Last week, Destiny opened its competitive multiplayer Iron Banner event. Normally, the game balances the gap between higher and lower-level Guardians so they can play together, but the Iron Banner should have been different by taking players’ levels into account.
As GameSpot’s Erik Tay told us last week, that didn’t seem to be the case. “I’m level 29 now and even when playing against a level 24 player, I couldn’t really tell the difference,” he said. “I also asked people I was playing with if they could tell the difference, and none of them said they could.”
In Bungie’s latest Weekly Update, Senior Designer Derek Carroll explained why: “The way we pitched Iron Banner did make it sound like a ‘no-holds-barred’ playlist,” he said. “In reality, we delivered what we felt would be a competitive experience for everyone, not just players at the level cap. The reaction from players seems to be: ‘No, we want it to be bad for lower-level players. That’s the point!’ We’re listening to that feedback, but this first Iron Banner is fairly conservative.”
Carroll further explained that “time-to-kill” is the same when you’re using higher-level gear against lower-level gear Guardians, but that the opposite is not true, so an enemy with lesser weapons will have a harder time killing you.
“To keep competition close and avoid unwinnable fights, the largest advantage you can have is around 7 levels,” Carroll said. “So, if you attacked a target 20 levels above you, you’d have a fair shot at winning that fight.”
Finally, Bungie said that it’s listening to player feedback, and that the next Iron Banner event is “very likely” to have different rules.
Emanuel Maiberg is a freelance writer. You can follow him on Twitter @emanuelmaiberg.
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