February 15, 2024

Destiny 2 PvP Sandbox Overhaul: Balancing and Skill-based Gameplay Updates

Aria Mitchell
Written byAria MitchellWriter


Ever since the introduction of initiatives like the Crucible Labs, it’s felt inevitable that Destiny 2’s PvP would one day receive a comprehensive rework. The first step on that journey arrives with Update 7.3.5 on March 5, where everything from player health to the ammo economy is getting changed.

Destiny 2 PvP Sandbox Overhaul: Balancing and Skill-based Gameplay Updates

The Crucible’s Sandbox Overhaul

The Crucible’s upcoming sandbox overhaul aims to address the root causes of the issues that have plagued Destiny 2’s PvP experience. The PvP Strike Team has outlined a suite of updates designed to improve the overall gameplay.

Goals of the Updates

The Strike Team has set three main goals for the upcoming updates:

  1. Improve players' understanding of the sequence of events that led to their death in a match.
  2. Alter the weapon sandbox to account for the improvement in overall player skill.
  3. Reduce the amount of high-reward low-risk options available to players and make mastery of primary weapons an aspirational pursuit.

Changes to Player Health

To achieve these goals, player health is being increased from 70 to 100, providing more granularity for balancing the game and decreasing the relative lethality of multiple sandbox elements.

Ability Cooldowns

Ability cooldowns in PvP will be penalized, with a 15 percent penalty applied to melee, grenade, and class ability cooldowns, and a 20 percent penalty applied to super cooldowns. However, melee and super abilities will receive damage buffs to compensate for the increased player health and reduced uptime.

Changes to Primary Weapons

Primary weapons will undergo various tweaks to re-balance their skill ceilings. The critical hit damage of all primary weapons, except bows, will be increased. Hand cannons and SMGs will have their body shot damage reduced, emphasizing the importance of precision.

Changes to Special and Heavy Weapons

Special and Heavy weapons will also be updated to align with the changes in player health. The base damage of trace rifles, shotguns, fusion rifles, and glaives will be increased. Glaives will receive a 20 percent buff to projectile damage and a 16 percent buff to melee damage. Machine guns in the Heavy slot will receive a 20 percent damage increase, while heavy grenade launchers will be nerfed by five percent in their detonation damage.

Special Ammo Economy

The Special ammo economy will undergo a significant change. Players will start each match with two kills worth of Special ammo, but will no longer respawn with more throughout the match. Special ammo will be awarded through a points-based system, encouraging kills, assists, and objective play. Special and Heavy weapon kills will not contribute to the meter, and Special ammo will no longer drop on death.

Future Updates

The sandbox overhaul is just the beginning. The PvP Strike Team plans to make additional tweaks based on player feedback. More announcements regarding rewards, game mode tuning, and matchmaking are expected in the coming weeks.


With the upcoming sandbox overhaul and specific balancing updates, Destiny 2’s PvP is set to enter a new era. Players can look forward to a more balanced and skill-based gameplay experience. Mark your calendars for March 5 and get ready to dive into the exciting changes!

About the author
Aria Mitchell
Aria Mitchell

From Rotorua's scenic landscapes, Aria Mitchell shines as New Zealand's leading expert in localizing online casino content. Marrying Kiwi essence with global gaming insights, she's the name trusted nationwide.

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