Destiny: Our Philosophy About Rewards/Loot Continue To Evolve As We See How Players Play And React

That’s Bungie’s Lead Designer Luke Smith, talking on NeoGAF about the specific faults of The Dark Below and how the systems¬†will change in the second DLC pack, House of Wolves. In his post, Smith acknowledges that there’s a lot that doesn’t work in the
Crota’s End Raid, and that Bungie won’t be making the same mistakes again.

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“Our philosophy about rewards/loot continue to evolve as we see how players play and react. We will continue to improve acquisition stories and frequency (My understanding of the perception is that Crota’s End drop rates are much improved vs. Vault of Glass: footnote below), lessen the grind and get players to the fun parts of their arsenal faster.”

From the outside looking in, it may seem like Destiny works just fine. From a mechanical standpoint, that’s true – but the game’s loot system (or, the reason players keep coming back) has been tripping over itself since the game was first released. Bungie has struggled since Day One to make the loot system rewarding players: it’s in a far better state than it was, but grinding through hours of content only to receive items you can’t use or don’t need is incredibly frustrating – and, sadly enough, a core part of the Destiny experience.

“We sat down and talked about the rewards for VoG and the rates vs. CE and ended up with the following:

  • - increase drop rates globally in CE: we wanted dedicated players to be around 32 or real close by the time Hard mode came out.
  • - increase the variability of perks that a given piece can roll.
  • the goal here: players would reach 32 easier than 30, but would have more customization and options to build the perfect set (in terms of stats, perks, weapon affinities). Destiny power leveling let you upgrade easier.

The part where this didn’t work as well as we’d hoped is with the Shard economy. Shards are a are a barrier between you and equipping a sweet new piece of gear. We want fewer barriers to equipping upgrades. The shard economies erect these barriers between players and the new piece of gear they just got.”