With each major expansion to Destiny 2, Bungie brings a major change to at least one area of the game. Could Power Level be the next big change?
With each major expansion for Destiny 2, Bungie brings at least one major change to improve the game as a whole. There have been major updates to weapons, armor, and subclasses at this point, including a whole new subclass, which leaves fans to wonder what could be next. Destiny 2 Season of the Haunted has players wondering if Bungie might remove the entire Power Leveling system with the launch of Lightfall, the next major expansion.
Destiny 2 is an online multiplayer first-person shooter developed by Bungie. The Witch Queen, the game’s most recent major expansion, released on Feb. 22, for Xbox, PlayStation, and PC. Instead of a traditional leveling system that relies on gaining experience, Destiny 2 uses the player’s Power Level, determined by the player’s weapons and armor and functions as a large section of the game’s end-game grind.
Season of the Haunted brought many new features and changes to the game, such as the changes to Iron Banner and the Solar subclasses. Another major change is the new patrol zone, the Castellum. While the main focus of the Castellum is on exploration and the new Nightmare Containment activity, when choosing the activity, players may see that the recommended power is 1580, 10 higher than the current highest Power Level without any Artifact Power Levels. If players read deeper, they’ll see that, while in the Castellum zone, players are set to a minimum Power Level of 1570, allowing for anyone to participate.
This isn’t entirely new, as Bungie has made certain activities available to all players before, but it has previously done so by setting the recommended power low. This leads players to wonder why this scenario is different. The main theory right now is that Bungie is testing out what the game would be like without Power Levels. By making everyone relatively equal on the Castellum by bringing those lower up, it can test the water with both player feedback and general participation. Match this with more and more activities disabling any advantage based on Power Level, such as the change that came to Iron Banner this season, and players can see the path the Bungie is possibly planning to take.
There is one major problem though with removing Power Level from Destiny 2: if that’s the only change, it removes the reason to play many of the activities. While not many players will miss the Power Level grind, it does give players a reason to play the core playlists and other activities that come out during the year. If removed without any replacement, it takes away a large reason to play a large chunk of Destiny 2‘s content. Thus, if Power Level is to be removed, it must be replaced with some other rewards for players.
This could something as simple as Enhancement Cores, Enhancement Prisms, Ascendant Shards, and any other end-game consumables. Bungie could also make it such things guarantee a high-stat armor, a weapon with additional traits in each column, or a higher chance at exotics. Another option could be to dive deeper into weapon crafting and make participating in these activities work with a bigger and better system.
If done well, removing Power Level from Destiny 2 could help revitalize the game and give players a new reason to continue playing. As of now, once players reach each cap at their Power Level, they lose their a reason to play many activities in the game — but this change could fix that. While it is all just speculation at this point, it is certainly something that players should keep an eye out for.
Blake Johnson is an Iowa State graduate who majored in English and Technical Communication. He took many creative writing, technical writing, and editing classes during his time there. During high school he worked for the local newspaper to cover small school-related events. He has long been interested in Pokémon, and would consider it the one thing he knows most about in this world.