Bungie Addresses Destiny 2's XP Controversy, Actively Working On a New Mechanic to Make Leveling Faster

Bungie Addresses Destiny 2's XP Controversy, Actively Working On a New Mechanic to Make Leveling Faster

There's no solution yet, but Bungie is working hard on fixing XP gains in Destiny 2.

Over Thanksgiving, it was confirmed that Bungie implemented a scaling mechanism in Destiny 2 that, for lack of a better term, throttled XP gains the more efficient a player was at leveling their guardians. Bungie responded by disabling the feature, but the firestorm opened the gates to a wave of complaints from players about Destiny 2 that the company addressed today in a new blog post. In it, Bungie issued a bit of a mea culpa and announced that it is working on a new mechanic to rebalance XP.

"We were able to disable the system with a server-side change, but a new solution is now needed to rebalance XP in Destiny 2," wrote Bungie in a new blog post. "We have begun that work, and will continue to provide updates to you about timelines and specifics."

In the meantime, Bungie has updated the values in its website API to reflect the removal of the unpopular scaling mechanic. Bungie also announced that a future update will link the internal and display-only values for greater consistency. Considering that one of the major backlashes against the scaling mechanic was a lack of transparency, players are particularly cautious of any behind-the-scenes chicanery.

Since the removal of the scaling mechanic, the XP per level was adjusted to 160,000, which has slowed down leveling for some activities. Bungie says that it is collecting data and calibrating XP earn rates to improve the speed of leveling, but there is no word yet on when the new system will be fully implemented. It's not likely that it will be included in the December updates.

It was discovered that Destiny 2's scaling mechanic essentially made it so that players grinding for levels were eventually making about four percent of the XP they were supposed to make. Bungie says that this is to reward players engaging in longer or fixed activities, while scaling down XP for players grinding repetitive activities. By slowing down leveling, players suspected Bungie was limiting the amount of Bright Engram rewards players could earn.

Gaining levels in Destiny 2 rewarded players with Bright Engrams which included rare items. By keeping players away from Bright Engrams they would normally unlock at a faster rate, it was seen parallel to EA's loot box woes.

While Bungie was presumably trying to discourage farming behavior, the EA comparisons were probably enough for Bungie to rethink the whole mechanic, shutting it down quickly.

There's no word yet on what the new system will look like, but it's safe to assume that Bungie wants to focus on rewarding players for engaging with the game on a longer basis. But that's just a guess.

Bungie has outlined a full suite of December and January updates that address the XP issue as well as quality of life improvements that appear at a glance to dramatically change the ways players can earn rewards for end game.

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Matt Kim

News Editor

Matt Kim is a former freelance writer who's covered video games and digital media. He likes video games as spectacle and is easily distracted by bright lights or clever bits of dialogue. He also once wrote about personal finance, but that's neither here nor there.

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