Bungie Hires Former ‘Valorant’ Game Director, Further Evidence Of Its PvP Ambitions

On Monday, Joe Ziegler announced his next role after leaving as Riot’s game director for Valorant in December 2021, and working on a secret Riot project for a while after that. He’s headed to Bungie, creator of Destiny 2.

In a tweet announcing his new spot, he says he’s working on “new stuff that hopefully will one day get played by you all.”

I don’t think at this point, Destiny 2 players have any illusions that Ziegler is being brought on to overhaul that game’s flagging PvP system, which has struggled since launch. Part of the reason it has struggled since launch is because Bungie pulled off a huge portion of its dedicated PvP squad to work on other incubator projects, and the best guess is that Ziegler has been assigned to one of those. Whether he’s leading a project or just working on it remains unclear.

We have a number of rumors about the PvP-focused games Bungie is currently working on, and we’re supposed to see one new non-Destiny 2 project out by 2025.

  • The first rumor is that Bungie is bringing back its old Marathon IP as a Tarkov-like, squad-based, live service extraction shooter.
  • The second is that Bungie is working on some sort of Valorant, Overwatch or Apex-style hero shooter with colorful characters with specific kits. Though the exact format of the game is unknown. It seems unlikely to be the same project as Marathon-Tarkov.

It would make the most sense for Valorant’s Ziegler to be joining a hero shooter project. While we know Bungie is working on new IP, it also stands to reason a hero shooter could be one based in the Destiny universe. For going on eight years now, Bungie has built up a cast of Destiny characters that could easily translate into heroes with their own movesets and kits for a hero shooter style game. That said, we do know Bungie wants to expand not just Destiny, but its IP ambitions as a whole, so who knows.

What’s clear is that in some form or another, Bungie seems determined to release a competitive PvP game to get back to the era when they were able to produce Halo as a competitive multiplayer title. Destiny 2 will still have people working on its PvP, but its proven enormously tough to balance married with the game’s PvE gear, and it feels like PvP in Destiny has had probably like four total months in eight years where no one was complaining about the meta or a lack of content or other problems with it. But instead of tripling down on Destiny PvP, Bungie is doing entirely new competitive projects which, even as a huge Destiny fan, I must admit may be the wiser move. We’ll see what Ziegler cooks up in…let’s say 2-4 years?

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