Video games have become a gigantic business, and it is not uncommon to find successes in the industry. But some games are more than that. Some games take the world by storm, even exerting a strong influence on the culture at large, becoming modern classics that stand as generational touchstones, or achieving a near-ubiquity that is impossible to ignore. Over the past five years, these games have taken the world by storm.
Bungie began its march to wild success when Microsoft snapped up the company in 2000 after Bungie presented a fantastic trailer of some game called Halo: Combat Evolved. For a decade, Bungie created video game classics and cultivated its sci-fi series into a pop culture behemoth.
So in 2010, when the now-independent Bungie announced its 10-year publishing agreement with Activision and its intent to create a new video game intellectual property, the hype train left the station sight unseen. The fruits of their labor, the sci-fi shooter/MMO Destiny, became one of the most anticipated games of all time. In the lead-up to Destiny’s September 2014 release, it hosted the largest console beta in history and became the most pre-ordered video game ever at the time. Activision also announced that Destiny shipped $500 million worth of product in its first day, declaring it “the biggest new video game franchise launch in history.”
While the game had its fair share of hiccups, Destiny’s soaring financial success and therefore impact on the ubiquitous ‘game as a service‘ model is undeniable. Multiple expansions and a full-length sequel have only magnified Destiny’s importance.