We've been warring over PlanetSide 2's continents for a little over a month now, and we're big fans of its super-scaled warfare. On the flipside, some players are highlighting a need for balancing improvements to keep the war machine turning. One particular player, BuzzCutPsycho—currently the world's leading Terran Republic soldier and ranked second overall in the leaderboards —wrote a lengthy post on the official forums criticizing some of PlanetSide 2's mechanics, including kill/death ratios, vehicles, and territory control.
"Fundamentally, this is a good game, but there are some problems which need to be addressed," Buzz began. A major problem is that too much focus on keeping kill/death ratios positive reduces teamwork and risk-taking, he claimed, writing: "The problem is so prevalent that a player is constantly driven to do cheesy things to get kills because the game, in its current state, revolves around trying to get as many kills as possible. You never login and say, 'Where is the frontline at?' Instead, you login and say, 'Where is the farm at?'"
If you've been playing for a while, you know the kinds of farms Buzz is talking about: hours-long meat grinders at hard to capture bases which can churn out more experience points than tactical wins. Buzz suggested that the removal of kill/death counts and a stronger emphasis on tracking team-related stats such as resupplies and Sunderer/Galaxy deployments would encourage better teamplay. He also called PlanetSide 2's "overabundance of vehicles" as "the biggest, most cancerous, and most destructive problem." Low resource costs for both air and ground vehicles provides players a safe and effective way of racking up kills, points, and experience in relative safety, Buzz argued. As a result, infantry combat takes a backseat in favor of a game that "in its current state practically forces me to pull vehicles in order to gain XP." Personally, I avoid vehicles for fear of receiving 20 rockets up my tailpipe as soon as I grip the steering wheel.
The rest of Buzz's post covers the weapons he feels are imbalanced (such as the Liberator bomber's Zephyr cannon), the hex-based map overlay, grenade spam, and other critiques. Head over to the official forums and have a read.
We recorded our initial thoughts about the launch of PS2 last month in the video below.
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Omri Petitte is a former PC Gamer associate editor and long-time freelance writer covering news and reviews. If you spot his name, it probably means you're reading about some kind of first-person shooter. Why yes, he would like to talk to you about Battlefield. Do you have a few days?