Bungie’s outlined the long-awaited Destiny 2 Arc 3.0 update ahead of its arrival next season, and the subclass revamp looks like a massive win for Hunters and an exciting upgrade for all.
Designer Sam Dunn describes Arc as “the ‘hold W’ subclass” in Bungie’s post (opens in new tab), referring to its focus on mobility and aggression. Amusingly, the dev team also mentions Crank 2: High Voltage, a madhouse action film starring Jason Statham as an ex-hitman who’s had his heart replaced by a battery in constant need of charging, as a source of inspiration for the concept of maintaining arc charges in combat.
These themes have driven some seismic shifts in how Arc performs. The new Arc keyword Amplified is a clear example. This is a unique buff obtained by rapidly defeating enemies with Arc damage of any kind, and it’s baked into all Arc subclasses rather than being tied to specific Aspects or Fragments. Becoming Amplified boosts your movement speed and weapon handling, and sprinting for a few seconds will ratchet your speed up further – “as fast as we can make our sprint animation go,” according to designer Mike Humbolt – and grant damage resistance.
Arc 3.0 also brings two debuffs: Blinded, which functions as it always has by stunning enemies, and Jolted, which will zap nearby enemies whenever you damage Jolted targets. Additionally, the Ionic Traces previously tied to middle-tree Arc Warlock will now be available to all classes as a way to recharge Arc abilities.
Hunters are looking like the biggest winners of Arc 3.0. Arc Hunter has been outclassed by Void and Stasis variants for years now, but its revamped form sounds promising. The class is getting a new Super, for starters: Gathering Storm. Unlike Arc Staff, a returning roaming Super, Gathering Storm lets Hunters throw their staff at enemies to apply Jolt and spawn fields of lightning, simultaneously giving the class the AoE and ranged options it desperately needed.
The rest of the class is mostly unchanged apart from the addition of the Blink jump – which has been Warlock-exclusive since Destiny 2 launched – and an Aspect which buffs Amplified even further, which are pretty big changes in their own right. Blink is also getting some blanket buffs to its distance and recharge to align it more with its Destiny 1 form.
Warlocks will retain their Chaos Reach and Stormtrance Supers, with the latter folding in the teleport and Landfall abilities of the old subclass trees. Arc Souls, AKA Arc Buddies, are back as well, along with additional ways to generate Ionic Traces and amp up your electrostatic melee attacks. Arc Warlock was already pretty good, so it’s gotten fewer targeted changes.
Arc Titan is sitting somewhere in the middle. Its Fist of Havoc and Thundercrash Supers are back and mostly unchanged, much like the Seismic Strike shoulder charge and Ballistic Slam dive. However, Titans have gained a brand-new Thruster class ability. This move echoes the Hunter dodge and lets you quickly move in a specific direction while keeping a first-person camera, and if that sounds a lot like the effects of the beloved Twilight Garrison Exotic from Destiny 1, you’d be right.
Titans are also getting a new melee called Thunderclap which can be charged (while standing still) to deliver a big “One Punch Man-style” hit capable of one-shotting a Guardian in the Crucible. The Titan Aspect Touch of Thunder, which upgrades all Arc grenade types, also sounds quite potent and is a clear standout in the Arc suite of Aspects, which mostly carry over familiar subclass bonuses.
Bungie also shared a few of the equippable Fragments which will be available to all classes with Arc 3.0. Here’s the full list:
- Spark of Beacons: When the player is amplified, Arc special weapon kills create a blinding explosion.
- Spark of Resistance: When surrounded by enemies, the player has increased damage resistance.
- Spark of Momentum: Sliding over ammo will reload your weapon and grant a small amount of melee energy. Sliding over Heavy ammo increases the amount of energy granted.
- Spark of Shock: The player’s Arc grenades jolt enemies.
The first Arc 3.0 gameplay will be shown as part of Destiny 2’s big August 23 showcase, which is set to unveil the Lightfall expansion and Season 18.