Until this point, neither of the weekly strikes — the weekly heroic and the nightfall — have supported matchmaking. People have needed to have other high-level Destiny players on their friends list in order to play the strikes, or attempt to go it alone.
"We wanted the Weekly Heroics to be a challenge that pushed you and your buddies, but what we observed was that these strikes don't demand the same cooperation of a cohesive pre-made group," said M.E. Chung, design lead on Destiny, in Bungie's weekly update today. "The overwhelming community response was such that many players didn't have the numbers on their friends list to experience the activity on a weekly basis."
After patch 1.1.1, weekly heroic strikes on all levels will require matchmaking; it won't be possible to solo the strikes anymore. Bungie is leaving the nightfall unchanged, since groups attempting that tougher strike would want to stay together if they died and were kicked back to orbit. The studio is still keeping matchmaking out of raids as well, with Chung acknowledging there's a problem but saying only that Bungie is still thinking about how to solve it.
"We are keenly aware of the issue," said Chung. "We think good Raid sessions rely on groups of communicative players who are invested in each other, but we know that it's challenging for many players to find groups for Raids and Nightfall today. We are thinking hard about how we can help make that an easier experience in future releases."
Bungie still expects to release patch 1.1.1 "before the end of February." The update will also include a host of weapon balance tweaks, an important addition to the game's menu interface and a long-awaited fix for a pesky bug.