E3 2014: Bungie's Destiny Doesn't Support Split-Screen Co-Op

"Ultimately, you can't build a game to suit every single player out there," Bungie's Eric Osborne says.

Split-screen co-op was a hallmark of Bungie's Halo series, but the same can't be said for the developer's next game, the multiplayer-focused shooter Destiny. The game won't have split-screen support, not because the studio doesn't like the feature, but because it doesn't fit with the developer's ambitions for the project.

"We're actually not supporting split-screen in Destiny," Bungie community manager Eric Osborne told GameSpot during E3 this week. "We love split-screen. Obviously we have a legacy of supporting it. We know a lot of players love it. We love it. But we really wanted to untether guardians. Even if you're in a fireteam, you can go wherever you want. That level of freedom was really important for us. We know some players really like split-screen. Ultimately, you can't build a game to suit every single player out there."

Though this year's Destiny will not have split-screen, Osborne made it clear that Bungie is always listening to feedback, suggesting that the option could be added to a future installment.

"The good news for us is with a new IP you get an opportunity to set a foundation in place," Osborne said. "You get to see what players do; see what the community loves about it. You get to be reactive. And the reality is we have no idea what people are going to do, what they're going to fall in love with in this world."

Destiny launches on September 9 across the Xbox 360, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, and PlayStation 4. Bungie will launch an alpha for the game on Thursday, and you can sign up today at www.GreatnessAwaits.com/Destiny. An open beta begins July 17 first on the PS3 and PS4, before coming to the Xbox 360 and Xbox One sometime later.

See more coverage of E3 2014 →

Written By

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.

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157 comments
jrod8383
jrod8383

I will not buy this game, for the one simple reason of not having split-screen.  Advanced Warfare is just around the corner anyways.  I'm still having fun on black ops two also. F them dumb@sses!

Fine_TableLamp
Fine_TableLamp

Thanks Bungie, I love watching my wife play and having to take turns and feel helpless as she gets surrounded by enemies and there is nothing i can do to help her. (not that she needs help, she's actually very good.) From what I have seen of this poorly written game I don't see a reason why they couldn't have made an offline co-op mode.

jacobtohahn
jacobtohahn

I have destiny but I'm very dissapointed that my bro and me need to take turns

nnniilaaa
nnniilaaa

What a disappointment, I wanted to play it with my boyfriend. I guess we will not be buying destiny. 

beardedfish420
beardedfish420

Was going to purchase this to play with my fiance as we dont really care to play online with strangers, but now I think were going to have to pass. Looks like it's back to playing COD.

Cryptic_Shadow
Cryptic_Shadow

Co-op online is so impersonal.  The world NEEDS more couch co-op gaming.  Gaming would be better for it.  Its now a lost art thanks to online play.  This is a real shame, imo.

jordan_weimer
jordan_weimer

I'm not buying Destiny or PS4 for now because it doesn't have split screen. That's the whole point of a console FPS game that isn't COD and something that is already missed. Perfect Dark (N64) introduced coop and Halo continued to improve on that paradigm. I was hoping to experience split screening the first game worth owning that was designed for four player coop, but not having split screen completely blows it. The great thing about coop is being with another person in the room and playing a video game without having to take turns or without wanting to jab the other person in the eye when they're kicking your butt. I guess we've clearly moved beyond the era where gaming was something you do with other people in the real world, but it's definitely disappointing to find out the last vestige of top notch split screen coop play is on the last generation of consoles.

stevie456
stevie456

I wanted to play this with my wife! What a total bummer!

br00tus
br00tus

wow... another game without split screen. this one actually hits me really close to home as halo3 was the whole reason i got a console. to play with friends by my side. =( i am dissapoint


br00tus
br00tus

WOW ANOTHER NON SPLIT SCREEN GAME. this one kinda kills destiny for me =(


Shalabi04
Shalabi04

of course there isnt gonna be split screen support because than that would mean less $$$ in their pockets, my guess is that they probably wanted to originally make the game only for the PS4 and X1 systems but that would've been overdoing it and the game sales would've plummeted. as if its not bad enough that PC players are being left out, could you imagine how it'd be if PS3 and 360 players were left out as well?


lol

aronweiler
aronweiler

I am so disappointed.  Bungie has just lost my money for sure.  I mean, I never comment on anything here... but I just had to create an account just to register my displeasure.  

