Destiny 2 Season 22 early patch notes: Exotic tweaks, weapon buffs, ability changes, more

Destiny 2 developers at Bungie have locked in the first batch of changes set to shake things up in the Season 22 update. From major Exotic gear tweaks to key ability changes for all classes, here’s an early rundown on what we can expect in the final patch notes.

Destiny 2 is well underway with Season of the Deep. As such developers Bungie are looking to change up the game’s balancing come Season 22. This mainly comes in the form Exotic armor tweaking, ability tuning, and now weapon updates.

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These changes follow the tune-up Bungie did at the start of Season 21. Now even more exotics are receiving balance changes to bring them in line with the more powerful Guardians we see today. This is what we know about the Season 22 patch notes thus far thanks to the first developer blog post and the weapon’s-related follow-up too.

Early Destiny 2 Season 22 patch notes

Season 22 Weapon Updates

Damage Falloff Tuning

Bungie is making changes to the way damage falloff works on several weapons. The changes will also affect weapons when they’re ADSed.

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The main goal for Bungie in these changes is to help differentiate certain weapon archetypes from one another so that one option is not clearly better than the other based on minor distances in engagement ranges.

Weapon Archetype Tuning

Hand Cannon

  • General
    • Increased reload speed at 0 stat by 15%.
  • PvE Damage
    • Increased damage against minor combatants (red bars) by 20%.
    • Increased damage against major combatants (orange bars) by 75%.
  • Heavy Burst
    • Changed Warden’s Law to be the first member of a new sub-family, Heavy Burst
    • Fires a 2-round burst.

Bows

  • General
    • Reduced the minimum reload animation duration from 0.5 seconds to 0.3 seconds. (This means that applying reload speed scalars on top of a high reload stat will still have an effect.)
    • Increased the projectile velocity at full draw so that the projectiles will continue to perform as if they were hitscan at longer distances at higher frame rates.
  • Lightweight Bows
    • Equalized the full draw projectile velocity with precision Bows.

SMGs

  • Aggressives
    • Fixed the RPM stat display to correctly show 720 RPM.

Sidearms

  • Aggressives
    • Reduced base damage from 32 to 30.

Pulse Rifles

  • BxR Battler
    • Increased zoom back to 20.

Shotguns

  • General
    • Fixed the impact stat on The Comedian.

Fusion Rifles

  • General
    • Fixed an issue where Adept Masterworks and Enhanced Intrinsic perks were decreasing the damage dealt by fusions when they changed the charge time stat.

Wave Frame Heavy Grenade Launchers

  • General
    • The size and damage of the self-damage AOE is now reduced.
    • This should make it much safer to fire the projectile closer to your feet.

Swords

  • Sword Guard
    • Energy now recharges after a short delay when used, but recharges much faster.
    • The delay before recharge and the recharge rate are both governed by the guard charge rate stat.
    • This delay ranges between 2.7 seconds and 1.05 seconds, decreasing with charge rate stat.
    • We’ve massively increased the rate energy returns after the delay to compensate, and they increase even more at higher charge rate stats. Even after the delay, Swords now return to full energy from empty faster than before this rework.
  • Full-power heavy attacks can now be used with any nonzero amount of Sword energy, rather than requiring full Sword energy.
  • We massively increased Sword guard damage resistance, >giving it between 82.5% and 95% damage reduction, depending on guard resistance stat.
    • This damage resistance value is sharply reduced against other players, like Glaives. Then it provides between 52.5% and 65% damage reduction, depending on guard resistance stat.
  • Sword guard no longer loses energy when taking damage.
    • As a result of the above, guard efficiency has been removed as a stat.
  • Sword guard duration is now increased across every guard type, with those with shortest durations benefiting most.
  • Sword guard talent nodes have had their stats squished down.
    • Combined with the above, even though their stats have been reduced, their damage reduction, charge rates, and guard durations are now increased across the board.
    • This allows origin traits and other Sword perks more room to increase these stats and allow performance beyond their previous maximum.
  • Sword guard talent nodes now visually affect the “charge rate” bar on the inspection screen when you hover over or select them, similar to other stat-affecting nodes.
  • Sword movement speed while blocking has increased from a 0.75x multiplier to 0.85x multiplier.
  • The Lament Exotic Sword has been special-cased so its charge rate and delay are unaffected, but it still benefits from the increased guard damage reduction and duration.

