The current season of Destiny 2 has mostly been successful among fans, with the pirate theme and Eliksni-focused storyline both expanding the current build following the Witch Queen expansion. While the new story missions and the actual Ketchcrash and Expedition activities have been well received, that same success does not extend to the challenges and triumphs associated with them.


Some of these challenges in question have recently come so under fire by the Destiny 2 community that Bungie has had to respond to the swelling of negative responses. This was specifically the case on October 6th, when community manager dmg04 had to comment on a weekly challenge that involved the sometimes controversial craftable deepsight weapons.

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Frustrating Season of Plunder Milestones

Several of the weekly challenges and triumphs have proven to be frustrating to many Destiny 2 players since Season of Plunder first launched. However, four specific examples have caused a considerable amount of grief for players, due in part to their reliance on RNG, as well as forcing players to engage in high-level or competitive content. These examples include the Robber Baron triumph, the Shaper II weekly challenge, the Salty Smith triumph, and the Antiquarian V weekly challenge.

Of these four examples, two of them are tied directly to the RNG of hunting down the deepsight patterns used to craft Season of Plunder weapons, one involved a long and difficult grind, and another involved both problems. The result has been that Shaper II, which required grinding three crafted weapons to level 10, has been directly addressed by the community manager. Meanwhile, two others were changed throughout the season, with Salty Smith lowering the requirement of crafted weapons from six to three, while the harshest grind of the Antiquarian V challenge was auto-completed for all players. It should be noted that Robber Baron will be getting a bug fix, although the main complaint about the connected Ruffian enemy’s spawn conditions has yet to be addressed in any significant way.

The Repute and Title that Spearhead Criticism

On their own, any of the four main examples that have flooded Destiny 2 forums in recent weeks would be mere frustrations that most players might otherwise ignore. However, in all four of these cases, it’s actually what the milestones are tied to that leads the conversation among fans. In the case of the triumphs, this has to do with unlocking the Season of Plunder seal and the associated title “Scallywag” which can be worn under a player’s name. As for the weekly challenges, what really bothered players was the way they barred progress on the weekly Reputes that could be earned.

The real problem was that Destiny 2 seemed to be unfairly gating the Repute currency that is at the center of player upgrades. To dive deeper into one of these example challenges, Antiquarian V and the Repute it rewards is tied directly to completing the weekly mission for Week 5 of Season of Plunder. However, when Week 5 began, that specific mission required players to hunt down and kill 50 champions, some of the strongest enemies in the game, with access to Master Ketchcrash being the key to a quick completion. While innocent at first glance, this meant that players who rely on the in-game matchmaking system to fill teams would be at a major disadvantage for what had previously been solo-friendly content.

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Other Ways Weekly Challenges Have Harmed the Destiny 2 Experience

Going beyond the desire to engage with paid content to earn Reputes or titles, other weekly challenges often force players out of their comfort zone. In a vacuum, getting players to stretch out to other corners of the Solar System and try new activities is exactly what “challenges” and “triumphs” are for. That being said, when that expansion is out of their comfort zone, it can start having a knock-on effect throughout the community.

Two weekly challenges from Week 7 caused a stir in Destiny 2‘s competitive circles: the Gambit-focused Closing In, and the Competitive Crucible-focused Fleeting Glory. While the Closing In challenge might have only ruined a few rounds of Gambit for competitors and casual players alike, Fleeting Glory was the larger problem of the two. This specific challenge brought an influx of normally PVE-focused players into the most competitive PVP gameplay outside the Trials of Osiris playlist.

The frustration is that players ready to jump into these otherwise competitive playlists have to worry about whether their teammates are also looking to win, or just running down a checklist. This makes Fleeting Glory an unfavorable mix that takes a highly competitive section of Destiny 2 and tries forcing more casual fans in with a group where tensions are high and toxicity can easily flourish. Equally, forcing players to act against their better judgment in a more casual-leaning playlist like Gambit will likely ruin other players’ experience as well.

How Destiny 2 Can Improve Challenges and Triumphs Next Season

There are two teaching principles that Bungie can take away from the responses to Destiny 2‘s Season of Plunder challenges and triumphs so far. One is that relying too heavily on RNG will always make what should be a fun activity into a slog as content becomes less rewarding with each attempt. The second is that a grind meant to spread over a week or even a season will be immediately daunting to players, making the whole prospect appear like it isn’t worth it.

For a lot of players, the weekly reset of Destiny 2 pinnacle rewards won’t always last, considering that they’ll eventually reach the cap. However, giving players rewarding challenges that can be attempted from week to week can provide something to look forward to. If Bungie takes note of what has been successful and what hasn’t, Season of Plunder could still turn out great overall, and Season 19 could benefit greatly from what the developer has learned.

Destiny 2 is available now for PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S.

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