Bungie is radically reworking how build customization works for Destiny 2’s upcoming Stasis subclasses.
We got our first look at these new Stasis subclasses in all of their crystalline glory during Gamescom Opening night. Now Bungie has put up a blog post that breaks down how they’ll work in more detail, and it’s a big shift for the now six-year-old series. Players will still be able to mix and match from a handful of different grenade, melee, and super ability types, but in addition the new Stasis subclasses will have a number of more complex modifiers for players to collect and upgrade as they play.
One type of modifier is called an Aspect, which Bungie says players will discover out in the world. They’ll consist of abilities and effects, with players picking and choosing which to equip at any given time. Aspects will then have secondary modifiers called Fragments, which are also discovered out in the world and imbue Aspects with additional perks and stat bonuses. While Aspects are specific to each subclass, Fragments can be used on any subclass.
Here’s an example Bungie provided of how it will work in practice:
For example, a Warlock finds a Frostpulse Aspect in the world and equips it. This Aspect augments their Rift ability, which now freezes any enemies caught in the field. The Frostpulse Aspect also has a Fragment slot available, allowing further customization. This Warlock decides to slot in the Whisper of Refraction Fragment that replenishes some of their class ability energy upon shattering enemies. They have now set themselves up with a nice 1-2 punch and, if played skillfully, can use this combo frequently.
In addition to these new customization options, Bungie stresses that Stasis subclasses are built around helping allies and controlling opponents rather than outright offensive power. Giving players robust options for playing support roles has always been a weak spot for Destiny 2. Between the new “freeze” and “shatter” mechanics associated with the Stasis power and the more granular options for creating custom builds that are coming alongside them, it really feels like Bungie is slowly pushing Destiny to become more of the MMORPG some of us have wanted for a long time.
The armor mods introduced with last year’s Shadowkeep update were one big step. The new Stasis subclasses coming in November with Beyond Light feel like another. Bungie didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment about if or when elements like Aspects and Fragments will be applied to Destiny 2’s existing subclasses.
Update - 4:01 p.m. ET, 9/1/2020: It sounds like the new customization options will be exclusive to Stasis subclasses, at least for now. “This system is specific to Stasis for Beyond Light, and we’ll see how the feedback goes before looking at any changes to the current ones,” a spokesperson for Bungie told Kotaku in an email.