This week at Bungie, we are riding high on the Eruption love, giving thanks for six-feet-tall jellybeans, and getting our gear ready for the Master King’s Fall raid.
Another week, another excuse to drop some truly Not Great™ jokes. Oh, and some info. We’ve got that too. While not every TWAB will have a ton of new info (that’s the nature of life, baby), this one does have some key dates, a closer look at another Destiny 2 crossover, and some important updates on known issues. But before we dive into all of that, we’ve got a quick update from our Product Security team.
Ready to go? Let's get into it.
The Multiple Facets of Online Game Security
Before we jump right into what else we’ve got going on this week, we wanted to take a moment to share more insight on recent activity around account bans. We’ve got the Bungie Product Security team here to chat about what’s on the horizon regarding account protection and maintaining a solid foundation of integrity for our play.
Bungie Product Security: Our mission is to protect players from cheating and enable players to experience the game as its talented designers intended. We want to prevent cheaters from being able to ruin the experience for legitimate players, whether that be directly in competitive PvP activities or indirectly via boosting or making new “burner” accounts and bringing them into endgame content like Trials.
The success of BattlEye has allowed us to focus on new data science, machine learning, and analysis tools. Some of the first detections went into limited deployment earlier this year, and we have moved some into full production with others coming later this year.
After building our model, we carefully tracked and accounted for the changes introduced by each game release, analyzed known bugs for likely impact, and assessed sandbox changes. We did all of this to minimize the risk of false positives. Beyond these initial precautions, we set very generous thresholds so that nobody would be banned for having cosmic rays strike their computer and flip an errant bit. After all of that, if there were any borderline cases, we used some signatures that indicate the presence of certain cheats on the user’s computer. This resulted in one of the largest ban waves in our history.
Some people whose accounts were banned have said they don’t remember cheating. When we investigate these cases, we often find that they gave their account to someone else to play the game for them. We again remind everyone that you must protect your account and do not use account recovery services. Saying that your fingers were not on the keyboard when cheating occurred will not be considered during an appeal.
Iron Banter, A Post-Eruption look
Like many of you, I spent a lot (probably more than wise) of time going head-to-head with fellow Guardians in the newly added Eruption mode that took over Iron Banner this Season. For a quick first week wrap-up, we’ve got the Rituals team back once more to dive into the reactions to Eruption and some inside info into a change that went live mid-week regarding skill-based matchmaking (SBMM). One more note before we dive in, the SBMM mid-week changes did not apply to Iron Banner. They only impacted the Control playlist.
Rituals: “A celebration of PvP for everyone.” One of our main goals with the changes to Iron Banner was to lower the barrier of entry and widen the funnel for players to participate in the Iron Banner.
Historically (and expectantly), we usually see the most engagement on the first day of the event, followed by a significant drop-off in players until the weekend comes.
With Eruption, we are seeing a consistent number of players across all days, and even an increase on the weekend. The number of hours played per player over each subsequent day of the week continues to increase.
We like to interpret this as generally favorable feedback regarding the game mode as well as the Iron Banner ritual. We're glad to see that this is resonating with a large demographic of players, and we're hopeful that we're on the right track toward accomplishing our goals.
That said, we are aware of a bug where shutdown points are being awarded for each damage participant. This is not intended and is causing larger swings in team scores than intended. We are actively investigating the issue and are looking to get a fix for the second week.
Control: Matchmaking Changes and Quitter Penalty
Matchmaking Times and Skill
On average, matchmaking times for Control have only increased by about 10 to15 seconds. We're glad to have not increased matchmaking times for the majority of players. But for players on either extreme of the skill curve, their matchmaking times have either doubled, or more than doubled. High and low-skill players naturally have fewer opponents at their level. As such, we adjusted our configurations so that matchmaking expands to a wider range of skill sooner, thereby finding a match sooner for those players. We don't expect this to affect the Control experience for most players in the middle of the pack. And we hope it broadens the available pool of Guardians for our high and low-skill players to match with.
While we expect the above change to reduce matchmaking times, we were also comfortable tuning the knobs to prioritize latency a bit more. We realize our initial numbers allowed for higher latency connections earlier than necessary. We made a change to restrict latency for longer, before expanding the allowable latency threshold. This change sacrifices some matchmaking time for the sake of better-quality matches.
Overall effect: Players matching in under a minute should see no change in skill of player or connection quality. Players that take longer than a minute to match should see increased connection quality but a slightly wider skill selection of players.
We’re aware that there has been an increase in quit rates for certain lobbies, whether due to connection quality or skill of opponents matched, particularly high-skill players. While we hope that the above changes alleviate the quitting issue, we would like to actively discourage quitting, as it can negatively impact the remaining players. As such, we have added Control to the list of activities that can trigger the Crucible suspension system. Note that suspension timers for Control are temporarily shared with Competitive playlists (Glory and Trials). We are actively working on separating the suspension timer for Competitive vs. Control.
