Type of site
Official company site
Bungie.net is the main official portal of Bungie Studios, the developer of Halo, Myth, Oni, Marathon, Destiny, and the only site for interaction between company staff and the community surrounding Bungie's games.
Before Bungie was purchased by Microsoft, Bungie.net was used to host and play the Myth series of games. In addition to being the main portal to all official information about Bungie and their games, Bungie.net also operates as a statistical database for the games Halo 2, Halo 3 and Halo 3: ODST. Bungie.net retrieves data directly from the Xbox and Xbox 360 LIVE servers and stores it in its databases. Every Xbox LIVE player that participates in a match of a Halo 2, Halo 3 or Halo 3: ODST will have an account created on Bungie.net automatically.
Bungie.net began life in 1996 as Bungie.com, a community/business website covering Marathon and previous projects. Even in the beginning, classic pages such as "Letters to the Webmaster and Soapbox" existed, if in a somewhat graphically inferior manner to the later versions. A few layout and content updates ensued throughout 1997 until at the end of the year, consequent of the release of Myth, Bungie.net was born, serving as a community, statistics and multiplayer metaserver. Bungie.com remained to cover the business side, while it's sibling thrived. With the release of Myth II at the close of 1998, the site was further updated and now supported the multiplayer sides of both games.
The Great Hack of '07
On Sunday, July 8, 2007, the Moderator Pezz had his, as well as others', accounts hacked. Moderators were blacklisted. Stickies and topics were deleted and blocked. The hacker(s) caused panic by Rick Rolling and posting links to Meatspin. Almost every forum was attacked. Many people thought it had something to do with the ARG Iris, but no one is certain. The Flood Forum was said to have been hit hardest with over an entire page filled with blocked topics.
This hacking spree went on for a quarter hour.
On March 19, 2007, the website underwent a new layout design and featured new accessibility features in preparation for the Halo 3 Beta and its launch. On July 14, 2008, the site became part of the Halo 3: ODST viral campaign where the homepage shows a false service suspension. By July 15, 2008, an apology letter from the President of Bungie, Harold Ryan, announced that the announcement trailer of Halo 3: ODST will postponed and the site's layout was reverted to its previous design. In order to coincide with the release of Halo 3: ODST, the website experienced some layout updates such as a new front page which displays a Flash-processed News Archive, a quick-access to players' personal stats and a Road To Recon list which shows the achievements the player has earned; successfully obtaining all achievements will unlock the Recon armor.
Bungie.net and Public Interaction
Bungie.net is an extremely successful and enjoyable online community, and that's mostly because of a member's ability to interact with the site and other members. Although there are different ways of doing this, the most widespread and popular is posting in the forums.
Bungie.net Public Forums
Inside these, any registered, non-blacklisted member may create or reply to a topic. Members cannot create new topics in the Voting Booth or The News unless their accounts have a certain level of security clearance.
- Bungie Universe Forum— Formerly known as The Underground - Discussion of all things Bungie.
- Bungie.net Community Forum— Formerly known as The Septagon - Talk about community stuff here.
- Halo: Reach Forum- Topics concerning the game Halo: Reach.
- Halo 3: ODST Forum- Discussion relating to the Halo 3 expansion, Halo 3: ODST.
- Halo 3 Forum — All subjects regarding Halo 3's campaign or otherwise are located here.
- Halo 2 Forum— Formerly known as New Mombasa - Anything and everything related to Halo 2.
- Optimatch Forum— General Xbox LIVE playlist discussion.
- Halo 1 & 2 For PC— Formerly known as The Maw - Discussion of Halo and Halo 2 for the PC.
- Halo Combat Evolved Forum— Formerly known as The Library - General Halo Xbox discussion.
- The Gallery Forum—Crazy pictures from Bungie and fan-created art goes here. This forum hosts the occasional Caption Contest.
- The News Forum—Bungie's top news stories go here. Whenever you see a Weekly Update or other announcement on the front page, a corresponding thread for discussion of that story automatically appears in The News.
- The Voting Booth—This is the repository for all official Bungie polls, as well as Sketch's primary domain. Within its boundaries are many general polls, such as "Do you have an Xbox or 360?".
- The Classifieds—Advertise for your Halo 2 clan, Bungie.net chapter, or other general recruiting here.
- Off-Topic Forum: The Flood— Formerly known as The Flood - Off-Topic forum; use at your own risk.
Users have the ability to create their own private groups (also known as Chapters) on Bungie.net. A private group consists of a private forum and is moderated by the members themselves. The group founder has the ability to accept and reject members and give other people moderator powers. Bungie also does a private group spotlight and gives one of the Bungie.net groups the ability to control Bungie Favorites for two weeks.
The moderators on Bungie.net are volunteers from the community who donate their time and patience to help maintain some peace and order on the forums. They primarily work to combat spammers and rule violators while also helping to answer questions and welcome new members. If a moderator sees a thread that doesn't belong in a forum, they will move it. If it's an inappropriate thread, they will lock it. The moderators also report members who violate Bungie's rules to the Bungie team so they can follow-up as appropriate.
- Bungie.net has a total of 3 million pageviews per day, and accumulates over 300 GB of data a month of online game statistics from the almost 1 million online games played every day.
- Occasionally, Bungie.net will have comical messages in the title bar such as "Satisfy Your Grunty Thirst", "Our Webmaster Wears a Gorilla Suit and a Jetpack" and "Don't use -blam-!".
- Bungie.net's design and inventive features have not gone unnoticed, since it was rated as the "Most Innovative Design" by IGN Entertainment in 2004. The site also exceeds a 99 percent up-time ratio even through peak usage periods, such as the week of the Halo 2 release.
- The "search" button for the search bar of the site is actually the Marathon symbol, tilted on its side to resemble a magnifying glass.
- During the lead-up of the release of Destiny, the website was redesigned. All Halo-related news and stats were swapped with Destiny, but Halo-themed profile pictures and profile backgrounds remained available.