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Destiny dev explains why it's rebalancing fan-favorite weapons

"Destiny shouldn't be Gjallarhorn simulator version 4.0 in a number of years."

When Destiny's next expansion, The Taken King, launches next month, it'll bring with it a significant update to weapon power and balance. Most notably, developer Bungie is reducing the lethality of fan-favorite guns like the hand-cannon Thorn and the rocket launcher Gjallarhorn.

Some players have been upset with this news; if you play any sort of cooperative mode in the game, chances are you'll come across a lot of Guardians using Gjallarhorn. It's extremely powerful and the go-to choice for many players. In a new interview with IGN, Bungie's community manager, David "Deej" Dague, addressed why the studio decided to "nerf" the rocket launcher and other popular weapons. He explained that the developer decided that it wanted to compel players to use more and different weapons, rather than just rely on a couple.

"This is the challenge for us, to create things that you always want to do," he stated. "If we created Destiny where it was just a game like, 'Oh, another Destiny game is coming out, which I like to [think of as just] more aliens to kill with my Gjallarhorn,' [then] I think people would probably accuse us of design failure. We want to give you new things to experience all the time, new places to go, new ways to upgrade your Guardian, new enemies to fight, new weapons to use, new subclasses to master. The act of playing Destiny is all about evolving your character. And using the same weapons for the next decade wasn't really part of that vision."

Deej went on to talk more about Gjallarhorn specifically, noting that although players love the gun, the studio believes that it's time to encourage players to diversify their chosen weapons. "Our goal as developers is to keep you guessing, to keep you thinking about, 'I'm going into this tactical scenario, what am I going to equip?'" Deej said. "And if Gjallarhorn is an obvious choice, then we'd like to provoke you to think a little bit more about your loadout. Like I said, Destiny shouldn't be Gjallarhorn simulator version 4.0 in a number of years. There are still going to be missions where you're going to use that Gjallarhorn. There are also going to be [new] weapons that maybe start to catch your eye."

You won't have to wait long to check out some of the new weapons coming to the game. The Taken King launches on September 15, and it brings a host of changes and improvements, such as a new leveling system and a one-time level boost for all players. Check out GameSpot's interview with the game's lead concept artist, who explains the addition of the level boost and why Peter Dinklage has been replaced by voice actor Nolan North as the voice of the Ghost companion.

Keep an eye on GameSpot for more news about The Taken King in the weeks to come.