Exotic Weapons Tuning

Monte Carlo

  • We finally did it. It was mechanically the most complex catalyst we have ever done, requiring a host of custom animation work and a lot of things we have never done on a weapon before, but we hope you enjoy it!
  • Monte Carlo can now act as a Glaive with its exotic catalyst.

Quicksilver Storm

  • Players have been reporting that it felt like the ammo was not being loaded into Quicksilver Storm at the correct time. We investigated and discovered a misalignment with the animation and the ammo loading that has been corrected.
    • Fixed an issue where ammo was loading into Quicksilver Storm slightly too late in the reload animation.

Dead Man’s Tale

  • Fixed the displayed impact stat. This is cosmetic only. Damage per bullet is unchanged.

Two-Tailed Fox

  • Reworked the catalyst perk, Third Tail. The performance of this weapon was just a little bit off, so we have changed it to fire the third rocket following the second rocket instead of at the same time, which helps it lean harder into the Three Tails fantasy.
    • Two-Tailed Fox now fires a three-shot burst with the catalyst, instead of firing three rockets in a two-shot burst.

Verglas Curve

  • We have fixed an issue where, if Whisper of Fissures gets the kill, it does not count for Hail Barrage stacks. We’ve also buffed the weapons performance in PvP when using Hail Barrage.
    • Whisper of Fissures detonations now generate Hail Barrage stacks if the Stasis crystal was created by this weapon.
    • Shiver Quiver now activates when slowing enemies.
    • We increased the slow stacks from 40 to 60 when hitting players directly with Hail Barrage arrows. This allows for a freeze if two Hail Barrage arrows hit the same player.

Le Monarque

  • Lemon has long been a thorn in the side of many high-end PvP players The massive chunk damage hit hard, and the long damage-over-time (DoT) duration kept you out of the fight for what felt like an eternity. We have decided to address both facets of this problem at the same time by shifting Lemon to use the same damage profile as a lightweight Bow. It now deals 85 damage on impact to the body and 136 to the head against players. We have also reduced the DoT duration from 3 seconds down to 1.75 seconds, which makes it feel significantly less painful to be hit by this weapon. The DoT deals the same total damage as before against players, divided into 6 ticks instead of 8, but we have increased the DoT damage in PvE by 50%. In PvE, this should result in a slight DPS increase, with the reduced impact damage being offset by the faster draw time and the increased DoT.
    • Reduced draw time from 684ms to 612ms.
    • Reduced body shot damage from 100 to 85.
    • Increased critical hit multiplier from 1.5x to 1.6x (crit damage against players goes from 150 to 136).
    • Changed the poison DoT effect.
      • Reduced poison DoT duration from 3 seconds to 1.75 seconds.
      • Moved from 8 damage ticks to 6, but poison deals the same total damage to players.
      • Poison damage increased in PvE by 50%.

Vex Mythoclast

  • Vex Mythoclast has been very, very strong in PvP for some time, having secretly benefitted from a number of buffs to Auto Rifles that have increased its usability. With Auto Rifles getting another bump to range in Season 22, we felt that Vex had been pushed up a notch too far in our playtests. We reduced the RPM from 390 to 360 to match other Auto Rifles in its subfamily. At the same time, we wanted to make sure this was not a DPS decrease in PvE, so we have increased its damage to compensate.
    • RPM reduced from 390 to 360 to match other high-impact Auto Rifles.

