Destiny is a unique and intricate world that Bungie has developed over a period of several years. This is a game that involves a lot of ideas directly inspired by real-life science and mathematics.
Despite the flaws within Destiny's gameplay and monetization, there is no doubt that the world of this game is like no other. In fact, this is one of the reasons why players flock to Destiny.
The depth of Bungie’s research and the implications that it has on story-telling are far deeper than most players of the game can imagine.
Destiny's story about Light and Darkness is directly related to physics’ description of the current universe
The world of Destiny is directly built on the idea of Light and Darkness. Within the universe of Destiny, Light and Darkness are the two fundamental forces that govern the entire universe. Light is associated with life, while Darkness is associated with conflict, death and survival.
Light believes in giving equal opportunities to everyone, while Darkness believes in survival of the fittest. However, answering how these two fictional entities are related to actual science, especially physics, is a bit complicated.
In order to understand this, it is important to clarify how Light and Darkness came into being. Before these two entities were known as Light and Darkness, they were known as the Gardener and the Winnower.
Both the Gardener and the Winnower used to play a flower game. The Gardener would give birth to a flower in the morning, while the Winnower would separate the flourished pieces from the dead ones in the evening.
There were a few rules, and both the Gardener and the Winnower followed them, until conflict began between the two. The Gardener felt everyone should have the right to live, while the Winnower claimed that only the fittest will survive. This is the key idea that has led to everything that the Destiny community has witnessed till date.
While these two entities in the world of Destiny are fictional, the idea is very much real. According to physics, the universe is based on two ideas: matter and dark energy.
Both matter as well as dark energy were born during the Big Bang, which is very much synonymous with how the flower game has been described in Destiny. It is a conflict between two forces that would ultimately shape the entirety of the universe.
Matter gives birth to life in the form of stars, galaxies and planets. Dark energy, on the other hand, rips the universe apart. It is a force that accelerates the expansion of the universe and will do so till nothing survives.
The similarities between matter and dark energy to Light and Darkness within the Destiny universe
Matter gives everything mass; it leads to the creation of stars and light, which in turn tends to life. Things like dark energy and black holes destroy life, stars and galaxies.
However, the question of which is good and what is evil is very complex in such a scenario. This is because both of them are needed to create balance in the universe, which is exactly how Light and Darkness have been described within Destiny.
They might be entities that are against each other, but both are necessary to maintain equilibrium. They are the entities that exist for the sake of it.
In fact, the similarities do not end here. Within the universe of Destiny, the Traveler is the one that denotes the force of Light, while the pyramid ships denote the force of Darkness. There is only one Traveler while there are thousands of pyramid ships.
The known universe to mankind is similar to Destiny’s depiction of Light and Darkness. The matter that makes up stars, planets, and galaxies constitutes only 4% of the entire universe, while dark energy constitutes 70% of it.
Matter is always weaker and is running against a clock. One day, dark energy will tear matter up into shreds and even protons will be ripped apart from their current known structure. The same thing always happens within the world of Destiny as well where Light has to run as it is always overpowered by Darkness.
Finally, it is a well-known fact that the fastest known object in the real universe is light. The Theory of Relativity by Albert Einstein states that light is red-shifted when traveling across vast distances. In other words, whatever humans see is far into the past.
There is, however, a limit to how much light can be red-shifted. Beyond a certain limit, information does not travel and it is lost forever in the dark reaches of space. This limit is known as the cosmic event horizon.
Within the world of Destiny, Darkness is pretty much the exact thing. The Traveler travels across worlds to provide the power of Light and thereby enhance life. However, once the pyramid ships arrive and Darkness takes over, that world is lost forever.
One of the biggest symbolisms of this is the way in which the season of arrivals showcased the destruction of Mars, Mercury, Io and Titan in the hands of the Darkness.
Those planets got lost once Darkness took over them, and no information is available on their current state. This is exactly how dark energy pulls everything apart from human beings as the universe expands.
The correlation between shapes in the world of Destiny and shapes in mathematics
Shapes play a massive role in the world of Destiny. The Traveler is circular in shape, while pyramid ships are triangular, and it's no coincidence.
Circles are often considered the perfect shape as they are the optimal description of symmetry. Every object tries to attain the shape of a circle somehow or another.
If one tries to squeeze a piece of paper, the shape that it will try to obtain is that of a sphere, which is also a 3D representation of a circle. In fact, even planets and stars are in the shape of spheres, close representations to a circle.
While the reason for planets and stars to form like that is gravity, the implication of this shape is not a coincidence. In philosophy, a circle is defined as something that is gentle and very pleasing to the eye. The Traveler, considered the bearer of Light, is therefore not very different from the same.
However, even if an argument can be made about a circle, the question arises on why pyramids come into play. A triangle is not the perfect shape, rather angular objects are known to showcase conflict in history and philosophy.
There might be a very strong reason why pyramids are the chosen shapes to represent Darkness. In ancient Egypt, giant pyramids were built that way because they provided the most stability. Pyramids look perfect as they are also symmetric, and despite being angular objects, they provide stability.
Tall buildings consist of several small triangular structures to provide support. In fact, pyramids and circles have been part of human history for time immemorial.
Symbols involving Illuminati, Kabbalah movement, Masons and various Christian faiths all feature the circle and the triangle. However, the reason behind choosing these two shapes amongst several others is not just for sake of visual appeal.
One of the most famous paintings by Leonardo Da Vinci, the Vitruvian Man, also features the triangle inside a circle. This is the one that showcases the proportions of the human body. In fact, certain alignments of the Vitruvian Man relate quite nicely with the Golden Ratio.
When it comes to Destiny, the featured artwork for the Lightfall expansion showcases the exact same idea. It is tough to say whether the developers at Bungie considered all these factors, but choosing a sphere and a pyramid to identify their fundamental entities makes a lot of sense.
Destiny’s world is not limited to the above mentioned ideas. There are numerous examples from the real world that have been put into the game for use. In fact, the Vex in Destiny are one of the few races that will intrigue a lot of scientific enthusiasts in the player base.
However, the difference between Destiny and other games is the way in which they use these concepts. Destiny draws genuine inspiration and builds a world that is parallel to our reality.
Destiny almost makes it a quest to feature ideas from science, mathematics and philosophy and puts them almost seamlessly into its framework. It keeps poking into the curiosity of the players and makes them think and question ideas they might not do otherwise.
This is probably the reason why Destiny is such a great game, and perhaps the only reason why players keep coming back to Destiny despite the issues and problems that it has.
Hopefully, Bungie will continue to further develop the universe of Destiny and ensure that it keeps growing through brilliant narratives and exquisite symbolisms.
Note: This article reflects the views and opinions of the author.