SOE Statement on PlanetSide 2 Client Modifications

by Twist on 11/26/12

It is vital that you not run software which modifies the Planetside 2 client in any way. If you do this, you are indistinguishable from various hacks that work in the same manner. The result of this is that you will be banned from gameplay and lose your characters/items.

We cannot make exceptions to this. We do understand there are relatively harmless apps that fall in this category, but if we allowed those they would simply be used as a shield excuse by players trying to cheat. This same rule applies to data that Planetside 2 uses for gameplay. Do not modify any of these files or attempt to modify them in memory.

There are some applications that modify the windows or directx environment without changing the client. These may also result in suspensions unless we specifically exempt them and declare them ok to use.

The most simple guidance here is do not use third party programs which change the Planetside 2 gameplay in any way unless it has been specifically cleared by SOE.

The above does not apply to user initiated *.INI changes, those are allowed, although setting your own options incorrectly can result in bugs.

As a clarification, since some players have asked, Mumble, Teamspeak, Fraps, and of course Steam, which all use overlays, are expressly allowed. Having an overlay to display information to the user not related to Planetside 2 itself is fine.

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Eurogamer PlanetSide 2 Review

By Richard Cobbett Published Friday, 30 November 2012

War in PlanetSide 2 isn’t hell, though your first experience of it probably will be. You create your character and pick a faction. Then you’re unceremoniously dropped – literally, from space – right into the biggest battle the game can find, surrounded by enemies and tanks and anything else that happens to be around, with a life expectancy measured in milliseconds.Somehow beat the odds and things don’t get better. You stagger from death to death in a haze of confusion and unexplained icons, not as some elite soldier of legend, but simply one more fleck of gristle in a planet-sized meat grinder that never, ever stops churning. At some point, you will be run over by a tank. Probably driven by someone on your team.

It’s nothing personal, of course. PlanetSide 2 is far too busy for that. In most shooters, 16 players counts as a party. More advanced ones might push the limit to 32, or 64. In Sony Online Entertainment’s free-to-play massively multiplayer game, you’re dealing with 2000 players per continent – thankfully not all on screen at once – locked in a three-way tug of war that doesn’t simply take cues from the likes of Call of Duty and Battlefield, but has a good go at stealing their thunder.

Those games ultimately win out in terms of feel, but PlanetSide 2 even being comparable is a stunning achievement when compared to the standards of your average action MMO. This is easily one of the most ambitious online games ever – and setting aside some launch issues, one that lives up to its impossible promises.

Fighting in an open world feels strange – not as intimidating as you’d expect, but far more than just a gimmick. For the most part, standard first-person shooter rules apply. Shooting is skill-based rather than reliant on arbitrary levels. If you don’t want to be shot, you get behind cover. Returning fire can be done from the hip, but you generally want to take advantage of iron sights and sniper scopes to deal out more accurate shots and hit distant enemies. It’s a shooter. You’ve played shooters before. The twist here is that, instead of existing as isolated maps, battlegrounds emerge organically as boundaries shift. Today, that bridge over a canyon is simply a handy route between outposts. Tomorrow, it might be a sea of tanks, with infantry crawling all over the scenery like ants.

Being in an open world, anyone who wants to take part can do exactly that. There are no lobbies, no queues, no arbitrary restrictions on numbers or how much you’re allowed to bring into battle – not overt ones, anyway. An Instant Action button will spirit over anyone who requests a teleport, but you can just as easily spot something happening and head over under your own steam.

The longer fights go on, the more people will be drawn to them. Sunderers (APCs) are brought in as mobile respawn points, planes strafe the ground and battle for air superiority, tanks take up positions and all hell breaks loose until one side seizes victory. If you’re outnumbered, too bad. Reinforcements may arrive, or not. War isn’t always fair.

The sheer scale of the battles is stunning – to the point that, while it makes sense for PlanetSide 2 to be a free-to-play game, it takes longer for that to fully sink in. Sony hasn’t so much embraced the model as given it a back-breaking bear-hug, almost to the point of creating a hidden mini-game called “What’s the Catch?” Without paying a single penny, you get – deep breath – all five soldier classes and access to mech suits, full access to all three continents, all of the vehicles, no equipment restrictions, as much fighting as you want and the ability to join and start your own guilds (Outfits).

Never are you made to feel like less of a player for not paying a subscription fee or for earning any equipment you need by saving up in-game currency. It’s a similar system to League of Legends and Tribes Ascend, only on an MMO scale and with less in the way of boobs/jetpacks.

The most important purchases are, as ever, boosts that speed up your in-game resource generation and guns with which to shoot people in the head for the crime of wearing the wrong colour armour. These are expensive, with new guns costing around £4 each (500-700 Sony funbucks) and each class having several slots to fill up with new weapons.

