PS: Grinding no more

Well, I took one last run through PlanetSide today (including a great run with the LLU–first time I’ve picked it up) and canceled my account. The problem is exactly how Wombat summed it up: the game is a lot of fun, more fun than any other shooter, but not worth $13 a month when other shooters are free. If they were adding loads of free new content, I’d be happy to pay $13 a month…but they’re not. Also, the pop seems to be dwindling–Emerald this morning was only two dots.

If they manage to pull it together, start releasing regular good content as part of the sub (rather than as an expansion), and get the pop numbers up a little, I’ll come back. For now, though, I think I’m going to renew my LSN subscription and play that, and play Vietcong when I need something more visceral.

It was awesome being part of the QT3 outfit. You guys rock.

But. . . But. . . for $14 a month you get PERSISTANCE! And DOWNTIME! And content that was promised at launch but still ISN’T IN THE GAME!

Welcome to the ranks of the fallen, Ry :)

Metcalfe’s Law strikes again…

  • Alan

I just canceled too. I have another month of playing though, so I’ll still be on.

Its a great game, just not worth the monthly cost.

There is actually very little downtime in PS. It’s not like other MMORPGs in that respect.

And content that was promised at launch but still ISN’T IN THE GAME!

Well, updates that were promised, perhaps. The content that was supposed to be in the game at launch was all in the game at launch. Or, to put it another way: it’s no Galaxies.

But I hear you guys. It pisses me off to no end, because Sony really has gold on their hands with this game, and they are doing their damndest to flush it right down the john. So much for being “experts” in the massively multiplayer genre.

I wonder if they lowered the monthly fee if it would make any difference? I’m guessing that for a lot of shooter fans, paying $8 a month would be just as unattractive as paying $13. Maybe if they offered a weekend package for $2.99? You get to play from Friday evening 8PM until Sunday Midnight?

Or maybe it just needs the character development hamster wheel that traditional RPGs have?

It has character development already. Your earn XPs, go up in levels, get new skills. If that’s really the only reason people play MMORPGs, then people are dumb, because I already get that in solo RPGs (and some other games) for free… or at least for no monthly fee. I think a lower monthly fee (under $10–even $9.99 would proably make a difference) and more regular updates would probably do the trick. As others have pointed out, the game already offers more than free shooters do, it just doesn’t offer as much as online RPGs in terms of continuous updates, and therefor it’s tough to justify paying the same price for it.

I’d continue to play anyway, simply because it’s the best MMO game out there, but once Sony has driven away enough of their subscribers, it won’t be much fun for anyone. Then it can join AC2 with its dwindling handful of players on MMORPG death row.

I suspect that SOE’s take on it would be that it costs a lot of $$$ to keep the servers (as few as they are) running with a game like this that is much more lag-intolerant than say EQ. But they have done a rather poor job of communicating stuff. It’s as if they expected everyone to just accepte whatever was handed out because, well, they are the Pros from Dover when it comes to MMOs.

The game is great. But it’s a game that needs a certain critical mass of people on each server, all the time, or it’s worthless. And keeping that critical mass should be job one for the live team, whatever it taks. IMO, they are not doing that well in that department.

A lower price might bring me back, but I’d also like to see an “Expert” server where they implement location-based damage, and maybe higher damage in general if they could redeuce the downtime between deaths.

They also should add some AI opponents and events, so they could do things like have a couple of thousand zerglings charge a base your team is defending. That whole underground thing should be like a dungeon quest, where you and a squad could try to blast your way down to kill an alien queen like Starship Troopers.

Ah, yes, but in comparison to, say, Battlefield 1942, there’s a ton more downtime.

Remember, I like Planetside. I just can’t see how anyone could have thought it was a good idea to make it the most expensive MMOG, up until SWG came out a couple months later.

Oh, did the Loadmaster or whatever the cargo plane that was supposed to be a vehicle carrier ever get put in? I’m genuinely curious.

For a game that’s so heavily dependent on Player vs Player conflict wouldn’t adding AI opponents and little side quests take away from the whole point of the game? MOB hunting is the order of the day in games like EQ and DAOC where they can’t appear to muster anything more interesting to do, but I really think PS has something here and going out with my buddies to kill the hive queen for the billionth time is just what I don’t want to do.

Aside from lowering the price point, which I think would be a good thing, there needs to be a more permenant sense of accomplishment. When you’ve had a great run, it’s kind of a bummer to log in the next day and see everything all changed around. But maybe that’s the nature of a persistent world. Perhaps if they made locking a continent a more meaningful thing. Make it so it’s really hard to invade a continent that’s been locked. Allow a side to lose completely and for the game to end. I wouldn’t be opposed to a sever reset as long as I get to keep my character.

I’m actually a bit surprised at how quickly everyone’s turned up their noses at PS. There have been a number of substantial changes to the game… the biggest being the LLU system. With the number of idiot fanboys foaming at the mouth over every little alteration to the core game, do you really thing it feasible or even a good idea to drop a new weapon or two into the game every couple of weeks? Think of how that would affect the game balance.

It’s kind of sad this number of people here who are quitting, yet saying how great the game is. Whatever… PS is getting my money, SWG is not.

Only if you play in a squad. That’s an inevitable tradeoff, though. If you are going to make a game that has squad command and logistics, then you are going to have to spend time coordinating soldiers and dealing with logistics. But you can also play the game like BF1942, if you want. Instant action will take you immediately to a hot zone, if you don’t like all the organization and travel time that goes with squad manuevers. Then again, if you don’t like that stuff, why play PlanetSide at all?

