Players were a stunned by the news that Bungie was parting ways with Activision and would be taking over Destiny 2 going forward. Some worried it would spell doom for the struggling franchise, but others thought Bungie would be able to return to the roots of the game and do it justice among the most loyal fans.
A little over a year later and things have definitely changed with Bungie behind the wheel. New features have been introduced that make the game more playable and rewarding, the lore has been expanded in bold directions, and tweaks to the game’s mechanics have been made to improve the overall experience. Here are the ten changes Bungie has made to the game that have made a lot of difference for players.
10 Gambit Prime
Players have complained that Gambit can often become an annoying slog that drags on towards the end and hasn’t been very fulfilling. In response, Bungie released their Gambit Prime which shortened the event to a single round and imposed better defined roles for each of the teammates participating. To simplify things, Bungie has assigned specially colored armor for each role that helps teammates quickly identify who is responsible for what, they also come with unique perks designed to better aid in carrying out the assigned role.
They also introduced a new final boss called the Primeaval that requires teams to be better coordinated and focus on fulfilling their designated roles in order to succeed.
9 Shotgun Nerfs and Buffs
One of the latest complaints is that shotguns have become overpowered in PVP content. Bungie has responded by introducing a series of nerfs for shotguns. Most notable are the slashes to the rate-of-fire boost provided by the Full Auto Trigger System perk, instead of providing a 100 percent increase it’s now only 10 percent. Ammo reserves will also see hits and the effective range of shotguns will also take some hits in Crucible.
It’s not all nerfs though as Bungie has introduced buffs in damage and natural rate-of-fire, but it’s clear that shotguns will no longer be the overpowered weapons they once were.
8 Season Of The Drifter Lore
The Drifter has been a mysterious character in Destiny 2 and players have been clamoring for more details about him. The latest season has given everyone an inside look at the character and revealed interesting details about the world lore as a result.
In addition to further details on The Drifter, players have also gotten an inside look a the Nine and their shadowy emissary Xûr. Players interacting with Xûr who have the Annual Pass were introduced to a unique quest, the Invitation of the Nine which offered even more lore and fantastic loot. It’s an update that has expanded the story of the world and fleshed out some of the holes that players were wanting filled.
7 Power Level Cap Changes
Previously the highest Power Level achievable was 650, but Bungie has increased that to 700 and introduced some mechanics to help players across the board get their quicker. The Drifter has a Power Surge bounty that provides gear with a power level of 640. This provides a huge boost to lesser leveled players and can see a bump in level increases for those that were at the previous Power Level cap.
This will also have the side affect of making some of the end game content a little smoother for those who manage to grind above 650 and make the grind to 700 a little easier to swallow.
6 Removal Of The Prismatic Matrix
This was a controversial change for many players as it feels more of like a cash grab then a benefit to players. Previously the Prismatic Matrix was a rotating list of items that allowed players a clear path to obtaining cosmetic items for their characters through the Eververse Store. It was provided as a way to make it more convenient to obtain elusive items while preserving the loot crate randomness.
Bungie however has decided to remove the Prismatic Matrix and introduce bundles that are purchasable with Silver. It was intended as a way to provide players a way to buy what they wanted without relying on the randomness of RNG, but for many players it feels like a return to paid microtransactions.
5 Bounty Power Reward Caps
Bungie has noticed players will often hoard bounty rewards or raid keys shortly before a new increase to the Power Level Cap and then use them after the change is made. Doing this provides the player with a mass of gear that can have a maximum power of the new cap and give them a leg up when striving for the new Power Level Cap.
To combat this Bungie has introduced reward caps that are determined based on when the reward is obtained. If a player gets a bounty reward when the Power Level Cap is at 650 their reward will max out at 650, but if it’s obtained after the cap is raised to 700, it will reach 700. This motivates players to cash in their rewards immediately instead of hoarding them for the next cap raise.
4 Joker’s Wild No More
While it has no impact on the game itself it was an interesting change that might have something to do with the split from Activision. The wealth of content to be released in the Seasons of The Drifter were named Joker’s Wild, but Bungie recently dropped the name and simply never replaced it with anything.
It’s possible Joker’s Wild was simply a codename for the project and somehow found it’s way into the Destiny 2 marketing and fan base, but Bungie has been strangely silent on the name drop and don’t seem to be in a rush to explain it.
3 Subclass Changes
As part of a class rebalancing effort Bungie has decided to introduce key buffs and nerfs it believe will bring the subclasses more in balance with each other. The Striker subclass is seeing significant changes to its Supers to be more effective and devastating, such as decreasing the cost of Trample by 85 percent. Meanwhile the Nova Warp for the Voidwalker has taken some hits in the updates and sees movement reductions while charging, the cost to charge becoming higher and its duration has decreased.
Players are still getting a feel for the new changes, but it's definitely shaken things up for both PVP and PVE across the board.
2 The Reckoning
Found in the Planes of the Nine, Bungie introduced a new bit of cooperative PVE content called The Reckoning. It’s designed to compliment the Gambit Prime runs in that it grants special gear for the set roles in Gambit Prime providing special perks to make the raid easier.
What’s interesting is that The Reckoning can only be accessed after beating a round of Gambit Prime. The idea is that beating the Gambit Prime gets you into The Reckoning which gives you perked armor which helps win the Gambit Prime which compels you back to The Reckoning for even better perked armor. This gameplay loop has been an interesting change and has kept players locked into the game.
1 Bungie Listening To Its Fan Base
Perhaps the most interesting change after the split from Activision is that Bungie seems more open and responsive to requests from the Destiny 2 community. Season of the Drifter introduced a wealth of lore and other content that seemed lacking from the game and giving players a boost to reaching level caps through Power Surge Bounties, that provide high level items instead of one-time consumables, cuts down the grind significantly.
Maybe without Activision Bungie can focus more on satisfying players and can move faster to implementing needed changes, rather than satisfying corporate overlords who might be leery of such changes. In any case it’s clear Bungie is paying attention to Destiny 2 fans and delivering on desired improvements.