The idea behind crafting seemed simple in Destiny 2. Grind for drops, if you don’t get what you want, enough time sunk in will eventually let you craft the drop you’re looking for. Easy, right?
Not…really, not in practice.
For two seasons of Destiny 2 now, players have been making use of the game’s new crafting system, and from my perspective, this has turned the game’s central loot chase into something very weird and convoluted for most of its weapons. And it’s additionally complicated, because a lot of weapons remain not craftable. Somehow, however, that makes them more desirable when they drop.
Here’s the way loot drops used to work in Destiny:
- Play an activity to get a weapon.
- Upgrade seasonal perks for more drops, double perks.
- Play enough to get a roll you’re satisfied with, masterwork it.
- Endgame activities give a bonus, Adept or Timelost weapons, with a stat bump and more mod options.
Sure, this could sometimes result in RNG frustration if you played long enough without the exact roll you wanted, but the craft system born out of that frustration has turned the chase into something bizarre. Here’s how crafting makes looting work now:
- Play an activity to get a weapon.
- If the weapon is craftable, scrap more or less every single drop of it.
- Farm specifically for red frame pattern weapons only, which have anywhere from a 5-15% drop rate.
- Amass seasonal currency at the same time to focus Threshold engrams to also try and get red frame weapons.
- Keep sharding non-red frame drops because even if they are the roll you want, or close to it, they can never get the enhanced perks from the crafted version.
- Finally get five red frames to unlock the pattern after weeks of hardcore grinding. Craft the weapon.
- The crafted weapon starts with perks you do not want. You will use these perks until you’re maybe rank 16-18 because switching them before that to lesser versions of the final ones you want is a waste of resources. You cannot use any other drop of this weapon along the way. Keep sharding those.
- At this point, you can finally pay 4,000 neutral element to get the enhanced perks you want. This will require you to get 40 kills on 14 other red frame weapons to extract their element.
- Craft the enhanced perks, get to level 20 for stat bump, you have your god roll weapon. All future drops of this weapon will continue to be sharded as they literally cannot be better than the one you have.
- You are now sick of this weapon, and move on to start the crafting process for a new weapon.
Bungie can say “oh crafting is just an option if you don’t get your god roll,” and yet it’s pretty clear that this system has turned into even more RNG frustration try to get red frames, and then this bizarre grind that has you using a badly rolled version of that weapon for hours to get it where you want it.
To me, if you’re doing RNG at all, I would rather have the old system. For me, I have never been satisfied with an Opulent or Haunted drop this entire season. If they’re not red frames, they’re trash. Once crafted, the drops don’t matter at all. But the new dungeon weapons, I still get excited every time one drops because I know that might be the roll I keep. That feeling is gone for anything you can craft now.
Again, maybe not everyone views it this way, but I don’t think I’m alone here. I can suggest changes to crafting to make it better I guess, and I have, but fundamentally, after two seasons now, I am not convinced it’s a system that belongs in the game at all.