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PS2 TE brohaha 
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DARKie

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Post PS2 TE brohaha
I'm putting this in a thread and copying the related posts so as to stop monopolizing the shoutbox, because I think it's an interesting discussion and I wouldn't mind knowing more about the perspective of non-PS1 players and others... *cues incoming Wall-of-text music*


Context for the uninitiated: The Enclave is leaving PS2 (more pointedly BuzzCutPsyco is "pulling The Enclave out" of PS2, how many members will actually leave remains to be seen). Here is BCP's 8 minute diatribe describing his reasons: http://www.twitch.tv/buzzcutpsycho/b/419693663

If you don't want to listen to him talk, the list version is:
  • The game is too shallow, with not enough metagame, strategy, or 'end-game'
  • He wants "continental conquest, sanctuaries, pretty much all the stuff that made PlanetSide a great game" before he'll consider PS2 a game worth playing
  • He sees the dev's design decisions as signs they are too detached from what the game needs to succeed
  • He sees balance as horribly out of whack (specifically citing ZOE MAXes)
  • He also seems quite upset at the "constant up and down of buffs/nerfs", he notes most specifically because people pay money for items and the system where you 'never know when something good today will remain good tomorrow' just sucks
  • He see the recent resource system changes as "okay", but the system as a whole is a failure. And he throws in that vehicles have been "nerfed into the ground", making changes to their relative resource cost meaningless
  • He sees the game going too deep into the 'free to play' model, nickel and diming players for perks that players need to make the game enjoyable ( and in typical BCP-egomainia fashion, suggests that he hopes SOE changes it's whole model 'out of spite against him')
  • PS2 does not have 'enough PS1 in it', it's become just a shallow TDM and there are many games which provide a better FPS/TDM experience, and PS2 is failing to stand out in the way that is supposed to make it better than those, depth
  • He complains that the game performs poorly and is riddled with hackers

To quote his TL:DL; 'PlanetSide 2 is going nowhere but down, so with that said... we're pulling out'


Now, I'll state at the start of this that I (like so many people) don't care for BCP, he was an ass in PS1 he's an ass now. I don't view his leaving (with whatever part of TE that chooses to go with him) as any sort of milestone in this game's progress (up or down). That having been said, I think he raises some valid, and not wholly original points.

I'll give my thoughts in reverse order of importance to me personally:

Hackers will always be a problem with F2P games and MMOs in general, it's a game of whack-a-mole. Personally, I just saw an ad on facebook yesterday for a page called 'ILikeCheats' which touts their newest released trainer and carried the headline "Always See Every Enemy". This is just a reality of being a popular game today, assholes will want to cheat, and other assholes will want to make money or some ePeen points providing those cheats. At least SOE does seem to be keeping GMs online pretty consistently.

As for performance, I haven't had any issues that I wouldn't expect from a game of this size and style; maybe that's just me.

In my view, balance will always be an ongoing issue; it'll never be 'just right' and there will always be people clamoring for a nerfs and buffs to the same weapons. That said, it's not at all uncommon to hear (even on our TS) people complain about buying gear that has since become irrelevant. This is a shortcoming of the cash-marketplace model which SOE should be evaluating. I don't know if recerts (especially if you have to pay more for them) are a true relief to this, but if that is SOE's plan I don't understand why that's taking so long.

On the topic of 'nickel and diming' the community. I think it's a very valid point, not really solely with PS2, but with the F2P model itself. Many people have said along the way they don't mind spending more for a whole product, rather than having to pay for every bit of content they want to use. As Cal mentioned in the shout box, many people have spent as much or more on subs in the past; and when you spread the amount paid over the time you spend in game it's a reasonable cost. That said, the problem described by 'nickel and diming' isn't how much the game (and content) ultimately cost, its the cheap shaken by your ankles feel of having to whip out your eWallet for every little add on to the game. Again, this isn't something unique to PS2, it's inherent in the model SOE chose for the game. Though it is something we were promised would be relieved by the subscription model which was supposed to allow access to all content; in my view it doesn't do that at all. It's more like paying the sub gives you coupons, when what we wanted was a way to pay upfront and bypass the micro-transactions altogether. SOE doesn't want to give us that easy-out because market research shows people will pay more in micro-transactions than they will in subs, and they want the most money possible. Hence the cheap, shaken-by-the-ankles feeling, and related resentment.

