United State Of Amerish: Planetside 2

By Adam Smith on February 24th, 2014 at 11:00 am.

The jungle territory of Hossin won’t arrive in Planetside 2 until May but the Amerish region is changing right now. A major revamp was implemented just before the weekend, adding nine new outposts and redesigning those that were already in place. Most significantly, perhaps, the Lattice System is now in play on Amerish, meaning that conquest of outposts must be conducted along supply routes, as on Indar and Esamir. A more strategic first-person space-biff awaits. There are other tweaks as well, including an increase in resource rewards and improved roads. The appearance of the continent has changed as well. Judging by the before and after shots in the video below, the forests and mountains no longer look like they’ve been plucked from Earth. It’s all a bit more sci-fi.

Hmm. I actually prefer some of the ‘early’ shots, although that’s because they respect scale and distance rather than showing close-ups of leaves and purple crystals. There’s nowt more alien than a glowing purple crystal though.

All the info is here and the update is live at this very moment.

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50 Comments »

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  1. Noburu says:

    Guns dont biff, they shots.

    I havent played in ages, even though I keep it updated on steam. I really need to hop back in, but damn Warframe eats all my gaming time.

  2. meepmeep says:

    Been playing this weekend, and can confirm the new Amerish is where it’s at. Had an absolutely epic 3-way battle at the NC Arsenal lasting a couple of hours.

    • Noodlemonk says:

      Indeed. The new Amerish is now wonderfully unique in how it plays compared to the other continents. It feels different, but in a good way. There are a lot of small areas where one can cram a Sunderer in, hidden from evil airborn. The new design affords much more vertical yet close quarter combat, which feels new and is a lot of fun.

      • meepmeep says:

        The new Ascent is also a great indicator of where this game is going – intelligently designed bases, each with their own flavour and flows of battle.

        Things are looking a lot more exciting, just as I was getting really bored of identikit biolabs and amp stations.

  3. Horg says:

    ”improved roads”

    About bloody time. You have NO IDEA how many IRATE letters I had to write to the council of Amerish about the epidemic of pot holes between Sungrey Amp Station and Ikanam Biolab. Now that they have finally seen sense and decided to spend our TAX PAYERS MONEY on VITAL maintenance, the Vanu war machine can roll onwards safe in the knowledge that our glorious Sunderers will no longer be getting stuck in the mud.

    • Premium User Badge

      Rizlar says:

      Two words: hover sunderers.

      Where we’re going, we don’t need roads!

      • MrUnimport says:

        VS always tries to sneak its agenda in at the slightest opportunity.

  4. Premium User Badge

    El_MUERkO says:

    I’m tempted to return but for me the biggest issue was the draw distance of hostiles, not being able to see the thing that’s shooting at you because ‘reasons’ is too fuppin annoying.

    • meepmeep says:

      I thought that was all fixed in an update ages ago? Certainly not a problem I’ve noticed for some time.

      • fish99 says:

        No it wasn’t fixed. They did extend the draw distance, mainly for infantry, but there’s still a hard cap of how many enemies your client gets sent the positions of, so you can still be in a situation where something kills you which you couldn’t see. Obviously it only happens in big battles.

        To me the clever solution for this would have been to always ‘pair up’ adversaries, so while it wouldn’t always draw everyone, you could be sure that if you couldn’t see them, they couldn’t see you. A bit of extra server code could probably pull that off.

  5. Taidan says:

    Have they utterly crushed all of the blatant cheating that was going on yet?

    • Asurmen says:

      Well, considering that there really hasn’t been much cheating at all ever, and it’s always been grossly exaggerated, I’d say so…

      • Taidan says:

        No change then? Nevermind…

        • Asurmen says:

          No change from very little is a good thing.

          • Taidan says:

            No change from seeing players running faster than the fastest vehicle, scoring and endless streams of headshots with a carbine at ranges snipers should have difficulty with, teleporting and clearing being able to see through walls?

            No change from seeing a single player repeatedly decimating entire squads by themselves, even when those squads are spawning from three separate Sunderers over a fairly wide area?

            I was seeing that kind of thing at least once a day back when I was playing, and I’m sure there are still plenty of videos up on YouTube, some from the point-of-view of the cheaters themselves.

            **Edit**

            Quick example from a video that was posted 9 months ago: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RJW9K81dvkA

            There are many, many more if you’d care to look.

            So I repeat again, have they fixed that yet?

            **Edit**

          • Asurmen says:

            And I repeat that claims of cheating are exaggerated and there’s very little occuring unless there’s massive cheating differences between servers, which seems unlikely to me.

          • Taidan says:

            …and I repeat that I was seeing this once or twice a day when I was playing, ad infinitum.

            It’s great that you are either ignorant of the facts or lucky enough to have dodged the issue entirely, but that doesn’t change my experience, and it doesn’t magically erase those videos and the issues they show.

            Want to carry on this pointless pissing contest to see who gets the last word in? I’m game. ;p

          • Asurmen says:

            I’m saying it was never a big issue and therefore has always been fine and never needed to be fixed. Yes, my server has never experienced what you had (which has nothing to do with luck. If cheating is a rampant as your rabibly claiming it seems rather my weird my server magically never encountered it) but also if cheating was as bad as you state the forums would be up in arms about it. They’re not. Cheating isn’t an issue.

