that numerous other franchises have begun adopting.
Tensions between the companies were reportedly high due to Activision’s mandated release of a new “Destiny” game or expansion every Fall. Now, Bungie will no longer be constrained to that schedule. “Destiny 2” will remain on Blizzard’s Battle.net and Bungie says the transition is ‘already underway in its early stages’/
Bungie also reportedly has a brand new game in development thanks to a $100 million investment from NetEase, while Activision is in the midst of a major shake-up with cost-cutting, executive turnover and now having dropped both the “Skylanders” and “Destiny” franchises.