This trend of not doing split screen because you don't want to sacrifice <insert shiny new gameplay feature here>, is not a good strategy.  Especially when we’re talking about a gameplay feature that is available in so many other single player games (Open World).  It’s almost like you just don’t want people to have real-life friends, so that they have to rely more and more on your games and services for interaction with others.  lol

I am seriously on the verge of trading in my PS4 for a PS3... at least there were a few good couch co-op games on the PS3.  

bighoffa13
bighoffa13

I hate the new trend of games without split screen. My 2 sons and I always play that way. We have played all the halos together for years. If the game doesn't have split screen, we never play it. Now there is no reason to buy this game. We are officially boycotting all non split screen games.

revotar
revotar

I can't even tell you how dissapointed I am. I love playing split-screen with my boyfriend and friends. I don't want to play with total strangers and none of my girlfriends have consoles of their own even though they enjoy gaming. Buying two consoles for me and my boyfriend would be just ridiculous, so that leaves me out of options. I was really looking forward to this game, but now I'm not buying it. Back to Borderlands it is..

scumbag_slu
scumbag_slu

I have to admit, though I would've loved to force my wife to play this game split-screen with me.  I'm really not that upset by this news.. I happen to think that when the programming automatically makes the second player appear next to the first player if they lag behind too much cheapens the experience.  The immersion is less intense, less real.  Also the split screen undeniably takes up your viewing space and peripheral vision that you might have in a single player full-screen game.  These two major flaws in split-screen co-op seem like what the company is trying to avoid by not allowing it.  They want Destiny to be smooth for everyone and split-screen players playing online would definitely have a disadvantage over others, making the online community all that much more unbalanced.  Although, I would've played a split-screen game with my wife, even if it meant being just the two of us and not online with everyone else.  If they can patch it in, great.  If they can't, there's no use delaying the game release so close to the release date just to appeal to the split-screeners.  


I hate to say I'm playing devil's advocate, but I am.  All i see in the comment section is angry gamers denouncing and claiming that they're refusing to buy this game.  If there's no voice for the other side, the game might be delayed and as someone who's been waiting for this forever, I would lose my $h#t if such a thing happened.  I'm counting down the days like Cartman waiting for his Nintendo Wii.  I trust in Bungie as I've been a Halo player since the first game.  I trust in the developers decisions.  The exclusion of this feature evidently makes the game that much better and smoother.  I'm so psyched.  I guess it helps that I coordinated with my friends which system to buy (PS4) and we're all going to get Destiny pretty much right away.  "Good for you!" you may be thinking... but hey.. maybe the rest of you should have done the same, rather than bashing a great developer and taking such a hostile stance against buying what will be the greatest game of 2014.

sandytafur
sandytafur

I agree with most of the posters, I am extremely disappointed.  This will prevent me from ever buying this game and will actually cause me to hold off on getting an Xbox One for the time being.  I was so looking forward to a new couch co-op experience with my hubby.  Not interested in console games to play solo (that's the space iOS and Andriod games fill these days).


Saying that local co-op tethers characters in some way does not make much sense to me.


I also want to throw out there for Bungie that local co-op that only works for part of the game or some limited campaign is no good either.... people want to experience the entire story and online play with friends or loved ones side by side.

stepanthony
stepanthony

This is so disappointing. 


Split screen was my main reason for buying the game. I'm astounded that they've left it out. I was going to upgrade to PS4 on Destiny's release. I certainly won't be buying the game now.


I don't think anyone's overreacting on this thread - it's such a let down.


"We love split-screen. Obviously we have a legacy of supporting it. We know a lot of players love it. We love it. But we really wanted to untether guardians."


