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Destiny 2’s inventory system is a broken mess

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How can there not be enough space?

Destiny 2 - Curse of Osiris
Destiny 2
Bungie/Activision

Destiny 2 made a great first impression. The new zones were gorgeous, the campaign was a significant improvement over the first game and the raid was excellent.

The flaws appeared as players settled in. Destiny 2 is often played like an MMO, and irritations are starting to mount with the game’s progression systems, multiplayer and endgame content for players who wanted something meaningful to do every single day. So now the community is pretty frustrated with the game’s shortcomings.

Destiny 2’s inventory system isn’t the game’s worst problem, but it’s a representative example of why players are beginning to lose interest in the entire experience.

Stuff you can’t carry goes in the vault

Destiny 2 allows players to carry up to nine of everything in their inventory, plus the one thing in each category they have equipped. That means nine of each of the three weapon types, nine helmets, nine gloves, nine ships, nine sparrows and nine ghost shells.

You also have 50 slots to store mods, and your mod inventory is shared by all your characters. Mods of the same type and quality, like rare-quality arc paragon arm mods, will stack with other rare-quality arc paragon arm mods. But arc paragon arm mods will not stack with arc paragon chest mods, and legendary arc paragon arm mods won’t stack with arm arc paragon leg mods. There are 39 different kinds of armor mods, so you need 78 slots to hold onto rare and legendary versions of all of them.

Destiny 2’s vault is too damned small
Bungie/Activision

The different cosmetic transmat modifications for ships that you get from Bright Engrams, Destiny 2’s version of loot boxes, also occupy space in your mod inventory. There are over 40 different transmats available.

Your vault is a storage locker that’s accessible from the game’s social spaces, and it’s where you put the stuff you can’t carry. You have 200 storage slots in your vault, and those have to accommodate all the weapons, armor, ships, vehicles, shells and mods that don’t fit in your inventory. To add insult to injury, this space is shared by your three characters.

It’s not nearly enough.

The vault is too small for all the stuff you collect

We’ve already mentioned that you can only carry 50 mods, and the overflow goes in your vault. Adding up all the rare, legendary and transmat mods, there are a total of 120 distinct armor and transmat mods, so you may need up to 70 of your 200 spots just for those.

There are currently 22 sets of legendary armor for each class in Destiny 2. Technically, there are only three functionally distinct sets of armor: Survivalist, Mobility and Heavy. You will usually want to use Survivalist gear on every class, in almost every situation. But there are 22 cosmetically distinct armor sets in the game for each class, if you would like to collect all the looks, and Destiny 2 encourages you to customize your appearance.

You can carry ten sets of armor in each character’s inventory — the one you’re wearing plus nine extras — so that leaves twelve sets you’ll need to store in your vault. Each set contains a helmet, gloves, chest, legs and a class item, so it occupies five spaces.

So, if you collect all the legendary armor sets for all three classes, you need 180 of your 200 vault spaces, just for those.

There are also 15 exotic armor pieces for each class, though, for a total of 45 additional items. You can destroy an exotic armor piece once you’ve collected it, and buy it again with exotic shards. But the new one you get will have a low power level, and you’ll have to find a high-level piece of legendary or exotic armor to infuse into the exotic to make it useful again. Most people prefer to hang onto a set of exotics instead of deleting them when not in use. It’s much less of a hassle, but it creates an issue with storage space.

There are 145 legendary weapons in base Destiny 2, not including new weapons added with Season 2 or Curse of Osiris, and 24 exotic guns, including those added in Curse of Osiris. You can store 90 total weapons in the inventories of your three characters, but that leaves 79 to put in your vault. The Dawning holiday event runs from Dec. 19, 2017 to Jan. 19, 2018 will also add new weapons and armor sets to the game.

There are also 70 unique ships. Your characters can hold 30, but you need 40 vault spaces to collect the rest.

You can hold all the cosmetically distinct sparrows and ghost shells on your characters, but these items roll with random useful perks. You may need to use vault space if you want to save a bunch of varying rolls.

Most players won’t collect every single thing in Destiny 2, and many players don’t play all the classes. But there’s so much more stuff to collect than there is storage space that it is very easy to overflow the vault if you’re a middling to hardcore player.

This was supposed to be a solved problem

The original Destiny also offered players insufficient vault space to store all the trophies they collected in their journeys. Bungie ultimately added more vault space with patches and expansions, and it moved stuff like ships, sparrows and cosmetic items like the Halloween masks to kiosks where players could retrieve unlocked items for free.

It took a bit of time, but Bungie ultimately solved the inventory complaints.

Destiny’s kiosks solved a lot of the storage issues
Bungie/Activision

Destiny offered 108 vault slots just for armor, 108 for weapons and 72 for currencies, ornaments, consumables and other miscellaneous items. So its vault is about 50 percent larger than the vault in the new game, and players in the old game didn’t have to worry about finding space for ships, sparrows or mods.

You can blame loot boxes to some extent. Destiny 2 makes its Bright Engrams the sole source for cosmetic ships and legendary sparrows, and players can dismantle vehicles they don’t want to get a currency called Bright Dust. That currency can then be used to buy a weekly selection of loot items from the Eververse store. These items can no longer go into collection kiosks, which means they have to remain as inventory clutter.

But loot box shenanigans can’t explain why Bungie couldn’t just make the vault bigger. There’s not much of a good explanation for why this is an issue at all, in fact, especially considering the angst it’s causing in players. Why make a game that features so much collecting if there’s no way to make your closet bigger?

Bungie should have anticipated the vault space needs its game imposed — especially since this has been an issue before — and come up with a way to mitigate this issue. Did ghost shells and sparrows really need to have randomized perks? Could they not have designed the economy in ways that shifted some of our stuff out of our inventory and into kiosks?

Bungie has a lot of work to do

Destiny 2 is a good game to play casually. You’ll probably never have much of an issue with features like the vault if you run through the campaign, do a few strikes, check out the PvP and move on. You’ll definitely get your $60 worth.

But giving players too little space to store all the gear and collectibles is just one of the ways Destiny 2’s design fails to meet the needs of high-commitment players. Mounting frustration with these issues is the reason why the Destiny community has been so angry lately.

The inventory problems are just one aspect of that anger, and the hardcore players are the ones who are going to stick with the game, and the series, for the long haul. It seems silly to upset that community over inventory space, of all things.