Changes coming to Destiny in December: Can Bungie properly balance Destiny?

Ever since Destiny entered it’s second year of existence, Bungie has continually stated their desire to release more consistent weapon updates to prevent another scenario where only a couple of guns would dominate the Crucible. Just recently, they revealed their plans for the upcoming December update, detailing all of nerfs and buffs that they intend to implement.

Auto Rifles

Auto rifles will gain a slight damage buff (3%-7%, depending on the weapon).

  • The Titan exclusive exotic, the Fabian Strategy, will essentially be turned into a high rate of fire, low impact weapon once the perk activates.

Pulse Rifles

All pulse rifles will deal less damage (8% for most types) and less range. On the bright side, all pulse rifles will deal slightly more damage in PVE.

Hand Cannons

Bye bye Hawkmoon, too bad that Xbox players never really got to experience you in your prime

All hand cannons will be more accurate while aiming down the sights, especially for close to medium range encounters.

  • The First Curse will be have longer range and a larger magazine. It’s exotic perk will refill the magazine, reduce the recoil, and become more accurate and have longer range when the perk activates.
  • Hawkmoon will lose some of it’s range, and the random lucky bullets will deal slightly less damage.


Shotguns will essentially have their ranges reduced to melee ranges. They also will be slower to aim, reload, and move around with. Shotguns will deal slightly more damage in PVE though.

  • The Chaperone will do less damage overall, but it will deal more precision damage.

Fusion Rifles

Maybe with the upcoming changes, more people will actually use the Sleeper

Fusion rifles will have better stability while aiming down the sights but less stability while hip firing. The fast charging archetype of fusion rifles will charge even faster, but they will also deal less damage. All fusion rifles will have less reserve ammo, but they will deal more damage in PVE.

  • Sleeper Simulant gets 2 extra shots in reserve and will receive extra ammo if your armor has perks that grant extra Heavy ammo.

Sniper Rifles

Sniper rifles won’t have as significant of a damage dropoff at long ranges, and the Luck in the Chamber perk only modifies precision damage.

So what will this mean for the Crucbile?

If the latest season of Iron Banner is any indicator, sniper rifles will become even more dominant. Pulse rifles will likely remain the go-to weapons for the Crucible due to their versatile nature. Shotguns might become even less useful than they are now as people opt to try and outsnipe each other. Unfortunately, due to the nature of the maps in Destiny, this might mean that certain areas will become impossible to survive in without a sniper rifle (for example, most of Pantheon) and defensive or long range strategies will possibly become more prominent as sniper rifles become the weapons that will start and end firefights.

Of course, Bungie could simply remove all starting special ammo and make special ammo boxes drop even less ammo, but instead, they opt to make sniper rifles the obvious choice in most scenarios. After all, fusion rifles are an incredibly rare sight in the Crucible, and if shotguns lose even more range they will essentially become glorified melees. Expect to see many pulse rifle/sniper rifle/rocket launcher loadouts in the future, more so than today.

Categories: NEWS

Tags: Bungie, Destiny