Your starting load-out is respectable though – and while I’m sure it’s not deliberate, any temptation to spend a fortune in the store is swiftly dampened by most of its gear being bland variations on stock themes like ‘assault rifle’ and ‘pistol’. There’s nothing as iconic as the Tribes spinfusor, and nothing particularly sexy if you’re not into efficiency. In a nice touch, you’re allowed to borrow any weapon for a half-hour field test before investing your cash/points.

In a straight fight between two players of equal skill and time played, it’s true that the one who’s paid will usually come out on top – if only because upgrades can only be bought with in-game credits, and outright buying a gun leaves many more of them to spend there. The sheer scale of PlanetSide 2′s battles does a lot to prevent any slide into pay-to-win territory though. Whatever your gear and however many upgrades you have, you’re only ever one soldier in a rock-paper-scissors throwdown – where paper and scissors are represented by the sniper over on that hill and his friend in a tank.

Whatever role you’re playing, the action is very solid – a touch floaty perhaps, and made a little stop-start by the way PlanetSide 2′s body armour usually makes tissue paper look like mithril dipped in adamantium, but more than adequate. Its only significant failings are in accessibility and readability. There’s no tutorial, for instance: just a link to an hour or so of YouTube videos in the launcher and a UI that comes across as a mess of unlabelled icons, blinking lights and labels apparently harbouring an active grudge against the colourblind. It’s a staggeringly bad new player experience for a game that does have a tricky learning curve, but whose raw basics really aren’t that complicated.

Similar confusion sneaks into the graphics. Textures are often very busy, which combined with the oddly muted faction colours can make it hard to spot enemies at even mid-range, or to react fast enough to sudden threats. The Vanu are particular offenders here, with their purple colours blending into much of the scenery, though the Terran Republic’s combination of powerful red with murky grey comes a close second. (If you play Terran, they also earn bonus confusion points for internally using red to flag up enemies. Cognitive dissonance can kill, people!) I’d like to have seen PlanetSide 2 take a few more cues from the likes of Tribes Ascend and even Team Fortress 2 in terms of its general readability, colour choice and silhouettes.

Back to the war itself. Out in the field, combat unsurprisingly varies dramatically depending on your class – which you can change at will, either at reload stations or between lives if you get bored or your team needs something. A Heavy Assault soldier’s life is one of explosives and endless streams of hot lead, while Infiltrators work the shadows with sniper rifles and Light Assault troopers bop around on jetpacks. The more points you put into each class and its gear, the more efficient you get with it, so it pays to focus.

Lone wolf players are likely out of luck, though not entirely. It’s certainly possible to play solo. You can join pick-up groups as you travel, be added to squads at the touch of a key, and contribute to base assaults and defence along with everyone else. PlanetSide 2′s epic-scale battles put tight limitations on what any individual can accomplish, though, and being a cog in a silent machine is rarely a rewarding career. To make the most of PlanetSide 2, you really have to gather some friends over voice-chat and set your own goals. When your group single-handedly kicks all kinds of arse by air, land and at least APC, you get more than just smug satisfaction from a base capture – you get a war story.

Long-term, of course, the novelty of PlanetSide 2′s scale will wear off, and it’s too early to guess how well it will adapt and evolve. Right now, players are still advancing their characters to the point of being able to take command, and it remains to be seen to what extent emerging leaders will get to to run their factions instead of simply fight for them. As the action moves away from simple massed battle, there will need to be a much more interesting metagame or progression system than the current feuding over hexagons in an inherently unwinnable campaign. There’s a limit to how often victories can be unceremoniously reset before they start feeling hollow.

PlanetSide 2 is much like Guild Wars 2 – a game that will live or die based on its ability to keep its server populations buzzing. For now though, give or take some nasty server problems, it’s worth putting those fears on the back burner. There’ll be time enough tomorrow to worry about the grand game and its future.

What matters today is that as a mix of shooter and MMO, PlanetSide 2 is nothing short of a triumph: not quite the best of both worlds, but certainly the best attempt anyone has ever made to fuse them together. Alone, it’s worth checking out just to witness its epic scale for yourself – and with the right friends by your side, PlanetSide 2 is an unforgettable experience.

Overall Score:
9 / 10

Source: http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2012-11-30-planetside-2-review?utm_source=eurogamer&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=notifications

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PLANETSIDE 2 IS NOW AVAILABLE!

PLANETSIDE®2 IS NOW AVAILABLE

 

Auraxis Erupts in Global Warfare as Sony Online Entertainment Launches the

 Award-Winning Free-To-Play Shooter PlanetSide 2 in North America and Europe

 

SAN DIEGO – Nov. 20, 2012 – The war is inevitable. Sony Online Entertainment, LLC (SOE) today announced the availability of its award-winning, highly anticipated massively multiplayer online first-person shooter (MMOFPS) PlanetSide 2 in North America and Europe. Players must enlist in one of three Empires – Terran Republic, New Conglomerate or Vanu Sovereignty – to fight in an epic war for control of the planet of Auraxis. An unparalleled gaming experience, players engage in extreme aerial, ground, vehicular and hand-to-hand battles alongside and against thousands of players in massive environments.

