Mon. Nov 28th, 2022

Als je <em>Destiny 2</em> starts up, you’ll see different vignette shots describing past adventures, depending on whether you’ve played the original series.”/><figcaption class=

enlarge / When you start up Lot 2you’ll see different vignette shots describing past adventures, depending on whether you’ve played the original series.

Bungie / Activision

During the Thanksgiving weekend, the biggest Destiny-related Reddit community exploded with data that seemed to confirm an unadvertised limitation in the game Lot 2. According to fan analysis, players of the always online shooter experienced drops in experience point (XP) gain depending on which modes they played and for how long… without any in-game notification.

This revelation was immediately followed by the game’s developer, Bungie, who confirmed the discovery as accurate and promised a fix. But this “fix” came with another unannounced change: a flat, overall reduction in XP gains for everyone Lot 2 activities. Bungie only confirmed this decision after fans pointed out.

math schmath

Lot 2, like its predecessor, relies largely on an open-ended “end game” system. Once you’ve completed the game’s primary ‘quest’ content, you’ll be able to return to previously covered terrain to find remixed and enhanced battles meant to be played ad nauseam alone or with friends. To encourage such repetition, Bungie dangles a carrot of XP gain, which works slower than during the campaign phases. Players get a “bright engram” every time they level up above the level cap; the engrams are essentially loot boxes that contain a random assortment of cosmetics and weapon mods. Everything you do in the game, from killing a weak villain to completing a major raid-related milestone should reward you with a set amount of XP.

As fans of the series geared up for the game’s first expansion, due out December 5 on PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One, eagle-eyed fans on r/DestinyTheGame began to wonder if those rewards were really as solid as claimed. Some players began to suspect that they were actually getting less XP than advertised every time they repeated certain missions and tasks in the game, such as the game’s “Public Events”.

A Destiny 2 XP gain analysis via graph.  The yellow line is the biggie.  This explains how much XP was lost, between what was advertised and what was actually earned.

A Destiny 2 XP gain analysis via graph. The yellow line is the biggie. This explains how much XP was lost, between what was advertised and what was actually earned.

With a stopwatch in hand, a user named EnergiserX kept track of the modes he played, keeping an eye on any shifts in XP gain over time. He collected enough data to confirm those suspicions: the XP earned in certain modes would decrease with each iteration. Worse, the game gave no indication of these diminishing returns. The XP gain numbers that appeared above the game’s XP bar did not match the game’s hidden scaling system. So there was no way for a player to accurately calculate how their XP gain had been affected or scaled without going through the exhaustive process of EnergiserX.

With the findings in hand, the tester posted a call to the developers on Reddit for a response, which the community received on Saturday. Bungie confirmed the use of an “XP scaler” and added that it “didn’t perform as we’d like,” meaning the developer would remove that XP scaling system in the game’s next patch.

However, Bungie didn’t clarify how the developers would have actually wanted this XP scaling system to work, nor what went into it to announce any changes beyond just the system. discovers.

Double your XP grind, double your fun?

A patch went live on Sunday, and a data-hungry player quickly confirmed that all the XP scaling systems they had discovered were now gone. Players would now get XP as advertised in the game regardless of which mode was played or for how long.

But introduced this patch another unannounced change to the XP system. Bungie decided to fine-tune the rate of XP gain by doubling the required XP needed to “rise” from 80,000 points to 160,000. Patch notes didn’t mention this change; Bungie had to be questioned again by its fanbase affirmative the exact amount of this XP related change. (As of press time, the game’s public API doesn’t report the updated XP-per-level to players combing data that way, which Bungie says will be fixed soon.)

Fan outrage against this system was largely due to the developer’s lack of transparency, with the game neither showing proper XP amounts while scaling was active, nor officially guiding players to play better-winning modes. Other players have pointed to official paid promotions, such as Bungie and Activision’s promotional deal with the snack food Pop-Tarts, which offered doubled XP gains in exchange for buying their food. “Do I technically have the 25 percent? [XP] boost?” Reddit user Armlock311 wrote on Saturday. “Technically yes, but if [the] scaling mechanism was well known before the Pop-Tarts event started, would you have spent your money on Pop-Tarts for the XP gain? I wouldn’t have done it.”

Other players have openly questioned how much this scaling system was powered by the game’s real money economy. Lot 2 players can spend real money on bright engrams, which can unlock the contents of the game’s loot box faster than can be earned from XP grinding. Bungie’s statement on Saturday about the XP scaling system did not address this question from fans.

By akfire1

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