Sprinkled with enthusiastic exhortations, armor-clad space warrior Lord Shaxx presents a compact, hard-hitting eight-minute workout mix.
The supportive exhortations of versus mode MC Shaxx have found a new calling in an age of home confinement and DIY workouts.
Shaxxercise is one of the Destiny 2 studio's responses to Covid-19 coronavirus measures, but this time it's the result of a throwaway comment from an employee's friend.
Kareem Shuman, who is heavily involved in the game's dialogue production process, was in a multiplayer session with a few friends when one of them “commented on how supportive and enthusiastic [in-game announcer] Shaxx is”.
"She wished she had someone like Shaxx yelling at her when she was trying to stay motivated at the gym," Bungie's developer blog explains.
They laughed about it together, though when Shuman got to work the day after, he found himself returning to the idea.
Therefore, with the collaboration of colleagues in the music, narrative, and art departments, they set about working a secret mixtape into the March 17 extension of Destiny 2's ongoing Season of the Worthy.
As part of the storyline's mission flow, players had to pass through the office of their formidable commander, Zavala.
If, against strict orders, they had a bit of a poke around, they'd find a number of personal effects: not only prestige military trophies, or a Newton's pendulum for the office desk, but also a ramen machine, a knitting kit and, tucked out of the way next to a set of free weights, a surprise Shaxxercise mixtape.
That's how players uncovered evidence of Shaxx's sideline as a personal trainer, shouting along to a sequence of high-intensity tunes with almost comically recontextualized lines such as "I want more, Guardian!", "Magnificent! Now stay focused", "You're unstoppable" and "Relax more. I said relax!"
Shaxxercise has been part of the game for a couple of weeks but now, perhaps with half a mind on the alternative workouts people have been seeking in an age of home confinement, it's available for the rest of us to experience and enjoy.
Available for PlayStation 4, Xbox One and Windows PC, Destiny 2 went free-to-play in October 2019.
Like its predecessor, it's a defining presence within a looter-shooter genre that also accommodates Borderlands, The Division and fellow free-to-play hard sci-fi epic Warframe. — AFP Relaxnews
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