New Changes Are Coming To PvE Weapons In Season 21

A few weeks ago, Bungie released a 7.0.5 mid-season balance update, primarily aimed at PvP, incorporating changes they had been trialing for Season 21. Consequently, the current adjustments are mainly targeted toward PvE.

Some of the changes players are meant to see in S21 are modifications to hip-fire reticles and several exotic weapons, along with other tweaks. Let’s delve into the details!


Weapon Reticles

Bungie has been considering player feedback regarding how reticles provide less information at high field-of-view (FOV) settings, details that aren’t always apparent during combat, and exotic weapons whose perk status can be challenging to monitor. In response, they’ve overhauled numerous weapon reticles to address these issues.

Hip-Fire Reticles And FOV

On the vast majority of the D2 weapons, the 2 reticle elements depict the current cones for bullet bending (autoaim) and error angle (accuracy), represented by moving circles and crosshairs. Their size is restricted on the screen not to block its center or overlap with the ongoing action in front of players. During FOV, they usually move in accordance with the autoaim and accuracy. Nonetheless, at high FOV, these elements won’t shrink enough to represent the current angles. The result is that they remain static. 

Bungie has redesigned the reticles for the weapons shown below to ensure they move better at high FOV while correctly reflecting the weapon’s status.

  • Fusion Rifle
  • Hand Cannon
  • Sidearm
  • Trace Rifle

We intend to apply similar updates to other weapon reticles in future updates.

On the other hand, Shotgun reticles already scale according to FOV, ensuring that the reticle aligns closely with the pellet spread irrespective of your chosen FOV (note that starting from Lightfall, they will dynamically adjust with Shotgun pellet spread angle modifications).

Charge Meters 

Until now, crucial features of Fusion Rifles, like charge and Sword guard energy, were discernible only through the weapon’s visual or auditory cues. We’ve now upgraded their hip-fire reticles to incorporate this information. Also, Fusion Rifles will now feature a charge meter beneath the reticle, and Sword reticles will display the Sword guard energy.

Experimental Aim Down Sights Reticle 

While D2 hip-fire reticles are designed with technology allowing them to scale with both weapon auto aim and accuracy, our aim-down sights reticles are typically custom-made for each weapon, not always reflecting this information.

Bungie has been exploring a method that maintains the bespoke aesthetics of a weapon’s sights or scope but substitutes the center crosshair or red dot with a version of the hip-fire reticle. However, they’ll let players experience this change to see how they react before further expanding it.

Shayura’s Wrath

Shayura’s Wrath will now feature an aim-down-sights reticle sensible to the weapon’s accuracy and autoaim and links to the “red reticle.” This implies that it will change colors whenever a foe is at the weapon’s range and targeted by the reticle.

Custom Exotic Weapon Reticles

Numerous Exotic weapons have perks with states with crucial information for players. That’s why Bungie has added reticles to display it to various Exotic weapons (note that Exotic Swords and Fusion Rifles will also benefit from the above charge meter and Sword meter elements). Remember that some Exotic weapons clearly express their state now and weren’t included in this update.

Following are the additions made to Exotics in this update:

Following are the additions made to Exotics in this update

Charge meter attached to Exotic weapons whose base weapon type doesn’t usually possess a charge meter.

Devil’s Ruin

Salvation’s Grip

Grand Overture

The perk counter shows pips for perked shots.

Quicksilver Storm grenade count.

Ace of Spades Memento Mori shot count.

Lumina Noble Rounds shot count.

Traveler’s Chosen Gathering Light stacks.

The perk progress meter shows perk buildup.

The Manticore

Perk active shows when the Exotic perk is active.


Ager’s Scepter


Touch of Malice

Cryosthesia 77k

Trinity Ghoul

Charge meter and perk counter.

Vex Mythoclast

Remember that Bungie will be looking for chances to create unique reticle work for more exotic weapons.

Inspection Screen Improvements

With Season of the Deep so close, Bungie has also decided to revamp the Inspection Screen’s display of weapons and other items, incorporating some much-requested improvements. Players will now be able to:

  • Spin weapon previews in the same manner as you would with a Sparrow or armor piece.
  • Activate ambient VFX for weapons equipped with this feature.
  • This functionality will be available for your inventory and when you check out ornaments in the Eververse store

These technological enhancements have proven beneficial beyond expectation, allowing also to introduce the ability to rotate ships and preview their contrails. Moreover, the depth-of-field blur from the weapon, ship, and armor preview screens has been eliminated, enabling clearer views of your gear from every angle!

Full Auto Melee

Given the popularity of the full auto (now termed “full auto firing”) feature, Bungie has developed a corresponding “full auto melee” setting that allows uninterrupted melee attacks with your fist charged melee, Sword, Glaive, or roaming Super melee simply by holding down the appropriate command.

