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This Week At Bungie – 1/27/2022

This week at Bungie, we kind of kicked a lot of butt, took some names, made grass prettier, and unbanned some folks. 

“Hey Guardian, come here often?” You can’t see it, but I’m totally doing a very alluring eyebrow wiggle but in exo; it’s fantastic. Anyway, it’s our weekly chance at a TWAB-tastic good time and maybe a few more hidden Easter eggs for those that liked finding them in previous blog posts. But alongside bad jokes and cute secret messages, we actually do have real game things to discuss. We’ve got some Ritual Reputation changes, an HDR setting revamp, an update on BattlEye, and absolutely nothing to do with Telesto. So, without further ado, let’s jump right into things!

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.   

From the dev team: 

Ritual Reputations

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.) 



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. 

Vanguard Ops

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. 

Nightfall

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?


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. 

Lost Sectors

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. 

Crucible

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. 

HDR Needs Love Too 

Destiny is a beautiful game, and we want our players to enjoy the majesty in all its glory.  Our resident magical space wizards (aka the Destiny devs) have cooked up some amazing new solutions to take the adventure we love and make it even more stunning, thanks to some new updates to our High Dynamic Range (HDR) implementation. 

Here’s what you need to know about the HDR changes launching next month with The Witch Queen:  

Windows 10 (and up): Windowed HDR is now supported. 
  • To use windowed HDR, players must have the in-game HDR option enabled, and Windows 10 configured to have "Use HDR" enabled for the specific display. 
  • When playing Destiny in windowed HDR, the game will automatically swap between HDR and SDR if the window moves to a display without HDR support. 
  • All players (SDR or HDR) that use the software OBS on Windows 10 (and up) with Window Capture: ensure the ”Capture Method" is set to "Windows Graphics Capture" or capturing will display a black screen. The BitBlt setting will continue to work for previous versions of Windows. 

Windows 10 (and up): Windowed Fullscreen should provide the same (or better) performance compared to exclusive Fullscreen. 
  • Under the hood, Destiny now uses DXGI flip model on Windows 10 (and up). Dig it and want to learn more? Check out more detailed information, which can be found here

Screenshots are now supported when playing in HDR on PC. 
  • Screenshots must be taken using the in-game screenshot feature. 
  • HDR screenshots will be tone mapped to SDR and saved as lossless PNG files. 

Display calibration improvements (all platforms). 
  • Players in HDR will see an updated calibration UI screen to adjust their settings. 


  • HDR calibration settings have been updated with friendlier functionality to accommodate the wide range of HDR display capabilities and viewing environments. 
  • SDR and HDR calibration settings are no longer stored account-wide and old settings have been reset.  
  • Display calibration settings are now stored per-platform: PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series S and X, PS4, PS5, and Stadia. 
  • SDR brightness settings no longer affect the game when playing in HDR. 
  • Xbox players going through new account bootflow will no longer be incorrectly shown the SDR calibration screen if HDR is active. 

We Need to Talk About Bruno

The Community Team continues to grow into an even more awesome bunch of lovable nerds and we are stoked to add yet another one to our ranks! We heard the LATAM community loud and clear about representation and we honored that immediately through our Bungie Bounties. Now, we’re excited to add a new Community Manager to our ranks that hails from Spain. So … we need to talk about Bruno, so let’s do just that. 

Bruno: ¡Hola, mundo!  

I’m Bruno and I still can’t believe I’m joining the Bungie Community Team as the new Community Manager for Southern Europe and Latin America. The world is filled with awesome and passionate Guardians, and it will be my honor to serve you however you need.  

I know that there are a lot of players to meet and a lot of places to be, but if us Hunters are known for something, it’s for having allies in every corner and for always being on the go. So, I’m ready for this mission! Now don’t give me that look: I might main an Arcstrider, but I love my three Guardian classes equally. I’m always jumping between them and trying new strats while raiding or playing Trials with friends. Using weird, but effective builds is one of my favorite things to do in the game!   

I can’t wait to experience all the incredible things that are coming to Destiny 2 along with you, both as an avid player and as your new Community Manager. If you are a content creator, a veteran clan leader, or a New Light, please, feel free to reach me on Twitter. I want to know what your Guardian looks like, what you expect from me as a CM, what you think your local communities need and, of course, I want to hear all your ideas about how the game we all love can keep getting better. Oh, and memes, send them my way, too!   

¡Nos vemos por la torre, Guardianes!  

It's Like The Ban Hammer, Only Not - Security Update

We’ve been experimenting with anti-cheat measures through the years and more tinkering is on the way. Because this is all super complicated and very precise, we have our incredible Security Team here to lay out what’s been going on with some player bans and what’s next on the docket for BattlEye.  

Team: Regular reviews of our processes, technology solutions, and community feedback are key elements to Bungie’s approach to security for its games. Today we are taking another step in our ongoing security journey at Bungie.   

