Destiny 2 is making big changes to Strikes, Crucible, and Gambit this fall

(Image credit: Bungie)

Big changes and additions are coming to Destiny 2's core playlists this fall and beyond, including adept weapons for Strikes and a unified version of Gambit. 

Bungie outlined these changes in its latest blog post. We'll go through them by playlist, but the first additions are universal. As Bungie previously said, it's adding a unique armor set to the core playlists in Season 12 (the first season of Year 4), and it will create a new set each year in the future. 

This armor set is seemingly shared between Strikes, Crucible, and Gambit, but has unique "decals and shaders specific to the activity." Bungie says it will also update weekly challenges to add ways "for players to earn higher-stat packages for these armor sets," which sounds promising indeed. So even if you don't like the way this armor looks, you can still wear it for the stats and then change its appearance using the transmog feature also coming in Year 4.

Similarly, Bungie will revive "pursuit weapons" (formerly known as ritual weapons, and before that pinnacle weapons) in Season 12 with the release of a new pursuit sniper rifle apparently called Adored (according to image file names on Bungie's site). Like the armor set above, this sniper rifle can be earned via Strikes, Crucible, or Gambit. And like the ritual weapons of old, it will feature multiple perk combinations rather than game-breaking unique perks like the ones that led to the removal of pursuit weapons to begin with. Also like the new armor set, you can customize this sniper rifle using cosmetics earned from the three core playlists. If you want, you can get ornaments for all three playlists and swap them as you like. 

(Image credit: Bungie)

As for the Strike page itself, the number of playlists is being culled. From Season 12 onward, there will just be a general Heroic Strikes playlist and a Nightfall: The Ordeal playlist. In a total surprise, Bungie says it's looking to add Adept weapons to Strikes "in a future season." These would presumably be tied to the highest tiers of Ordeal Nightfalls, but that remains to be seen. Still, the idea is exciting. Adept weapons come with an extra perk and were previously exclusive to the Trials of Osiris Lighthouse. It would be fantastic to see PvE equivalents tied to end-game challenges like Ordeal Nightfalls, especially for the crushing Grandmaster difficulty. 

Speaking of the Trials of Osiris, it's due to receive Adept weapons sometime in Season 12 as well. The lack of Adept weapons for flawless runs has been a prominent complaint since the release of the playlist, so this update can't come soon enough. The Crucible as a whole is also getting a tune-up that will control the number of modes available. As of Season 12, we'll have:

  • Featured modes: Control, Elimination, Rumble, Survival (and solo or Freelance Survival)
  • Rotated weekly: Clash, Mayhem, and Showdown
  • Special modes: Iron Banner (with a new solo Iron Banner Freelance mode), and Trials of Osiris (still on weekends), and private lobbies

Finally, we have Gambit, which is due for the biggest overhaul of all. Simply put, Gambit and Gambit Prime are being combined into one mode colloquially known as Gambit Perfected. The new version of Gambit will use the same one-round structure of Gambit Prime, but its enemies have been rebalanced now that the special armor released alongside Gambit Prime in the Season of the Drifter has faded out. 

Bungie says that it will now take slightly longer to summon the Primeval, but it will also take slightly less time to kill it. Blockers have also been rebalanced to make 15-more Blockers more valuable, and the Primeval Slayer buff has been tweaked considerably. You'll still need to kill Primeval Envoys, but those Envoys will now respawn for every 40% of damage dealt to the Primeval. "So if you get invaded and the Primeval is healed a lot, you have the opportunity to get more Slayer buffs and catch up," Bungie explains. The Primeval invasion timer (how frequently you can invade while the enemy has their Primeval up) has also been extended slightly compared to normal Gambit, so you won't get domed (or supered, rocketed, or hammerhead-ed) from the side quite as often.

Ultimately, Bungie expects the new version of Gambit to be faster than Gambit Prime, which was already faster than normal Gambit, which is good news for the mode overall. All of the changes and additions outlined here sound pretty good, to be fair, but Gambit is in especially dire need of adjustments after languishing largely untouched for nearly two years. Bungie says it will share more details about the timing of these changes in the future, and when we know more, you'll know more.

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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 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.