Tommy’s Matchbook

  • The previous setup wasn’t working as expected, so the new behavior gives the same end-result but front-loads more scorch onto the base behavior.
    • Updated Scorch value
      • It was previously 14 + 7 (with the Ember of Ashes fragment equipped). Now it’s 15 + 5.

Touch of Malice

  • Touch of Malice is a strong weapon, but the usability of the gun was just too low in any content where it mattered. This was due in large part to how easy it was to unintentionally kill yourself. When we brought back Touch of Malice, we increased the amount of self-damage the final round dealt to the user because there are far more ways to self-heal in Destiny 2 than there were when the gun originally made its appearance in Destiny 1. But we believe we may have gone too far. To make it up to you, the final round now deals 20% additional damage in PvE. Additionally, we have reduced the damage it deals to the user, and it can no longer kill the user. This isn’t to say that you can’t die when you’re at low health, but the weapon itself will not be the thing that kills you. (It will just hold you at 1 HP if you continue to fire it for too long.) We also set up the Touch of Mercy perk to be a lot more useful and easier to activate, and we have fixed the ball of Darkness to correctly deal arc damage, blinding PvE combatants.
    • Increased final round damage in PvE by 20%.
    • Decreased the self-damage from the final round from 10 to 7.
    • Final round damage can no longer kill the user.
    • Increased the health awarded by the Touch of Mercy perk from 30 to 75.
    • Set up Touch of Mercy to work like Unrelenting. (Guardians and major combatants give more points towards activation, and we increased the time allowed between kills.)
    • Ball of Darkness now appropriately deals Arc damage and will blind combatants and stun Unstoppable Champions.

Malfeasance

  • Malfeasance does a lot, and we wanted to make sure you knew when you were getting the effects of the catalyst.
    • Fixed an issue where the Vorpal Weapon catalyst wasn’t displaying the status buff text.

Cloudstrike

  • Cloudstrike has been a very strong weapon flying under the radar for quite some time. Recently it has become more prevalent, but getting killed by the explosion because your semi-nearby teammate chose the wrong lane to peek feels bad. We want to maintain the Exotic fantasy of the weapon and the core strength, but we felt the actual lethal distance itself could come down a bit. Players within the radius will still take damage, so in the hands of a skilled player, the weapon will still be a highly effective tool. But now you’ll be much less likely to die if you aren’t within a much smaller radius of your teammate when they get killed.
    • Reduced the lethal kill distance of the lightning strike against players.

Wicked Implement

  • We took a conservative approach with this Scout Rifle out of the gate. We wanted to avoid creating a lousy experience for those on the receiving end of a long-range Primary weapon with the ability to slow targets in PvP. Now that it’s spent some time in the live game, we can give its intrinsic perk more uptime by making it easier to keep active. We also improved its utility by providing more opportunities to generate Stasis shards. With Headstone added to the catalyst and the ability to create tracking shards from destroying Stasis crystals, you can keep your mag full and your powered melee up more easily. Shard generation will continue to have a brief cooldown, as with all other shard sources.
    • The timing window for Creeping Attrition has been increased from 3.5 seconds to 4.5 seconds.
    • You can now also active Tithing Harvest by destroying Stasis crystals.
    • The Wicked Implement Exotic catalyst now also includes the Headstone perk.

Perk Updates

Bipod

  • We were a little over-cautious when we made this perk. We wanted to see how people were able to combine it with other perks and effects in the wild to improve their DPS. After reviewing, we believe we can safely reduce the damage penalty by a substantial amount.
    • Reduced the damage penalty from 40% to 25%.

