As you can probably guess from the title, this blog post will contain a bit of a rant.
Destiny 2 (or D2) PVP (player vs. player) mode has been a roller coaster ride for me since its release, and in this post I’ll be discussing a few things that are still bugging me.
We need balanced weapons in order to make PVP matches fun, because winning a match knowing you topped your opponent fair-and-square is far more rewarding than, well, cheating.
Bungie has a history of releasing overpowered weapons, which I’m sure they were all unintentional, but given the track record, let’s just say it’s not a surprise that we’re seeing the same pattern in D2.
Bungie will happily rectify anything that are proven to be overpowered, a process widely known as “nerfing”. They did this to a lot of weapons in Destiny 1 (D1), such as Thorn and Red Death. They have also nerfed an entire gun category before, like auto rifles and shotguns.
Here’s my thought on the subject of overpowered weapons – they are NOT as big an issue as it was before in D1.
This is because we have no random weapon perks any more in D2, this meant if a weapon is overpowered, then ALL instances of that weapon would also be affected, it would be a case of fixing “that gun”, and not on a specific perk like D1 where it could impact an entire pool of weapons.
In D2, as long as both participants have the same gun then it’s (in theory) a fair match. Obviously that’s not counting in additional mods like Masterwork and Armour mods for recoil reduction.
This is evident in the recent release of the exotic weapon “Prometheus Lens“, which I did do a video of when it was broken.
Bungie made a bold move to control the damage by opening the Prometheus Lens to most players, which actually worked very well. Over that weekend we had more fun than rage in PVP.
So yes, I don’t think over powered weapons are THAT big an issue, but they are an issue nonetheless. The accident with Prometheus Lens was something that never should have happened. Even though Bungie made the bugged weapon available for most players – not ALL players are accounted for, because not everyone could afford that gun at the time (e.g. new players).
Teams vs. Solo in Quickplay 4v4 Mode
I’m a solo player most of the time.
This, in theory, shouldn’t be an issue. I can join the Quickplay mode, and everyone would be happy as Larry, right?
That is until you get team-shot in the face against 4 other players of the same clan, and suddenly it feel like I’m competing in a professional tournament and I’m working with 3 other players who just wanted to dance and chill around a camp fire singing “The Campfire Song” by Spongebob Squarepants.
In my opinion, there are some positive benefits with the new 4v4 mode, it forces the players to work better as a team, it makes winning the match sweeter in some cases. HOWEVER – I believe it is fairer IF there is a separate connection mode for solo players.
The original intention for having a Quickplay mode and a Competitive mode is so that solo and team-based players can compete in separate queues respectively, however the match-making algorithm doesn’t stop teams from joining into a games with solo players, and this makes a lot of matches extremely harsh for solo players, and sometimes outright unreasonable.
Solo players should not end up against a team, they should end up against 7 other solo players. In fact you can introduce this without creating another game mode – you just need to add a check to see “whether the player is in a team”, that way solo and team players can still join Quickplay without affecting each other.
Bungie is attempting to fix some of this by re-introducing 6v6 mode, and potentially the Rumble game mode (8 players compete against each other in Battle Royale style). This might change things a bit for solo players but ultimately the match-making algorithm needs reworking, it’s simply unfair on solo players at the moment.
Extreme “Swing” Effect on Match-making
Okay, rubbish title to capture the problem, but bear with me.
As you grind the PVP mode, the match-making algorithm keeps track of your performance, and attempts to connect you to other players who are on the same level as you, it’s a neat idea right?
I agree, but it also introduces a small side effect.
Let’s say you ended up with a really good team, or you were just on fire (metaphorically), and did amazing on the current match. You’re now sent back into orbit after the win, the victory tastes good, yeah?
On your next match, suddenly everything gets turned up to 11, your team members have changed, you’re up against a clan team (see problem from above), you didn’t do anywhere near as good, and scored on the negative side.
Now the algorithm is thinking “oh you’re not doing so great, let’s reconnect you to another pool with players who match those results”, and holy behold – you’re on fire again.
Now you’re back to step one, and this effect continues.
This is what happens sometimes when you play consecutive matches in D2, the experience is either really poor, or really great. I find this demotivating, and it causes a lot of “drop outs” where players unexpectedly quit a PVP match half way (also another burning issue which Bungie needs to address) – and honestly, I don’t blame them, because sometimes things can get real brutal.
So yes, it’s a big rant, some of which may be subjective to my experience, but I honestly think these are all things that Bungie needs to address and fix, otherwise they’ll be losing more players before they hit the next DLC in Spring.