Published on May 26th, 2017 | by Suros_Six0
Why I Think Destiny 2 Shouldn’t Have a Ranked Playlist
Now that Destiny 2‘s gameplay reveal is finally in the books many people are abuzz about the potential the game has. Whether the game is going to be a flop, or whether it will be a great new experience is something newcomers will have to wait to find out once they get their hands on it. However, the hardcore that were invited to the reveal event seem to have nothing but good things to say about it.
Many things were revealed at this event including things like Destiny 2‘s new “Guided Games” system that promotes interaction between solo players and clans along with several ideas the development team had going in. With new features being shown off, it has left many people hungry for more, and it has brought up many old conversations. Of the conversations, one specific one that caught my attention is the discussion of whether or not Destiny 2 should include a ranked playlist. Something to show off the best of the best, and motivation for those who aspire to climb some sort of ladder. I’ve seen a lot of support for this idea, and I’ve seen a lot of indifference either way, but I’m here to tell you why I oppose it.
While I do think finally coming to PC is something that gives Destiny 2 a better chance of becoming competitive, I still think it’s something that is better off not pursued. In my time with Destiny I’ve had the opportunity to be a part of one of the most positive communities I’ve ever seen. I’d attribute the formation of such a pleasant community to many of the gameplay elements Bungie put in place. For example, when you’re roaming the open world in Destiny there really isn’t any way to grief people. You can’t kill other players, you can’t push them around with your vehicle, all you can really do is use an emote toward them or help them clear out enemies. I remember hearing a quote from a Destiny community member that was along the lines of, “when you see someone else in Destiny you immediately think, ‘that’s someone who can help me'”.
Now you may be asking yourself, what does the PvE environment have to do with a ranked playlist in PvP? My answer would be that it has everything to do with it. Destiny is first and foremost a PvE experience. Before you can hop into PvP you still have to play the first mission of the story which is a tutorial and an introduction to the world. That’s without mentioning that a lot of the highest level weaponry is mainly earned through PvE content. Missions that match you with players to complete a goal sets up a mentality of “it’s us versus the game” instead of “it’s us versus each other”. Everyone gets loot, and everyone gets to have a fun time working together to get to the loot. We’ve all had that LFG group that just can’t seem to get past Aksis Phase 2 after throwing ourselves at the enemy for four hours, but other than that, I’ve never had a negative experience in PvE.
PvP on the other hand can be a different beast entirely. While I haven’t had any particularly toxic encounters playing random matches, things can definitely get a bit frustrating when you’re trying to get through Trials of Osiris. For those unfamiliar, Trials of Osiris is a PvP event that takes place every weekend. It uses an elimination game mode that promotes teamwork to succeed. If you enter the event and win 9 matches in a row, you are allowed to go to the “Lighthouse” and there you are rewarded with specific gear that you can’t get anywhere else. Failing to do so can still earn you some cool gear, but it’s not as good as what you can get if you complete the challenge. If you’re not adept at playing against others, getting 9 wins in a row can definitely be quite the chore, but I feel it’s a great way to show off your skill (unless you’re abusing peer-to-peer servers of course, and that’s a thing that happens).
Sure, when you load in with your fireteam you still each have a common goal: take out the enemy team before they take you out. However, if the same group keeps throwing themselves at Trails and can’t make it to 9 wins despite their best effort, tension can definitely build. Bungie softens this a bit by making it so people have to be in a party to queue up. That means you either know your two teammates or you find them on LFG. More often than not, it’s less likely that you’ll get angry at your friends than you will at random people you don’t know. Furthermore, if you are willing to hop onto LFG and look for people, I’d wager you are probably more willing to be patient. Creating a ranked playlist without this barrier changes the dynamic up quite a bit, suddenly you no longer have any connection with your teammates, and it becomes much easier to avoid making that connection with them all together.
What I’m getting at is this: I believe that adding a ranked playlist would create room for a more negative community. Maybe it’s just me, but I feel like when there is a rating score players can see easily coupled with competitive mindsets, people begin to hold that number above all else. For example, when I first started playing Overwatch it was definitely all about fun and trying things out, but then after ranked came out those fun matches became few and far between. Even in quick play I still see people get berated for just trying to enjoy a match instead of trying their hardest to win. That’s not to say Overwatch having a ranked playlist was a poor decision, it’s a PvP oriented game so it only makes sense. However, as I have said, that’s just something Destiny isn’t.
Now I know it may come off as silly to seemingly blame a specific playlist for people’s bad behavior, but this is all just based on my own personal experience. I’ve played a lot of different competitive games, from shooters like CS:GO to everyone’s favorite MOBA, League of Legends. I’d hate to see Destiny‘s positive community go down a dark path into negativity, but that ultimately isn’t my choice. I could definitely be wrong and the possible addition of ranks promotes a competitive environment for people that love to stick to Crucible matches. An environment that promotes handshakes win or lose, but as of right now, I’m pretty skeptical of that possibility.
If people really want to show off their achievements in PvP, they already have an option to do so by wearing their Trials of Osiris items. If they want to see themselves on some sort of leaderboard, there are third-party sites for that. If players just want a more competitive PvP environment, I’ll sound like a broken record if I say this again, but they can gain that through Trials of Osiris. Bungie has created fun PvP events where people can really show off their skill, and an addition of a ranked playlist just seems excessive on top of those events. Not only that, but I believe it will create a more hostile environment for those just trying to have some fun.