It has been a LONG week and a half for Bungie where responses seemed to only make things worse. The most recent – and biggest – example of this was last week when gamers discovered that their EXP gains after hitting the Level 20 cap in Destiny 2 were reduced after a certain point. Bungie responded by removing this reduction, but then doubled the amount of EXP needed to level up. And whereas this was all pretty awkward, it all could have been avoided if Bungie owned it and explained themselves from the start.
If you actually know how Destiny 2 plays, you know that the only thing you obtain by level up past the Level 20 cap are Bright Engrams – cosmetic loot boxes of sorts. Gaining less EXP post Level 20 wouldn’t affect your gameplay experience since Light is the trait that determines that. Though in the end, Bungie’s lack of openness became an issue about trust and caused many other grievances to boil over. It was this environment that made Bungie finally realize they needed a proper sit down with fans about their own short comings and how they hoped to make it right.
What follows here are all the things Bungie will update starting today, what they are looking to improve in 2018 and whether or not any of this even matters.
Major December Game Improvements:
- Armor Ornaments
- Masterwork Weapons
- Improved Faction/ Reputation Systems
- More Ways To Use Legendary Shards – Engrams, Xur, Etc
- Improving the Weapon/ Armor Mod System
December will see two major updates for Destiny 2 within the span of a week. The December 5th Update won’t just bring the ‘Curse of Osiris’ DLC but also a couple of game improvements with the rest coming the following week (December 12th). As for as the improvements you can expect. As Bungie promised a few months ago for their Dawning event, Armor Ornaments are arriving and can be unlocked for your entire account by completing specific objectives. Another major improvement is the introduction of Masterwork Weapons, which are a special type of Legendary gear that can either drop or upgraded (by using parts from a previously dismantled Masterwork weapon). Masterwork weapons will not only keep track of kills and generate more orbs of Light, but also have a re-rollable final perk, which could serve to reintroduce God-Tier weapon sets.
Beyond these new additions, the December updates will also add some fixes to one of the most criticized areas: vendors – ie: the Token System, Legendary Shards & Mods. For full patch notes, please read Bungie’s official statement, but the main takeaways are that your time will be used much more effectively. Activities will now drop more Reputation Tokens and you’ll be able to purchase some weapons/ armor pieces directly from vendors (Faction Rallies and Iron Banner included)! Legendary Shards can now be used to buy Legendary Engrams from the Cryptarch, Fated Engrams from Xur that contain Exotics that you don’t already own, as well as Three of Coins which now give you a boost for Exotic drops that lasts 4 hours. The final improvement of note revolves around the Mod system, where you can buy which Mods you need directly from Banshee-44 (aka no more wasting mods and stardust trying to get a Kinetic Energy Mod).
Planned 2018 Improvements:
- Better Prestige Awards
- Better Lost Sector/ Adventure Rewards
- Crucible Improvements – Private Matches, better rewards, punishment
- Emote Improvements
As for what Bungie has planned for Destiny 2 beyond this month, that will depend largely on the feedback we as a community gives them. That being said, they do have some goals to hit in January/ early 2018. The first of which is better rewards when completing Prestige activities with the intention of expanding rewards for Lost Sectors and Adventures at some point as well. Additionally, they also plan to make several improvements to how the Crucible works such as adding Private Matches, adding better rewards and punishing players who abandon their team during competitive matches. The final item on their immediate “2018 Improvements” List is allowing players to have multiple rare emotes equipped at once. No more choosing between Salty, Spicy Ramen, Flip Out, etc. You can have them all equipped at once!
Does Any Of This Even Matter?
The answer to this question is largely based on what kind of player you are. Whereas the December updates do start rolling out today, most of them are PVE based. If you’re a hardcore PVP player, the meta will be changing with the Season 2 Sandbox update but beyond that maybe you don’t feel like waiting around for 2018 for game mode changes – and that’s totally your call. This is something players have to decide for themselves. Take my experience for example:
First I completed the story, then I wanted to hit Max Light and then I kept grinding because I really wanted a Valakadyn after hearing YouTuber Blessious go on and on about it! And it was worth it; but afterwards the game just started to feel more like a Phone App. I realized I was just logging in each week for the bounties I didn’t need and stopped playing for over a month. Though despite the content drought, lack of endgame and awkwardness on Bungie’s end, I’m still going to play when updates hit for one important reason (besides already having bought the digital downloads months ago): I love the world of Destiny!
I never liked 1st Person Shooters; but Destiny changed that with its beautiful worlds, monsters and lore. Despite all of Destiny 2’s shortcomings there is one area where it has vastly improved upon its predecessor: Story! And that is why I can forgive Bungie and wish them the best – while still holding them to a higher standard. They came close to failure, but it’s not too late; and we as a fan base have to keep this (productive) dialogue going with them.
But that is just my personal reasoning. What are yours? With a bunch of new content coming this month, will you give Destiny 2 another chance? Sound off in the comments below, and remember: Keep it productive. Don’t just say “Destiny 2 sucks”, talk about what you’d like to see it improve – if not for you, than for someone else.
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Joe primarily covers video games news (i.e.: Pokemon, Spyro & Destiny) as well as the occasional ‘Theory Thursday’ pieces. Before writing for FanFest, Joe was the Creator & Editor of TheInsightfulPanda.com. He is also an illustrator and is currently working on Season 3 of his not-for-profit, fan-art crossover series PokéRangers on Instagram.