In its latest financial earnings call, Activision has stated Destiny 2 Forsaken did not meet sales expectations. The publisher remains determined to find new ways to “re-engage the hardcore Destiny fanbase.”
Destiny 2’s Forsaken DLC marked a big step-up in quality from previous efforts Curse of Osiris and Warmind. Indeed, in our own impressions, we noted the expansion was some of the best content in the entire franchise.
Unfortunately for Activision, though they too make special mention of its “high quality,” it hasn’t proven good enough to rekindle interest in the game — at least measured by what we can presume are lofty expectations.
Activision’s Coddy Johnson said that “While forsaken is a high-quality expansion with strong engagement and new modes of play, it did not achieve our commercial expectations… And there is still work to do to fully re-engaged the core Destiny fanbase.”
Activision is intent on finding new ways to monetize the game, presumably in an effort to better its margin moving forward. Johnson spoke of improving “the pace of innovation and cadence of in-game content” in Destiny, while focusing on creating new ways to make in-game purchases (microtransactions) more appealing.
Presently, Destiny 2 uses Silver as its in-game currency. Players are able to purcahse the currency with real world money to spend on various cosmetic extras. It’s unclear what sort of new ways Activision plans on implementing the microtransactions moving forward.
Although pleased with what Johnson calls a “deeply engaged” player base, Activision is focusing now both on trying to get lapsed players to return to the experience as well as providing incentive to new audiences.
Activision has already been implementing that exact strategy. Back in September, Destiny 2 launched as a “free” game for PS Plus members on the PS4, timed with the launch of Forsaken. It was also temporarily free on PC recently.
And according to September’s NPD report, it’s been working –Destiny 2 made its way back into the top 10 best-selling games for that month. What’s more, monthly active users for the Destiny franchise grew quarter-over-quarter and year-over-year for the period ended September 30.
Yet still, Johnson insists the company has “not yet seen the full core re-engage in Destiny, which has kind of led to the underperformance against expectations to date.” He went on to say, “Some players we think are still in ‘wait and see’ mode. If you’re in, you’re deeply engaged. If you’re not, we’re hoping now’s the time to bring players back in and win them back.”
Destiny 2 Black Armory is the next scheduled content drop for the game, which launches in December.