When we started talking about launching Destiny 2 on the Epic Games Store, the goal was to make the game even more available to people all over the world, no matter what platform they preferred. But as soon as Bungie and Epic started talking, they realized they were huge fans of each other, and things started snowballing. This is how we ended up with a crossover spanning three games, six characters/outfits, a map recreation, and three Guardian classes reimagined as rock-em-sock-em jellybeans.
Both studios were embarking on new territory. Destiny 2 doesn’t have characters that come from other games. And on Epic’s side, although they celebrate welcoming a huge collection of recognizable faces into their universe, none of their original Fortnite outfits have appeared in any other game… until now.
“When we started talking about who would be coming to Destiny 2 from Fortnite, we knew we wanted iconic, instantly recognizable outfits that were also fan-favorites, ” said Joss Price, director of strategic partnerships at Bungie. “We came up with our short list and when we went to Epic, they were already on the same page.”
The list read: Drift, Black Knight, Oblivion.
Since the teams at Epic and Bungie are big fans of each other’s games, it wasn’t surprising that they saw eye to eye when choosing outfits. It was easy to imagine the sleek and streamlined Oblivion as a Hunter. In other cases, it wasn’t just that Drift’s long coat matched a Warlock’s silhouette, the fact that they’re imbued with magic also came into play. Black Knight as a Titan? Easy choice.
In a well-established universe, it can sometimes be hard to specify what makes something click into place or stick out like a sore thumb. Luckily, both Destiny 2 and Fortnite have been getting regular updates for years now and both teams have gotten really good at identifying when something blends seamlessly with the universe.
Justin Dazet, Destiny 2’s commerce area lead, spoke glowingly about the team of artists working at Bungie. “Our artists are incredible at taking something that might not seem like it fits on paper and approaching it from a place we could have never imagined. We hold our art pillars very close, and I think you can see that in the consistency of our releases. Our goal is to ensure that you’re never pulled out of the fantasy.”
There’s no single way to be a Guardian. And although they take many forms and have an infinite variety of styles (#ThreadsOfLight), we share the community’s respect for the Destiny universe, and can sense when something feels out of place.
We also share the community’s passion for playing with non-canonical elements—after all, we never stopped being fans. Our goal is to strike a balance that allows us to flex our creativity in new ways while mindfully reeling things in until they feel at home.
Price remembers, “A guiding phrase for us was, ‘Authentically Destiny 2, unmistakably Fortnite.’ We were blending two universes and we knew that staying true to both was possible or we wouldn’t have attempted it.”
Flying in the opposite direction (possibly in a Battle Bus) we find three iconic Destiny 2 characters: the Titan Vanguard, Commander Zavala; the Warlock Vanguard, Ikora Rey; and the time-traveling Exo Stranger.
“Just like us, Epic has a very good idea for how things should fit in their game and what their design principles are,” said Bungie Art Lead, Josh Deeb. “The fact that they’re fans of Destiny 2 made remaining faithful to what makes our characters special easy—it felt like we were speaking the same language.”
The teams identified features that make each character instantly recognizable, and sought to preserve those key aspects:
● Zavala’s glowing eyes which are a feature of the Awoken race.
● Ikora’s facial expressions—a signature of the Warlock’s intimidating and studious personality.
● The Exo Stranger’s robotic elements distinguish her from her two biological companions.
In addition to the three Destiny 2 characters making their Fortnite debut, Epic also worked with creator team PWR to build an entire Destiny 2 map in Fortnite.
“Javelin-4 is one of the most iconic and well-played maps and it ported really well,” said Price. “The team at PWR are huge Destiny fans, and the map was extensively playtested until it struck a balance that felt true to both games.”
“As life-long fans of Bungie and avid players of Destiny 2 and Fortnite, it has been an incredible opportunity to work alongside such talented teams,” said PWR’s creative director of game development Boomer Gurney. “Bringing these two iconic games to life in one experience was challenging and only possible thanks to the passion of everyone involved. This project has been our most playtested game to date, and while it was invaluable to help fine-tune and capture the spirit of both titles, I think everyone was just having a lot of fun playing. We’re very proud of what we’ve been able to create together and excited for players to experience it live in Fortnite.”
Dima Goryainov, Destiny’s universe concept art lead, spoke about one of the biggest challenges PWR faced with the recreation of Javelin-4. “PWR did an incredible job of finding really creative ways to use the existing Fortnite asset library and Creative toolset to very closely match the visuals of Destiny 2. Some areas of the map look nearly identical to the original Javelin-4 and even for something as specific as the rocket, enough similar pieces were creatively utilized in order to still get the overall feel across. They absolutely nailed the look in terms of visual design, detail density, and lighting.”
Joining the party and adding a little extra chaos to the crossover, Mediatonic made the Fall Guys collab as painless as a pillow fight. As developers of Fall Guys , Mediatonic are all pros at this and have nailed adding new characters to their universe plenty of times. But for us, this was untraveled territory. We’ve never seen the three Destiny classes represented as Bumbling Beans before—most of us had never even considered what that might look like—but as soon as we witnessed Mediatonic’s eye-opening implementation from concept art to adorable playable characters, the approval on our side was a breeze. I mean, c’mon:
As if that wasn’t enough, Katie Lennox, director of consumer products at Bungie, hinted at something both teams are working on, “I can’t say much now, but we’re really excited to be partnering with our friends at Fall Guys on some extra special squishy offerings for fans that will be revealed at a later date!”
Follow Fall Guys and the Bungie Store on Twitter to make sure you get updated when the announcement happens.
In hindsight, this partnership was a no-brainer. There’s a lot of crossover between communities; people who like to play Fortnite end up liking Destiny and vice versa. In fact, it was easy to find examples within both our studios. Here at Bungie, Dazet can’t start his day without a game of Fall Guys. Destiny 2’s Game Director, Joe Blackburn, loves playing Fortnite with his family, and Epic’s Chief Creative Officer, Donald Mustard, has said that Destiny 2 is one of his favorite games of all time.
When you combine fandom with a passion for creativity, the results can be astounding; just look at the incredible work that comes out of both communities. That magical combination was found throughout this collaboration.
“Although this was our first game of collaboration, it felt like we were at the World Series,” Said Deeb. “And to stretch the analogy a bit, when you work in games, it often feels like you’re in the same sport’s league. So, it’s understandable that some people might see that as a hyper competitive landscape, but it’s the opposite. We’re all fans of playing the game, so to speak, and getting to partner up like this is incredibly fun.”
And so, as you prepare to take your new Black Knight ornament out for a Nightfall spin, throw a fluffy-fisted haymaker, or leap out of the Battle Bus with signature Sparrows and sword-themed pickaxes in hand, count yourself among the hundreds of fans that made this a reality. We hope you love playing what we made as much as we do.
We’re all Guardians, now. See you starside.
Destiny 2, Fortnite, and Fall Guys are available for free on the Epic Games Store and the PlayStation Store. PlayStation owners who link their account will be able to unlock a new Destiny 2 emblem set to release on September 1. Destiny 2 content is available today in Fortnite. Fortnite-themed armor ornaments are available today in Destiny 2. Guardian-themed costumes coming to Fall Guys beginning on September 17.