In a much-anticipated blog post, Destiny 2 game director Christopher Barrett talked abut what's coming to the sci-fi shooter in the time ahead. Things kick off on January 30 with an update that will expand the Masterwork system to include armor for the first time.
This armor offers better damage reduction when you're using your Super ability. Additionally, you can re-roll your Masterwork armor stat type, and it can be upgraded as well using Cores and Shards tied to Masterworks. The January 30 update also changes how Raid rewards work with the aim of making them "more unique and interesting."
"They will now feature mods with Raid-specific perks, and we are adjusting the rewards to ensure a Raid item drops from each major encounter," Barrett explained in a blog post. "The Raid vendor will also directly sell Leviathan and Eater of Worlds armor and weapons for purchase with Raid tokens and Legendary Shards."
What's more, there will be new perks that can drop from the final encounters in the Leviathan and Eater of Worlds raids. Barrett added that Bungie is working on other rewards specific to some raids and some activities are coming in the future.
An update coming in February, meanwhile, will add scoring and high score tracking to Nightfall Strikes, which will replace the existing time-limit mechanic. "The scoring is similar to the Destiny 1 system but with adjustments to emphasize competitive execution of Strike objectives and support for player selectable score modifiers," Barrett said. "In February, Nightfall High Scores will be exposed in-game via new emblems and will unlock rewards. We also have plans for Clan and Community High Scores in the works."
Destiny 2's February update will also add a 2.0 version of mods, which is described as a "full rework" of how mods work for armor and weapons. "This will focus on reducing redundant mods, more unique theming, and greatly increasing their impact on your power," Barrett said. "We are aiming for a February release, but the scope of the rework could push parts or all of it out to early spring. We will be evaluating how Mods play into the Bright Engram economy as a result, because we're sensitive to pay-to-win outcomes."
Here are some of the other changes coming to Destiny 2 in the February update, with descriptions written by Bungie:
- Quickplay Improvements
- We are adjusting game mode rules to increase the pace of gameplay and power ammo acquisition in Quickplay.
- PC Tower Chat
- We are adding text chat to the Tower for the PC version of the game.
- Exotic Repetition Reduction
- This will prevent players from receiving the same Exotic twice in a row. You may still receive duplicates, just not consecutively.
- Fireteam Members on Destination Map
- You will finally be able to see the other members of your fireteam on the destination map. No more having to ask your fireteam where they went when they fast travel to another landing zone.
Then in Spring 2018, Bungie will launch Destiny 2's next paid expansion following last year's Curse of Osiris. While some of the content will of course be locked behind the paywall, everyone is getting new updates to other parts of the game. For Crucible, Barrett said Bungie is hoping to give players "new reasons to play, more variety, and balance improvements." One part of this is a new ranking system; starting with Season 3, there will be seasonal Crucible ranks, broken into two categories: Valor and Glory. Here is a rundown of the two:
- Valor – A progression rank that goes up as you complete matches. Winning helps you move up faster, but there are no loss penalties.
- Glory – A progression rank that goes up when you win and down when you lose. Performance is how you move up here.
Also new in the update will be private matches for everyone, which you can invite friends to and choose a map and mode. Bungie is also launching a 6v6 playlist (an increase from some of the current 4v4 modes), a "Mayhem event" for a limited time, and some behind-the-scenes improvements and fixes to improve the experience overall.
That's not all that's coming and changing in the spring update; the following are some "highlights" that Barrett called out in his blog post, including increasing the vault space, support for multiple emotes, and more:
- Weapon and Ability Balance Pass
- Sandbox adjustments based on player feedback and data from the live game. The Sandbox team will share specific changes as we lead up to Season 3.
- Exotic Weapon and Armor Balance Pass
- Exotic weapons and armor are receiving a comprehensive design pass to ensure they stand out from the rest of the gear and offer new, exciting, powerful ways to play.
- Seasonal Reputation
- Specific vendors will now display a Seasonal ranking. Earning reputation will unlock unique Seasonal rewards and will reset each Season.
- Improved Iron Banner and Faction Rallies
- In addition to the changes that you will see when Iron Banner and Faction Rallies return this month, we will continue iterating on these to make them unique, exciting experiences that you all look forward to.
- Playlist Repetition Reduction
- This feature solves the problem of experiencing the same playlist entry multiple times in consecutive or frequent succession for both Crucible and Strikes.
- End Game Player Pursuits
- We agree with your feedback on the imbalance between Achievement and Bright Engram rewards, and we will be making adjustments to shift more rewards into specific endgame pursuits instead of generic XP grinding for Bright Engrams. We are excited to share the details as soon as we have them worked out.
- When multi-emote launches, you will be able to choose which emote you have equipped to each of your four emote slots.
- Vault space
- We are targeting an additional 50 slots to player vaults. We don't believe just adding more space is a complete solution and are actively working on other changes to reduce load on your vault space.
- We are adding an Exotic accessory tab to Vault collections so you will no longer need to spend Vault space on Exotic Ships, Sparrows, and Ghosts.
- PC Clan Chat
- In addition to the Tower chat that is targeted for February, we are adding clan chat to the PC version of the game.
- Heroic Strike Changes
- We'll be introducing modifiers to add more gameplay variety to the experience.
Then in Fall 2018, or potentially sooner according to Bungie, there will be "a lot more" in terms of updates and changes. However, Barrett said Bungie is "not quite ready" to talk about these things with any specificity, though he did provide an outline of what players can expect:
- Item Collections and Records
- Weapon Slot and Archetype Improvements
- Additional Crucible Playlists (e.g. Rumble)
- Better Clan Rewards
- Masterwork Exotics
- Pinnacle Weapon and Gear Improvements
- Trials of the Nine improvements
- Shaders and dismantling
- The Future of Guided Games
- Address Solo Vs Fireteam matching
Bungie also today announced some changes coming to Destiny 2's microtransaction system, quality-of-life improvements, the next Faction Rally, and more.