The resource system was one of those ideas that the community was weary of from the start and the dev's doubled down on time and again, hoping they could turn them into a worthwhile source of 'depth and metagame'. Unfortunately, they have utterly failed to really make the system work, either making resources so "relevant" (read:necessary to play) that we saw huge shortages of important vehicles (as what the state of the game at release) or making resources so abundant and items so cheap that resources are irrelevant. One might argue that this is an issue of balance, and that once they find the sweetspot on resources the whole system will flourish (certainly that has been the dev's contention since pre-November 2012). I don't think that's the case however. I don't think it's really possible to make resources relevant on the individual level without creating the huge drawback in terms of people not enjoying the game because they can't pull the items they want, and/or there is a shortage of useful items being deployed in game. The problem is compounded by the system of selling resources and boosts; which leads to the irritating feeling of being 'nickel and dimed' for every bit of content you want to use in the game.


Finally, one of my biggest beefs with the game (which also appears to be BCP's largest issue, along with many PS1-vets): the unfulfilled promise of a PlanetSide sequel. PlanetSide 2 is not a re-skinned, upgraded version of PlanetSide 1; it was never meant to be (despite the calls of some for exactly that). It is meant to be a wholly separate game, with it's own unique feel; I understand and appreciate that. However, where the PS2 dev's missed the boat is that they failed to recognize the most important core aspect of PS1 that really was the reason the game lasted nearly a decade while so many FPSes (and MMOFPSes) rarely last more than 2 release cycles. That was PS1's depth, its metagame, and the goal of 'global conquest'. No one played PS1 for the awesome graphics and fantastic gun play, on their own these aspects of the game (while decent circa 2003) were rather lackluster by any modern standard. We played (and kept coming back) because the game gave you the sense of actual immersion in a universe all its own. It was very very rare that anyone reached what might be considered PS1's "endgame" (that is, locking all the continents), and when it happened it happened at times when the losing empires had <15% pop, and was by all accounts not much of an accomplishment. Nevertheless, the ongoing trek towards conquest was a real and serious motivator, especially because a) you could win continental battles, that is you could lock a cont and decimate your enemy so much that they didn't come back, and b) taking territory was a much longer process, fights lasted longer but their results where more permanent. You might fight for an hour over a couple bases, but after you went for a congratulatory dinner and drinks, you'd come back and find that hard won territory still in your control. You would see your empire progressing (or falling) and feel a real sense of connection to that progress. In PS2 on the other hand, the lines move so fast, and progress is made/destroyed in the time it takes me to walk to the bathroom. In PS1 the worst possible fights were the 3-ways where maintaining progress was very difficult. People often got very frustrated with the stalemates and logged out early because the "fights sucked". The PS2 system literally locks the game in that worst-possible configuration perpetually.

Continental conquests (which are in the pipeline) may alleviate this problem, but in my opinion there is no excuse for more continents not already having been released. It wouldn't have taken a new PS1 player a month to recognize the inherent flaws with a perpetual three-way fight; the PS2 team should have recognized it (especially with everyone pointed at it and jumping up in down) and they should have put continents on the front burner from the start. I don't care how tedious map generation is; take three guys, lock them in a room with the terran tools and don't let them out until they've made at least 3 more conts (and sancs to go with them). Also, I'll head off counter-arguments about splitting the population by saying that not every continent should be fought over at the same time; indeed it is exactly that fact that you can win a continent and move the fight to another that gives the whole notion of conquest such an important weight. Even if there are only 2 cont's being fought over at one time, its important to have more so that those two fights can have some meaning other than simply "this is where we've been pushed by the devs" because that feeling of perpetual sameness is exactly what leads to the feeling that PS2 is just a big TDM, instead of what a true PlanetSide sequel should be.


