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How Destiny 2's clan system is shaped by Super Bowl rings

Game designer and Destiny 2 social lead M.E. Chung explains to the Financial Post how Bungie studies sports and team culture for inspiration in designing Destiny's new community & clan systems.
"When we talked about what kind of systems we want working on clans, we said, 'Well, we want people to feel like what it feels like to be on a team,' and sports teams was a really good analogy for us."

- Bungie's M.E. Chung speaking to the Financial Post about the design of social systems in Destiny 2.

Bungie's shared-world shoot-'em-up Destiny 2 debuts in September, replete with some new (to Destiny) community-focused features like customizable clan banners and clan progression/reward systems.

While the notion of a shared progression system for players in a clan is an old one, developers may find it interesting to read Destiny 2 social lead M.E. Chung's conversation with the Financial Post about building social features that help players feel like they're part of something greater, rather than something gross.

"There’s also sort of the philosophy that we’ve been talking about in the studio, I call it the 'Super Bowl ring' philosophy," said Chung, explaining that the Destiny 2 team looked to modern sports teams (see quote above) for guidance on how to improve its clan system 

"I don’t know how familiar you are with the NFL, but one of the things that they do, it’s a common gentleman’s agreement practice that when a team wins the Super Bowl, not only do all the players on the field and the first string, second string all get rings, but they also … it’s common practice for them to give it to the general manager, and the owner, and everyone from the staff, to the medical team, to the people who are taking care of the grass on the field."

This is a significant departure for the franchise, given that clans in Destiny were mostly relegated to organizing and supporting each other outside of the game via social networks and Bungie's clan management website.

You can read more of Chung's comments about everything from the risks/rewards of implementing voice chat in a popular online game to the challenges of tuning matchmaking ("I've met some amazing people through random matchmaking, but it tears me apart when I hear stories about how people quit games because of someone who tore them a new one") in the full Financial Post interview.

And of course, if you'd like to see a timely example of why it's so important to have good social systems and good friends to play games with, check out Gamasutra's recent playthrough of the Destiny 2 beta. 

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