Bungie responds to fears new Gjallarhorn will dominate Destiny 2 meta again

Brad Norton
Destiny 2 Gjallarhorn return

While the Gjallarhorn dominated Destiny as one of the most powerful Exotics in the early years, Bungie is well aware of concerns it’ll dominate The Witch Queen era upon its return. Here’s how the devs are planning to balance the immensely popular Rocket Launcher.

In the first few years of Destiny, a select few guns sent shivers down the spines of even the most accomplished Guardians. From the rare Vex Mythoclast drop to the all but essential Icebreaker, various Exotics stood out as must-haves.

Though none were quite as elusive as the Gjallarhorn. The extraordinarily powerful Rocket Launcher was unlike anything else in the game, dealing more damage than any counterpart due to its tracking Wolfpack Rounds. 

In certain cases, if your team didn’t have a ‘Gally,’ you had little hope of clearing various endgame encounters. 

After a four-year absence, the infamous Exotic is finally making its return as part of Bungie’s 30th Anniversary Pack. But rest assured, the developers are already taking extra precautions when it comes to balancing the almighty Gjallarhorn.

Destiny 2 gameplay

“We’re always concerned when we bring something over from D1 to D2,” Game Director Joe Blackburn explained to PCGamer

On one hand, devs have to meet expectations and “live up to the hype.” On the other, they also can’t reintroduce the Gjallarhorn in a way that’s deemed “underpowered or the opposite”. Bungie wants to avoid a situation where the Gally returns, “melts everything in the game for one week,” then has to be reeled back.

Fortunately, the team is already “cheesily confident” with where the classic Exotic currently sits in early playtests. “I think we hit a pretty good place way back when Rise of Iron came out and Gjallarhorn first returned,” Blackburn said. 

Destiny Gally
The revamped Rise of Iron Gjallarhorn could be closer to what we get in Destiny 2.

“This needs to be the weapon for anyone that’s excited about trying Destiny, that you can tell them: ‘put Gjallarhorn in your heavy slot. It’s going to be good.’”

From annihilating raid bosses to ripping apart Trials teams, the Exotic Launcher was known was its outrageous power in Destiny 1. Considerable nerfs took effect in Year 3, and that version appears to be what fans can expect upon its return this December.

Destiny 2’s game director concluded with: “I’m confident that we’re going to hit that and I’m confident that we have some delights in there.”