Destiny Update 2.0 Will Nerf Thorn and Gjallarhorn, Make Changes to Base Weapons

Expected to arrive in September, just before The Taken King, Destiny update 2.0 will feature a number of changes to the base Destiny game, including weapon balancing.

First off, here’s all the base weapon changes set to appear in update 2.0:

Auto Rifles

  • Increase base damage
  • Start damage falloff closer to the player to emphasize its role as a close to medium range weapon
  • Small reduction in base stability. Landing shots at optimal range is unaffected, but repeated precision hits require more weapon control to land consistently
  • Boost damage by 10% against AI combatants

Pulse Rifles

  • Reduce base damage of the medium RoF by about 2.5%; PVP: Bursts-to-kill (all precision hits) is 2 or 3, depending on victim’s Armor stat
  • Small reduction in base stability. A burst should still land all shots at optimal range, but three precision hits will require more weapon control to land consistently
  • Increase magazine size on for all base inventory stats

Scout Rifles

  • Increase base damage for medium to high Rate of Fire Scout Rifles; PVP: Does not affect TTK in PVP on a Guardian with full health
  • Increase magazine size for all base inventory stats
  • Reduce Final Accuracy when firing from hip; Fast firing outside of ADS will be less accurate
  • Boost damage by 5% against AI combatants

Hand Cannons

  • Start damage falloff closer to the player to limit long range lethality
  • Small reduction in ADS accuracy, targeted at making long range snap-shooting less reliable
  • Reduce final accuracy when firing from hip; Fast firing from hip is less reliable
  • Reduce magazine size for all base inventory stats
  • Reduce base Optics (zoom) for all Hand Cannons; ADS now grants more width in favor of depth


  • Shotgun perks that enhance lethality at range should be less effective when combined with a high initial Range stat: Reduce Shot Package Accuracy buff by 30%; Rangefinder adds a 5% base Range increase on ADS (was 20%)
  • Reduce Precision Damage multiplier on Shotguns by 10%
  • Reduce damage against AI combatants by 10%

Fusion Rifles

  • Slow charging, high Impact Fusion Rifles have decreased Range values; Makes it more difficult to max out Range for these weapons
  • Projectile Speed for Fusion Rifles is slightly reduced; Emphasizes the need to lead a targets outside medium range
  • Improve Accuracy for short range Fusion Rifles
  • Reduce Accuracy for long range Fusion Rifles

Sniper Rifles

  • Final Round on Sniper Rifles buffs precision damage only, not base damage; This change only affects this perk when combined with Sniper Rifles

Rocket Launchers

  • Slight increase in base Blast Radius.
  • Grenades and Horseshoes proximity detonation reduced.

As for the Exotic Weapon Tuning coming in 2.0, Bungie says, “Fair warning: Some of these changes are intended to make you feel better while killing with the weapon, and some are intended to make you feel better while being killed by the weapon.”

Looking at Thorn, Bungie has seen a spike in its popularity. They want to preserve everything that keeps it compelling, “but its effective range and lethality are one of the most hotly contended items by the PVP player base. The base changes to Hand Cannons and weapon stats address Thorn’s range.”

Here’s what you can expect from Exotic Weapon Tuning in 2.0:

Hard Light

  • Increase base Stability to 80 (was 65)
  • Increase bounce count for Hard Light projectiles
  • Hard Light projectiles are not affected by Damage Falloff


  • Increase base Stability to 60 (was 40)
  • Increase magazine size
  • Cursebringer perk will always trigger on a precision kill
  • Cursebringer explosion has increased radius and deals more damage

The Last Word

  • Reduce Range stat to 10 (was 20), reduce Stability to 20 (was 30).
  • Reduce effective range while in ADS.
  • Increase accuracy and precision damage aim assist scale when firing from the hip. “Get three coffins ready.”
  • Fixed bugs with Hipfire damage bonus applying incorrectly


  • Reduce base damage of Thorn’s Mark of the Devourer DoT (Damage over Time) to roughly 1/3 of what it was in PVP and PVE
  • Allow DoT to stack up to 5x across multiple landed projectiles: This is a net buff for Thorn’s DoT, but reduces the lethality of the weapon in PVP


  • Add a stack limit to Luck in the Chamber and Holding Aces so that only 2 of the bonus perks will ever stack on one round. This should prevent Hawkmoon from 1-hit killing full health players in PVP
  • Add 2 rounds to Hawkmoon’s magazine when Holding Aces is unlocked
  • Luck in the Chamber damage bonus reduced by 3%

Ice Breaker

  • Increase recharge time for Ice Breaker rounds to 1 every 8 seconds. Was 1 round every 5 seconds

No Land Beyond

  • Increase weapon handling speed for faster time to aim, ready, and stow
  • Adjust sights to fix overlap/parallax issue while aimed
  • Increase time decay of The Master to 8 seconds
  • Add an additional 20% Precision Damage bonus while The Master is active

Black Hammer

  • Increase ammo inventory to 18 rounds
  • White Nail perk now pulls ammo from your inventory

Lord of Wolves

  • Tripled recovery boost bonus for allies granted by Lord of Wolves


  • Reduce damage of Wolfpack Rounds

Meanwhile, weapon stats are also undergoing some changes, with Bungie wanting to introduce some more variety into how your upgraded weapons feel, while also addressing the PvP lethality of some weapons that don’t have any flaws:

Reduced Base Weapon Stats

We reduced the base stat value of a few targeted stats across various weapon types. Specifically, we focused on the stats for a given weapon type that typically enhance performance the most and made those starting values slightly lower. This means brand new Auto Rifles will have slightly less starting Stability, brand new Shotguns slightly less starting Range, etc. You still have lots of options to grow those stats as you spend time with a weapon. Also, this change is only being made to weapons newly available in The Taken King, so your base stats for everything from launch through House of Wolves remain consistent.

Next week, Bungie will give a preview of the new weapon foundries you’ll loot in The Taken King.

You can find out more about all the weapon changes over on Bungie’s website.

What do you think of the weapon changes?

[Source: Bungie (1), (2)]