Destiny: The Taken King's Pricing Model is a Little Crazy

Destiny: The Taken King's Pricing Model is a Little Crazy

Do you own the original disc? You might want to sell it now.

I've been on a bit of a sports kick lately, but sometimes even I need a break. Hence my decision to reengage with Destiny now that The Taken King is out.

I bought Destiny at launch; but after hitting level 10, I wound up bowing out. It wasn't that it was a bad game, per se, just that I didn't have time for all the grinding it required. In the months that followed, everyone hit the level cap, and I felt distinctly left behind. Thus, Destiny ended up sitting on my shelf for a solid year.

Having heard so much praise for The Taken King, I decided I would pop in Destiny and give it a try. But as I quickly discovered, there was a lot more to the process than just picking up the game and running with it.

There's no bundle with just the expansions. It's the Legendary Edition or nothing.

First, there was the roughly 18 gig patch that came with it. Before I could even launch Destiny, I had to download that behemoth, which took a full 24 hours. I'm kind of surprised that I stuck with it after that point, but I was committed.

When the patch finally finished downloading, I went to figure out how to buy The Taken King. But as I soon discovered, you have to have both expansions in order to buy the standalone version. Whatever, there's precedent for that in MMORPGs, even if it's kind of annoying that enjoying The Taken King means having to buy The Dark Below - a substandard expansion with rewards that are reportedly outdated. There was one glaring omission, though. There's no way for those who purchased the vanilla version of Destiny to just buy the expansions and The Taken King in a bundle.

The best you can get is the Legendary Edition - an overstuffed packaged that included the base game, the expansions, The Taken King, and various themes and other extras for $59.99. If you already own the base game, well tough luck. Incredibly, buying the expansion pass for $35 and The Taken King for $39 adds up to nearly $70, which is a lot of money to throw at a handful of expansions.

In the end, the best option was to sell my launch copy of Destiny and grab The Legendary Edition, which is pretty nutty when you think about it. I didn't want to drive all the way to my local GameStop, so I just plunked down the money and grabbed the expansion pass and The Taken King, which I'm sure made Bungie's accountants happy.

Yeah, I have no idea if it'll be worth it or not. All I know is that for some reason I decided to spend something like $130 on a grind heavy MMORPG that I've found to be just okay to this point. For what it's worth, though, I played the first couple missions of The Taken King - the expansion lets you bump your character straight to level 25 to enjoy the new content - and enjoyed it. So that's something. I'm sure that Jaz will have plenty more thoughts when his review-in-progress of the expansion kicks off later today.

Here's hoping that this pricing model won't become a trend, though. If someone has already invested in the base game, it seems only fair to offer a value bundle containing just the expansions. The current model is both confusing and kind of a hassle. But with Destiny continuing to be quite popular, I don't expect that will change anytime soon. Activision and Bungie will happily go right on counting their money.

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Kat Bailey

Editor in Chief

Kat Bailey is a former freelance writer and contributor to publications including 1UP, IGN, GameSpot, GamesRadar, and EGM. Her fondest memories as a journalist are at GamePro, where she hosted RolePlayer's Realm and had legal access to the term "Protip." She is USgamer's resident mecha enthusiast, Pokemon Master, and Minnesota Vikings nut (skol).

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