THE ADVENT CALENDER – 5TH DECEMBER
Planetside 2 – A Plastic Shooter
Planetside 2 is one of those games that really defined my gaming back-story. way back when before eve online had even been put into Alpha, a game called Planetside came out that was a subscription based FPS shooter that gave you the entire planet to be your warzone. I was sceptical as ever of such a bold claim and after much soul searching about having to put my credit card details into the computer for a game (seriously back then it was like leaving your wallet on your doormat outside) I was into Planetside and ready to go
I signed up with the red dudes as frankly any army in red looks kind of bad ass and the others looked a bit ‘hippy trippy’ for my liking. The Terran Republic were also the old guard from Earth and frankly being British I craved order and Empire above all else.
At first I really had no idea what I was doing until I saw someone jump onto a pad and turn into a vehicle and away he went, repeating what I had seen I found myself in the cockpit (hurr) of a Galaxy Class drop ship. 2 hours later I had seen more war than a BBC foreign correspondent assigned to Syria and was frankly amazed that the game could handle so many people warring over such a large map.
The crescendo was reached when I got into a sniper battle with one entire army vs. another across the span of a bridge. never before had I seen such a spectacle and was staggered at how 3 hours of my life had whizzed by faster than if I had snowballed crack.
After another 2/3 months of playing Planetside I was growing very bored of constantly taking the same bases in euro time zone, only for it to be retaken in the US time zone ready for when I logged on the next day to start the process over again. Very quickly I became aware I was fighting for the same bit of land over and over and the strain was starting to show. People I played with stopped logging on and before I knew it, so had I.
Fast forward now perhaps 10 years to the release of Planetside 2 – A game that appr0ached the same genre as its precursor but did so with a free to play model that was rather nice. Had they not done this its likely I would not have played this game at all but as it was free and on steam, I downloaded it and once again was drawn into epic large scale battles.
For Planetside 2, my thing was tanks, I loved them. As the footage below shows tanks were something of a passion for me and I really got into the game, constantly looking for an armoured column
(hurr) to cling to and stick with for hours of the game.
Then one day I realised once again I was taking the same base that I had help take the day before and immediately I became more and more annoyed that the same problem that had killed my love of
Planetside 1 was present in Planetside 2.
Other things really started to grate me as well about Planetside 2, the complete lack of feeling in both audio and visual of the game and its controls, Yes it’s a pretty game but it feels like one is playing from under a duvet and lacks any feeling of ‘feedback’ from the controls.
Everything feels like it’s made of plastic, the game has some of the best graphics out there, yet why does it feel like tanks are made of plastic, why do the guns feel like they are firing plastic bullets? it’s all a bit too ‘space age’ for its own good and has made for a rather disappointing player experience.
The above issues do not cause major concern but are niggling issues that stare you in the face on each game you play and after a while I just found myself not wanting to play this game for no other reason than, ‘nothing I do matters, so why bother’
When the player is made to feel so disconnected with events and even surplus to requirement, that’s not a good place for a game to put said player.