Destiny 2’s Pinnacle Grind, Rewards And Activities Are All Messed Up

Forbes 1 month ago
Destiny 2
Destiny 2

It’s time to talk about the rather strange state of Destiny 2’s ultra-endgame. I’ve been there for a little while now, and with the reveal of Master level Nightmare Hunts yesterday, there’s really no more guessing that needs to be done about rewards and pinnacle activities.

And things are…very strange, to say the least.

There are a few issues at play here, from the pinnacle grind to the farmability (or non-farmability) of endgame activities. And I’m going to try to go through it all here.

PINNACLE DROPS

I genuinely don’t know if Bungie intended the 950 to 960 grind to take 100x longer than the 750 to 950 leveling process, but that’s currently where we are. The system in place right now requires you to get a 951 drop in every slot to get to 952, and then a 952 in every slot to get to 953, and so on. All in all in that requires something like 80 perfect pinnacle drops over the course of the season, and yet it’s abundantly clear that there is no bad luck protection in place. I just read about the tale of a guy who has gotten every single pinnacle drop in the game for three weeks, 46 drops, and still does not have a single character with a 951 in every slot. It’s so slow I am now hearing theories about how Bungie is planning to make the grind from 950 to 960 take the entire year. But I think someone just did the math wrong and this is slower than intended.

The raid will get you four drops a week, Iron Banner gets your 4-7 a character depending on if the challenges are bugged or not. Nightfalls and now Nightmare Hunts get you one per character. Add all these together and it does seem almost impossible to get enough drops to get to 960 by the end of the season, given that you will likely need hundreds to avoid the bad luck of getting multiples in the same slot (across 15+ pinnacle drops from Iron Banner this week, probably two thirds of those were chest pieces or heavy weapons for me).

I don’t really understand what Bungie is going for here. The grind feels interminable, bordering on impossible, and under the new scaling system, I don’t even think these last 10 power levels really even matter all that much, and you’re probably better off just artifact farming temporary power. But without knowing what this system is going to be in the future (will 960 be invalidated in the first week of the next season, or is 960 truly a yearly pursuit?) no one knows how hard they should be working toward this goal.

Destiny 2
Destiny 2

THE RAID

Everyone seems to like Garden of Salvation, but it’s starting to feel like raid rewards are not keeping up with other aspects of the game. Running the raid once a week made sense when the drops were fixed, but at this point, I really don’t understand a reason as to why the raid cannot be re-run for non-powerful drops as many times as people want in a given week. We are now chasing random rolls on both armor and guns, and three shots a week per account at getting what you want in a raid seems very weird, considering something like say, Vex Offensive can be run infinitely for dozens, hundreds of rolls on every piece of gear in just a few days of farming. Sure, limit powerful drops, but if players want to farm raids for good rolls, I don’t see the problem. I also find it weird that the raid doesn’t drop pinnacle currencies like Ascendant Shards, but more on that in a minute.

MASTER NIGHTMARE HUNTS

These just launched yesterday and it’s pretty clear already that the rewards for them are underwhelming, bordering on non-existent. You get what appears to be a guaranteed essence, but big deal, those are easy to get in lower difficulties. You get Supreme mods, but again, you can farm those in legend. The only thing you seem to get is one pinnacle drop per character per week, and then a halfway decent amount of essence materials, either 10 fragments or a core or something along those lines. This makes farming essence guns a little easier I guess, but this whole process still seems too convoluted, and at the very least, I thought Master difficulty would be dropping full, actual guns or pieces of armor, rather than just vouchers and materials. And of course, no, Master Nightmare Hunts are also not dropping premium currencies like Prisms or Shards or enhanced non-Nightmare mods.

Destiny 2
Destiny 2

MASTER NIGHTFALLS

So, where are all the good drops being hoarded? That would be Master 980 Nightfalls, which have been available since launch, but now that everything else is here, we can see just how valuable they are. But you can’t just beat them. I skated by my first 980 yesterday, but I skipped a ton of champions and got “bronze tier” earning myself effectively zero rewards. Rather, you need to kill nearly all the health-regening champions to get Platinum rewards which are vast. Master Nightfalls give you a pinnacle drop, high stat exotics, enhanced mods, Enhancement Prisms and Ascendant Shards. They are, in fact, the only source of Ascendant Shards in the game that I can find, other than purchasing them for Banshee as exorbitant prices, or the free trio you get from the battle pass.

Master Nightfalls are really not farmable unless you have a tightly coordinated group. Even finding one on the fireteam app is going to result in disaster a good deal of the time, so you really need your top tier buddies for this. And hope that your buddies are Gladd and Chevy. That may be fine, the game needs challenges, but I do find it weird that so many high-end prizes are concentrated in this singular activity while other pinnacle activities have way, way less rewards. Compared to Nightfalls, Raids and especially Nightmare Hunts feel sparse. Not that I like the idea that you can really only do three activities (four with Iron Banner) to make significant endgame progress at a certain point anyway.

Something just feels off about this whole system. Too much weight has been given to Nightfalls. Nightmare Hunts feel painfully under-rewarding. Raids have not kept up with the times in terms of farmabilitiy. And the entire Pinnacle 950-960 grind defies all logic and reason. Some people may like the current system, but I gotta say, I think it needs some significant reworking.


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