PlanetSide 2 sets the new standard for shooters,” said John Smedley, President ofSony Online Entertainment. “With thousands of players fighting simultaneously across several beautiful, massive continents, the size and intensity of PlanetSide 2has no equal. You’ve never played anything like it.”

PlanetSide 2 takes all the groundbreaking features from the original game – massive multiplayer battles, distinct empires to rally around, and enormous continents where intense ground and air combat unfold – and adds features that modern gamers have come to expect of the FPS and MMO genres. With advanced technology, years of gamer feedback, and a new SOE proprietary MMO game engine called ForgeLight™, PlanetSide 2 offers a truly competitive and visceral FPS experience with massive warfare, massive customization and massive community.

“We set out to create a massive, unprecedented game, and we succeeded.PlanetSide 2 will break records for its size and combat,” said Matt Higby, Creative Director of PlanetSide 2 at Sony Online Entertainment. “Now, it’s the players’ turn to make history. The war stories of brutal combat, acts of valor, casualties and victories from beta testing have been epic. But, the slate is clean, and the game has launched. It’s time to create legends.”

Players can opt to play as one of six classes to aid their chosen Empire in global domination. They’ll fight for control of key territories and valuable resources on three playable continents – Indar, Esamir and Amerish. With an extensive skill tree and free-form class-based system, players will be able to customize their soldier, weapons and vehicles to match their play-style, as well as the needs of their squad, outfit or empire. Battles can last for days or weeks, so players will need to build alliances and specialized combat outfits to take on long-term strategic and tactical initiatives. With aircraft and ground vehicles, as well as infantry combat, the battles will be larger and more intense than ever before.

As players earn battle experience, they’ll increase their certs and unlock access to new roles and extensive customization options, along with a variety of weapons and vehicles.

PlanetSide 2 is designed to enable player-driven combat where teammates rely on each other to succeed and survive. With so much control in the hands of the players, every day we learn more about what they can and will do in Auraxis,” said Higby.We’ve launched, but development will never be done. We have tons of plans in place and content in development to help fuel years of battle.”

In addition to the unmatched size and scale of battles, PlanetSide 2 will be the first game to integrate live broadcasting functionality through the largest video platform and community for gamers, Twitch, allowing players the ability to stream gameplay directly to the Twitch platform with a single click.

PlanetSide 2 is now available as a “Free-To-Play. Your Way.™” title on PC systems via digital download. For players who are interested in an enhanced PlanetSide 2experience, a Premium Membership option is available starting at US $9.99/month and includes scalable gains for resources, XP and passive cert points. Additionally, Premium Members will receive priority log-in queue access, early access to new cosmetic items and a monthly Station Cash bonus. Players who maintain their membership over time will accrue enhancements to their benefits, and players who purchase their membership in multi-month blocks will receive an increased benefit gain immediately.

Players can also purchase additional in-game content with the US $15.00 PlanetSide 2 game card sold exclusively at participating North American GAMESTOP retail locations. In addition to the choice of 1500 Station Cash™ or 30 days of Membership time, the all-new game card will grant an exclusive PlanetSide 2 virtual item, the NS11 Rifle.

PlanetSide 2 ESRB Rating: TEEN with Violence. Visit www.esrb.org for rating information.

For more information about PlanetSide 2 or to login and play, visit:http://www.PlanetSide2.com.

To download PlanetSide 2 from Steam®, visit: http://store.steampowered.com/app/218230/.

For PlanetSide 2 Basic Training game tutorial videos, visit:http://PlanetSide2.com/game-tutorials.

Players can also follow PlanetSide 2 on their favorite social media platforms, including:

http://www.facebook.com/PlanetSide2
http://twitter.com/PlanetSide2
http://www.youtube.com/PlanetSide2

Players can also join their favorite developers and community members weekly during the PlanetSide 2 Friday night Twitch.tv stream, Friday Night Ops. To watch the stream every Friday night 4:00 P.M. – 9:00 P.M. PST or to subscribe to thePlanetSide 2 channel, visit: http://www.twitch.tv/PlanetSide2.

About SOE

Sony Online Entertainment LLC (SOE) is a recognized worldwide leader in massively multiplayer online games. Best known for its blockbuster hits and franchises, including EverQuest®, EverQuest® II, Champions of Norrath®, PlanetSide®Free Realms®, Star Wars®Clone Wars Adventures™, and DC Universe Online™, SOE creates, develops and provides compelling online entertainment for a variety of platforms. SOE is building on its proven legacy and pioneering the future of online worlds through creative development and inspired gameplay design for audiences of all ages. To learn more, visit www.soe.com.

SOE, the SOE logo, EverQuest, Champions of NorrathPlanetSide, and Free Realmsare registered trademarks of Sony Online Entertainment LLC. All other trademarks and trade names are properties of their respective owners.

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