Destiny 2 might have the most microtransactions of any mainstream game

destiny 2


While it’s widely believed that Destiny 2 is “over-monetized” at this point, as prices continue to rise and portions of content are sold separately, it’s also about the sheer volume of what’s being sold.

I’m not saying Destiny 2 is the most predatory game out there. This title certainly goes to gacha games that require literal gambling in order to achieve huge gains in power. Destiny 2 doesn’t do this due to its store-based bugs, although there have been small dips in selling power lately. Nothing beats full-fledged gacha or loot boxes.


If we break down everything Destiny 2 is selling at this point, it’s amazing. It’s not just about store items, it’s also about how playable content is structured and I think we need to provide everything in one place. So let’s get started.

destiny 2


Game content:

Expansions Individual Seasons (with a Season Pass) Forsaken Pack (Weapons, Dungeon, Raid) Special Bonus Content (30th Anniversary) Dungeon Pass (two dungeons per year) Event Cards (quarterly)

destiny 2


Shop Items:

Armor Ornaments (Exotic and Legendary) Weapon Ornaments (Exotic and Legendary) Ships Sparrows Ghost Tank Finishers Emotes Transmat Effects Upgrade Module Boosters (to burn light dust) Glimmer Boosters (to burn light dust) Shaders (some recently behind a paywall ) Unlimited ghost projections transmog activation

While it’s true that many things can be earned in the Store category for Bright Dust, A) You have no control over what or when things rotate for Bright Dust, and more and more things don’t anymore. And B) It’s easy to burn through month-long accumulations of light-colored dust on, say, armor or a few pieces of jewelry.

There are some games here that come close. Call of Duty has invented all sorts of emblems, trinkets, and weapon skins to throw in bundles along with real operators, but it doesn’t have as many, nor is its gameplay nearly as split as Destiny.

Most other games in the looter genre specifically don’t reach this level. When I think back to the success and failure games: Borderlands, The Division, Anthem, Marvel’s Avengers, Outriders, Diablo, none of them come close. Warframe might be in a way, but even then.

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From this list, there are some things that I feel shouldn’t be sold at all. The Forsaken Pack, Event Cards, and Dungeon Pass should not exist. Transmog should not be sold in the shop. The boosters should be deleted so they don’t fool new players. Shaders shouldn’t lag behind $10 packages now. In the Season Pass, Deepsight Harmonizers should not be present at all and must be earned in-game.

It just went too far. Too much splitting of the content, an overloaded shop, stuffed with many things that really shouldn’t be there. Not to mention that too many things are put there, at least compared to the rewards you get in the game. Five new ships and ghost grenades for each earned. Three paid sets of armor ornaments per season.

Will that be checked? I doubt it. It only gets worse over time and we almost never see anything go down. But even a few things would go a long way at this point, just to show that it won’t keep growing until the entire game is shattered into a million small, paid-for pieces.

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I’ve been writing about video games, television, and film for Forbes for over 10 years, and you may have seen my reviews on Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic. I cover all types of console and PC games, but when it comes to looting or gunfights I’m definitely in. When I watch something, it’s usually sci-fi, horror, or superheroes. I’m also a regular on IGN’s Fireteam Chat podcast and have published five sci-fi novels.

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