Fellow Helldivers 2 players, I'm begging you to stop calling the extraction shuttle early

Helldivers posing
(Image credit: Arrowhead Game Studios)

I am, when all's said and done, quite a lazy man. I like naps, usually forget to take the bins out, and frequently put off making dinner until about 9 pm. But I'm a very diligent Helldiver. The propaganda machine back at Super Earth has really had an impact on me, and now I can't help but try my hardest to spread managed democracy throughout the galaxy. Helldivers 2 has made me a bootlicker.

It's very hard to do this very important work, however, when I've only got one ride off the planet, and the pilot doesn't care that there are more bug nests and automaton outposts left standing. Once that shuttle leaves, the mission is over, whether I'm safely inside it or not. 

(Image credit: Arrowhead Game Studios)

Right after launch, my fellow Helldivers seemed pretty keen to clean up during every mission, smashing the extra objectives and rooting around for caches contained within points of interest. It was glorious victory after glorious victory. But now? Everyone seems to be in a rush to get back to the ship. Maybe there's a birthday party about to kick off and they don't want to miss out on the cake. I get it. Cake is great. But medals are also great, and I want more of them.

Last night, I couldn't find a single PUG willing to 100% a mission. I desperately tried to steer my squad away from the main objective, knowing that as soon as we completed it we'd be hoofing it back to the extraction point. Granted, this is sometimes a very sensible strategy. In one mission, where disconnects left us down to a duo, and death had sapped us of all our respawn reserves, we really should have left sooner, but because we didn't neither of us made it back to the ship. But that's an anomaly in my experience, and most of the time there's been no reason to flee so quickly.

So I'm using my privileged position as a person who writes stupid words on the internet to make a personal plea: please let me get more medals. Some more super credits would be nice, too. I've got my eye on some nifty heavy armour in the shop. How else will I be able to protect the weak, fleshy citizens of Super Earth?

(Image credit: Arrowhead Game Studios)

This problem was inevitable when Arrowhead created an evac system where any member of the squad could call the shuttle down, regardless of consensus. Once the shuttle timer begins, there's no going back. If you're lucky, you might have time to strike off one more objective, if it's close, but that also means you're not helping your team defend the landing zone, which feels like a bit of a social faux pas. 

I'm not convinced there's an alternative, though. A vote system might sound good in principle, but that just creates more potential problems. One squad member not paying attention, or looking to do a bit of mischief, could screw up the whole mission. Individual extractions wouldn't really work, either. With a single shuttle, players are forced to work together to protect the landing zone, and that singular objective helps ramp up the tension. 

Maybe there could be a system where a majority could cancel the shuttle before it arrives, but I doubt there's much impetus for Arrowhead to add such a feature. It's not like the community is up in arms about this.

A soldier from Helldivers gives a patriotic salute while their comrade burns an alien corpse to death in the background.

(Image credit: Arrowhead Studios / PlayStation)

I'm embarrassed to admit that this situation has made me a touch passive aggressive. "Oh, so we're just going to ignore the rest of the objectives then?" Honestly, this probably just makes the person summoning the shuttle early feel vindicated. Nobody wants the passive aggressive dude to have any fun, and rightly so. Am I the villain? Probably!

As much as it feels like this system is a personal attack against me and my hunger for medals, in truth it really just encourages better communication, and it's really my fault for not wanting to talk to randos in PUGs. I should be hopping on voice comms straight away to ask if we could stick around after the main objective has been completed, instead of dropping some passive aggressive remarks in chat once it's too late. It certainly seems like a more sensible approach than writing a whole article about it. Sorry, I just can't help myself. It's a sickness. And sick people deserve your help. To get more medals.

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Fraser Brown
Online Editor

Fraser is the UK online editor and has actually met The Internet in person. With over a decade of experience, he's been around the block a few times, serving as a freelancer, news editor and prolific reviewer. Strategy games have been a 30-year-long obsession, from tiny RTSs to sprawling political sims, and he never turns down the chance to rave about Total War or Crusader Kings. He's also been known to set up shop in the latest MMO and likes to wind down with an endlessly deep, systemic RPG. These days, when he's not editing, he can usually be found writing features that are 1,000 words too long or talking about his dog.