When Destiny 2 was announced, I was one of the first on board. Everything about it seemed cool, and the success (albeit slow-burning) was very pronounced. When the PC version of Destiny 2 was revealed, it was Hype City.

PC has had a troubled history with shooters over the past few years. The Division was one of the most anticipated shooter games of the decade, but it also became one of the biggest flops of the decade. It was riddled with bugs, glitches, and poor end-game. Many of the single-player shooters, like Doom, were good; but it’s a pretty clear sign that the age of the single-player shooter is decaying. PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds breathed life into the genre, but with it being 100% PvP, the PvE side of things left a lot to be desired.

Then Destiny 2 was inching closer and closer. The hype was getting real, and the Nvidia graphics cards were selling like hot cakes. The PC beta was released for a bit over a weekend, and reception was overwhelmingly positive. The gameplay was among the smoothest I’ve experienced since Warframe. The loot system seemed pretty damn good; and the new player experience felt top notch, which was important due to a ton of PC players never having experienced the first installment.

Warframe’s newest update, called Plains of Eidolon, was released shortly after the beta of Destiny 2. It was easily the most ambitious update Digital Extremes has ever produced, which is saying a lot given how ambitious this game has been in the first place. The update featured a huge open world map; a bunch of new gear and cosmetics, with a particular weapon being customizable, both functionally and visually; and a plethora of bounties, missions, and game modes. The launch also brought in a campaign on Twitch for Warframe Partners and other select streamers, allowing viewers to watch streams and get pretty solid in game loot for merely watching. This brought in tens of thousands of viewers for a game that used to be fairly niche on Twitch. Streamers like DanieltheDemon has been one of the major beneficiaries of the promotion. Even streamers who had never played the game before dived in and loved it. On top of that, they launched another Twitch Prime campaign, where people with an Amazon Prime account can link their Twitch account to it and to their Warframe account and receive some of the better gear in the game for free.

All of these promotions put together have resulted in a major influx of both new and returning players. Warframe, which was already steadily growing, exploded in popularity. All of this was happening in between the console release of Destiny 2, and the PC release.

Destiny 2 received high praise on release, especially its visuals and overall smooth gameplay. However, many clammed at the end-game. Some were worried that the amount of content wasn’t the problem, but rather the lack of reason to play through it. This worried the hardcore Destiny community; and the problem was even further magnified during TwitchCon, where Destiny saw a dip in viewership that Warframe, and most other games, did not. The Destiny panel started off a bit rocky. Cosmetics and achievement rewards were plentiful, but the lack of gun variety and end-game activities put even more of a damper on things. All of this was merely hours before the PC version was released.

PC gamers became wary, and like many in the gaming community, they were heavily influenced by other players on a whim. The consensus was that Destiny 2 was, in fact, a very good game. But it didn’t have that hardcore, “I want to pour as much time as I can into it and keep getting rewards” grind to it as many thought. Of course, this naturally conflated into “The game has no end-game,” and this had the greatest effect on gamers who aren’t the biggest fan of paying full-price for a game, which many PC gamers do. Overall, Destiny 2 still sold very well on PC, and continues to do so. But that’s all it did: sell. There was no campaign on Twitch or other places. Just game.

Because of the proliferation of the (mildly exaggerated) mindset of how stale the end-game of Destiny 2 was, many PC gamers wanted something to fill that void. They didn’t want another Division incident. They wanted a game that they could play and lean on for a long time. Warframe, on top of being completely free without a majorly overbearing microtransation system, was gaining a metric ton of traction. Momentum was shifting among this subset of players, and the game continued to grow. Some players made the transition to Warframe for the huge customizability and variety, along with the aforementioned grind that many were yearning for. Some even wound up playing both games, having Destiny 2 as the more casual game or for the first person fix.

It’s not all fine and dandy for Warframe, however. The game is pretty notorious for its overcomplexity and how user-unfriendly it can be. Plains of Eidolon added to that exponentially. Sometimes it’s hard for newer players to play the game without also having the Warframe wiki open at the same time. Advancing through the quests can be very confusing, and some specific objectives are convoluted and annoying. The UI can be frustrating to navigate and overwhelming, which is similar through most of the experience as you work your way up the ranks. With that said, the game delivered on what many Destiny 2 players were looking for in terms of the hardcore experience, and the shortcomings of Destiny 2, while not as bad as advertised, made a lot of players convert.

Anthony has been competing in games for the better part of his adult life and is dedicated to improving his game, improving his community, improving himself as a person, and most importantly having fun and enjoying himself while doing so. You can check out his stream to find out which video game is the latest to catch his attention.

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