Outside of one map, we don't see any predictable difference in quit rate between maps. So while we will be making changes to map weighting soon, we don't see this as a major factor in quit rate. While we have always weighted new maps higher for a couple of Seasons in the interest of letting players see new content, we also started specializing playlist maps in Season 18, starting with Control. We used a number of factors in determining initial weightings: quit and mercy rates, player sentiment, internal surveys, and more. We will continue to periodically analyze the process, and as always, we welcome your feedback.
In the interest of transparency, we would like to share the current map selections for Control:
- Cathedral of Dusk
- Twilight Gap
- Rusted Lands
- Distant Shore
- Endless Vale
- The Fortress
- Radiant Cliffs
- Altar of Flame
- Widow’s Court
- Exodus Blue
Significantly Reduced Weighting
- The Cauldron
In the next patch, which goes live today on September 15, we are lowering the weighting of Disjunction and Cathedral of Dusk from Increased weighting to Full weighting.
Whether We Wanted It or Not, We've Stepped Into a War with Beans in the Blunderdome
OK, Guardians, listen. If you, at any point and time, thought to yourself, “Self, I love being a Guardian, but what I really want is to be a chaotic astronaut bean that is both cute and competitive whilst trying not to be defeated by the biggest foe of all: gravity,” then you’re in luck. Don’t let those dreams be dreams. Go ahead and let that inner bean out from its confines of logic and reality because Destiny 2 and Fall Guys are together at last on September 17. The way it was meant to be.
Last month, we were finally able to share some interesting ways that we’re breaking the fourth wall here at Bungie, including how you can bean the very best bean that you can be. Whether you’re making the Titan Vanguard proud with this little cutie on the left...
...or making your way downtown (walking fast) to don that best bathrobe as a Warlock while passing your Hunter buddy doing their best with a new way of jumping, one thing is for sure: these beans have no right being so determined to do their little waddle while being so clumsy.
Anyway, Fall Guys x Destiny 2: a match made in heaven. Just one of the many ways that we’re proving that the world of Light and Darkness doesn’t always have to be focused heavily on the Darkness. Sometimes, there are beans. Other times, pirates, talking worm guns, a celestial horse taking center stage in an interdimensional talk show—really, Fall Guys isn’t the weirdest thing we’ve done, but challenge accepted anyway.
Go ahead and peep some of the other cosmetic goodness that this crossover will deliver:
- Warlock costume
- Titan costume
- Hunter costume
- Spicy Ramen Celebration
- Ghost Shell Wearable
We hope you enjoy your time in the Blunderdome. Just remember to duck. A lot. And don’t be afraid to be a little bit ruthless. If it’s coming down to that Crown and there’s a chonky bean coming your way to take that top spot, nobody will notice if you just... shimmy them off the edge. I’m not saying to do that, but I’m not not saying that either.
Anyway, good luck and have fun! Destiny 2 body slams into Fall Guys this weekend. Don’t forget to tag us in your most epic takedowns and those endearing-yet-unavoidable fails of being yeeted into the awaiting slime. We want to see them all!
So, You've Found Yourself in a Master Raid, Now What?
OK, so we’ve all been having fun slinging Oryx’s sorry butt out into the great unknown, right? While you all have been busy capturing that enticing Golgoroth gaze, our epic Raid team has been working hard on upping the ante a bit. Anybody looking to fireteam up for a Master King’s Fall? You better be, because Oryx is about to go Super Saiyan on September 20, 2022, for all Guardians. Even better? We’re sweetening the pot with new challenges. Oh yeah, it’s going down.
Here’s what you need to know:
- Tuesday, September 20, 2022
Normal Mode Challenges:
- Rewards double loot for the encounter the challenge is active on
- Encounters reward stat-focused armor
- Challenges reward Adept weapons
- All encounters are set at Power level 1600
Like any Master level piece of endgame content, Master King’s Fall will be hard. Like, really hard. But not impossible! So fireteam up, make sure to communicate with your crew, and don’t forget the most important thing of all: Oryx spawns in the back 😌
Player Support Report
Post-mortems are therapeutic.
It’s a bird, it’s a plane—it's our phenomenal Player Support team back once more to give a little more insight into the known issues we’ve been focused on. Keep in mind that this isn’t everything. Some investigations are still ongoing, but it is a helpful breakdown of what’s been addressed, what’s still in the works, and a collection of links that you should probably bookmark if you want to have some nifty tools when it comes to all things Destiny 2.
