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Destiny 2 drops weapon crafting hints plus huge buffs players have wanted for years

Guardians in the upcoming Destiny 2: The Witch Queen expansion
(Image credit: Bungie)

Destiny 2: The Witch Queen's weapon crafting system is coming into focus, and the expansion will also make artifact mods more accessible and reduce vault clutter by making armor masterworks less expensive.

Bungie outlined some upcoming changes to artifacts and armor in its latest blog post. Beginning with The Witch Queen and Season 16, you'll be able to unlock more than the usual 12 artifact mods by grinding out more XP. It will take a long time to unlock all 25 mods on the artifact, but that'll actually be possible, and even a few extra mods will go a long way toward build diversity. Bungie says it's also bringing back some "perennial favorite anti-champion" mods for Season 16 along with fresh mods highlighting new weapon perks coming in the expansion.

Armor is likewise getting an update that players have requested for years. From Season 16 onward, changing the element (arc, solar, void, and stasis) of masterworked armor won't force you to take out a second mortgage. Instead of the current system, which charges one ascendant shard for swapping a masterworked legendary and three shards for masterworked Exotics, you'll only have to spend some glimmer and an upgrade module in the future. That's a comically large discount – somewhere north of 90% off compared to the current costs. This will free up vault space since duplicate armor won't be as necessary going forward, and it'll make build-crafting much less expensive.

Bungie's post concludes with a brief teaser for the weapon crafting system coming in The Witch Queen, which is tied to a change to weapon masterworks. 

"Elements of the new weapon crafting system will encourage you to use many different weapons and ask you to burn hard-earned Masterwork materials on a weapon that you may only be using for a few hours, just to generate Orbs," Bungie says. This supports the popular theory that we'll have to reach kill or usage milestones with specific guns to continue the weapon crafting process, which sounds similar to the old Black Armory system at first blush.

Bungie was quick to add that hastily upgrading all those guns "seemed like a tall order," so it's adjusting how weapons generate orbs of power to make masterworking less essential. Simply put, we're getting new helmet mods that enable specific weapon types to generate orbs on kills. This is great news for Exotics that don't have catalysts since they can't make orbs as-is, but it could be bad news for basically every other gun. It'll be interesting to see how these new mods fit into popular loadouts – hopefully smoothly, and not like a round peg in a square hole.

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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.