Destiny 2 Iron Banner will return to three times per season upon the launch of season 20, the developer behind the popular FPS game has confirmed. Grandmaster Nightfalls, which will resume on January 17, will also undergo changes designed to make them more accessible to all players. Further, the second session of Destiny 2 Iron Banner season 19, which will kick off on January 31, will feature tweaks in rank gains, a direct result of recent player feedback regarding the fan-favourite activity.
Bungie outlined the changes in a blog post as part of its This Week at Bungie series. The Iron Banner updates are welcome changes, as many players felt the ranking progression was slow and that two weeks wasn’t enough time to compete in the event and level through the ranks to earn Iron Banner rewards.
The next round of Iron Banner, which will again feature the Fortress Iron Banner game mode in which players must fight opposing Guardians as well as face Cabal turrets, will now grant more points at the end of each Iron Banner match, double the multipliers that players get for wearing Iron Banner gear, and increase the multiplier players earn for weaning an Iron Banner emblem.
To balance this, the team decreased the multipliers players get for completing challenges, so less-skilled players who struggle to complete such challenges can still level through the ranks faster just by wearing Iron Banner armour. Starting in Destiny 2 season 20, the team also promised an Iron Banner emblem on the first reset of the rewards track for players who don’t have one, presumably to retain the emblem multiplier and make ranking more accessible for players who would otherwise progress more slowly through the ranks.
Grandmaster Nightfalls will return next week, but the team has tweaked power levels to make the Nightfalls more accessible to all players. Players will only have to reach a 1580 power level to participate in them, but players who enter at those levels should be prepared for enemies to be 40 levels more powerful than they are. Previously, Nightfalls required a minimum power level of 1605.
Bungie also decreased the overall power level requirement for Grandmaster activities to 1620, down from 1630. However, the set power difference of -25, meaning enemies are 25 power higher than the individual player, remains in effect. At 1580, artefact power and pinnacle drops can increase a player’s effectiveness up to 1595. The developers also promised more updates to Grandmaster Nightfalls and high-difficulty modes in the future, which could possibly include Destiny 2 Nightfall weapon updates.
These updates come on the tail of significant changes to the Destiny 2 armour mod system, which made all mods other than raid-specific mods available to all players. This starkly contrasts with the previous system in which players who didn’t own specific mods would have to wait until they went on sale with Ada-1, which required keeping close tabs on her daily inventory. Bungie’s blog post promised updates to mods and buildcrafting with Lightfall, which the team will expand on in next week’s TWAB.
Finally, the post also outlined changes to focusing costs, which the team announced along with the mod changes that took place earlier in the week. Focusing costs for Destiny 2 Trials of Osiris, Iron Banner, Crucible, and Gambit were reduced from 50 legendary shards to 25, Adept weapon focusing is reduced from 250 legendary shards to 50, and the Glimmer cost of focusing regular ritual weapons is down from 10,000 to 5,000.
These changes show that Bungie is listening to players in its efforts to retain its status as one of the best space games available. If you’re a new player looking to get back into the game before Lightfall releases in February, check out our Destiny 2 Spire of the Watcher dungeon guide and our Destiny 2 Revision Zero exotic quest guide for overviews on how to complete these activities. You’ll also want to check out our Destiny 2 Strand subclass guide to preview what’s to come.