Wednesday, March 30, 2016

New Gear and Exotics for Destiny's April Update detailed by Bungie

Image source:
Earlier last week Bungie announced that there would be an update scheduled for April 12th, 2016. They also mentioned other dates where more information about the April update would be revealed in parts via their Twitch stream and those dates were:

March 23rd, 2016 – New ChallengesCompleted
March 30th, 2016 – New Rewards - Completed
April 6th, 2016 – Sandbox and Crucible Updates - Completed

Well Bungie had their second livestream today March 30th, 2016 where they outlined new gear and items including new armor and weapons that will be added to the April update.

Some of the changes outlined this time around were:

Extra Vault Space: I deliberately decided to start off with this as it has become a personal problem for me which I’m sure many other Destiny players face as well. While the vault space was in fact increased in The Taken King expansion, things still seem to get crowded in the weapons/Armor vault spaces especially if you are a hoarder and have both Year 1 AND Year 2 gear in there. Add to that the new armor, weapons, exotics and other items with the April update and we have a serious problem. Fortunately for us Bungie had the foresight to predict this and as such have increased the total vault sizes yet again to 108 slots for weapons and armor.

INFUSING: Another BIG change that stood out to me was infusing items no longer happens in increments (THANK GOD) but rather now you get the FULL value for the item you are using to infuse with. So for example if you have a 200 Light Level gun and you are infusing that with a 300 Light level gun you will end up with a 300 Light Level gun as your final product, not something in between. This, thankfully reduces the grind time and having to store a whole bunch of infusion bait. There might be another reason that Bungie made this change but we will get to that later.

Sterling Treasure Chests: These are items you will receive ingame that contain NEW armor and materials which will be available post April update. These boxes contain the new Desolate (Taken looking) armor that was showcased in last week’s livestream as well as this week. They also contain reputation boosters, which are new, for vanguard, house of judgement and crucible. Players will get a Sterling Treasure Chest once every week in the Postmaster, once a week at Variks and once every week at Lord Shaxx.

Chroma: This is a nifty cosmetic feature that lets you change the way your armor and guns look slightly using 4 different colors White, Red, Blue and Yellow. The new guns and armor released with the April update will already have a ‘bubble’ or perk that contains a certain color causing your gear to glow, BUT you can re-roll this color to your choosing and use CHROMA and all it costs to re-roll is a bit of Glimmer. You can ONLY get Chroma from the Sterling Treasure Chests as well as dismantling the gear obtained in the chest.

Light Level 335: This was something that was mentioned in the last livestream for the April update but Bungie noted all the ways that you can go about achieving this new Max Light Level of 335. One obvious way is the King’s Fall hard mode which was mentioned last time, will drop Light Level 335 gear. Other ways to get Light Level 335 gear include: Court of Oryx(artifact only), Iron Banner, Trials,  Exotic Engrams have a chance to decrypt at Light Level 335,  Strikes (Unique items only), and obviously the new Challenge of Elders game mode in Prison of Elders.

New Taken Ship: Yes, a TAKEN ship which looks cool but looks like a re-skin of one of the ships you obtained from doing Vault of Glass. This would be MUCH cooler if it was a completely new ship design altogether instead of just a re-skin.

Taken Ghost: Again it’s probably just a re-skin but looks cool none the less.

Taken Sword: Yes, there is even a TAKEN SWORD added to the April Update although I am not sure if the sword will be Legendary or Exotic yet or if there are multiple versions as well one for each type of BURN just like the previous swords. The one showcased in the livestream was a Taken Void Sword.

Exotics: Some more Year 1 exotics will be joining the fray starting April with the likes of Patience and Time, Lord of the wolves, universal remote and much more which was highlighted on their Instagram page.

Eververse:  New emotes which looks absolutely awesome and fun to use as well as a Taken Specific emote which requires you to obtain ALL the pieces of the new Desolate gear first.

Micro transactions: Last but not least somewhat of a controversial reveal from Bungie was adding certain items to the marketplace. Remember those Sterling Treasure Chests I mentioned, where you can earn a couple each week. Well if for some reason you are not satisfied with the weekly amount ingame you can actually just buy them from the Eververse vendor for silver. The Desolate gear that you get in these Treasure Chests are still Light Level 3 and require you to infuse them to reach higher levels so it’s not too BIG a deal ‘yet’ because you still have to do ingame activities to get infusion gear for higher Light Levels.

The problem is that Bungie is messing with micro transactions in a way that is no longer purely cosmetic in nature. The gear while only level 3 still has other perks and stats like any other Legendary gear found in game. So while this might not be a big deal yet once Bungie starts going down this slippery slope of micro transactions it could potentially lead to selling items that CAN be then considered pay to win. Hence why I said Bungie might have had an ulterior motive for changing the infusion system to full value instead of increments.

Even though I disagree with the route Bungie have taken, I don’t think it’s a game breaker ‘yet’ but Bungie is definitely pushing the boundaries of micro transactions and trying to gauge the reaction of its player base.

So while most of this update was positive, there was still that lingering negative aspect of micro transactions to sour the mood, which I’m hoping is the extent of Bungie’s micro transaction announcement. The game still looks like it has a lot to offer with the new April Update for both new and returning players and I am definitely looking forward to it.

Please feel free to share your thoughts on Bungie's new reveals for the April update in the comments section below.



Post a Comment