A Discussion on the Potential Role of Walkers in PS2

Discussion in 'PlanetSide 2 Gameplay Discussion' started by Abraham with Cheese, Mar 8, 2015.

  1. Abraham with Cheese

    We've had this post a million times before in the forums. There are those who want walkers in the game, and those that don't. Understandable, really: there's the "coolness" factor versus the "practicality" aspect.

    I'm not here to talk about that.

    Instead, let's talk about a role that so few actually manage to partake in.


    Specifically, large-scale AA. What I mean by this is not anti-ESF: there's already plenty enough of that, with which the Valkyrie can also be associated. No, let's talk AA designed to repel/counter liberators and galaxies. Now, I know what some are thinking, and no, I'm not anti-air biased. I'm just pointing out that all the AA in this game is more or less designed to drive away the bigger aircraft, while it is more suited to outright destroy ESF and Valkyries.

    So, what do we do? We make a walker that is basically a SAM missile battery. So, basically one of these:

    Mounted with one of these:

    Why not simply make a Sundy be able to carry this, some may ask. Well, to be honest, the Sunderer already has so many options as to what it can do: repair other vehicles, supply ammo, spawn infantry, be an effective AA, AV and AI platform as it is, go through shields, etc.

    What we could use is a vehicle with a more defined role as it is. So, now, the specs of the walker would have to be balanced enough to that it wouldn't be able to just waltz in and blast every single aircraft from the sky. So here they are:

    Main armament: an ammo pool of twenty missiles (obviously smaller than the ones pictured above) that semi-lock on to enemy aircraft with larger signatures, AKA galaxies and liberators, similar to what the Striker currently does. Effective range? Height ceiling. Reload time between missiles? Ten seconds. However, it does not show up on radar when it fires its first shot, but does so after subsequent shots. Each missile, upon direct impact, deals a large amount of damage (perhaps equal to two lock-on infantry rockets), but has a limited turning radius: best for targets that are higher in the sky. This way it can counter/drive off high-altitude "large" aircraft without said aircraft also being vulnerable to infantry lock-ons.

    Secondary armament: these craft will have NO true anti-vehicle capabilities. The original side armaments will be a pair of Basilisks, with the option to cert into either Walkers/Rangers (for more AA) or Kobalts (for AI). The turrets will be placed on the opposite sides of the walker, so that they cannot completely cover every direction one could approach it from. This will mean that infantry support will be vital to its continued survival.

    Movement: this vehicle will be slow, and I mean slow, at least compared to other vehicles. Think somewhere around infantry running speed. Also, it cannot fire it's missile battery while on the move: it must deploy to do so, which takes about five seconds. It can, however, fire its secondaries at any time.

    Size: I'm thinking about the same size as an MBT or a sunderer, and it can only be pulled from the same terminals one can pull a MBT from.

    Health: similar to that of a sunderer, if not a bit more. However, it is very vulnerable to vehicles, and cannot stand up to bombardment for very long. It also can be damaged by light arms, similar to that of a harasser, if not slightly reduced. Therefor, infantry support and cover will be vital to it's well-being,

    Cost: this thing will cost the same number of nanites as an MBT: 450, barring nanite cost modifiers due to continent locking

    Certs: more or less the same kind of fields as others (mine/C4 guard, increased reload, increased armor on sides/back/etc), with one notable exception. It will have access to a sensor array that can detect enemy infantry from upgraded distances, but only if said infantry are running. Walking infantry will not show up on the minimap, thus meaning infiltrator recon darts and motion spotters will still be vital for situational awareness.

    Empire variability: other than color scheme differences (and perhaps overall shape/design changes, aka VS is sleeker, TR is more mass-produced-looking, NC looks bulkier), TR and NC will shoot missiles while the VS will shoot plasma

    Indirect additions: due to it's size, it can be an effective shield for infantry to hide under when it is deployed, to protect them from aircraft. However, when moving, any infantry that run under or close enough to it are likely to be killed almost instantly, due to the legs and moving body.

