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Some Destiny players are unhappy about traveling merchant Xur's selection and think that Bungie is deliberately keeping the best loot away from players. The studio flatly denied that they have any control over what the NPC sells, though.
The evidence for the accusation comes from a video of Bungie community manager David "DeeJ" Dague playing Destiny on Twitch. During the video, reposted on the Destiny forums, Dague says the following over voice chat at around 1:04:
It is not random. There is a plan but every time I ask the guys who know what Xur is selling they say, 'Are you asking as a community manager with a valid concern or are you asking as a warlock that wants another feathered helmet?
Dague jumped in on that forum thread to clarify that they don't deliberately control what items Xur sells. The team knows what's going to be sold before the NPC appears in the Tower, but that's all he meant when he said "plan."
"Xur is randomized. There are times when we can pull off miracles like making him stay in the Tower longer when Christmas is cancelled, but his inventory is governed by the same chaos that influences all the loot drops."
He added that the video is from several months ago when he was still learning all of the ins and outs of Destiny's system.
"These conspiracy theories are symptoms of a burning desire. Gjallarhorn is the most popular ask that comes my way. I know you want it, even more than the collective requests for more vault space. As you can see, these are things that are beyond my control. I don't have one either."
I'm sure that Bungie could control Xur's loot table if they wanted and make sure that he sells Icebreaker or Gjallarhorn every weekend. It's their game so they have the power to change whatever they want. Xur didn't achieve self-awareness and escape their control. He's a bundle of code that they created.
However, the idea that Bungie is deliberately removing good loot from Xur's inventory just to keep you playing until House of the Wolves comes out is far-fetched. I've gotten screwed over more times than I can count in games with randomized loot and I understand the desire to want to blame someone for my woes. If it bugs you that much that you can't buy a new rocket launcher, though, I think the better course of action is just to play a game that isn't centered around luck of the draw and collecting loot.