New Nightfall weapons and Reputation Changes in the Destiny 2 News Roundup
Bungie was back this week with their This Week At Bungie update on 27th January 2022. Today I’m going to round up all that news, plus a few little snippets that came out after related to new and returning Nightfall loot, weapons rotating out of the loot pool and reputation changes across playlist activities.
Let’s dive into the update from Bungie.
RITUAL, VANGUARD, AND CRUCIBLE – OH MY!
We have more than a few interesting changes on the horizon, including updates for Ritual Reputations, Trials, and those oddly satisfying Nightfalls. When reviewing player feedback, it was clear a few tweaks were necessary, including the evolution of Vanguard Ops, so we put on our Big People Pants and got to work. Here’s where we are right now.
Looking at the data for Season 15, Guardians were approaching the new Vanguard Ranks differently than what our models initially assumed. According to our findings, players were running more Vanguard Strikes than anticipated and were optimizing for the new activity streak at a lower rate, as well. We used the data from the Season of the Lost to adjust the model to be more accurate with actual behavior, and then re-tuned everything to bring the average gain more in line with Crucible. For Season 16, expect increased Vanguard reputation on completion, activity streak amounts, Nightfall multipliers, and Nightfall completion quality bonuses. Vanguard reputation gain should be approximately twice as fast for most players, with the ability to optimize even faster by playing higher difficulty Nightfalls and utilizing the activity streak more.
Similarly, Trials of Osiris was about 30% slower than anticipated while not having an accelerated gain when higher ranks are achieved. We also felt like we were not valuing winning rounds enough, especially players getting to 20-round wins and at 7-ticket wins. We have added a small amount of Trials Reputation at match-end for every round won in that match, which increases based on how many ticket wins a player has. At the top end, each round won awards 21 reputation (up to 105 extra reputation a match). This ideally speeds up Trials reputation gain by 50 percent or more for players who do not regularly reset their ticket in an attempt to go Flawless. While we were not able to give an accelerated reputation gain for higher ranks in The Witch Queen for technical reasons, look for more news on that sometime later in the year! (Also, here’s a quick preview of a returning Trials reward for next Season. There’s another weapon in the pipe, but we’ll leave that for you to discover when Trials returns in The Witch Queen.)
Bungie then previewed the returning Summoner, the Trials Autorifle coming back for The Witch Queen.
So, what about the things we aren’t changing yet? We are happy with the speed of Crucible reputation gain, though we may look at this again alongside Iron Banner vendor changes in the future. Gambit reputation gain was about 30 percent slower than desired, but with the Gambit revamp coming in The Witch Queen, we would like a full Season to analyze playstyles and patterns before making any changes. More details on that coming in a future TWAB (oh yeah, that’s right – we hit with you that anticipation).
We also are not currently making any changes to the activity streak system or the placement of the ritual weapon ornaments. We have heard your feedback on it, and don’t believe it is currently meeting our design goals. It is intended to feel like a nice bonus for dedicated players, but rarely feel critical. Right now, it can sometimes feel too punishing to leave a ritual playlist, but this is being partially driven by Gambit/Vanguard reputations moving slower than intended combined with the ritual ornaments being on the second reset. We want to see how the tweaks to Vanguard reputation changes playstyle and hourly gain before we make any changes across the board.
Lastly, we know how annoying it is to not remember which reputation bonus is active by Thursday/Friday. Starting in The Witch Queen, when double ranks (or rewards) are active, those activities will have a modifier on the launch screen to remind you. Big things really do come in small packages.
As we discussed in an earlier TWAB, the Season 13 Battlegrounds activities have been added to the Vanguard Strikes playlist, and this playlist has been renamed Vanguard Ops.
As a reminder, the four new Battlegrounds coming with the new Season are:
Behemoth – Nessus
Oracle – Nessus
Hailstone – Europa
Foothold – Cosmodrome
The actual Battlegrounds activities are the direct-launch/no-champion version of the Battleground, as these match the length and difficulty of most of the Strikes in the playlist.
