Remember PlanetSide Arena? It has a new ship date.
But first, a recap of the story so far… the ship date being in the headline and all.
Back in mid-December of 2018 Daybreak’s big new game announcement was a rework of PlanetSide 2, bringing it back to the realm of shooters of old by taking their MMOFPS and turning it into a match based game with a bunch of old school modes… and Battle Royale too, of course.
Those looking for an actual NEW game went away disappointed, but even cynics like myself had to admit that this seemed like a viable plan of sorts. After all, what could it take to turn PlanetSide 2 into a Battle Royale game? H1Z1 was literally built off of PlanetSide 2.
Daybreak was confident too, declaring that season one for the game… because of course it would have seasons and battle passes and whatever, it has to pay for itself… would commence on January 29, 2019.
However, nothing in software is as easy as it seems, and people often confuse something being simple to articulate (e.g. PlanetSide 2 Battle Royale) with being easy to do. They are not. So a couple days before the 29th, the date for PlanetSide Arena was pushed to March 2019. Still pretty aggressive, but with a bit more breathing room.
And then come mid-February the whole thing got a moved to “summer” as a release, though this would now include a simultaneous launch on the PlayStation 4. They also refunded everybody’s Steam purchase, which seemed the decent thing to do.
And then summer came, moved along its merry way, until yesterday, the Thursday before Labor Day, the traditional end of summer in the US, regardless of what the calendar tells you, when we finally got some news about PlanetSide Arena. There is now a four stage release plan, spanning from Early Access availability this coming September to the actual game release at some point in Q2 2020.
There is also a FAQ page, which is good, as the announcement itself is pretty sparse. Call me a pessimist, but I made sure that FAQ page was saved to the Internet Archive right away in its current state.
The first question is, naturally enough, about what the game actually is. I’ll quote that one:
PlanetSide Arena is a massive-scale, match-based, scif-fi arena shooter that reintroduces players to the revolutionary PlanetSide Franchise – the record-breaking MMOFPS that redefined all-out planetary warfare. PlanetSide Arena features class-based combat, combined arms gameplay, compelling team tactics, and a deep tech tree with weapon mods and in-game progression.
It is still a match based shooter. The various modes mentioned back in December 2018 have gone missing, and when you click on the link in the FAQ that mentions modes, it just directs you back to the page with the above graphic.
The graphic itself gives few details, aside from the emphasis on teams (3 people), squads (12 people) and outfits (your space shooter guild).
What is coming in September is Window only… so no more PlayStation 4 simultaneous launch… and in Early Access mode, available via Steam. Given Daybreak’s Early Access history, that probably means a rough alpha with obvious missing features coming at you. Pay to help test.
Daybreak will have achieved their “summer” launch window… minus the PlayStation 4 part… rolling in just four days before the calendar maker’s official end of summer in the northern hemisphere, though that assumes you consider Early Access a launch. I am unconvinced. But I am sure we’ll hear about it if the game is totally broken.
And the Daybreak story goes on.