Envious Assassins

  • This is already a strong perk, but the mental overhead of remembering to swap to your weapon before the invisible time limit expired—combined with it no longer working once your magazine was overflowed by any amount—made it slightly less fun to use than was originally intended. We’ve made some changes that should retain all the strength of the perk,while also making it less cumbersome to utilize in combat.
    • There is no longer a time limit after kills within which you must activate the perk or get another kill.
    • The perk will now activate even if the magazine is overflowed. (It will stop activating once you hit maximum magazine size of 2.5x or greater.)
    • Enhanced Envious Assassin now provides fractionally more ammo per kill, instead of a longer window of time after a kill.

Under-Over

  • Under-Over was a little too niche for its own good. It was strong, but opportunities to utilize the perk were too few and far between. To address this, we have increased the already existing damage bonus and added two more. We hope that the perk can find more of a place in endgame PvE builds, particularly for activities which feature Dark Cabal and Lucent Moths.
    • Now provides bonus body shot damage against players with Woven Mail.
    • Increased the bonus damage against combatant shields.
    • Deals significantly increased damage to enemies who are enhanced by Dark Cabal overshields in addition to enemies shielded by Lucent Moths.

Under Pressure

  • Under Pressure has long been a perk that offers a lot of upside reward for comparatively little risk in PvP, as it often triggers neutrally during combat and sees nearly 100% uptime on Special ammo weapons. (It is especially potent on Fusion Rifles.) As such, we have reduced the maximum accuracy bonus that can be granted by Under Pressure, while allowing it to retain the full strength of the stability bonus.
    • Reduced the maximum accuracy cone scalar from 0.5 to 0.75.

Shoot to Loot

  • It seemed a shame that pairing Shoot to Loot with perks like Explosive Payload and Kinetic Tremors didn’t allow the splash damage to interact with orb collecting—so we did some custom tuning behind the scenes to make it happen! We also removed an unintended interaction that allows Shoot to Loot to continuously grant ammo to overflowed magazines… without actually consuming the ammo brick on the ground.
    • No longer triggers the reload when shooting a Special brick that could not be picked up while also having an overflowed weapon equipped.
    • Explosive damage now interacts with Orbs of Power.

Valiant Charge

  • This perk now deactivates as intended after a single swing.
    • Perk now deactivates after the initial Sword swing.

Ambush

  • There were certain unintended damage impulses that were causing the Ambush origin trait to deactivate, so we excluded those from the list of potential triggers.
    • No longer deactivates from healing, fall damage, or being shot by allies.

Explosive Light

  • There’s no more free explosive damage, but don’t worry, there are more than enough Orbs of Power to go around.
    • Fixed a bug where the enhanced version of the perk was granting two stacks on the initial Orb pickup.

Chill Clip

  • Chill Clip has been something of a must-have multi-tool, and it was a little too easy to deal with all three types of Champions at once. We have made it slightly more difficult to get the full freeze effect, which should move it back to being closer in line with other perk options.
    • Reduced the slow stacks from 60 to 40.
    • Wolfpack Rounds no longer trigger this perk.

Weapon Progression Updates

Bungie is buffing several other activities to incentivize players to run it whilst leveling up their weapons. These activities include:

  • Crucible
  • Trials of Osiris
  • Dares of Eternity
  • Wellspring
  • Gambit
  • Platinum score completions of Legend and Master Solo Lost Sectors

The devs have also introduced a rollover system, where any bonus progression over the required level will roll over into the next.

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Season 22 Exotic Gear updates

Hunter

Knucklehead Radar

  • The functionality of the Foetracer Exotic helmet has been completely removed from that Exotic and added to Knucklehead Radar, on top of its existing benefits.

Foetracer

  • We took some cues from the popular Monochromatic Maestro artifact perk for this one. When you deal damage with one of your abilities, you gain a damage bonus with weapons that have damage types matching your subclass damage type. Additionally, when you defeat an enemy you’ve damaged with one of your abilities (either with another ability or with a weapon with a damage type matching your subclass type), you will spawn one of the collectible objects associated with your subclass, such as Ionic Traces or Firesprites.

