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Destiny Nightfalls Are Getting A Total Overhaul

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Destiny, a video game about crushing the hopes and dreams of Peter Dinklage, is changing in just about every possible way when the next expansion launches this September. Even Nightfall strikes will be totally different.

When The Taken King comes out on September 15, dying in a Nightfall will no longer kick your party back to orbit. Those weekly Nightfall experience boosts are going away, too. Instead, it sounds like Nightfalls will be more like level 40 weekly heroic strikes.


Writes Luke Smith on the Bungie blog:

Our desired Nightfall experience is the weekly ritual where you get together with your friends for a test of thumbskill and allow players to optimize for gear.

Burn skulls motivate weapon rotation and now the Burn resist talents found on chest pieces will rotate armor.

The death penalty of being kicked to orbit often leads to players feeling forced to play too safe, rather than running through the world as a monster killing machine.

Another thing we didn’t like about the Year 1 Nightfall was how players could feel forced to play Nightfall as early as possible in the week to maximize the benefit from the Nightfall buff. So, we’ve shelved that buff until we can reform it into something closer to its original intent - a mark of prestige for having achieved something challenging. We’ve adjusted sources of XP and Reputation up to account for its absence.

  • Now requires Level 40
  • Wiping no longer returns Fireteams to Orbit
  • Now uses 30 second time-out penalty for Death (same as Raid Normal)

Crazy. Since Nightfalls will basically be weekly heroics now, Smith also says they’re replacing those strikes with something called the Weekly Heroic Playlist. Read up:

We’ve removed a dedicated Weekly Heroic Strike from the game this Fall. In its place we’ve added a new playlist: the Vanguard Heroic Playlist.

Each week players receive bonus Legendary Marks from the Weekly Heroic Playlist. These awards are received at the Account level rather than the character level - as was the case with Year One Weekly Heroic Rewards.

We made this change to enable players to focus on a single character more, or feel less pressure to gear three characters at once for Legendary Marks.

  • Requires Level 40
  • Removed the Weekly Heroic Strikes
  • Instead, accounts receive Legendary Marks for completing the first three Weekly Strikes
  • Removed the Weekly Cap on how many Legendary Marks can be earned.
  • Guarantee a Legendary Engram drop from a character’s first clear of a Weekly Heroic Strike

The Daily Heroic and Daily PVP missions will now be based on account completion, so you won’t have to do them once on each character per day. They’ll have better rewards, too. And...

Did we mention that you’ll need to confront the immediate threat first? Oryx lies between you and these challenges. You’ll need to survive his wrath to partake in the new endgame.

Safe to say I can’t wait for this damn “expansion pack”—aka the end of the year-one beta and the beginning of Real Destiny.

You can reach the author of this post at or on Twitter at @jasonschreier.