Weapon Archetypes


The stats for Tyranny of Heaven have always been unusually low. Bungie has decided to enhance its stats since it’s already modifying the D2 weapons.

Submachine Guns

Aggressive Submachine Guns had an upswing in PvP. They require adjustment to remain balanced—so Bungie has slightly reduced both base and crit damage, necessitating greater precision to achieve their optimal time to kill (TTK).

  • They decreased base damage from 15 to 14.
  • Increased precision hit multiplier from 1.45 to 1.5 (crit damage reduces from 21.8 to 21).

The Immortal 

This weapon is so statistically dominant that it outperforms all other Aggressive SMGs. We’ve restricted its range while allowing it to stand out in other aspects. Its base range value was reduced by 10.

Sniper Rifles

Sniper Rifles are a very secure choice; we don’t want to make them overbearing. However, there’s still space to increase their damage for an improved PvE performance. Rapid-fire Sniper Rifles received significant reserves increase and recoil reduction in the S20 mid-Season balance update. Bungie may further enhance them in the future if the current change doesn’t have a significant impact.

  • They Boosted PvE damage by 10%.

Note: This boost does not affect Izanagi’s Burden’s Honed Edge perk shots; all other Exotic Sniper Rifles receive the buff as stated.

Scout Rifles

The Long Arm was unintentionally receiving the damage bonus vs. minors for Exotics, so we’ve rectified this (it continues to benefit from the Scout Rifle PvE damage increase from the mid-Season balance update).

Exotic Weapons

Eyes of Tomorrow

Eyes of Tomorrow‘s multiple missile barrage and “Adaptive Ordnance” exotic trait insinuate its primary use is for annihilating clusters of enemies. However, the rocket launcher’s ammo capacity is insufficient for this purpose. That’s why Bungie has decided that an intelligent utilization of the weapon against groups should replenish ammo. Now, annihilating four targets with a missile volley will replenish one ammo.

Graviton Lance

Graviton Lance‘s performance exudes an exotic feel, but it was easy to overlook the total damage of a burst due to its back-loaded nature. The adjustment of Revision Zero’s Heavy Rounds 2-burst feels appropriate.

  • Enhanced RPM from 257 to 300 (lower burst delay by 20%, now aligns with Revision Zero’s Hakke Heavy Rounds fire rate).
  • Adjusted damage per shot.
  • Enhanced first shot damage from:
    • Body: 9.5 to 19.
    • Crit: 15.7 to 31.4.
    • Diminished second shot damage from:
    • Body: 35.6 to 25.6.
    • Crit: 58.7 to 42.3.

Jade Rabbit

As a robust PvP Scout Rifle, Jade Rabbit posed difficulties in tracking the exotic perk’s state, and a single ammo refund was not sufficiently impressive for an Exotic. These adjustments make the state more precise and offer a greater reward for accuracy.

  • Introduced buff text to indicate when Fate of All Fools increased body shot damage is active.
  • Swiftly landing 3 critical hits now replenishes 3 shots instead of 1.

The Manticore

Hovering with The Manticore is fun, but Bungie aimed to make it more gratifying, flexible, and sustainable. This change should enable you to stay airborne longer and safer.

  • They elevated the catalyst’s damage resistance from tier 3 to tier 4.
  • Enhanced speed during hang time.
  • Activating the catalyst perk (through an airborne kill or sustained damage post an airborne kill) now partially reloads the magazine.


Lumina‘s Noble Rounds cap was 5. While working on Exotic weapon reticles, Bungie aligned it with Ace of Spades’ Memento Mori shot count, improving consistency between the two and slightly boosting Lumina.

  • They raised Noble Rounds’ cap from 5 to 6.


Heartshadow wasn’t fully meeting our envisioned fantasy, so we’ve made it easier to leverage the Exotic perks.

  • The damage increase activates faster while invisible, after 0.25s instead of 1s.
  • Heartshadow now weakens upon inflicting any damage while the damage increase is active.

Worldline Zero

Many truly enjoy Worldline Zero‘s performance, and given our focus on Swords, it was only reasonable to make it distinct from a specific perk on glowing Sword Dares.

  • The Heavy sprinting attack can now be linked to itself once.
  • Sword guard energy cost from each sprinting heavy attack was reduced from 100% to 50%.
  • Boosted damage from an individual sprinting heavy attack by 8.3%.

Sweet Business

Sweet Business’s performance is enjoyable, but introducing some explosions could enhance its fun factor and strength.

  • Now discharges explosive rounds every 20 shots (fewer shots when fully revved up).

Legend of Acrius

Legend of Acrius already packs a powerful punch, offering some of the game’s most significant damage per shot. Still, its ammo reserves depleted fairly quickly, requiring close proximity to enemies for use. These limitations were eased.

  • Raised total ammo from 12 to 16.
  • Expanded maximum projectile distance from 9m to 12m.