Lucky Raspberry

  • This Exotic was a little too unreliable in its current form, so we’ve taken a crack at streamlining its energy gains, while leaving some of its benefits intact. The Exotic still expands the chaining capabilities of Arc Bolt grenades. But now instead of basing the grenade energy gains on those chains, each time you damage an enemy with the lightning strikes from the jolted condition—as well as each time you pick up an ionic trace—you gain additional grenade energy. We’ve also given this grenade the intrinsic ability to stun Overload Champions. Now you don’t have to jolt them and then trigger the jolt lightning strikes just to stun them, making these grenades a more reliable tool against Overload Champions.

Renewal Grasps

  • We’ve undone the previous nerf to Duskfield grenade cooldowns when using this Exotic.

Titan

Icefall Mantle, Doomfang Pauldrons, Path of the Burning Steps

  • Season 21 included some changes to Eternal Warrior and the Path of the Burning Steps. We added an escalating damage bonus to Arc and Solar weapons, respectively, when you get kills with those damage types. We liked that this gave players another way to get surge-like bonuses, but the Eternal Warrior seemed to to have the most reliable way to get up to the Tier 4 damage bonus. We’ve made some further changes to these perks to make them a little more reliable, while also expanding the functionality to two other Exotics.

Icefall Mantle

  • Grants an escalating bonus to Stasis weapon damage when getting rapid Stasis kills. When you activate your class ability, you immediately gain the highest tier bonus.

Doom Fang Pauldrons

  • Grants an escalating bonus to Void weapon damage when getting rapid Void kills. When you get a Void melee kill, you immediately gain the highest tier bonus.

Path of the Burning Steps

  • Getting a Solar Grenade kill now grants the highest tier Solar weapon damage bonus.

Eternal Warrior

  • Since the exotic only grants its highest tier damage bonus automatically when your Super ends (which is a rarer occurrence), the duration of the Arc weapon damage bonus when your Fist of Havoc Super ends has been extended to 30 seconds (up from 10 seconds in Season 21).

ACD/0 Feedback Fence

  • This Exotic got a complete mechanical rework and now ties into the Armor Charge system, increasing its versatility and making it more useful in scenarios where you might not be taking a lot of melee damage. With the new perk (which completely replaces the old), when melee hits give you an Armor Charge, you take reduced melee damage while you have that Armor Charge. Taking melee damage causes you to emit a burst of damaging Arc energy that jolts targets, consuming your Armor Charge and dealing more damage based on the number of stacks consumed. (Note that the damage dealt by the burst of Arc energy should be comparable to its current damage for 0-3 stacks of Armor Charge.)

Hallowfire Heart

  • This Exotic often stands in the shadow of the more ubiquitous Heart of Inmost Light. To remedy that, we’ve removed its base energy to Solar abilities and replaced it with a perk that will let you build more into Sunspots. We think you’ll be seeing many more Sunspots on the battlefield as a result. As for the perk that greatly increases your ability regen rate when your Super is fully charged, we left that as-is.

Warlock

Astrocyte Verse

  • We’ve added two more pieces of functionality to this Exotic. Enemies near you when you Blink become volatile. Additionally, when you’re using the Nova Warp Super, the Dark Blink ability no longer consumes Super energy.

Geomag Stabilizers

  • Geomag Stabilizers: While we’ve often heard calls to restore the perk that let you top off your Super energy by sprinting, the legacy of that incentive still creates some pretty silly play patterns. Instead, we wanted to give players a way to get more Super energy, no matter how charged their Super is. Now picking up an ionic trace while wearing this Exotic will grant Guardians additional Super energy.

Wings of Sacred Dawn

  • Leaning into the “orbital weapons platform” fantasy, we wanted to help players have a way to stay aloft longer (especially in target-rich PvE environments). Typically, reloading was the main cause for a float to end. This Exotic now automatically reloads Solar weapons (including the weapon you are holding) from reserves each time you get a kill while aiming down sights. Try this one out with Xenophage!

