Bungie’s experiments and adjustments for improving Destiny 2’s Trials of Osiris PvP mode continue this weekend with the release of Freelance Mode, a new version of Trials that focuses on players who want to take on the competition solo. The mode goes live with the Destiny 2 daily reset at 10 AM PT / 1 AM ET on Friday, October 22.
Some details about the mode came with the latest This Week at Bungie blog post, although it’s a pretty straightforward addition. You’ll find the new Freelance node in the Crucible section of Destiny 2’s Director, hovering just above and to the right of the Trials of Osiris node. The mode is only accessible to players who want to take on the Trials of Osiris by themselves; no pre-made teams will be admitted. The usual version of the Trials remains available for teams, and you can still queue into that one solo, if you so desire.
Now Playing: Destiny 2 Players NEED To Play Trials of Osiris
Bungie’s changes to the Trials of Osiris this season have been pretty significant, and included the ability for solo players to take on the mode with new incentives to get people playing. Up until this season, Trials was only accessible if you had a full team of three players, a requirement that was, itself, something of a limitation in getting people to play. When Bungie opened the door to solo players, a lot more people flooded into Trials, which has gone a long way to making the mode healthier with a larger and more diverse field of competitors.
The trouble is, however, playing solo in Trials as it has existed previously is a rough proposition. Pre-made teams of three tend to have a huge advantage over the more fragmented teams a solo player can find themselves on, since those pre-made teams are more likely to benefit from better communication and experience playing together. What’s more, it is possible for teams to try to seek out matches with teams that include solo players, which can make for a frustrating experience if you are playing alone as you can repeatedly get stomped by folks who simply have better coordination and strategy execution.
The Freelance node should alter that situation for solo players by pitting them only against one another, and removing the advantage that pre-made teams would have over them. Now, teams will largely only face other teams, and solos will only face other solos. You’ll still be able to go Flawless in either node, and you’ll still earn rewards in the same way, but the adjustment should alleviate some of the frustration solo players have been facing. We’ll have to see how segmenting those two types of players affects the mode and its player pool overall.
Bungie also released a patch for Destiny 2 this week, which made further adjustments to improve Trials. Gone is the ability to watch the matchmaking count in order to attempt to queue against team that include solo players, and you can no longer gain bonus Super energy in the mode for capturing the control point in a match–something that some players felt conveyed an unfair advantage.