This week, Bungie released update 1.1.4 for Destiny 2. Internally called the “Go Fast” update, the patch was meant to overhaul the game’s sandbox and speed up the overall feel of the game to give back the sense of power that players felt in Destiny 1.
For the most part, the patch is an overall improvement to the sandbox in many ways, but it’s not good enough—nor what players wanted—to bring them back into the fold.
Update 1.1.4 buffed damage across the board for weapons in PvE activities, and this is a good change. In general, PvE feels better than before, and the addition of things like Nightfall boss-specific loot is very much welcomed.
Crucible has seen a number of changes as well, but they haven’t done enough to make it fun again and have also created a number of new issues. Power ammo spawns are now much faster and more frequent, which means the game is more heavily reliant than ever on shotguns, snipers, and rockets, with little-to-no emphasis on primary weapon gunfights.
When you do get into a primary weapon fight, players will now most likely find a way to flee thanks to the increased movement speeds. To counteract this, the game’s community has called for faster time-to-kill across the board, otherwise players will continue to just run away from fights if they don’t have Power ammo.
In the end, however, you are still penalized for breaking off from your team and rewarded for playing as a unit that team-shoots single targets to take them down faster. This is just simply not fun to play. In Destiny 1, players could flank and make big plays by themselves. Now, they are team-shot into oblivion before being able to use any of the cool powers the game gives you.
If Destiny 2 launched with these settings and changes made in 1.1.4, the game would’ve felt much better overall. But the fact is that this update is the first major change to the sandbox in the game’s six months since it released in September last year. That’s simply not good enough. Changes need to be implemented more frequently.
If this update meant to bring players back into the fold, it probably won’t. These changes will be more appreciated and felt by players who have stuck with the game through thick and thin. If Bungie wants to bring scorned gamers back, it’s content and end-game activities that will do the trick.
Expansion II will release some time in the month of May. That DLC needs to be huge, as it will draw the attention of many players who bought the Expansion Pass before release. If it’s good enough, they will stay, and other players may come back to buy the expansion as well if it’s indeed fun enough.
For now, update 1.1.4 could be looked at as a good start for the overhauling of a game that had massive expectations and missed the mark in a big way. If new content is good enough to hook players back in again with an addictive endgame and rewarding challenges, these changes will complement it well.