I'll add another of my most irritating issues with PS2 that BCP mostly ignored, which is that there is little connection between individual outfits and their empire. Now DARK was started with the idea of being a self-sufficient force from the word go, and it's always been our mentality to keep our own interests out front. Nevertheless, the feeling of connection to other VS outfits, and the empire at large, was very strong in PS1. I was in contact with other outfit officers and OLs via command chat and tells on a near-constant basis, and there was a real sense of interconnection in our 'ongoing strive to lead the Sovereignty to Victory'. PS2 is missing this; communication between outfits (and between empire-leaders and the empire) is sorely lacking, and when it does happen it's generally on a small scale and tangential to the general operations of the empire as a whole. In PS1, outfits ran the empire. Not only because outfits where the important tool for playerbase organization, something that PS2 does still have, but because good outfits produced good leaders who were widely recognized by the empire. They therefore had the ability to give orders and have them followed. (Please excuse the hubris for a moment) I was one of those leaders for a time, and I can atest to the fact that there were nights when the VS were in very tough spots and I was able to literally take command of the empire, give orders to the entire cont and have them carried out. Other commanders respected me, and the need for a single voice of command at the time, enough to let me do that and it made the whole empire run much smoother. Admittedly, such times were not the norm, and there was often arguments about tactics and battle plans, but really that's the whole point. PS1 had a mechanism through which a consistent group of leaders could hash out strategy and attempt to lead the empire, and naturally through that process some leaders gained respect while others lost it, and on the whole we all learned a lot about who we were playing the game with; we made serious and lasting bonds throughout the empire. This worked because the outfits produced CR5's, the CR5's had permanent access to the command channel, and the command channel became a forum for discussion among these 'leaders' of the empire. PS2's version of the 'command channel' and command structure is sorely lacking (most notably I think because of the reliance on voice chat, and because there is no consistency with who is in the channel). As a result the empire feels like just a collection of separate teams that happen to wear the same colors, instead of a unification of outfits working in tandem. This, along with the lack of continental conquest, is what leads to a lack of the sense of immersion and connection to the PS2 realm, which was so strong in PS1.






So that's my super long-winded view on the state of the game; I know from conversations with several of you that some agree in whole or in part, but I'd be interested to hear other views on the situation (i.e. please don't let this be one of the threads where my wall of text scares off all discussion)

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Sat Jun 22, 2013 6:36 am
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DARKie
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Post Re: PS2 TE brohaha
With MMOs of any type nowadays, I'd say especially a shooter, it's F2P or die.

The only way I see the resource system working as a decent meta-game mechanic is if all resource boosts, paid or acquired with certs, were removed completely. Heck, boosting resource gain could be tied into a meta-game mechanic like a module you have to install somewhere or something. Right now though, toss or disable the entire system until something is figured out.

I think most ps1 vets would agree on getting more continents in for home conts and locking, over other meta-game first, but a lot of people were screaming and yelling for lattice. It was apparently easier for them to implement lattice, and it did help make the Indar situation a little better (in most peoples eyes), so they did it first, and are going to finish that completely before we get any new continent.

I was thinking and also got Erendil's view on why they probably went with lattice on existing conts before Hossin. If the tech is already in-game and only has to be shuffled around and UI added, it's quicker and easier than preparing/re-vamping a whole cont which may not even be close to ready, and is totally designed for the old hex system. Ghosting and zergs avoiding each other was happening quite a bit which goes against their whole push for massive battles and "size always matters", so a quick fix for that would be great for incoming players trying out this new, advertised "massive", f2p game. Erendil said, "Higby has a hard on for massive battles." What if we were waiting for both lattice AND Hossin right now?


The devs are learning and listening, and a lot of the GUs have brought it closer to PS1 in one small way or another. PS1 was lacking a lot 6-7 months into it's life. I think we have a solid base with PS2, it was just a rough start for all the ps1 vets and other shooters/MMOers used to all the games releasing a $60 game w/sub, instead of going F2P from the start. We've got PS2 going to PlayStation 4, so I think the game will do a fine job surviving it's slow transition into an acceptable meta-game for most players.

