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The ‘implied fiction’ and gun bazaars behind Destiny's weapons

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The weapons in Destiny, Halo developer Bungie's upcoming open-world shooter, share a common ancestry with Star Wars lightsabers and Kill Bill's Hattori Hanzō — even if that connection is only implied.

When creating Destiny's weapons, designers wanted them to convey the feeling that they were crafted, like lightsabers are assembled by Jedi in the Star Wars universe. Concept art inspired the idea of "gun bazaars" on planets, where Destiny's weapons originate.

"We thought of the gun bazaars in other parts of the world and in places where there are military conflicts, and we we're thinking, 'Man, there's some master craftsman who's putting together your duke," art lead Tom Doyle said.

When asked how much the design team thinks about the fiction underpinning weapons, he agreed that they're "building the weapons out" from the fiction they're creating.

"There is a lot of what I refer to as ‘implied fiction' in the weapons," he said. "I just told you guys the story of the gun market. Well, unless you have depot access and are at Bungie, you never saw that concept of the bazaar. But we want [it] to feel like there are these dudes underneath the city who are craftsmen, no different than a guy who forges a katana, and you almost expect on the bottom of the Duke the armor seal that is his."

"Hattori Hanzō," a fellow podcaster said, referring to the katana craftsman from Quentin Tarantino Kill Bill films.

"Exactly," Doyle said.

You see the Destiny's weapons in action in a video from E3 and listen to the rest of Bungie's podcast — the developer's first in nearly three years — at Bungie.net.

Update: A previous version of this article attributed the quotes above to Josh Hamrick, when it was actually Tom Doyle. We've corrected the article and apologize for the confusion.