Bungie shared details Thursday on the next Destiny update planned for February. The Tower will be turning red to celebrate Valentine’s Day with a new event with a new Crucible gametype. However, a new Iron Banner event is scheduled for next week with a gametype that hasn’t been seen in the monthly event before.
The next Iron Banner is scheduled to kick off on Tuesday, January 26, and run through the Destiny weekly reset on the following Tuesday, February 2. In a surprise move, Bungie announced that Rift will be used in Iron Banner for the first time. Control has been used for all but one Iron Banners. The one preview exception came in November when Clash was used.
Rift is, of course, Destiny‘s spin on the single flag Capture the Flag that uses a Spark in place of a flag. Teams compete to grab the Spark and run it to the opposing team’s and slam it in for points. Meanwhile, the team without the Spark is trying to kill the Spark Runner so that it will reset in the middle of the map.
It will be interesting to see the reaction to Rift used as the Iron Banner. Many fans think that Bungie needs to do more experimentation like this to keep the monthly event fresh.
Naturally, a new Iron Banner means a new rotation of weapon and armor. January’s will be the Ashraven Flight Fusion Rifle and the Colovance’s Duty Scout Rifle on the weapon side. Meanwhile, chest armor, boots, and class items will be featured for armor.
The Crimson Days event will follow Iron Banner on February 9 along with a new Destiny update. It will be on the same scale as The Festival of the Lost event for Halloween last year. Bungie doesn’t have any details to share at the moment, but expect new masks, emotes, and mini-quests as before. The Tower will get a nice upgrade with rose-type bushes and petals scattered everywhere.
Details on the next Destiny update are also extremely scarce right now. The only thing Bungie was willing to share is that Crimson Doubles will be added as a new Crucible gametype. This a multiplayer match built for two as the 2v2 with an undeclared special twist. “Sweet” loot is teased for those that tackle the mode together. Presumably, that means bonus rewards for fireteams of two.
This is the first of two promised updates for Destiny in early 2016. A second large update will arrive in the coming months. Once again, there are no details on this either. The closest thing to information present on the second update was given by Community Manage Eric “Urk” Osborne before the start of the New Year, as Inquisitrcoveredcovered.
“The first of these early 2016 experiences will be on a scale close to Festival of the Lost. The second will be far larger than anything you’ve seen since the release of The Taken King. There’s also another significant update to the world and sandbox planned in this same window,” Osborne revealed.
Whether this will be story content, Strikes, or Raids remains to be seen. The “significant update to the world” line suggests something on that order, but it is probably best to set expectations accordingly with the game being in uncharted territory.
Finally, Bungie confirmed what some Destiny players already suspected. The developer has been tweaking the game’s Crucible matchmaking behind the scenes to ensure better balance in matches. Design Lead Lars Bakken provided the closest thing to an explanation on how it works.
“We have super-secret mathematical systems that measure your performance and rate you as a potential combatant,” Bakken said. “It is constantly being re-evaluated after every match, and we even use different skill buckets depending on what playlist you’re in. For example: Iron Banner playlist skill ratings are not the same as normal Control.”
Expect Bungie to continue to tweak matchmaking in Destiny. Additionally, Bakken stated the developer is currently looking into the number one item that is the bane of all Crucible contestants – lag.
[Image via Bungie]