Eric, you obviously don't love it and this isn't sufficient reason to leave it out.


shicky117
shicky117

I'm so disappointed. My wife and I can't play together then. I'm not buying another Xbox One just so we can play this game together. Until it's splitscreen, I won't pay for it. A shame. I've always loved Bungie's work.

frogman_savage
frogman_savage

It may seem like an overreaction, but im not going to buy this game because of this.  



eliebaz
eliebaz

Damn it!! What happened to splits screen campaign?!!!

Dredez18
Dredez18

inconsiderate assholes.

We know some players really like split-screen. Ultimately, you can't build a game to suit every single player out there."

I guess were the minority. Love how they made the decision not to have split screen for us.

kpeppers
kpeppers

As an adult with jobs, kids, and a wife, I have little time to play games and when I do, I look forward to visiting with friends and handing out, not sitting by myself playing in silence. This sucks and eliminates any chance that I'll buy this game. "You can't make a game for everyone." I guess that's true. 

p51ponystang
p51ponystang

For all you game develpoers out there!!! The gaming community is becoming large in the since of multiplayer split screen co-op. Why you ask? The gamers of old are married with kids now. Wake up!!! Entire house of gaming. This movement is here now and will do nothing but get bigger. It is the market that games like Halo, and the Wii U system have on lock down.

p51ponystang
p51ponystang

multiplayer split screen rules!!! For them to not have that makes no sense at all. Now I got to go buy 4 xboxes to play destiny in one house for me and the kidos??? not happening. sucks. Just will wait for Halo 5. In the meantime still have old halo games to play. I have two destiny games on reserved at Gamestop. Gotta get returns done on them and put  money towards The Master Cheif Collection halo 5 beta...

colbster
colbster

Functionality seems to be going backwards. I really would have liked to have a friend over to play without needing 2 xbox ones and 2 TVs. I have a 113" video projector, so split screen works awesome... as long as developers stop to think that there may be socially active people out there who like to have friends over to play without setting up a f'n internet cafe at their house.

96camsteve
96camsteve

Thanks Bungie,


This is the one game that I have been looking forward to for about, what 3 years now?  And without split screen, it is worthless to me.  Why would you ruin what so many of us miss about Halo 1, the LAN parties with all of our friends?  I mean I understand the desire to make money, however this move is going to transition the players that have been with Bungie since Halo 1 to move on to another game.  Not having split screen is going to drive this game into the ground, rapidly imo.

sweaterkittens
sweaterkittens

This is beyond disappointing. My wife and I have been playing splitscreen Halo for a decade and were really looking forward  to this. I preordered last December with the expectation that Bungie would still be Bungie, but I suppose that was naive of me. I'd prefer it if they'd let the consumers decide how they wanted to experience it. 

The_Inebriator
The_Inebriator

Disappointing to say the least. I was really looking forward to this so I could have a new local multiplayer game to play with friends and family, but it looks like Borderlands still reigns supreme. I'll save my $60. Bungie should really take a second look at what solidified their core fan base because they are alienating a lot of longtime supporters with this decision.

tannerjellison
tannerjellison

Ugh...I got this for my xbox one hoping to finally have a use for my second controller. I wanted a borderlands type experience with my girlfriend, that was why I pre ordered. Hearing this is a huge disappointment. I expected more from bungie. Co-op is not playing with a stranger, it's playing with friends. And what is the chance I have many friends that had 600$ laying around and also decided to go xbox and not playstation. I will have nobody to play with other than strangers, which is getting pretty old in battlefield 4. Please. ... fix this, I don't care if you delay the game after the beta. I'm sure tons of people agree but haven't made their way onto this site to say so. I need a reason to keep this xbox one around, a real co-op game would do that for me.

tannerjellison
tannerjellison

Ugh...I got this for my xbox one hoping to finally have a use for my second controller. I wanted a borderlands type experience with my girlfriend, that was why I pre ordered. Hearing this is a huge disappointment. I expected more from bungie.

