Should Seasonal Artifact Perks Be Disabled in Destiny 2 PvP?
If you played Trials of Osiris in Destiny 2 this weekend, you might have noticed an abundance of Firebolt Grenades being thrown around. While they’ve always been popular among Solar subclasses, their current popularity in the Crucible can be attributed to a Seasonal Artifact perk that grants players two charges free. With how significantly these kinds of benefits affect Destiny 2 PVP gameplay, is it worth asking whether these perks should be allowed inside?
Seasonal Artifact mods were always a controversial issue among Destiny 2 PVP players. Unfortunately, their status as mods that needed to be slotted limited their impact. Now, however, the Seasonal Artifact has been transformed into an unlockable perk set with two grenade charges in all Crucible modes for anyone who played enough to unlock Rain of Firebolts perk in column five – regardless of Exotic or mod investment! Receiving such an advantage without investing in an Exotic or mod is an unsettling advantage in PvP; maybe Bungie intended this advantage but seems highly unlikely that Bungie intended it this way.
Seasonal Artifact perks can be somewhat harmless, such as those which reduce the cost of certain mods. But there are others like Rain of Firebolts, Stranded Reach and Untangler that have an enormous effect on The Crucible.
Seasonal Artifact perks in Destiny 2 create intriguing dynamics within seasons and also serve as incentives to increase the usage of certain mechanics and abilities. That may have been Bungie’s intention with regards to Firebolt Grenades, which are relatively underused Solar grenades for PVE activities. Having an incentive to experiment with different tools is beneficial, but having two of them makes Firebolt Grenades superior to any other Solar grenade option available in The Crucible.
All of this leads into a larger discussion about the balance between PVE and PVP in Destiny 2. While some players would probably enjoy a Crucible with fixed loadouts and minimal abilities, that wouldn’t be true to the Destiny experience anymore. One major draw of the game is its cross-play mechanics between PVE and PVP – meaning there will always be balance issues that need addressing. Certain weapons or broken combinations in Destiny 2 must always be addressed for it to remain an engaging and competitive environment.
However, the Seasonal Artifact perks appear to have been overlooked when considering their implications for PVP. Perhaps in the future Bungie could separate out those benefits that apply both to PVE and PVP, leaving us at the mercy of whatever grenades or melee abilities happen to be popular each season. Otherwise, we can expect being subjected to whatever seasonal curses Bungie decides upon!