Bungie has been pivoting to make a Destiny 2 a hobby again, as opposed to the more casual-friendly game that keeps handing rewards to players. One of those big initiatives is Exotic Masterworks, specifically weapons. Coming on May 8, Exotic Masterworks will differ from legendaries in a pretty big way. Instead of earning them randomly, they require a chase that the community will have to discover. They will add a chase and a reason for players to log in and play specific activities.
Addressing the fact that most active–or even lapsed–players already have nearly every Exotic in the game at this point, Bungie made earning the upgraded version something that happens once you have your hands on the weapon.
There will be one Exotic Masterwork per Exotic weapon that exists so far in Destiny 2. In order to begin the Masterwork process, players will have to find an Exotic Masterwork Catalyst. When inspecting the Exotic, there will be a hint at what activities can grant the catalyst for that weapon. Not all Exotic Masterworks have the same drop rates. Some Exotic Masterwork weapons are guaranteed after a certain amount of engagement, while others are earned at random.
Once acquired, the catalyst can be applied to immediately enable orb generation on double kills for the weapon. Exotic weapons with a catalyst applied will also start tracking enemies defeated, like their Legendary Masterwork weapon counterparts.
After applying the catalyst, there will be bounty-like objectives available that need to be completed in order to upgrade to the final Masterwork state, which will apply stat/perk bonuses to the weapon.
Each weapon will have a different set of tasks to complete. Some might be longer to finish, and other may have fairly easy objectives. Bungie wants players to actually engage with their Exotic weapons in order to earn the upgrade for each. They hint that some of the Exotic Masterworks are paired with the most difficult activities in the game.
To clear up any additional questions, Bungie offered the following information about Exotic Masterworks:
- Exotic weapon Masterwork pursuits only need to be done once per account- you don’t have to chase your white whale on each character.
- Through the Masterwork process, duplicate drops of an Exotic weapon via engrams, milestones, or even the Exotic Collection will be initialized at your current Masterwork upgrade state.
- The Exotic Masterwork process takes place fully in the weapon details screen – there won’t be any objectives that take up character inventory space.
- Not all Exotic Masterworks will be available immediately when Season 3 begins. If you inspect an Exotic Weapon and a Masterwork socket is not visible, the catalyst is not yet available.
- We won’t be publishing guides on how to acquire specific Exotic Masterworks. This is in your hands!
Bungie is open to make any changes or adjustments needed to Destiny 2 Exotic Masterworks, so they’ll be keeping an eye on the system when it goes live on May 8. That same day, Destiny 2: Warmind will be releasing free to those that have the Destiny 2 Expansion Pass, and $19.99 to those who do not. Warmind will likely not feature many of the changes that have community leaders excited from the community summit, but as we go into E3 and September, I expect Bungie will reveal more details about what’s coming in the future. I’d also expect that we will hear about Exotic Masterwork armor in the coming months, as with legendaries, Bungie staggered the release of weapons and armor.
In addition to detail Exotic Masterworks, Bungie gave a small preview of some major Exotic weapon changes that will be coming with balancing patch on May 8.
- Tractor Cannon – Now adds suppression debuff and Void damage vulnerability. Can be used to shut down supers and multiply any Void damage.
- Hard Light – Switch elements on the fly by holding reload. Ricochet shots now do double damage.
- Borealis – If you break a shield/super with matching element, sniper will deal double damage until reload or element switch.
They’ve been detailing a lot of other changes headed our way, such as a rework to the Rat King, Graviton Lance, and Skyburner’s Oath. We’ll get all of the details in the full patch notes when they go live on May 8.