Destiny 2’s last This Week at Bungie blog revealed some big changes coming to PvP and PvE activities. Some of the most notable ones were the nerfs to certain overpowered Warlock and Titan abilities in PvE. Destiny 2’s sandbox developers Kevin Yanes and Eric Smith have now explained the thought process behind the decision to do so in a podcast.
The update mentioned some big changes to the Titan Shoulder Charge and the Warlock Handheld Supernova that could one-shot kill opponents. This led people to believe that Bungie was looking to remove one-shot kill abilities altogether. However, sandbox developers Yanes and Smith clarified how that is not what they meant to say.
In the latest episode of the DCP Firing Range, the duo was asked why Hunters still have two one-shot kill abilities whereas they were taken away from Titans and Warlocks. Smith explained, “Our goal here isn’t specifically to remove one-hit-kill abilities from the game. I think, in the TWAB we could’ve done a better job at the language talking about requiring a higher level of skill or a big build crafting commitment to achieve a one-hit kill ability.”
Yanes added, “I think the message got maybe mangled a bit because we did start 30th anniversary and we were like, 'No more one-shot kills.'” He also mentioned how his team played an important role in changing his opinion about this and actually got him to realize that power spikes are good and “keep the variety going”. However, the team decided that there has to be a cost associated with it. For example, the Shoulder Charge can still one-shot opponents when paired with the Peregrine Greaves Exotic leg armor, but it will take up an exotic slot so it isn't as easy to achieve.
The decision to nerf one-hit-kill abilities was made to get players used to the changes coming to the light subclasses with The Witch Queen DLC. Eventually, this system will compel players to spend more time on getting better armor builds and will highlight the gunplay aspect of PvP in Destiny 2.