MASTERCLASS: PR Lessons With Bungie

Welcome to Bungie’s School of Public Relations & Community Management!

Looking to become a beloved community manager for the next big AAA hit at your dream game dev studio? Want to be that cool guy/gal who does kickass developer interviews and narrates sneak-peek demos at E3? Dreaming of becoming such an awesome community manager that the devs ask you to voice the most important character in the game? Want to become legend™?

If you answer ‘H-to-the-E-L-L YES’ to all of the above, get out. This sacred place is not for such shallow aspirations, this is the valhalla of communication where intrepid community managers attempt to stay sane while being eternally stuck between bone-headed, tone-deaf game developers and screaming, toxic gamers — a haven where we promise nothing and somehow deliver even less!

So get your notebooks or iWhatevers out, guardians, ’cause you’re about to have your minds blown like that hilarious Jackie Chan meme with our patented 5 Tips That Will Keep Your Players’ Boners Rock Hard™.

This is a satirical article, by the way, I feel like this needs to be stated somewhere.

5. You’re Not Wrong, It’s The Players That Are Playing Wrong

Game development is hard, guys. So who are these chums to criticise and say that the game you spent 3 hard years making sucks? No one, that’s what they are. Loot is boring? Well here are more cosmetics, dances and friendship! Story is childish and a complete middle-finger to established and beloved lore? Put in more memes! Time-to-kill is too low? L2P!

We spent the past 3 years ignoring all of Destiny 1’s feedback-inspired improvements to make Destiny 2 the game that we, the true gamers who truly understand what Destiny 2 should be, love and if players are not playing the game our way by, for example, using Shoulder Charge as a traversal tool instead of as the pathetic, nerfed-to-hell low-damage melee attack that it is intended to be, well I guess they’re being toxic and we just can’t get along.

How dare the players try to have fun their way!?

“Guys I really want to love Destiny but there just isn’t anything to do and the loot is just so bori–“

 

4. Three Magic Words To Calm Any Foaming Nerd

As a community manager, communication is key. And communication–hold on let me just pull up my dictionary–means “to exchange information and gain understanding through the use of words or any other medium”. Yeah, what he said. We love communication. Love it so much you can make a drinking game out of the amount of times “communication” is mentioned in this article.

What you’ll learn here is 3 simple words that will douse any proverbial fire and keep your players happy:

WE

HEAR

YOU

You might be wondering, “But wouldn’t that mean we’re admitting we’ve made a mistake and that we now have the responsibility to fix it?”

Naaaaah, chill dude. We said we “heard” them right? It’s like when you hear your fellow community manager colleague cry in the bathroom due to the sheer amount of stress and death threats but you choose to ignore it because you need to draft this week’s update notes but the legal team still hasn’t responded whether “Gotta Go Fast” can be used without getting sued by Sonic and friends?

Exactly like that. You hear the players’ screams and pleas, but they don’t matter because you can just choose not to listen, and just continue to design your game the way you see fit. Communication is successfully established while responsibility continues to get dodged. So easy!

 

3.

 

2.

 

1. Yeah That’s Right

Tips #3 and #2 are just GIFs of a dancing guardian. We promised 5 Tips™, but we didn’t say PR tips.

And that’s precisely what keeps your players engaged while keeping you sane.

Here’s a case study. Players yelled at us to add Nightfall-specific weapons and armour to our Nightfalls (specific missions that are tougher than usual), right? So we added 7 Nightfall-specific loot, but we didn’t specify that they’re gear/weapons, so imagine their surprise when 4 out of 7 are cosmetic ships and sparrows (space scooters) that improve the core gameplay in no way whatsoever! They loved it!

Another example, players love memes in Destiny, right? Who cares about the shooty shot bang space wizards nonsense. With this brilliant insight in mind, let’s litter the DLC’s launch trailer with hilarious new emotes while everything gameplay-related looks unimproved, all while the entire fanbase and countless news outlets are screaming at you to fix the loot and gameplay! *Drops mic*

There you have it, guardians. If you want another tip you’ll have to buy the DLC pack that comes with 2 additional tips, each releasing 5 months apart. No, you can’t buy them individually, that’s not how the world works, you dirty entitled millennial. Quit ruining the economy, jeez.


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