          • Taidan says:

            Oh, so they haven’t taken any action at all to fix the rampant cheating?

            Thanks for the confirmation.

          • Phendron says:

            Pissing contests over unsubstantiated claims about a game you no longer play.

          • Taidan says:

            …Claims, already substantiated with video, (and very easily to do so again many more times – http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=cheating%20in%20planetside%202&sm=3 – rearrange by upload date for recent examples.) over a game that I used to play a lot but quit due to the exact topic of this thread.

            Sticking your head in the sand doesn’t make the issue go away.

            A simple “It’s not that bad these days” would have been a good message to send out. Maybe a bit of news that SOE had patched something in would be nice to hear.

            Trying to get away with barefaced lies, despite the overwhelming amount of evidence to the contrary? You just made yourself look foolish.

    • hotmaildidntwork says:

      Having not encountered any since beta, I couldn’t really say.

  6. Premium User Badge

    Sinomatic says:

    I’ve only played since the patch for a short time last night but Amerish looks amazing. It’s a little disconcerting wandering around bases with literally no idea of where the hell you are (after months of playing the game), but it’s definitely an improvement on the near-identical base types that we’ve seen up until now. Given how many bases there are in the game it needs that sort of variety. There seems to be a lot more verticality in the new designs too, make things more interesting still.

  7. LevelHeaded says:

    Trailer tl;dr: Planetside 2 still hideous.

    • 0positivo says:

      wait, what?

    • fish99 says:

      Given the scale of landscape and the amount of enemies, I’d say it’s a fairly pretty game overall.

    • Kerbal_Rocketry says:

      The video doesn’t show it off very well, its a game that needs a decent sized moniter and wide FOV, with that the terrain is stunning at times.

      Wish they had given Amerish some colossal mountains, like proper gigantic monsters that have to be flown around. Would of further reduced the domination of aircraft over tanks.

  8. kevinspell says:

    I love everything in this game except the unlock system. It ruins the experience for me. I don’t have the time or the will to play something for 300h to finally have fun the way I want to. I would even consider paying to unlock all the things I want but the price to do that is ridiculously high when I compare it to how many other games I could buy with that amount of money.

    • Noburu says:

      Here here!

    • MrUnimport says:

      The embarassing thing is that for the moment, unlocking stuff is the main point of PS2. The vast majority of weapons are near-clones though with only a few worthwhile guns, which tend to be on the cheaper side of things. Nobody actually needs five different brands of shotgun, for example, and the quarter-price model is generally thought to be the most usable and versatile of the bunch.

      That said, I can see why the grind puts off new players, and while it’s better than it has been for a long time it’s still pretty grim to learn the game while also struggling to upgrade your basic equipment. Hopefully by the time they implement more territory mechanics, intercontinental lattice, etc. they’ll conclude there’s stuff to fight for that isn’t certs and slash cert prices across the board to reduce the barrier to entry.

      • Premium User Badge

        Rizlar says:

        Yeah, it must be annoying for new players. In reality you don’t need many upgrades, the default loadouts remain very competitive, but it seems like this is hard to communicate to new players when they keep getting killed by weapons they can’t afford. And there are some playstyles that you need to invest huge amounts of certs for, vehicle upgrades for instance are prohibitively expensive for newbies.

        • kevinspell says:

          “And there are some playstyles that you need to invest huge amounts of certs for,…”

          And there lies my problem. Now I’m not a veteran player but I did start playing on release when most players were still low level. And gave it two more tries later. One quite recently. Every time this was the reason I stopped playing.

          What I like to do in my team oriented games is to mix things up. One “round” I will camp on a hill and do nothing but spot. Then I’ll join a tank platoon. Next I’ll play as a transport pilot. Then as a medic. Then as a AA gunner, support machine-gunner, AT guy…

          And when I mix things up in PL2 I get this voice in my head bugging me you just need this armor on your tank, and this AA gun for your MAX, this rocket pods for your Mosquito,… to be more effective in helping your team. And while I think PS2 is a brilliant game I don’t want to spent X amount of time unlocking everything just to not have that feeling any more. So I quit and go back to ARMA, RO2, CS,…

      • P.Funk says:

        “The embarassing thing is that for the moment, unlocking stuff is the main point of PS2.”

        Pardon this veteran gamer’s hubris but… what ever happened to winning team games as a team?

        Is it impossible to sell soap to the modern gamer without making the experience narcissistic rather than about selfless teamwork?

        • MrUnimport says:

          Sense of accomplishment from victory is diminished thanks to persistent bases that get recaptured when you look away, fluctuating populations that mean one side has many more men to throw at a base, large numbers that diminish individual importance, and lack of win-screens and round restarts.

          Basically: in a typical FPS your team of 12 or 16 or 32 heroes win a round against your equally-numbered foes and nobody can take that away from you. In Planetside 2, your team of 48 all lands on an outpost defended by 12 shmucks who fold like a house of cards, and then fruitlessly attempts to hold out against a team of 72 while screaming on command chat for assistance that never arrives. Meanwhile, the outpost you captured from the 12 guys flips back because a team of four decided to ghostcap it, and either nobody on the server noticed, or you’re down to 25% world pop and just don’t have the manpower to be everywhere at once.