Any bounties, quests, Triumphs, or challenges used to reference strikes now references Vanguard Ops instead.
We have been slowly iterating on the pressures and challenges we apply at each of the Nightfall difficulty ranks. One big outlier was the strike-specific modifiers with damage boosts and other effects that enhanced boss attacks. While some of them were cool and fun (who doesn’t like getting yeeted five miles by Sedia?), they were generally inconsistent and were pushing tactical play more than the intended buildcrafting. So, we have removed these from Nightfalls starting at Hero. We also added a new style of burn called Acute – which will increase player damage taken from a specific element by 50 percent and increase player damage done by 25 percent. Most Nightfalls already had a 25 percent damage received modifier, so this will be an across-the-board increase of 25 percent in both directions for that element.
Secondly, we are moving the Seasonal Strike modifiers that we introduced in Season 15 from the Vanguard playlist to Nightfalls. These are unique buffs and boosts that aid you if you lean into the combat themes of the Season – for Season 16, they are themed to Glaive and Void usage. These rotate weekly, and appear on all Hero, Legend, and Master Nightfalls. We look forward to your feedback on these as we continue to iterate! Ah, and here’s a quick preview of some sweet loot that you’ll be able to earn from Nightfalls next season. Look familiar?
Duty Bound (600 rpm auto)
Silicon Neuroma (Aggressive Sniper)
We have also been iterating on how we communicate the shields present in a strike (if Match Game is on). Like the Legend and Master Lost Sectors, all Nightfall activities now have a modifier that lists the shields used.
When we introduced Legend and Master Lost Sectors in Beyond Light, we were forced to split the daily Legend and Master Lost Sector locations, since there was no way to select difficulty within the public bubble. Thanks to some fresh technology built for the upcoming The Witch Queen campaign, this limitation is now removed! There is now a single daily Lost Sector, which has both Legend and Master difficulties available at the same time, selectable at the entrance. Both difficulties give the same Exotic reward.
While we don’t have any specific changes to talk about with the Crucible or Iron Banner in this TWAB, we would like to address the longer respawn times we implemented in the 30th Anniversary patch, and then removed a few days ago.
When we original implemented this change, we were hoping it would spread out the pace of combat and reduce the number of times players spawned in and were immediately killed by the same Super that had just wiped them out. Despite the initial intention, feedback has shown that this wasn’t the best solution for the issues we were trying to solve. When we looked at the data, we saw unclear/mixed messages, partially because we implemented the change at the same time as large ability tunings, and the start of the Dawning:
Kills per minute were slightly down in the modes with longer respawns.
Team score delta went up a little, but we saw the same jump at the start Season 15, and it eventually went away. This is likely a larger player base coming in during a new content drop.
Match duration went up slightly in Control and Iron Banner, but not in Clash.
Inversely, Mercy Rates are down in Control and Iron Banner, but up in Clash.
The rate at which players quit went up slightly when these changes were introduced, but almost immediately came back down. In Control, 10% more games ended due to time. In Iron Banner, 5% more games ended due to time, but in Freelance Iron Banner, 5% less games ended due to time.
When looking at both feedback and analytics and seeing little definitively positive, it was the obvious choice to revert Crucible respawns back to their original values.
After the TWAB DMG came out on Twitter to confirm a few weapons leaving next season
- Igneous Hammer
- Sola’s Scar
- THE SWARM
- Shadow Price
- Uzume RR4
- Hung Jury SR4
- Multimach CCX
- Timeworn Spire
- Guiding Sight
- Steady Hand
So make sure you get hold of these before they go! I’ll be putting together a guide in the coming days on how to get them all, so keep an eye out for that.
Let me know in the comments what you think of the latest news from Bungie ad Destiny 2.
That’s it for this look at the latest news. For more Destiny 2 content like this check out This Week In Video Games on YouTube and subscribe today.