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Destiny 2 players are seeing red when it comes to the new consumable shader system

Destiny 2 shaders work differently than they did in the first game: they can be applied to individual items! But they're also consumable. Bungie's sequel makes so many little quality of life improvements on the original that it's difficult to count them all, but those two relatively minor tweaks are dominating the community conversation a few days after launch.

• Read our Destiny 2 guide and find out out how to finish the campaign and start clearing Strikes like the best of them.

In the original Destiny, shaders were permanent pieces of gear, like most of the loot you could earn from killing enemies or completing tasks. You popped one into your shader slot and it would color all of your armor in matching tones. In Destiny 2, shaders drop in multiples of single-use items and each piece of gear, including guns, has its own shader slot. You can still find shaders in the wild but you can also get them in Bright Engrams, sold via microtransaction (and earned by leveling up once you hit the level cap) at the Eververse Trading Company.

Update: Director Luke Smith has laid out Bungie's reasoning for the Destiny 2 shader changes.

Many Destiny 2 players are frustrated by the new shaders

When I checked, six of the top 20 Destiny Reddit forum threads were all about The Shader Problem. This was the most active of them all - look at those upvotes!

The poster rightly observes that this new system - as we know it now - will lead to all kinds of unfun stuff like stockpiling shaders for that one perfect gear set that will never actually arrive. A lot of players are airing their grievances on Twitter too. 

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Some players are giving Bungie the benefit of the doubt

These are still early days for Destiny 2, of course, and a lot could change. More generous shader conditions might even already be part of Bungie's roadmap.

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It says good things about Destiny 2 that this is the biggest sticking point most players have arrived at so far. On the other hand, it is a pretty big bummer for everyone who used to enjoy swapping through shaders like they were going out of style. Whether and how Bungie responds to these player concerns will set a strong precedent for the years of Destiny 2 ahead.

Connor Sheridan
Connor has been doing news and feature things for GamesRadar+ since 2012, which is suddenly a long time ago. How on earth did that happen?