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I haven’t been playing all that much Destiny 2 lately. I come back at reset to see whatever new story developments happen with Mithrax and the gang, but besides that? I can’t really seem to find that much to do.
The way I see it, there are two main grinds that I would say are not working very well in Destiny 2 this season, one old one, one new one, and I wanted to talk about why.
The Transmog Grind
For ages now, I’ve said that a good grind to be doing when you have nothing else to do is a transmog grind, short quests to turn gear into ornaments.
I was not pleased when I found out there was a cap, but with the current system, I’m not on pace to hit the cap with any of my three characters. I think I’m at about 4-5 out of 10 possible transmog pieces for the season on all three, though I know people who have focused on one character only may be finished.
But for me? I can’t must the motivation to finish off the remaining ones, namely because of the ongoing problem with Synthstrand.
The actual quests, I have no problems with. The strike, Crucible and raid ones especially all seem like they have perfectly fine requirements, and once I do get those bounties, I’ve had little trouble completing them.
The problem is Synthstrand, the timegated currency where it takes roughly 5 hours of combat to rack up enough to be able to purchase a bounty, so 25 hours for a single set of armor on one character. This may have been okay when I was playing the game for other reasons, but now here in this relative “dead time” after my Override grinds and such are mostly done, I don’t really want to play 25 hours of X random activity for the sole purpose of collecting an armor set’s worth of Synthstrand.
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I didn’t like the cap but the cap isn’t the current problem. The timegate of Synthstrand, or really, the existence of Synthstrand at all, has turned this into a grind I only want to complete by accident, as trying to do a “dedicated” transmog grind under this system is a recipe for boredom and frustration. And yet I feel like I almost have to do it, given that I will “lose” my remaining under-cap free transmog slots if I don’t get it done for all classes this season. I don’t like any aspect of this.
The Artifact Grind
This is an old one, but to me, it’s only getting worse in time. Previously, the Artifact power grind was meant to be a bonus on top of your gear power increases to help you with difficult content. But with the gear grind all but eliminated for seasons, pretty much the entire power grind is now just the Artifact alone.
I’ve said this many times in the past, but it does not feel good to spend time grinding for temporary power that goes away when the season ends. The new Seasonal Challenge system is what I’m supposed to be going after week to week now, but a combination of truly ugh-worthy challenges like 16 Gambit ranks and the fact that all these power gains, 8x XP rewards or not, are temporary, makes it deeply unmotivating to try to pursue. The only real motivator there is Bright Dust.
The only reason we even need to grind out power within a season is to hit the minimum threshold for Grandmaster Nightfalls. Additional grinding past that gives you no actual advantage, since there’s a contest mode active to make sure those stay difficult and rely on tactics, not power gains.
Iron Banner and Trials don’t let you use artifact power to get an advantage. Maybe Master mode raids will take into account power and not have a contest modifier that negates it over a certain point, but we don’t know that for sure yet. The point is, the artifact power grind through bounties and seasonal challenges is more pointless than it’s ever been. And it’s always been pretty pointless. Also, let me reiterate here the idea that as we continue to grind the artifact, we should be able to unlock all mods within it, which at least would make progress there more useful for a longer period of time.
Grinds that do work? Gear grinding is still pretty good, with lots of good seasonal and raid weapons to chase, different sources of high stat armor and such. Playlist weapons, Nightfall weapons. So it’s not like there’s nothing worth doing at all. But those other two grinds? I definitely think they need some changes.
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