It’s been a long time coming. Two of Destiny 2’s most overpowered pieces of gear are finally getting necessary nerfs that have been long asked for by the community. The Recluse submachine gun and One-Eyed Mask Exotic Titan helmet are getting reductions that will bring their abilities more in line with the rest of Destiny 2’s weapons and armor (if that’s even really possible).
The Recluse is a pinnacle Crucible submachine gun that was introduced back in Season 6. Its abilities make it one of the most powerful options in the Energy weapon slot as it can mow down adds—and even some stronger enemies—with ease. It’s become something of a staple weapon for most every loadout, often precluding anything else from being used in that slot, and is arguably one of the biggest reasons Bungie introduced Ritual weapons this season in place of the usual powerful Pinnacle weapons chase.
Its nerf will change the effects of the Master of Arms ability, which currently increases its damage output and makes every hit count as a precision shot after a single kill with the weapon. Master of Arms will now simply give a damage bonus rather than the dual effects of precisions shots and bonus damage. On paper, this means that Recluse will still be an excellent choice of weapon, but won’t reward blindly spraying bullets. Players will instead need to tighten up their aim and actually aim for precision hits if they want to maximize damage output.
One-Eyed Mask is an Exotic Titan helmet that’s been something of a crutch for every single Titan in the Crucible PVP modes. Taking damage from an enemy marks that player for the Titan to see. Killing a marked enemy grants an overshield, health regen, and increased damage output, something that can easily turn the tide of any encounters with a Titan wearing this Exotic. With the nerf, One-Eyed Mask will no longer grant an overshield on kill. It will still begin health regen and give the damage boost, as well as the ability to mark enemy players, but it should drastically decrease the survivability of the Titan, pulling One-Eyed Mask back to being on par with other Exotic options.
As a frequent user of both Recluse and One-Eyed Mask, both of these nerfs seem entirely fair to me. I appreciate when Bungie changes the meta and tamps down power spikes that become the only effective and usable options within encounters (such as the Whisper of the Worm nerf earlier this year). Destiny 2 is filled with a bunch of great weapons and gear that simply don’t get used because a few of them are found to be too powerful. Reducing the power spikes allows other items to have their time in the light.
It’s not all nerfs though. The Exotic machine gun Xenophage is also getting a damage buff after an extremely underwhelming release. It’s a unique slow-firing slug machine gun with single high-powered shots, rather than the typical barrage of bullets that a normal machine gun is. Bungie said that the low damage output was unintended and it will get a 50% damage boost in PVE while pulling more ammo from Heavy ammo crates in PVP. As the game’s newest Exotic, it’s nice to see it being made usable.
All of these changes won’t go live until Destiny 2’s next season starts on December 10. There are three and a half more weeks left in the Season of the Undying, at which point the Season of the Dawn will launch with a bunch of balance changes and what Bungie says will be a “whole new meta.” Additional patch note previews will be coming in the following weeks with the full detailed list of patch notes and fixes coming on December 10th when the new season’s update is available to download.