Destiny 2 buffing Vex Mythoclast, scout rifles, and hand cannons in PvE, nerfing special weapons in PvP

Destiny 2
(Image credit: Bungie)

Bungie teased a medley of Destiny 2 sandbox changes on a recent podcast, including PvE buffs for scout rifles, hand cannons, machine guns, and the newly re-released Vex Mythoclast. 

Firing Range is a regular podcast hosted by prominent Destiny 2 PvP content creators: CammyCakes, Fallout Plays, CoolGuy, Mercules, and Drewsky. The show's latest episode (which has handy notes in this Reddit post from Hawkmoona_Matata) featured Destiny 2 sandbox discipline lead Kevin Yanes and weapons feature lead Chris Proctor, who touched on everything from Bungie's initial plans for Stasis, the reasoning behind the upcoming Stasis nerfs, the state of balance in PvP, and a variety of weapon changes. 

There were plenty of new details in the nitty-gritty math and design stuff, but much of Yanes and Proctor's input lined up with previous announcements from Bungie. Stasis is getting nerfed across the board, top-tree Dawnblade is too good in PvP, abilities are altogether too powerful in PvP, and so on. However, news of specific weapon changes was a welcome surprise. We recently heard that machine guns are getting a boost since they aren't fulfilling their role as a heavy weapon, but we now know that hand cannons and scout rifles are also due for a bump in PvE specifically.

These buffs go back to changes introduced in 2019's Shadowkeep expansion. Simply put, these changes made enemies tankier and headshots weaker. The headshot damage nerf isn't being reverted, but it will be "mitigated" on certain weapons. This nerf hit many hand cannon and scout rifle archetypes especially hard, causing them to almost one-shot basic enemies, but leave them with an annoying sliver of health that required a follow-up shot. Damage perks could get around this, but compared to the pre-Shadowkeep experience of smoothly headshotting weak enemies, the result always felt clunky. Players have complained about the feel of precision weapons ever since, so hopefully this long-awaited buff makes headshots feel more rewarding for those guns. 

Destiny 2

(Image credit: Bungie)

Two controversial Exotic weapons are getting some fine-tuning as well. The first, Dead Man's Tale, has become a menace in PvP and remains a strong choice in most PvE activities. Consequently, it's getting a nerf later in the Season of the Splicer. Bungie didn't go into much detail on the nerf, but did suggest that mouse and keyboard players should feel the effects more than controller users, which implies that Dead Man's Tale's lethal hip-fire accuracy will take a hit. 

On the other end of the spectrum, Vex Mythoclast, an iconic Destiny 1 Exotic fusion rifle which was reintroduced when the Vault of Glass raid was added to Destiny 2, is due for a buff. The updated version of Vex Mythoclast is underperforming in pretty much every way, as Bungie acknowledged, so it's planning to give it a boost as early as next season, though the exact timing on the buff is still up in the air. 

Looking further ahead, Bungie mentioned special ammo changes coming to Destiny 2 PvP alongside ability changes. Bungie's gone back and forth on the availability of special ammo throughout Destiny and Destiny 2, and it seems we've once again hit the point that special weapons are too dominant for comfort (please act surprised). Bungie says it's going to look at how easy it is to use a special weapon as a primary, but didn't say when ammo changes will arrive. 

One Destiny 2 player bought a website domain just to dedicate it to baby Fallen.

Austin Wood

Austin freelanced for the likes of PC Gamer, Eurogamer, IGN, Sports Illustrated, and more while finishing his journalism degree, and he's been with GamesRadar+ since 2019. They've yet to realize that his position as a staff writer is just a cover up for his career-spanning Destiny column, and he's kept the ruse going with a focus on news and the occasional feature.