I just don’t see downtime as being a strike against the game. MMORPGs have downtime spent doing absolutely nothing–sitting around while you heal, or craft items, or whatever. PlanetSide has none of that–the only “downtime” it really has is time not spent fighting, but at least you are still busy doing other stuff.

Remember, I like Planetside. I just can’t see how anyone could have thought it was a good idea to make it the most expensive MMOG, up until SWG came out a couple months later.

Agreed. That was a dumb move on Sony’s part, and their future plans just seem to be pounding more nails in the game’s coffin. It’s a real crime when you consider what a watershed game this is.

I’d like to see the AI in there to give me something to do in addition to the PvP, especially those times where a PvP fight is not available or is one-sided. They also need to take advantage of the “massive” part, and have AI missions that require a large offensive force.

If they do that, they will need a lot more coordination tools than they have now. Have a “mobile command” air or ground vehicle available to CR5’s that shows squad or platoon positions or something to allow a commander to leverage his troops. They also need to make more incentives to play on non-poplocked continants (XP bonuses or something like that).

My account is paid up till the 28th, after that I’m off. If SOE kept the game as it is, and lowered the price to $5 or $6 per month, then I’d probably pay and play for a long while (E&B is my main MMOG, this is a nice diversion, but it’s only a diversion).

I picked up the game when it first came out, and I was running pretty much on the minimum specs for the processor, so I basically tried it for a day, and found that it did not run acceptably on my computer, which is about what I suspected, so I cancelled and unistalled the same day.

I recently upgraded my MB and prccessor and ram, and re-upped my subscription, and now the game runs great., but I will not being renewing.

Since I had limited experience the first time around, I wanted to play the Tutorials again. I could not finish the first tutorial, and the second one crashed to desktop. Since you cannot play the third (which is also broken I hear) without first finishing the second, I could not proceed.

A quick visit ot the Planet Side forums indicated that this was a known issue, and apparently has been for some time. Sigh. Since they are pushing the free trial it would see logical that they prioritize fixing these, however this is not the case; instead it seems that they want to concentrate on releasing paid expansions. Go figure.

Trying not to be disallusioned, I created a character on emerald, went through the monotony of the shooting and driving ranges, got my starting certs , and armed with my “pea shooter” and smile was promptly “pwned” (thought I would never use that word) at every opportunity by more experienced players. Even on the most populated server, it seemed that there were only one or two “hot spots” that were population locked, so there was a lot of down time waiting for them to open. Very frustrating.

Although I am sure I would have got the hang of it, I share the sentiment of most of the other posted in this thread. At 12.99 US, it is just not worth it…There are just too many other FPS options available that generate less headaches, and are more accessable.

I like it and plan to continue playing it. But all of the criticisms of various aspects of the game, as voiced here, have merit. As a PvP game exclusively, it requires a critical mass of players, which it all too often doesn’t have. There’s no choice of where to fight; you fight where the opponents are, which usually means one continent on Emerald most times. The price, while perhaps objectively reasonable, is subjectively too high. The inline support, while in some respects admirable, falls short of what many folks expected, though perhaps those expectations were unreasonable. But failure on SOE’s part to properly communicate what’s going on, what’s being worked on, and what’s being fixed is partly to blame. I understand their reluctance to expose themselves to the flaming of the official boards, but they have to learn to ignore most of those people IMO.

It’s a fantastic game, when all the pieces come together. I hope like hell it survives.

Yeah, it would be fun, for instance, to be with a group of 10 other players defending a fort against swarms of alien bugs ala Starship Troopers.

I do think the game could benefit from non-PvP that was more like EverQuest, at least in terms of attracting a wider playerbase. Heck, if you could build bases like you can cities in Shadowbane, that would help.

I think Planetside will ultimately fail because it doesn’t have that crack factor of EQ or DAOC. It was fun and interesting for a few weeks, but then I found myself using the final two weeks of my subscription on “other stuff”…

How’s E&B going for you? I really enjoyed that game - I thought it had a fantastically fleshed-out universe for an MMO.

How’s E&B going for you? I really enjoyed that game - I thought it had a fantastically fleshed-out universe for an MMO.[/quote]
I like the game, but mainly for the storyline aspects and the people that I chat with in-game. You’re right: that game has one hell of a storyline, probably one of the more intricate that I’ve seen. Everything from crystallography to cryptography is needed at some point to figure out what’s going on. Without some of the helpful folks at the main E&B Research forums and at ebportal, it would be difficult to really get the more detailed aspects of the storyline (the main plot points are pretty easy to get just by talking to the NPC’s or reading the patch message). Also, I’m only playing this game about 10 hours a week tops since December, and I’ve got a pretty twinked out mid level trader-warrior and a decently outfitted low level miner. You can be a fairly casual gamer and make decent progress in this game.

There are some big things the EA devs need to fix, though: trade and exploration experience need some major work. Explore experience in particular (which one would get by exploring new places or mining) is so broke that the only way to really make any Explore level progress after about midway through the levels is to do “jobs” (basically fedex missions despenced from a terminal). Jobs are hella boring, and don’t really have any revelance to anything Trade is about the same way, but while you can make trade runs, you’ll get far more XP per time spent from jobs. Another big complaint is that most of the high level content pretty much is combat, and on some servers of those spawns are being camped by some large guilds that deny other players some uber equiptment.

All in all, I like the game, but it does have some big flaws that really should have been fixed by now. Also, I’m really worried about the surviveablity of this game. EA says this game has enough subs to be profitable right now, but it wasn’t exactly a big seller. Not too many people have to quit to bring the subs down to Motor City Online levels.