We may not be getting Hossin right away, but there are some game changing map designs and mechanics coming with the Esamir revamp and beyond.

Look! = https://forums.station.sony.com/ps2/ind ... ut.129175/

Esamir and Amerish are going to be new from what we saw on that FNO video, still planned for Summer on the roadmap, with Indar probably getting a pass to add those mechanics in.


Hopefully then with lattice in we'll see Hossin, cont locking, and some home conts soon to start this global meta game going again, with resource meta-game being revamped along the way.

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Sat Jun 22, 2013 8:43 am
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DARKie
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Post Re: PS2 TE brohaha
To start, I'll say I obviously agree with you on many points: nerfs and buffs will come and go- deal with it 8), hackers will hack- deal with it 8) , performance and mechanics are great for a game like this- and they're actually going to improve when SOE utilizes multicore processing better. I also agree, as I think all of us will, that the game needs some work from an end-game/metagame standpoint. But as Obi pointed out, PS1 wasn't built in 7 months, give it some time to grow. The devs are working things out bit by bit, and I'm sure the big guys at the top have pressured them into a lot of the stuff we complain about (i.e. MLG, suspect weapon release timings, and even the pushing back of game features for perceived more 'profitable' ones). As for the rest of my reply, I'm going to do it in chunks with no particular order, as I don't have a solid block of time to dedicate to putting together a full response:

MightyMouser wrote:
I'll add another of my most irritating issues with PS2 that BCP mostly ignored, which is that there is little connection between individual outfits and their empire. Now DARK was started with the idea of being a self-sufficient force from the word go, and it's always been our mentality to keep our own interests out front. Nevertheless, the feeling of connection to other VS outfits, and the empire at large, was very strong in PS1. I was in contact with other outfit officers and OLs via command chat and tells on a near-constant basis, and there was a real sense of interconnection in our 'ongoing strive to lead the Sovereignty to Victory'. PS2 is missing this; communication between outfits (and between empire-leaders and the empire) is sorely lacking, and when it does happen it's generally on a small scale and tangential to the general operations of the empire as a whole.


You'd be surprised how much coordination and communication goes on between OLs/PLs/SLs and in command chat during alerts/prime ops hours. It may not be quite as grand as what you're talking about from the first game, but give it time. Were your strong bonds formed over the course of the first 6-7 months of play during PS1? I'd venture to say no, they probably took years. I've only been a leader of DARK for about 4 months, and I've already created strong bonds with the leaders (OLs) of NNG, DA, and KOS. These guys trust and listen to me, I do the same for them. We communicate very frequently and even coordinate at times (though not to the extent you describe in PS1). This stuff won't happen overnight. As the game grows, so will DARK, and so will the bonds of the players who are in it for the long haul. I've already made it my personal mission (as I've discussed with Obi and Erendil/Alydon) to forge good connections between DARK and the other VS outfits that are here to stay. Though, I've already seen enough outfits come and go even in these first few months that it's hard to tell exactly who's sticking around.

ObsidianOne wrote:
With MMOs of any type nowadays, I'd say especially a shooter, it's F2P or die.


I completely agree with this. There's no way PS2 could have survived a $60 launch with a sub fee. All the tons of non-paying players help draw even more people to the game. More players means more word-of-mouth, which means more players in turn, which means more potential profit and more appealing populations. This is a social-media world where more is more. Truthfully, I wouldn't be here for one, along with others in the outfit, if the game were not FTP. Does it feel like SOE is pulling one over on me every once in a while? Sure. But when you break the numbers down as Cal pointed out, it's a pretty damn solid entertainment/dollar ratio. I'm really fine with forking over my money for the amount of hard work I feel the devs are putting into this game, even if they aren't necessarily focusing on the things I'd like them to focus on first.

