I am fully aware that DE at times seems to be playing an entirely different game than most of the player base, but the changes to itzal is a whole other level of DE being completely out of touch.
Several streams ago, it was revealed (thanks to a bit too much adult beverages) that DE wanted to nerf the itzal because, and I pseudo-quote, that DE wanted players to use the k-drive more.
This is a recent example of DE being completely out of touch with their own player base. What DE has failed to understand is that us as players are reward driven. We want to get relics? We complete missions. If we want more relics? We try to complete missions faster or go for more rounds. With open world however, there is absolutely no reward for traveling. Take 10 minutes to travel 1000m? No reward. Take a few seconds to travel 1000m with the pre-nerf itzal? No reward. The only difference is that in order to get "no reward", one takes 10 minutes and the other less than 10 seconds. That is a massive amount of time difference that could be used to do any number of different things we WANT to do. Want to farm toroids in the space port? pre-nerf itzal would get you there in little time so there is minimal delay between you doing what you want. Now? Too bad for you! Now you have to spend more time doing something you are not rewarded for at all. Want to try to speed run eidolons and get as many as you can in 1 night? Too bad, DE wants you to waste time literally HOLDING 2 BUTTONS and occasionally pressing a third.
So what do they give itzal for such a massive nerf? A nerf that would reduce travel time to a mere fraction of the original? Must be something amazing right? Nope... they give it valkyr's worst ability... rip line... You know, for the high speed and chaos of archwing, you clearly have plenty of time to line up and aim perfectly on a single target and use an ability to fling them to who knows where. This ability SUCKS on valkyr already. But she at the very least can grab onto terrain and pull herself. On an archwing? This ability is 100% useless. Why would you ever use rip line on the itzal when you can use vortex? I hesitate to even mention vortex because DE has set a horrifying precedence here. Hey, I got 2 options. The first only hits 1 target, requires pin point accuracy, and flings them so far that I would have a better chance of finding 1 spider hidden among the hundreds of scarabs on Inaros when he is charging 4. The other option is an instant AoE that pulls any enemies in range to me (not flinging them out of map boundaries behind me), and pulls items to me. I know, the difficulty of the choice between the two is an avengers level threat.
Here is why I was, and always have been, adamantly opposed to a itzal nerf like this. Its sets a dangerous precedent of "nothing can be special/niche". When trials were still around, itzal was only used for speed running JV. Archwings like amesha and elytron were the most popular because they had the best ability to tank and clear enemies. Once open worlds were introduced and trials removed, there was no need for any archwing to have the tanking possibilities of the amesha or the clearing power of the elytron. So the best option by far became the itzal due to its vastly superior mobility, and even vortex was highly desirable for eidolons/orbs as it was an instant way to collect all the drops. Why spend minutes traveling 1000+m to do one part of a bounty when you can spend seconds? This is what DE, again in their own... influenced... words, said they disliked. They disliked that the players used the itzal because it was so much faster than the k-drives. So they nerfed the primary reason anyone ever used the itzal outside of farming resources, and they gave a vastly weaker version to all arch wings. Then they gave the itzal a completely lazy ability that has zero value. So, you know what will happen? People will still use itzal primarily in open world because it picks up drops the fastest. By DE's own logic that they just used to nerf the itzal, then what is to say that they won't nerf the itzal again and give every archwing the same ability but vastly weaker? So lets continue to follow DE's own logic and go ahead and do just that. Now every archwing has a blink and the ability to suck in items from a wide range. Why would I ever use the itzal when I can use the amesha? Basically used for the exact same thing, but the amesha is far far tankier. Continuing with DE's logic, now the Amesha gets nerfed and its uniqueness is broken into a weak version and shared among the others. Wait... now the itzal and amesha are both equally as mobile and tanky, but the elytron here has far superior clearing power as well. So now the most used archwing becomes the elytron. Before you know it, we apply the DE logic yet again and same thing. So when you once had multiple archwings with clear and distinct strengths and weaknesses, you now have virtually identical performing archwings. The only difference is now they all are completely inferior at what each one was strong at.
DE should have waited for rail jack to be released and then look at usage. Rail jack would allow the other archwings to finally have a reason to be used. If DE wanted more people to use k-drives, they should have more incentives to be used. Example, if I could easily/passively gather resources while using k-drive at the cost of taking longer travel time, I would be far more likely to use k-drive for generic travel. The itzal nerf was horribly thought out, and DE should be outright embarrassed with what they thought was a good replacement. DE needs to revert the archwing changes and wait for rail jack to come out and gather some data on what is used. Then actually take some time and think about the core issues and how to properly address said issues instead of throwing a band aid on it.