Battletoads1
Battletoads1

Well, I am very glad that I have two controllers for my ps4 and only one game to play co-op with as of now....please Bungie add the co-op play to the campaign! 

instructedchaos
instructedchaos

The only split-screen game I have for PS4 is NBA 2K14, (and I have lots of PS4 games). It makes me mad that almost every game that comes out doesn't have split-screen. Now when my friends come over I have to switch to my PS3 to play split screen Call of Duty. UGH

animesanity
animesanity

I'll tell you exactly what I'm going to do Bungie... I'm going to skip out on your $400 million game. No Split-Screen is a deal-breaker. Multiplayer is about playing with other people, not the internet. It's about passing a controller to your sibling or fiancé and sharing an experience. It's about attracting a party of rowdy cheering friends. No one should have to buy another console (with the capacity for 8-controller input) just to play with your family or fiancé. For such a smart and capable company Bungie has clearly forgotten what it felt like to have a good multiplayer experience. Playing online with strangers is fine if you've checked the rest off the list first.

This decision was made because people are gullible enough to go out and shell out the extra money... because they don't remember a time before call of duty. Without pressure Devs won't change and they'll keep developing in a way that portions out the game experience based on what you're willing to pay for. More dlc will come out... And less support for local play with people in the same room. This marketing strategy believes that they can get a PS4 or XBOX one in EVERY ROOM of your house instead just every home. It believes that they can extort families into buying the same game several times just to play together.

I'm personally going to wait until MASTERCHIEF Collection drops with Halo 2 Anniversary addition. It's ironic to see Bungie competing with their own work this year... But with GTA V hitting Next Gen and Inquisitions right around the corner there's enough single player fair to tide me over till a real multiplayer game drops. One that I can explore with friends under one roof with one console.

If Devs don't support more than one controller but have the nerve to call their game multiplayer only... They will see no support from me.

mr_gamer_405
mr_gamer_405

This sucks. Is it that bad to make the graphics a little worse to make it splitscreen. Halo does it just fine and it looks perfect. I SINCERELY hope you guys add it in by launch or update it in later. I am not doing another "titanfall". A "titanfall" is a shooting game that has all the capabilities of being split screen but isn't for some odd reason. PLEASE BUNGIE, I know you are a great company that actually listens to its fans. Please put the GAMERS FIRST in this one. I know BUNGIE has never been greedy before, just really hope they don't change now.

Sincerely

All splitscreeners

charter77
charter77

@Fine_TableLamp same for me, I would like buy this game to play with my girlfriend, but if we can't I have no reason to buy this one, because if we want to play online she's have to buy PsPlus account too!!! :(

TightNinja
TightNinja

@sandytafur Couldn't have said it better myself.  I too enjoy playing games with friends in the same room, eating pizza and drinking beer.  So many devs just don't get this.  They are truly out of touch. I have no interest in this game now. Campaign co-op and online split screen co-op was the only reason I even considered getting this game. Scrathecd of list.  

Shalabi04
Shalabi04

@shicky117 the game comes out tonight, even if you somehow come up with the 1500 signitures, its really too late and we would have to wait for bungie to release a patch or updates that unlocks that feature

TightNinja
TightNinja

@colbster I have a hd projector as well. 4 player split scrren mean each player has at least a 32" screen....that is plenty of space.

HYPERTiZ
HYPERTiZ

@Placebo_obecalP After all it is an MMO, a massive world comparing it to Borderlands which is smaller :|

actually I dont know anymore :|

HYPERTiZ
HYPERTiZ

@mr_gamer_405 @mr_gamer_405 Honestly, if they brought the visual graphics down even it looks terrible I would not really care, and would love splitscreen.

HYPERTiZ
HYPERTiZ

@mr_gamer_405

You are comparing an Open MASSIVE world (think GTA Online etc) to a linear and small world\levels (Halo series) comeone... 

HYPERTiZ
HYPERTiZ

@mr_gamer_405 Honestly, if they brought the visual graphics down even it looks terrible I would not really care, and would love splitscreen.