MightyMouser wrote:
Now, I'll state at the start of this that I (like so many people) don't care for BCP, he was an ass in PS1 he's an ass now. I don't view his leaving (with whatever part of TE that chooses to go with him) as any sort of milestone in this game's progress (up or down). That having been said, I think he raises some valid, and not wholly original points.


I couldn't be happier he's gone. He was toxic to the game and the community. He was offensive, racist, overly aggressive, pompous, and self-aggrandized. He was an exploiter, a criminal (look into his guide on charge backs sometime), and a general douche-bag. He's helped soil the reputation of TE, TR, and the game in general, and soured many players that would have otherwise been happy had it not been for his constant negativity. Did he have a couple valid points? Sure, I suppose. But I refuse to give him any credit for the ideas: we've been talking about these things for a while now. It's irritating to me that his little bit of theatre a few days back is what sparked this conversation, but I'll get over it. Rant on BCP over, haha.


As for the resource system, I honestly don't have a strong opinion. I still don't have a good feel for it after GU11, yet to see if it works well now or not. I know vehicles were too easy to chain pull prior to the update, maybe this is the right fix, maybe it isn't. I do know they've got a resource revamp lined up for sometime in the near-ish future, so we'll see what that brings.


I'm inclined to believe the devs are putting off additional conts for exactly the reason Obi brought up. It doesn't make sense to add even more discontinuity to the game by adding another cont with hexes when we're switching fully over to a lattice system soon. It seems more logical to design the cont with lattice in mind and release it in a ready state.


To conclude... I'd like to thank you, Mouser, for bringing these things up in such a reasonable way. I'm getting really tired of people bitching and whining about the game without giving a fair thought to the devs or trying to understand the viewpoints of players who don't think the game is a sinking ship. It's refreshing to see someone who has complaints, but invites an open discussion rather than spouting out some anti-PS2 rhetoric and calling it a day.

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Sat Jun 22, 2013 10:59 am
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DARKie

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Post Re: PS2 TE brohaha
PhunkSauce wrote:
MightyMouser wrote:
Command Channel comments



The reality is... the Mattherson VS has just as good a command voice channel as we had with the old global command chat. I regularly hear AT, GOTR, Nightmare and a bunch of other outfits co-ordinating during alerts. I don't believe, however, most empires have this luxury. This was mostly due to the old PS1 guard coming over and forcing their command structure onto PS2. There really are no more added tools given to us by SOE. The stuff that was added was fluff, no real inter-outfit communication tools or even basic ability to work with Platoons. Most of what they did have was broken or non-existent until this last patch. That's 9 months. Outfits drive the exciting battles. non-Outfit oriented players are the bread and butter of the Zerg. Outfits are only as good as their leadership. Tools should exist to make that leadership easier and more efficient. Up to now, organization has occurred DESPITE what was given to us by SOE, not because of it.

One thing I think we need to start to do... and unfortunately, I'm not really good at doing it... is letting command chat know when we are taking/holding an objective. Especially during alerts when we are running a full squad. We may not have the numbers, but we do have intelligence and information about that objective. If we both let them know we are there, and let them know we'll call if we need reinforcements, we can be a little more effective in working with the other outfits. The only system we have right now is name-recognition. I think we need to push our name on to command chat a little more than we do now. That way If we call for help, we have an established reputation that will cause some of the bigger outfits to listen.

ObsidianOne wrote:
With MMOs of any type nowadays, I'd say especially a shooter, it's F2P or die.


I remember when PS1 first started out. About 90% of my FPS playing friends wouldn't touch the game. Anybody remember the arguments of... "Why would I want to pay a monthly subscription, when I can play all I want on this game (Quake, CS, UT) for "free"? I was the same way... it took my friend 3 months to get me to try PS1... once I did, I was hooked...but the initial argument was still valid. At the time, a subscription model was new... and not very popular. Anytime anyone wants to charge money in a completely new way there is always blowback.