          It’s a pernicious issue and one that’s very difficult to solve. Right now, what provides “rounds” is the alert system, which generates a hour-and-a-half long mission like attempting to capture a given continent, or all facilities of a given type. Opinions are varied on this, but winning alerts is generally considered the object of PS2 at the moment. Even so, they tend to go to whoever has the population: in a world of free, respawning soldiers, whoever can field the most at once will have the advantage in /every/ battle.

          EDIT: Jesus Christ I need to stop writing essays on RPS

          • Premium User Badge

            Rizlar says:

            Disagree a bit. Playing as part of an organised group is really satisfying. You find your own fights that are fun, turning tides or just looking for a good scrap, when double your numbers turn up you hold out for as long as you can and sometimes you win! Faction-wide coordination between multiple outfits across all three continents wins alerts. Organised play in PS2 is amazing.

            The problem is for everyone else, who aren’t lucky enough to be playing with a bunch of great people / aren’t interested in doing so. For them the lack of a real win state or clear objective is a big problem. SOE are looking at ways of plugging these players into the bigger picture, with player-created public missions, whether that will be enough remains to be seen.

  9. Duke of Chutney says:

    i love the before and after shots showing completely different non comparable scenes randomly picked from the new and old maps.

    The roads on Amerish are still a mess imo, but the new bases do rock, far more interesting than the bases on the other two maps.

  10. The Random One says:

    Maybe I’ll go back, if the maps no longer look like Planet Generic.

    • Premium User Badge

      Napalm Sushi says:

      I’d say the game’s greatest weakness right now is that all of the permanent structures (and most of the vehicles) that you encounter are of Nanite Systems (a.k.a. Common Pool) origin, and in order to minimise any clashing with the 3 factions’ distinct visual styles, the design manifesto for Nanite Systems stuff is… well, this is from the Player Studio guide on the game’s own website:

      “The look of the common pool is fairly generic Sci-fi or advanced modern technology. The lines are simple, beveled boxes, with some curved shapes. The common pool is simply a combination of all faction attributes.”

      …while the recommended colour palette is literally “grey and white with some beige.”

      This is what happens when you focus so much on the inter-factional differences in your planetary civil war scenario that you forget to give your sci-fi civilisation any overarching cultural or aesthetic tendencies.

      • MrUnimport says:

        None of the buildings look like the NS guns, if you ask me, which tend to be hard-edged like NC but lack the bulk and block of that aesthetic. More overtly futuristic than other weapons as well, with exotic mechanisms.

        It would be lovely if we got buildings with a more homely, lived-in look, and if you ask me that’s a ton more important than wanting NC blue-yellow brick walls, TR red-grey curvy yurts, and VS whatever VS lives in.

        • Premium User Badge

          Rizlar says:

          Purple pyramids.

        • Premium User Badge

          Napalm Sushi says:

          A good start would probably be if the common buildings and items were the product of more than just a single unaligned corporation. My friends and I often joke that Nanite Systems are the real winners of the war.

          A central part of the problem though, I think, is that the devs themselves don’t seem to know what constitutes a “homely, lived in look” in this setting. Beneath the clashing ideologies of the 3 belligerent factions, the underlying culture of the Auraxians has never really been established.

          • MrUnimport says:

            This is mostly just texture artist laziness. There’s no real reason to slap the NS logo on everything and anything, even if it does heavily resemble the Anaheim Electronics logo. If you check out the concept art at ukitakumuki.deviantart.com you can see some lovely lore paragraphs discussing such things as the production rights for the Lightning one-man tank, background stuff that never made it into the game because they hired some comic book writer to reboot the Planetside setting instead of making PS2 a sequel to the First Auraxian War. Which in some ways is an improvement, after all the modern NC and TR are no longer designated good and bad guys respectively.

  11. MrUnimport says:

    Big fan of the new Amerish bases, they have really compelling layouts that contribute massively to a sense of place. A few unique props, themed locations, it’s fantastic. Amerish, always littered with mines in name, now has actual mine tunnels everywhere. Many bases now have under-tunnels of questionable significance but which are super fun to run around in. I’ve yet to see how well the new layouts stand up to high-pop battles or what kind of game flow they produce, and I have to admit they’re rather obviously cobbled together out of existing assets which are the same bland sci-fi walls as ever, and they lack signposting, and NC Arsenal now feels like a Doom map thanks to its big empty spaces and giant blocks and simplistic design, but on the whole this is a massive improvement to the previous “same five buildings arranged differently on a hillside” model of outpost design.

  12. Universal Quitter says:

    Having never played Planetside 1 or 2, *ducks to avoid thrown shoe* I assumed for a moment that “Amerish” was some kind of pseudo-United States space colony.

    I’m a little disappointed that life isn’t quite as absurd and ridiculous as I had assumed. What a waste of a dumb name.

  13. fish99 says:

    Must get back into this. Just need to finish Dark Souls first.

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