When Bungie cancelled its latest livestream to instead address Destiny 2 players mounting concerns', what with that whole dodgy XP business, you knew they were going to have to deliver something more than a heartfelt apology. Today, in a detailed blog post filling in fans on planned changes to the game, Bungie revealed a load of improvements, including a brand new weapon tier and private matches planned to be added over the next few months.
The most exciting news for loot hounds is the Masterworks weapon tier, as it seems to take us at least part way back to the golden age of unique stat rolls for weapons. In Bungie's words: "A new Weapon Tier: Masterworks, which will feature stat trackers, random, re-rollable stat bonuses, unique item tooltips, and item details screens."
Starting December 12, Legendary weapons will have the potential to drop as - or if you have them already, be upgraded to - these new Masterworks versions. These Masterwork weapons will track kills, generate orbs on multikills, and "add weapon stat bonuses that are selected randomly from a small pool and are re-rollable." These super guns will drop from any source of Legendary weapons for Guardians who rank above 250 Power, and Raid and Trials of the Nine Weapons will have a high chance of dropping as Masterworks. Got a Masterwork you don't like? It can be scrapped for materials to upgrade a different Legendary to a Masterwork.
This is the biggest change in a long list that includes better incentives for players across the board, improvements to Iron Banner and Faction Rallies, the mod economy, Exotics, and Legendary shards. Basically, if someone has written a post about it on Reddit, it's on the list. Even that damn Spicy Ramen emote gets a mention.
We're particularly intrigued by the mention of Fated Engrams. "Every week, you’ll be able to acquire one of the new Fated Engrams using Legendary Shards that will decrypt as Exotics that aren’t already in your collection."
Players should start to see some changes in a patch due December 5, while others will come on December 12. Further changes, like private Crucible matches, are scheduled for a vaguer "early 2018" time frame.
You can read through the full road-map here, and there's certainly plenty to chew on.
"Going forward, Destiny 2’s post-launch game systems, features, and updates are being designed specifically to focus on and support players who want Destiny to be their hobby – the game they return to, and a game where friendships are made," said Destiny developers Luke Smith and Chris Barrett as part of the update.
"We want Destiny to be a game that fits into your life, providing you with reasons to log in and play with your friends, clans, and families. We want Destiny to be a world you want to be a part of."
Bungie also promised a new podcast this week to talk through some of the changes and has committed to being more open with fans in the future. Will it be enough to placate the hardcore? Only time, and concurrent player numbers, will tell.