Winter’s Guile

  • Due to the nature of the Stasis warlock’s melee ability, this Exotic was previously a disappointing choice for that subclass. We’ve added a new perk to this one, specifically for when you are playing your Stasis subclass. Now combatants encased by your Penumbral Blast melee will automatically shatter after a short delay.

Season 22 Ability updates

Alongside the exotic gear updates, several abilities are also receiving tuning. In particular, Titan’s barricades are receiving nerfs in PvP, and Strand is receiving a bunch of changes.

Strand

Suspend

  • Reduced base Suspend duration vs. non-Champion PvE combatants from 8 seconds to 5 seconds.
  • Thread of Continuity now extends this duration to 7 seconds, down from 12 seconds.
  • Reduced base Suspend duration vs. Champion combatants from 8 seconds to 3 seconds (4 seconds with Thread of Continuity).
  • Increased snap damage dealt to Suspended boss combatants by 67%.

Threadlings

  • Increased Threadling damage vs. PvE combatants by 30%.

Tangles

  • Reduced Tangle creation cooldown time from 15 seconds to 12 seconds.

Sever

  • PvE combatants affected by Sever now have their outgoing damage reduced by 40% vs. 30%.

Thread of Mind

  • Reduced class energy gain, based on the tier of the defeated target:
    • Minor combatants reduced from 15% to 10%.
    • Major combatants and players reduced from 25% to 15%.
    • Bosses, Champions, and minibosses reduced from 50% to 25%.

Thread of Generation

  • Reduced the overall energy gain per damage event against PvE enemies by about 20%.
  • Rebalanced the energy gain multiplier across primary weapon archetypes. We wanted to bring the energy gains for dealing damage with precision weapons and fully automatic weapons closer together.
  • Overall, we’ve reduced the efficiency of fully automatic primary weapons and increased the efficiency of precision primary weapons to compensate.

Silkstrike

  • Increased Silkstrike damage resistance from 40% to 45%.
  • Reduced suppression time between Silkstrike super air attacks.
  • Reduced vertical lift provided by Silkstrike heavy air attack to reduce instances of missing the primary target.

Threaded Specter

  • Increased Threaded Specter lifetime from 10 to 12 seconds.
  • Increased Threaded Specter health vs. PvE combatants.
  • Threaded Specter now takes longer to detect nearby PvE combatants at the beginning of its lifetime.
  • PvE combatants now more consistently focus on Threaded Specter instead of the Hunter.
  • Allied players no longer have reticle magnetism toward Threaded Specter.

The Wanderer

  • Destroying a Tangle now creates a delayed Suspending detonation.
  • Increased Suspend detonation radius from 6 to 7 meters against PvE combatants.
  • Increased thrown Wanderer Tangle detonation damage to match standard Tangle detonations.

Grapple

  • Grapple melee always takes priority while active, regardless of whether or not a target is within range.

Minor Thread Adjustments

  • Thread of Propagation
  • Thread of Continuity
    • No longer grants +10 Strength.
  • Thread of Wisdom
    • No longer requires a precision kill to activate.
  • Thread of Isolation
    • Reduced the number of precision hits required to activate by an average of about 30% (varies by weapon archetype).
  • Thread of Rebirth
    • The number of created Threadlings now increases based on the tier of the defeated target:
      • Minor combatants: 1.
      • Elite combatants or players: 2.
      • Boss, Champion, or miniboss combatants: 3.

Titan

Barricades

  • Towering Barricade
    • Base cooldown increased from 48 seconds to 70 seconds.
  • All Barricades
    • Maximum health reduced from 600 to 500.
    • Damage resistance vs. PVE combatants increased to compensate.

Thundercrash

  • Increased base cooldown time from 500 seconds to 556 seconds, matching the majority of our roaming Super roster.

Knockout

  • Reduced damage bonus vs. players from 50 to 30.

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