Destiny 2 Armor Changes Detailed in Director's Cut Post

luke smith details armor change

With the upcoming Shadowkeep expansion, Destiny 2 will get a complete overhaul of its armor system that will change the way players can customize their characters. Bungie showed off the new armor system in a livestream on Wednesday and now game director Luke Smith has provided more details.

The livestream left some players concerned about the mod options in Destiny 2’s armor system overhaul. From what Bungie has shown, it appears that player armor type will have to match mod type, which creates the possibility that a mod that a player wants to use might not work with their armor.

RELATED: Destiny 2 Introducing Pinnacle Power Sources in Shadowkeep

Today, in the second part of Destiny 2 director Luke Smith’s multi-part 20-page blog post about the state of the game and upcoming changes, Smith confirmed that the armor will work this way. Smith started with a recap of yesterdays livestream where he summarized the key points of the new armor system. Then, he described how the new system will merge with the old one.

First, the recap. Smith summarized it well, so here is the information directly from the post:

  • Armor now has an Energy meter ranging from 1–10.
  • You can use materials and currency to level up the Energy value on a given piece of armor.
  • Mods have both an Energy cost and an elemental affinity. In order for a mod to be equipped, your armor needs to have rolled the correct element and have enough Energy available (e.g.,
  • Hand Cannon Reloader costs three Void Energy to equip, so your armor must have rolled Void and have three Energy available in order to use it).
  • Fundamentally, this means we have additional vectors for tuning things like mods. We could tune their effect (how much speed does the reload effect add?), we could tune their cost (how expensive is this mod to socket?), we could add mods to the pool for a different affinity, et cetera.
  • When you acquire a mod from the game, it’s like getting a perk that you can put on all armor. So once you’ve found Enhanced Hand Cannon Reloader from pinnacle activities (enhanced perks will come only from pinnacle activities), you’ll be able to socket that mod into new armor that meets its criteria (the mod is not consumed and can be socketed in and out at a small cost).

Here are the elements of armor that can roll randomly:

  • Elemental affinity rolls between Solar, Arc, and Void
  • Armor’s starting Energy value can roll randomly as well (they can all be leveled to 10)
  • Stats all roll random values (intellect, discipline, strength, mobility, resilience, and recovery)

Now, on to merging. According to Smith, all of the currently pursuable armor in Destiny 2 will get an update to the new system. That means if a player likes a piece of armor they got in one of the currently running in-game events, they can go run it again to roll a version that uses the new system.

luke smith details armor changes

Some players' current mods won’t work with the new armor, but the team wants players to move to the new system at their own pace, so they will allow players to continue to use any mods installed on their current armor until they feel ready to move to the new system. Furthermore, all current armor will convert to the new statistical system, which means things like the new armor cool down times will change on players' current armor. Players will see the new numbers when they install Shadowkeep.

Smith addressed possible concerns about switching from the perk system to the mod system. He said that the team doesn’t want people who love their rolls to feel like the work they did in Forsaken was a waste of time. Therefore, Bungie fully expects players to keep using some of their Forsaken-Era gear while they progress through the Shadowkeep expansion. Over time, as players reach the new power cap, they should begin to find new armor pieces and mods that they like. As they go, they can mix and match old and new pieces of armor so they can transition to the new system at their own pace.

At the end of the Armor section of his post, Smith says the team tried out these changes via long-form play testing and found that players seem to generally stick with their current armor for a while on their main character while they quickly start to experiment with the new system on their alt characters.

It sounds like Bungie has taken a player choice-first approach to transitioning to the new armor system. Hopefully the change brings some more customization options to the shooter.

Destiny 2: Shadowkeep will release on October 1st on PC, Playstation 4, and Xbox One.

MORE: Destiny 2 Introducing Pinnacle Power Sources in Shadowkeep

Source: Luke Smith - Bungie

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