Daily Archives: December 14, 2018

PlanetSide Arena

Daybreak said they would be announcing a new game come Thursday morning Pacific time.  And what they announced was PlanetSide Arena.

The word “new” obviously has some sort of alternate definition, because it didn’t look all that new to me on the stream.  It looked pretty much like PlanetSide 2, tired six year old graphics and all.

But then the stream made it clear that it really was PlanetSide 2.  Just PlanetSide 2 merged with just about every common shooter mode ever… including battle royale, because of course… with seasonal battle passes and achievement progression and as many as 500 players in a match.

Meet Battle Modes

Those are all the planned modes anyway.  Season 1 will have just two modes, and I know you can guess one of them without looking:

  • Massive Clash (250 vs. 250 group battle)
  • Battle Royale (Solos and Teams of 3)

So those who picked “PlanetSide 2 Battle Royale” in the pool win.  I would say something about Daybreak jumping on the battle royale bandwagon, but they pretty much started it with H1Z1.  I have my doubts about whether they’ll be able to take the lead with their second go-around.  Fortnite needs to stumble to be assailable.

The stream actually addressed where in the lore PlanetSide Arena occurs, which surprised me with the idea that the game had some sort of lore beyond factions.  Anyway, it takes place several decades after PlanetSide 2 in the timeline, after the war between the three factions led to a chaos where there are no factions.  Convenient… unless you’re into the faction thing.  Then no faction for you I guess.

Of course, the upside of just reworking a game you already have is that the development time is cut down dramatically.  So if you are dying to get your hands on PlanetSide Arena you only have about a month and a half to wait.

January 29, 2019

And, of course, there are pre-orders with special bennies available now.

At least the price is discounted

Oddly, the only place to pre-order seems to be Steam.  There is no direct from Daybreak purchase available.  I guess that means we’ll see how many people end up playing it via Steam’s stats.

Also, no mention of a PlayStation 4 version as yet.

So the revenue scheme here is box sales and season passes I guess.  That is probably not going to play well against Fortnite, which Epic gives away for FREE.

Also missing from the list is any mention of the Daybreak All Access subscription.  You know, that thing that the Daybreak installed base is likely already subscribed to.

The All Access pass is what PlanetSide 2 has largely depended on, which led Daybreak to say that the game was “really struggling” back in late 2015.  Since then the newer games in the stable, H1Z1 and the late Just Survive, have avoided the All Access pass, with H1Z1 even getting its own cash shop currency.  PlanetSide Arena appears to be avoiding the All Access pass as well, which I suspect will limit any halo effect benefits for PlanetSide 2.

I gather that the target audience is people who are not already invested in Daybreak.  Or, at least the installed base is being taken for granted.  That always works out well for companies.

Anyway, this is clearly not my thing.  But it is coming from Daybreak, so its performance does have some impact on a couple of games I do care about.   We shall see where this one goes.

Does this count as PlanetSide 3 from that rumors post?  It hits on a couple of notes, but really isn’t a new game.  Close enough though?

Anyway, this is where I would be linking to other bloggers talking about the first “new” game announcement out of Daybreak since its founding, but there aren’t any yet.  I thought waiting until the next day to post would give me a couple links.  We’ll see.

A Keepstar Waits in the Hole

A Keepstar and a Sotiyo are down in J115405… along with various other smaller structures… but the timers on several more are counting down.

Structures in their final timer… and some mobile depots

The big circles are hostile structures, with each circle divided into thirds, each third representing one of the steps necessary to destroy it.  Each is already past the shield and armor steps, waiting only for the structure timer to arrive.  Over the next five days there will be some more fleets to kill them.  But the big one is coming soon.  The second Keepstar, Unassailable Wealth, is less than a day away.

Soon to be assailed

We got out last night to support the Initiative contest the armor timer.   We got out our Ishtars, and I climbed into my Guardian to fly logi, while our friends in INIT undocked their Raven fleet once more.

Ravens hanging off of the INIT Fortizar

Once more though, no ships undocked to try to fend off the attack.  Instead we were left to dodge the Keepstar defenses, its point defense system, its bomb launcher, and the dreaded doomsday that can reach out and hit even the elusive Raven fleet.

There is just a bright blue spark that appears on the Keepstar structure to let you know the Arcing Vorton Projector firing and the lightning is coming.

The lightning forming on the left side of the structure

Then it arcs out towards its target, bouncing across six more ships before dissipating.  The FC’s Raven was the target, with others eating the rebound.

Ravens exploding after the hit

Fortunately for the attackers, while this weapon pretty much ensures a few subcap kills on each firing, it has a 10 minute cycle time.  We only had to face it twice during the armor timer.

The second firing was just as effective as the first, the FC being the target both times.  The second time the fleet logi had their Typhoon pre-locked and reps running on it.

Armor reps on the Typhoon already

The Typhoon went anyway.

Here comes that lightning again

However, the kill mail showed that the Typhoon wasn’t fit, so an economic victory since it was probably insured.

After that there wasn’t time for the Keepstar to fire again.  The Ravens finished up the armor timer, with our Ishtars adding their bit.  The armor layer was soon burned down and the Keepstar did that transition effect that indicates that the structure timer is up next.

The Keepstar light show

The timer was set for 23 hours from that point, putting the final even at some time just past 00:00 UTC.  We will see if there is any final effort to contest this Keepstar and whether or not it will be anything like the loot pinata of the first.  I am sure somebody is busy tonight delivering 3200 cap boosters to lots of people just to make the loot hunt that much more dramatic.