PlanetSide 2 – 12 Months Later

The “OMFG” patch (seriously… Operation: Make Faster Game) was released for PlanetSide 2 last week, and in the interests of giving the F2P game I have sunk $100+ into one final chance at redemption, I decided to give it a go. My initial re-impressions were… lackluster.

Glad this bug hasn't been fixed in 6 months.

Glad this bug hasn’t been fixed in 6 months.

While I have not bothered to post my opinions here, I did not have a particularly charitable view of this design pivot. Basically, the dev team stopped all development other than that which increased frame rates. Whether or not it was necessary (it arguably is), the game mechanically needed the biweekly updates I raved about 6 months ago to maintain any interest from me. I can sympathize with someone who wants to play and cannot due to not having a high-end system. However, as someone who was already playing and stopped because, in part, hitting Instant Action loads me into a drop-pod and rockets me into a base that has seen any action since Higby’s mom left last night is incredibly frustrating. Not that it helps much when some action is found when the opposition evaporates like so much morning dew and the devs seriously expect you to babysit an empty base for 6+ minutes.

Way back when this Ps2 adventure began, I compared it favorably to Battlefield 2 & 3. “It plays just like them except you can get a vehicle anytime you want, and look at all those Galaxies flying by!” Now? I’m longingly gazing at the $48 Battlefield 4 deals I passed up because I would like to be able to actually shoot people in the face when I boot up a FPS. Whatever appeal six minutes of standing around once had is gone; what good is an expansive, open-world battlefield filled with ghosts and dust?

Give me more of this.

Give me more of this.

Last night as I scanned Indar looking for the hexes with the magical “Enemies: 48+” tag, I realized that all I was really doing was queuing for FPS server. I care nothing for the resources, the bases, or any of the other metagame nonsense. And in that context, the only real benefit of Ps2 is the ability to pull the equivalent of a fighter jet or tank when you want one. The costs though… the costs are steep. Not just in terms of the F2P payslope, but also in the drudgery of finding people to shoot.

So… good job, SOE. I’m not quite sure whether my (very slight) increase in frames is due to the two months of optimization, or simply because so many people left due to two months of no content updates that there is less character models to render.

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Posted on November 21, 2013, in PlanetSide 2 and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. Hmmmm I don’t even remember if I still have it installed on the PC.
    I had fun at the very beginning, but it got old real fast. Flying over the terrain was nice, anyway, maybe I should keep it around just for that…..

  2. You must play during weird hours man. I was on Mattherson during US prime time last night and there were plenty of xp pinatas for my prowler to blast.

    • Well, last night was the start of the double XP celebration. That said, it isn’t so much that the 48+ hexes don’t exist, it’s that there were so few of them and/or the fights seem to collapse in on themselves rather quickly.

      • I dunno man. Are you west coast or something? I never have any issues finding fights until after ~10pm eastern, when the VS horde starts to really gain steam. If that’s when you get your play time in I could certainly understand your frustration.

        I know from experience that nobody wants to fight the VS during the night. Their massive population and organizational advantage on top of stuff like the ceaseless ZOE spam and such really kill off a lot of the action.

        But earlier in the evening it’s an entirely different story most nights. I spent 3 hours last night in a raging 3 way battle in the Crossroads/Xenotech/Snake Ravine area. And even without the double xp events the alerts always concentrate the action somewhere. Hell with the lattice linking Crossroads and the Crown once again the middle of Indar almost always has a fairly large fight somewhere.

  3. I have no idea why it all ended up the way it did. It sounded so good on paper; the combined arms, 3 side territory control, and just massive battles yet it felt so lacking. I enjoyed my time yet its appeal never captured me the way i thought it would and i left within a few weeks.

    sounds like it hasn’t changed much over that time either. It still more a lobby shooter and progression grinder

    • It just gets stale after a while if you’re the kind of person who wants to see and do new things in new places. PS1 had 9-10 continents at launch iirc. The classes are annoyingly homogenous except in a few areas. And the relationship between infantry and armor/air is just plain fucked.

      Then there’s the whole optimization bugbear. Like Az I really haven’t seen any massive performance improvements, so from my perspective game development has essentially stalled for 3 months which really affected my willingness to log in.

      So yeah, the game does have major issues. But to raise the specter of GW2 again, at least the PS2 devs actually give two shits about the area of the game I play and typically don’t spent their resources making the game actively worse for people like me. None of which can be said about ANet or most other MMO developers at this point in time.

      I’ll take ‘fun w/ issues + the game continuing to evolve in a positive way’ over ‘fun w/ issues + stagnation and indifference’ any day of the week.

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