Tommy’s Matchbook

Tommy’s Matchbook revolves around self-immolation. It has been updated to allow you to incinerate others as well!

  • Catalyst upgraded: When overheated, continuous fire chars your target. Every 5 rounds applied induces 14+7 (in conjunction with the Embers of Ashes Fragment) burn stacks.

No Time to Explain

No Time to Explain‘s drone was ineffective against Barrier Champion shields with an anti-barrier effect. We have rectified this and made the drone compatible with the Feeding Frenzy perk.

  • It was updated to function with anti-barrier (will breach Barrier Champion shields and surpass combatant shields).
  • It was updated to function with Feeding Frenzy (from the NTTE catalyst).
  • This also resolved an issue where the feedback for Feeding Frenzy would always play when the player spawned and then never again.

Skyburner’s Oath

Skyburner’s Oath’s Solar 3.0 pass was overly conservative, so it was upgraded to be on par with other incendiary options.

  • Elevated scorch stacks from 3 to 5 and 5 to 10 with the Embers of Ashes Fragment.

Salvation’s Grip

Salvation’s Grip‘s functionality and usefulness are engaging and occasionally beneficial, but as a Heavy weapon, it needs to inflict significant damage, without sacrificing its unique identity— its functionality has been revamped, drawing inspiration from bowling.

  • It was reformulated to include two firing modes. A charged shot creates a pattern of Stasis crystals (where the number of crystals is not reliant on charge time). An uncharged shot is a standard Grenade Launcher shot, causing more damage to Stasis crystals and frozen targets.
  • They added a new perk that replenishes the magazine from reserves when you swiftly shatter at least 3 crystals with the uncharged shot.

Bad Juju

Bad Juju was always challenging to control because it was originally configured to use Auto Rifle recoil.

  • A problem causing the weapon to recoil like an Auto Rifle, increasing its difficulty to control, was fixed. The recoil pattern will now resemble other Pulse Rifles.

Fighting Lion

  • Fighting Lion’s damage against red bars soared due to a recent bug; this has been rectified. Also, it still receives the 40% damage bonus for Exotic Primary weapons.
  • An issue causing this weapon to inflict more damage than intended on red-bar combatants was resolved.


Thunderlord has seen a rise in popularity with its catalyst’s release and the S20 Machinegun boost. Still, it had a defect that triggered lightning strikes more frequently than intended against Divinity bubbles. This has been rectified without affecting its regular crits. 

  • An issue resulting in hits against a Divinity bubble being counted as two crits instead of one was fixed.


Winterbite’s early version included an exploitable damage bug, which has now been fixed.

  • The impact damage has been eliminated and reallocated to the detonation damage.
  • The self-damage scaling has been adjusted to account for the detonation’s increased damage.


Fragile Focus is rather powerful, but the perk deactivator was excessively severe.

  • The bonus persists until the shield bursts and reactivates when the shield fully regenerates.

Thresh, Demolitionist, and Pugilist always provided increased energy on Shotgun, Fusion Rifle, and Sniper Rifle eliminations, but Glaives missed out on that bonus until now.

  • Provides increased energy to Glaive projectile eliminations (same as Shotguns, Fusion Rifles, and Sniper Rifles).

Reconstruction has been streamlined in functionality so it can be applied to more weapons without surpassing perk budgets.

  • Consequently, there is a slight modification to the perk’s timing where the initial and cooldown timer between reloads have been united.
  • Base perk: 4 seconds.
  • Enhanced perk: 3.5 seconds.

Shoot to Loot is already beneficial in specific scenarios. Still, Bungie is pursuing a viable method to let players engage with Orbs of Power from afar, and this seemed like an evident choice. 

  • It was upgraded to collect Orbs of Power.
  • At present, this feature only functions on direct hits. An upcoming patch will incorporate the capability for orbs to be collected with weapon detonations.

What's To Come In The Future For Destiny?

According to developers, the interaction between Zoom and damage falloff is being revised. Weapons with their type’s standard zoom value (for instance, for SMGs, this would be a 14 zoom stat or 1.4x magnification) will remain unchanged by this specific modification. However, weapons with less than average zoom values for their class will have their damage falloff increased. Also, weapons with higher than average zoom values will have their damage falloff decreased. This will solely impact damage falloff.

Bonuses to aim, assist, precision, and recoil will continue to apply to prevent detrimental effects on weapon handling. They will also be reevaluating the base damage falloff ranges for several weapon types to ensure that weapons previously reliant on having above-standard zoom for competitiveness are not overlooked.

A significant update to Swords is also on the horizon to significantly enhance the value of guarding. 

Looking further ahead, Bungie is developing an update for Sparrows that will enable players to utilize their preferred models over Always on Time (without affecting AoT itself).

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1 comment

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    May 13, 2024 at 1:43 pm

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