Destiny 2 director casually announces a change for The Final Shape that players have wanted for 9 years: shader icons that actually make sense

Destiny 2's Zavala
(Image credit: Bungie)

After 9 years of bafflingly inconsistent icons screwing up the best-laid fashion plans, Bungie is trying to make Destiny 2's shaders a little more consistent starting with The Final Shape expansion due next year

That's according to game director Joe Blackburn, who delivered a quietly massive announcement in a recent video from long-time Destiny content creator Datto. For the Destiny 2 fashionistas out there, this minor reveal was a megaton teaser. 

"I don't know if we're gonna ever talk about this again," Blackburn begins, visibly alerting the known fashion enthusiasts on the group call. "This is a very small reveal, and I have nothing to talk about, but we have redone how the icons look in The Final Shape. There's like a whole other section of every shader icon to better describe the areas that are shaded. 

"All of the colors are represented in the new icons and they're organized a bit differently. I still think you have to know how armor works, or really look at it and go 'I get it,' but the more prominent areas pick up the more prominent parts of the shader, and all the little hidden colors are represented on the shader icon." 

Amusingly enough, this comment was the result of a 55-minute game show-style video dedicated to poring over Destiny 2's collection of shaders – thought up, as Datto puts it, "because I am in a desperate need of content." It's a fun watch, and well worth it for this news alone.

Blackburn's comments will come as a godsend to habitual outfit-swappers. As any Destiny 2 fashionista can tell you, the color-coded icons for a disturbing number of shaders don't make a lick of sense. Random new colors and inexplicably missing colors can ruin what looks like the perfect shader and outfit combo, to say nothing of different armor layers shading inconsistently. Monochromatic shaders will infamously throw in random highlights, and I've even had shrieking reds and *shudders* greens jumpscare me while trying otherwise demure shaders. 

It's been this way for nine years, and Destiny 2 arguably made it worse by broadening the variety of shaders without really improving the UI's visual language. Hell, we just got a way to favorite shaders. But this chaos may finally come to an end in Destiny 2 The Final Shape. I'll tell you right now that if the Witness has shaders that actually look like the game says they do, some of my clanmates would switch sides in a heartbeat. 

This tiny bombshell aside, the best bit of the video is when Destiny 2's original, one-time consumable shaders are brought up around 22:40. Who remembers those dark days? Not Blackburn, who says he's forcibly "wiped that away from my memory." 

Bungie tried to stop them, but Destiny 2 players have revived one of the best DPS glitches in MMO history: the double-slug boss melt.

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 senior 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, all while playing as many roguelikes as possible.