If you've played Destiny 2 PvP this season, you have almost certainly been cut down by Hard Light. And then again. And again. The Exotic auto rifle became real strong after buffs this season, and has been statistically the most-used gun in Crucible. It's a recognisable problem too, because it spits colourful lasers bouncing off walls and all over - not a subtle gun. Thankfully, Bungie last night tweaked this superweapon in a little hotfix patch. Initial reports are that it's still good, just not monstrous. Nice.
All auto rifles got big buffs this season, dragging them back from meta obscurity, and Hard Light got extra help because Bungie removed the wild screenshake that had made it downright unpleasant to use. It's been in a really good place: 600rpm auto rifles are generally great right now; Hard Light had no damage falloff over long ranges; its shots bounce off surfaces and even pick up extra damage after bouncing; and it's stable when firing. Plus as an Exotic weapon, it drops with a fixed roll so players don't need to grind for a 'god roll' for full benefits, unlike some other meta guns. All of which means that Hard Light has lit up the Crucible like a murder disco for the past seven weeks. Bungie acknowledge it was a bit much.
With hotfix 126.96.36.199 on Wednesday night, Bungie gave Hard Light damage falloff (though with a floor of 0.7x at max range, not the standard 0.5x of autos), PvP ricochet bonus damage has been cut from 2x to 1.35x (in PvE it stayed the same), and they have removed an adjustment that made it more stable than actually intended. Despite all that, Hard Light still seems pretty deece. Famed PvP streamer "Drewsky" reckons it's still worth using:
When Bungie first announced the changes on Tuesday, they explained that it's mostly because of players on mouse and keyboard, "since the ability to precisely aim regardless of range allows you to use the weapon at longer distances, on top of being able to use ricochets more effectively." Well done, us.
"Although weapons like the Fighting Lion can also do what Hard Light does for indirect fire, they are generally less effective during a direct confrontation," Bungie continued. "Hard Light boasts a lot of great stats, and its impact grows with more players using it - eventually no cover is safe."
Other 600rpms auto rifles have been really popular this season too, including the Galliard-42 XN7568 found in Black Armory Forges, The Summoner from Trials rewards, and Suros Regime. Hard Light has been the most recognisable problem (what with the bouncing lasers and all) so it's no surprise it got nerfed, though I do wonder if Bungie might later tweak the whole archetype. Maybe they could buff up some weaker guns to come stare these down.
Oh, and some good news for all players: the hotfix also squashed the bug which meant the Season Pass's perks for level 32 (pay for robots to clear Bunkers) and level 92 (get to buy a random roll of Rasputin's daily Seraph weapon) could only be used by the character which initially hit that level. Now all characters on your account can use those, as planned. The daily Seraphs are an easy bonus chance for a good'un, so that's nice.