With the launch of Season 15, the Bungie Product Security organization began utilizing the BattlEye security suite. We are pleased to say that the security system has provided us with a monumental leap forward in our ability to monitor attacks that threaten Destiny operations and the player experience. It effectively prevents many actions from those who attempt to harm Bungie’s goal of building a community around our games that we can all be proud of. Its success protecting Destiny 2 has allowed us to safely review technologies and practices that were previously deemed too risky to the product and our players.  

In December 2021, we began a survey of risky behaviors that we felt were mitigated by BattlEye. Based on the review we’ve identified 68 players that were banned in association with the use of ProcessHacker since August 2021. Of those, 61 players were identified as having no other indicators they were attempting to attack Destiny 2. These players were unbanned as of January 24th. 

We expect this will not be the last time we unban players who were previously banned for security concerns. However, our efforts to review and improve our product security practices and methods means the unbans will be the result of disciplined investigation and our ever-evolving understanding of the risks to Bungie, Destiny 1 and 2, and, ultimately, to our players. The process will take time, and we thank you for your patience as we work to improve our games and your experience with them.  

Signed,   
Program Manager, Bungie Product Security 

Don't Forget to Ask "How's PSR"

 

The Player Support Team is back at it with another update. This time the team is digging into an issue with real names as Bungie Names, which rewards should be claimed before The Witch Queen, and a few other small tidbits that we thought you should know. But enough talk from me, let’s give it up for our cape-less heroes.  

This is their report.

Bungie Names 

Since the Bungie Name feature went live, players have been asking when they can change their name. We are investigating a way for players to change their Bungie Name in a future update and are currently targeting a date close to The Witch Queen’s launch date.  

Upon an investigation into a player’s real name being used for their Bungie Name, we have determined that this issue occurs when a player sets up a Steam account with an email containing their name, doesn’t change their Steam account name upon activation so it takes on the email address name, and then doesn’t add in a Steam display name. If Steam doesn’t have a display name, our Bungie Name feature will take Steam’s account name to use as a Bungie Name instead.  

Claim Rewards Before February 22

Player should claim the following rewards before The Witch Queen launches on February 22, otherwise, they will be lost:  
  • Bungie Rewards  
  • Season Pass Items  
  • Shaxx Crucible Rewards  
  • Drifter Gambit Rewards  
  • Zavala Vanguard Rewards  
  • Season Vendor's Rewards  
  • Gunsmith Reputation Items  
  • Seasonal Seals and Rewards 


Certain seasonal seal/title triumphs and rewards require multiple weeks to fully complete, so players who want to obtain those rewards should begin the process of unlocking them this week. 
 
For activities, rewards, quests, and more that are entering the Destiny Content Vault, please click here

Known Issues

For a full list of emergent issues in Destiny 2, players can review our Known Issues article. Players who observe other issues should report them to our #Help Forum

Grab the Popcorn

 

Hippy: Why did the leader of the Cabal ruthlessly kill so many Guardians? Because he was Callus. What does that have to do with this week’s MOTW picks? Absolutely nothing; moving on.  

This week, we have a few laughs and a lot of impressiveness. The first is a pretty nifty way to “learn the alphabet” with in-game dialogue. And sometimes mind-numbing screams. A is for AHHHH, after all. Our second video is a project six years in the making; a fan-made Destiny show in a new machinima genre they dubbed Immersiplay.  

Enough chatting, let’s dive into some fan-made goodness!  

Movie of the Week: Learn the Alphabet with Destiny 2



Movie of the Week: Destiny Solas - Episode 1



What’s this?! A BONUS video? We aren’t going to do this a lot, but I just had to add a third masterpiece in dedication to our amazing Player Support Team. That, and us Osiris x Saint stans deserve some happiness: 

Movie of the Week: Saint-14 And Osiris Deserve the World 

Let There Be Art

Sam: The countdown to The Witch Queen has been creating such a buzz in the art community that it’s truly one of the hardest things to pick ONLY 2-3 of you each week as winners. This week doesn’t have a theme (I tried, I am a sucker for a good theme) but it does have excitement, fear, humor, and love so I think it worked itself all out in the end, ya? 

Art of the Week: Stepping Up
Art of the Week: "If it shoots from its eyes, how the Hell do I see it?"
Art of the Week: A Titan's Proposal 

Don’t forget to tag Bungie on socials with your art and movies each week using #AOTW/#MOTW #Destiny2Art. And remember, it doesn’t have to be only paintings or digital art as mentioned last week (where are my fiber art friends at? *wink*). We want to see it all! 



We’re less than a month away from the launch of The Witch Queen and showing Miss Savathûn who is boss. The excitement is real, and the team can’t wait to hear your thoughts on what’s coming in hot. For those that may need a little refresher, feel free to mosey on over to our product page centered around the next expansion to make sure you’re all caught up and ready to rock. 

Buckle up, kids, we’re going on an adventure! Stay tuned and, in the meantime, stay fresh and be kind. See you soon!  
 
"I should go"
Hippy

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