The two sides of Destiny 2 are eating each other
Since the launch of destiny 2, Bungie struggled to keep the balance between its PvE and PvP communities. The two camps have been arguing for years over whether Destiny should just be a PvE game or if it really has room for competitive offerings. In the process, each player lost. Whenever Bungie tries to make a new addition to co-op play, it’s crippled by multiplayer balancing – and vice versa.
Bungie’s dedication to both sides of the Destiny coin, while admirable, has resulted in an identity crisis. The studio will likely never separate their PvP Crucible from their cooperative PvE activities. But if anything is clear, it is that current attempts at harmony are not working.
The story of the clash
The original destinyPvP was a bit of a mess, with players primarily abusing a stable of single shot weapons, like shotguns, instead of primary weapons like automatic rifles or hand cannons. But he was loved by a certain group of players. Many of those who finished it all destinyThe PvE content of s saw the Crucible as a way to extend their playtime. Part of Destiny 2The most prolific content creators in have cut their teeth on the original game’s multiplayer mode, and they’ve incorporated that knowledge and experience into the sequel.
The transition from the original destiny To Destiny 2 did not come without its changes. For Destiny 2, Bungie has made a major change to help reduce frustration in PvP. Instead of keeping the traditional series weapon slots of a primary weapon with almost unlimited ammo, a secondary weapon with limited ammo, and a heavy weapon with rare ammo, the studio has eliminated the secondary weapon completely.
Players could now equip two primary weapons – one of which dealt elemental damage – and a heavy weapon. Previous special weapons like shotguns and the serial single fusion rifle were now in the heavy limited ammo pool, as were rocket launchers and swords. This period of “double primary” of Destiny 2 resulted in some really enjoyable PvP. Opponents were able to further develop a cat-and-mouse game as they weren’t able to kill each other as quickly as before, as shotgun and sniper rifle ammunition was scarce. For all the joy found in PvP, however, Destiny’s PvE game has suffered from the change. Those one-shot weapons that Bungie made less accessible to improve the Crucible were the same weapons that were essential for taking out high-level PvE enemies.
Then came the Abandoned expansion, which made its own changes to Destiny 2loading system. As was the case at Destiny 2, players could still use primary doubles. But they could also customize their loadouts with two special weapons – a shotgun paired with a sniper, for example – or a combination of special and primary weapons, much like the original. destiny. This freedom has given PvE players more room to experience unique loadouts. But the change also brought PvP back to the one shot hellish landscape that it had been in the original.
Now, with those frustrations in place, Bungie is once again pinging its balance efforts. In a recent interview on the Firing Range podcast, run by some of Destiny’s top PvP enthusiasts, the developers at Bungie dubbed Destiny’s philosophy of a shared ‘sandbox’ (a term used to describe the environment of PvP). ‘current game balance). For Bungie, it is essential for the Destiny experience that players can pick up a new weapon during a raid, take it to the crucible for a spin, and have similar experience with the weapon in both modes. The studio doesn’t want players to practice using an ability against a Fallen Dreg in the Cosmodrome just for that ability to behave differently against real enemy players.
This attempt at symbiosis has more recently affected Destiny 2 with the new Stasis subclasses added in the Beyond the light expansion. These classes started strong in PvE content, where freezing enemies with icy powers has proven to be a satisfying mechanic.
But the Stasis classes were so powerful in PvP that Bungie quickly nerfed them. As that nerf began to smooth out PvP – even though Stasis remained subdued for months – it was a blow to the viability of the subclasses against AI enemies. Bungie recently announced plans to cancel some of the nerfs to help Stasis return to viability in PvE.
Maybe you are starting to recognize a pattern? These same changes that will improve the viability of Stasis for PvE players could have a ripple effect on the PvP community. The Pendulum continues to swing. The lack of consistency is not in the behavior of abilities and weapons from mode to mode, but from season to season throughout the game.
So, is Destiny a PvP or PvE game?
Based solely on where Bungie is putting its time and resources, it’s hard to say that Destiny 2 is not a PvE focused game. PvP players, despite their attachment to the shooter, have hardly seen any new content. A Reddit post earlier this year pointed out that it has been over 600 days since Destiny 2 received an entirely unique PvP map, rather than something ported from the original game. Meanwhile, Bungie updates the game with new PvE content every three months, and then streams that content throughout the following season. While Assistant Game Director Joe Blackburn recently revealed plans to add more maps and modes to Crucible in 2022, many players feel it’s too little, too late.
Bungie’s biggest dilemma is that despite a history of focusing primarily on PvE content in Destiny 2, the studio has cultivated a dedicated PvP community for nearly seven years – longer, considering the goodwill it has garnered with Halo’s benchmark multiplayer offerings. He can’t just throw away the players who have gotten so attached to his competitive arena. But, all things considered, there’s no denying that Bungie’s attempts to balance the Crucible are causing disharmony in its larger PvE landscape.
Some players started PvP in their own game. Others just shouted at Bungie to balance the two game modes separately. One of those solutions is to completely develop another title, with more standardized weapons like Halo, because players would not bring tools from other activities. And the other is something the studio expressly lacks interest in, as noted during the balance conversation on the Firing Range podcast.
So what gives? Bungie has placed itself in an impossible position. Destiny has always thrived on repeatable raids, dungeons, and cooperative activities. That’s why I come to the game, and where I made amazing friends. But others have the exact same experience on the PvP side. Is my experience more valid than theirs? I do not think so.
But as both sides of Destiny’s player base grow increasingly frustrated, this is a question the developers may have to answer for themselves. Ultimately, the money ends with Bungie, who wants to have their multi-faceted MMO experience and eat it too.