Without further ado, here’s what our Player Support team has for you all this week:
Next Tuesday, September 20, Destiny 2 Hotfix 184.108.40.206 will be released. View our Destiny Server and Update Status page for maintenance times, as well as the timeline below (all times are Pacific):
- 9 AM: Destiny 2 maintenance begins.
- 9:45 AM: Destiny 2 is brought offline.
- 10 AM: Destiny 2 Hotfix 220.127.116.11 will begin rolling out across all platforms and regions.
- 11 AM: Destiny 2 maintenance completes.
While we continue investigating various known issues, here is a list of the latest issues that were reported to us in our #Help forum:
- We are investigating reports of players unable to access Destiny 2 on PS4.
- The 120Hz refresh rate option is missing on PS5 and Xbox Series X.
- The Rift Lost Sector is missing Triumphs and incorrectly lists shields present.
- The Charged Melee keybinding functions inconsistently with the Titan Thunderclap melee when in close range of enemies.
- The Hyperborean Pinion Exotic Sparrow cannot be obtained from Collections.
- The Dawn Chorus Exotic Helmet doesn’t appear in Collections.
- The Expedition activity doesn’t show any stats in the activity summary.
- The Xenology Exotic quest isn’t counting progress in playlist activities.
- Repeatable Star Chart bounties can continue to be purchased when players have a full quest inventory.
Backstreet’s Back (Oh God, Why?!)
Hippy: Movies. We love ‘em. You love ‘em. They’re great. As a peace offering for making everybody cry last week with the touching gold art post, here’s a MOTW pick that is guaranteed to make you smile. Or punch me in the face. The jury is still out on that one.
Anyway. Backstreet Boys. Destiny 2. The zany crossovers continue:
Movie of the Week: I want it that way (tell me why...)
Sam: The only thing that comes to mind when we see creations like this is, "how?" This time, creativity, effort, and team worked to create these videos is just a really rad thing to see. So, whether you say that Oryx is in the front, back, or "over there," this Minecraft build may just make you say, "Woah, this is really cool. Now I want to try to submit something for a MOTW," and we're hoping you do just that.
Movie of the Week: Oryx, the Minecraft Slayer
It's a Bird, It's a Plane, It's... uh, Mithrax? Where Are You Going?
Bruno: Lots of Guardians are wearing gold to show their support for Childhood Cancer Awareness during September. This community is awesome, and we couldn't be prouder.
Art of the Week: In September, we wear gold
Ivan: Where is he heading? What is his motive? Why is he flying? Mithrax does his own thing, even if we Guardians sometimes don't understand.
Art of the Week: Set sail upon a sea of stars
One More Moment of Your Time, For a Friend
Hi everyone. My name is Drew, player support and community moderation lead, but some of you may know me as Duardo.
Earlier this year, we lost a well-respected and longtime member of our community, Seraphim Crypto. Almost nine months in and the pain of loss remains for many of us who knew him. Trying to put into words the loss we’ve felt has been a challenge, even now, so here is a link to an obituary
I wrote back in January about my friend.
As time has slowly gone by, I have dug into our moderation chat to find some of his favorite things he shared with us: Sera’s favorite Destiny class was the Exo Void of Dawn Titan, his favorite armor was from Scourge of the Past/Black Armory, he loved using Bows, his favorite number was 37, his favorite color was purple, he loved Toast, and he always fought for human rights.
To honor his memory and be a part of our game forever, several of us at Bungie (who are so incredibly awesome to help make this happen) were able to work with our designers to create a new community emblem: Seraphim’s Gauntlets. This emblem represents his love of Destiny, Titan gauntlets, and the number 37. While there are only 36 dots, one is left unlit in the center to represent the loss we feel for him.
I hope that everyone who wears this emblem feels the same connection we felt for Seraphim Crypto and the love for our community.
If you want to join us in honoring our friend, here is the emblem that allows us another opportunity to do just that: XVX-DKJ-CVM
You know w
hat that sound is, Guardians? That’s the sound of another TWAB coming to a close. But seriously, on a more personal note: don’t sleep on the Fall Guys crossover. That game has been a delight and one that I return to regularly (even if I still don’t have any Crowns, I just cannot—for the life of me—”git gud”) because of how much joy it brings to a group of friends. It’s a fun time, and it’s an excuse to have Destiny 2 exist in the same universe as other iconic characters like Gordon from Half-Life, Sonic the Hedgehog, Altair from Assassin’s Creed, and a plethora of other mighty heroes. It just works, you know?
Next week, we’ll be diving into some more weapon theory, showing off some new spiffy ornaments, and more. Until then, please—for the love of Saint-14's pigeons—drink your water, take care of you, and never forget to always try to put that kindest foot forward.
See you next week!
"I should go,”