At least the F2P model allows us to have a bit more control over what we purchase and what we don't. It's the supply and demand prices that are not working... (due to only 1 supplier and decent demand, they can charge what they want) I think in time, F2P will settle down into established norms and the companies will figure out how to balance the money to player ratio better. Remember, this is really one of the first FPSs venturing into the F2P model. Also, they are trying their best to keep away from the Pay2Win gripes as much as possible. It's a hard one... camo's can only generate so much revenue... and you know SOE is a company... they have to make money, otherwise, Why build the game?


MightyMouser wrote:
Now, I'll state at the start of this that I (like so many people) don't care for BCP, he was an ass in PS1 he's an ass now. I don't view his leaving (with whatever part of TE that chooses to go with him) as any sort of milestone in this game's progress (up or down). That having been said, I think he raises some valid, and not wholly original points.


All of the points he put out there have been being harped on since beta. Threads upon threads upon threads... The only thing he's putting behind them is the name recognition. I'm hoping his name doesn't soil those points like his name soils anything related to TE.


PhunkSauce wrote:
As for the resource system, I honestly don't have a strong opinion. I still don't have a good feel for it after GU11, yet to see if it works well now or not. I know vehicles were too easy to chain pull prior to the update, maybe this is the right fix, maybe it isn't. I do know they've got a resource revamp lined up for sometime in the near-ish future, so we'll see what that brings.


Moved my response to this to the other thread... Once it got to 3-4 paragraphs just by itself, I figured it didn't belong here anymore.

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Sat Jun 22, 2013 2:08 pm
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DARKie

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Post Re: PS2 TE brohaha
ObsidianOne wrote:
I think most ps1 vets would agree on getting more continents in for home conts and locking, over other meta-game first, but a lot of people were screaming and yelling for lattice. It was apparently easier for them to implement lattice, and it did help make the Indar situation a little better (in most peoples eyes), so they did it first, and are going to finish that completely before we get any new continent.

I was thinking and also got Erendil's view on why they probably went with lattice on existing conts before Hossin. If the tech is already in-game and only has to be shuffled around and UI added, it's quicker and easier than preparing/re-vamping a whole cont which may not even be close to ready, and is totally designed for the old hex system. Ghosting and zergs avoiding each other was happening quite a bit which goes against their whole push for massive battles and "size always matters", so a quick fix for that would be great for incoming players trying out this new, advertised "massive", f2p game. Erendil said, "Higby has a hard on for massive battles." What if we were waiting for both lattice AND Hossin right now?


PhunkSauce wrote:
I'm inclined to believe the devs are putting off additional conts for exactly the reason Obi brought up. It doesn't make sense to add even more discontinuity to the game by adding another cont with hexes when we're switching fully over to a lattice system soon. It seems more logical to design the cont with lattice in mind and release it in a ready state.


That's certainly a valid point, they've chosen to put the lattice ahead of adding conts, and as a supporter of the lattice concept I can accept their logic there. However, unless the team is much smaller than I think (and as one of SOE's newest games, I doubt that) the primary reason both the lattice and new conts have taken/are taking so long is because the team has wasted so much time trying to shoe-horn their original hex system into a workable solution, and they started out from the get go believing 3 conts would be sufficient for a full fleshed game. Hence they put off new conts (and initially resisted the idea of a lattice), and because of that miscalculation the game exists with a rather large fissure. The are focusing first on bringing in new players, a worthy goal, but at the same time they are losing current players who are losing interest in the "large scale TDM".


PhunkSauce wrote:
You'd be surprised how much coordination and communication goes on between OLs/PLs/SLs and in command chat during alerts/prime ops hours. It may not be quite as grand as what you're talking about from the first game, but give it time. Were your strong bonds formed over the course of the first 6-7 months of play during PS1? I'd venture to say no, they probably took years. I've only been a leader of DARK for about 4 months, and I've already created strong bonds with the leaders (OLs) of NNG, DA, and KOS. These guys trust and listen to me, I do the same for them. We communicate very frequently and even coordinate at times (though not to the extent you describe in PS1). This stuff won't happen overnight. As the game grows, so will DARK, and so will the bonds of the players who are in it for the long haul. I've already made it my personal mission (as I've discussed with Obi and Erendil/Alydon) to forge good connections between DARK and the other VS outfits that are here to stay. Though, I've already seen enough outfits come and go even in these first few months that it's hard to tell exactly who's sticking around.


