Destiny 2's Season of the Splicer is here, it would be fair to say that a few weeks in it's a mixed bag.
I'm certainly not as high on it as I was on Season of the Chosen, but there's plenty to enjoy - but it also falls into the pitfalls of some of Destiny's older, less enjoyable seasons.
Destiny 2 Season of the Splicer Has Fallen Into The Exact Pitfalls I Was Worried About
As fun as the array of new PvE content added in Season of the Chosen was, the one thing that pulled me back, week-after-week (aside from it being my job) was the story.
Challenging Caiatl's champions, smashing treasure chests, heading into the Proving Grounds in the second half of the season was fun, sure, but the narrative thread tying it together was most interesting to me. The attempted assassination of Zavala, Crow's redemption, and the constant bickering between Osiris and Saladin had me feeling like part of an ensemble cast.
Season of the Splicer starts out well, with the Guardians taking Mithrax and his House of Light under their protection, but the main issue here is the lack of a formidable or personable antagonist - something I worried about when leaks suggested a Vex focus.
Sure, getting to fight in the Vex network is trippy the first few times, but facing a hivemind race of time-travelling robots just isn't as exciting as the Terminator movies made it sound.
Still, the biggest boon of the season is its loot pool. Gridskipper, Hung Jury and the likes of Fatebringer are part of a whopping 23 new weapons added in this season. That's huge and goes a long way to repairing some of the damage caused by Beyond Light's overzealous vaulting.
It breathes new life into existing content, and new Iron Banner weapons are particularly welcome.
That does, however, bring us to one major issue of Season of the Splicer. With less of a pull to play PvE content with the story lacking, it's a chance to play Gambit and PvP... and that's not sustaining the player base right now.
Gambit, as I've said before, needs at the very least a rebrand. It's a fun mode with decent enough loot, but it feels ready for a facelift. Hell, give us a Vanguard sanctioned version (they already requisitioned the Prismatic Recaster), with a few tweaked maps. That may not make a great deal of sense lore-wise, but at the same time, we're currently playing Gambit matches on Titan, a location that's supposedly vanished.
PvP, however, might be in the roughest spot it's been since Destiny 2's initial launch, and the culprit is, as you'd expect, Stasis.
This week's blog post did confirm that Stasis is being looked at very closely and that the team is looking to return the Crucible back to its heyday where weapons were put first and foremost.
Thankfully, a new hotfix will take a deeper look at Stasis next week, but for now, it's tough to get excited to jump into PvP without having Stasis equipped.
Finally, transmog. After the revelation that the system is time-gated, I couldn't be less excited about it. Sure, I'll use this season's free transmog tokens, but I can't see myself putting all that much time into it.
So, all in all, a strange one for Destiny 2 so far. Season of the Splicer feels like it adds genuine reasons to farm great rolls on some fantastic weapons, but it also lacks a storyline to match or any real changes to PvP.
We'll re-assess after next week's hotfix.