Calisai wrote:
MightyMouser wrote:
Command Channel comments

The reality is... the Mattherson VS has just as good a command voice channel as we had with the old global command chat. I regularly hear AT, GOTR, Nightmare and a bunch of other outfits co-ordinating during alerts. I don't believe, however, most empires have this luxury. This was mostly due to the old PS1 guard coming over and forcing their command structure onto PS2. There really are no more added tools given to us by SOE. The stuff that was added was fluff, no real inter-outfit communication tools or even basic ability to work with Platoons. Most of what they did have was broken or non-existent until this last patch. That's 9 months. Outfits drive the exciting battles. non-Outfit oriented players are the bread and butter of the Zerg. Outfits are only as good as their leadership. Tools should exist to make that leadership easier and more efficient. Up to now, organization has occurred DESPITE what was given to us by SOE, not because of it.



I've been on the Command voice channel a few times over the past weeks, including during alerts, and I've heard on several occasions some variation of

"RageQuit is losing ground at SkyDock, requesting assistance"
"Roger, RageQuit. This is GOTR, we're sending you 2 squads"

And that's fine and dandy, but what I have not heard (and maybe I'm just missing it) is some variation of:

"Anyone have any suggestions about how we should handle this Alert"
"Yea, we should route the NC on the west coast first, and let the TR go for now.
"No, we need to handle the TR before they make it to Ymir and we spend forever getting them out"
"If we don't focus on the NC first, we'll have them at our warpgate before we can even worry about Ymir."
...etc...

It seems to me, the system as it exists just isn't conducive to actual conversations like this. You have a (primarily voice) channel full of outfit representatives who may, or may not, be their outfit's actual leadership, and who may, or may not, be the same guys you know and are used to talking with. That lends itself well to calls for support, and informing the empire of what you're doing; but trying to have a 5 minute conversation about strategy in that channel is very difficult, made more so by the fact that it is being forcibly shoved in the ear of everyone in the channel (resulting in many muting the channel). Two things you need are consistency among the members of the channel, so voices of reason can be recognized and rise, and a consistent channel which people can hold an actual conversation and others can watch it and give input without having it cut into their voice comms. The fact that the text box disappears by default (and isn't readily visible while dead) doesn't help, because even if command is using a text channel, it's no good if most of the people you want to see it are missing the conversation.



On the topic of PS2 needing a F2P model to survive. I will cede the point, certainly many standard FPS players balk at the subscription model, and that was a large demographic SOE wanted to bring into the game. However, I think a true subscription model could co-exist with the F2P model; not merely the coupon club that we have now, but a system which allows subscribers to bypass the microtransactions altogether. SOE could have enabled such a model, they chose not to, and that was an irritating mistake in my opinion.


I understand and accept that Rome wasn't built in a day; that the dev's are making headway, and that it is going to take time. What is frustrating however is that the implication that PS2 started from nothing and is having to learn and adapt to new lessons along the way. PS2 may only be 8 months old, but it had 10 years of experience on which to draw. They should have been able to foresee many of their current problems by looking at the first game, and how it handled them (and why). They not only seemed to have intentionally ignored how PS1 grew and developed, they ignored the PS1 vets who tried to warn them at every stage. As a result they threw out what should have been their primary source of inspiration. Rome wasn't built in a day, but had the Romans had access to diesel powered cranes, they probably could have built it much faster. The dev's had such cranes, but instead of using them they cast them aside and tried to built their own complex pulley system.

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Sat Jun 22, 2013 5:52 pm
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DARKie
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Joined: Mon Nov 26, 2012 2:06 am
Posts: 83
Location: Portland, Oregon
Post Re: PS2 TE brohaha
This has been an interesting read. Really rather enjoy seeing everyone's well thought-out ideas and opinions.

I honestly have very few beefs with this game as long as I just enjoy it for what it currently is: A mostly mindless TDM shooter. This Outfit makes it better and infinitely more enjoyable simply because we often stay organised, pick objectives, assault/defend those objectives, and create some great team play. We are also pretty good at drifting off and succumbing to the mindless TDM occasionally, particularly as the clock ticks into the wee hours of the morning.

It IS sad that this was brought on by someone like BCP that, IMHO, barely qualifies as a human being. But, honestly, if he can force a larger discussion, then he's not so useless after all.


My .02 is going to start with ForgeLight. Why? Because no few of the "not so great" design decisions of the devs in this game have been driven by the limitations of a brand new engine. And I see, as the engine starts to get better, so does some of the content. Creating a new engine and tossing it into a AAA title is truly a balsy maneuver. It took 2-3 years for the great CryEngine to be stable and perform even decently on higher end systems. Only the true hardware nerds and early adopters saw what that engine could DO for a long while. With the scale of PS2, a lot of good ideas that require additional assets (more defendable bases, for one) are going to take a while. Better continents with cooler assets (lava, thick trees, etc) are going to have to wait for the engine to come up to snuff. Nevermind the netcoding and libraries needed to keep 3000 people with their shiny armor and trinkets rendering at a decent framerate while keeping the game playable. This stuff isn't truly relevant to the topic, but is worth considering in light of it.


F2P:

I agree the F2P model is now a matter of sink or swim in MMOG these days. It has more to do with the schizophrenic nature of the younger kids these days, I think. They jump on a bandwagon, and are gone in a couple months as soon as a shiny new game hits the market. Hell, I'm guilty of this occasionally and a kid I am not. I am driven to try out every game I can that seems even a tiny bit interesting to me. All this said, SOE is not doing a great job of F2P, but also not doing a terrible job. I DO think they will hit a balance...will have to if they want to retain players and not just rake in the amazing profits they are currently seeing. The buff/nerf cycle they use on cash purchases doesn't work well and leads to resentment. They either need to spend more time testing new weapons, find a different way to introduce new weapons (outside of cash-driven...yeah, certs...who does that?), or possibly just bite the bullet and intentionally release new weapons slightly underpowered. Buffing that shiny new toy will make friends, nerfing it pisses people off, completely changing it causes /ragequit.


Resources:

Short and sweet, a work in progress that should be getting about 10x more Dev attention than it currently seems to be. Not a fan of where it is now, but willing to accept it knowing it WILL continue to evolve.


Lattice:

As probably the lone Lattice hater here... Perhaps it really was GREAT in PS1, but this isn't and that is in inescapable fact. I signed up for a sandbox, I got stockyard shutes. The performance hit of a bazillion zerglings in a perpetual meatgrinder alone is enough to chase me away. Nevermind the dumbed-down gameplay of just sitting around shooting each other, rampant TK for various reasons, and then moving one base along the shute, and doing it again. ad nauseum. But still? I hold out hope this will evolve, there have been a couple of GREAT threads on the main forum about combining the sandbox localized strategy of Hex, the predictability of Lattice, and tieing it all to the resource system. I will find it again later and post a link here.

Global Command:

While SOE really needs to get on it and provide some better tools for a game like this, there is another shorter-term option. Player-driven. Back in Warhammer Online a number of people got very large VOIP servers and invited Guild and Alliance leaders in. Not a perfect answer by any means, but it is a means to an end. Not something I would use personally as I just don't have the playtime, but Hell, even I'd pitch in $50 a year or w/e to do this. Doing it in WAR made the community tighter, and we even invited in people from the opposing faction late at night to just BS, drink ourselves blind, duel, compare specs, w/e. Another up-side to this is that because we had such a large portion of a given faction (or both factions) on a server all in one place, we often got the Devs in there to play with us, listen to ideas (almost all of which were ignored, but that is neither here nor there), and just basically shoot the shit. This added in one important aspect of Developer/Player relations: we got to know each other a little.


Probably not the most coherent post, but you guys threw so much good stuff to think on out there it was hard to cover it all without a 10 page report!

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Sat Jun 22, 2013 10:51 pm
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