    So... what do you think?
    • Up x 1
  2. ColonelChingles

    So... slow vehicle that's about the size, health, and cost of a MBT.

    Why not a MBT? Make it vulnerable to small-arms fire if necessary, and give it a dome shield to protect infantry.

    One problem is that you're throwing in an entire vehicle that's limited to one role... AA. Which is a lot of work just for introducing one vehicle. If this were to happen, I would imagine that to make it worthwhile they would extend its armament to other areas like AI or AV... and then we run smack into the debate that always happens when we discuss mechs. :p
    • Up x 1
  3. asmodraxus

    The future of walking vehicles in PS

    Hopefully none what so ever.

    1) They would be a far larger target (vertically) and therefore would either have to be far armored then an MBT or would just die
    2) The weapons systems would therefore have to be better than the MBT equivalent (or they would have very limited effect on the Battlefield).
    3) Some veterans from PS1 absolutely loathe with a passion that some people cannot even begin to grasp the very concept of walking vehicles within planetside (see BFR's) and therefore no matter how many people say they would be balanced we just need to look up SOE's current history in regards to balance...

    Phoenix made it so it would instagib infantry despite everyone telling SOE it was a bad idea, got removed after a week where the NC never left the safety of the spawn rooms (some people still managed to auraxium them despite not killing any vehicles).

    Mag got nerfed to hell in GU2 as it was using gunners (the other tanks at the time didn't and so people where wondering why it got so many kills) took several months of it not being used or getting much in the way of kills and the devs wondering wtf happened so they removed most of the nerfs.

    ZoE was OP, now just useless
    PPA nerfed to hell, still largely useless
    Striker, once upon a time dictated the air game as every TR carried one (stealth and smoke/flares was the metabuild for vehicles if you weren't TR) and it got so bad the Mossie got nerfed as it was 'over performing'. Then the lock on aspect got removed and the TR got the PoS they currently have.

    I could go on but erveryone should know the history of the buff/nerf cycle
    • Up x 1
  4. MajiinBuu

    I honestly thought the thread would be about the current A30 Walker :confused:
    • Up x 6
  5. Abraham with Cheese

    Sadly, no. The real purpiose of this was to discuss the implementation of a unique, ground-based AA-dedicated platform, something this game sorely lacks. People may say "hey, why not use MBT?"

    Then why did Harassers come about? They are simply lighter, faster version of MBTs, which already had the infantry-suppression and AV roles down. Why introduce the Valkyrie when we have galaxies for troop transport? Why is there talk of the dune buggies being introduced if we already have sunderers for that? Besides, no one vehicle is dedicated for AA (except other aircraft), and frankly a little variety wouldn't hurt.

    Who said they would have to be vertically taller? Since we're never going to be getting any kind of artillery in the game, why not ask for some dedicated AA? Everything else can either be dedicated AV and AI, so why not something that is AA? Why not make it cost more to pull over a MBT in favor of it being more effective against liberators and galaxies? Why not give it a huge deploy radius (like a sunderer) to prevent a faction from just lining them up along a front?

    I'm just frustrated that so many people hate the concept of a walker in this game, all because of the ones from Planetside 1. It doesn't have to be anything like those: just a four-legged, slow, moderately-armored AA vehicle designed to counter only big aircraft: ESFS and Valkyries cannot be targeted.
  6. ColonelChingles

    I actually think you've brought up two very excellent examples of how role overlap actually does hurt the game.

    When Harassers were first released, they indeed were cheaper, faster versions of Lightnings which could do everything a Lightning could do but better. They totally edged out Lightnings in every single role except AA. Later the Harassers received significant nerfs to recreate the role for Lightnings, but even then it's a very thin line as the current Vulcan Harassers show.

    Valkyries also suffer from this problem, in the sense that they are overshadowed by Galaxies in everything except cost. This means that for transport purposes there is very little incentive to take a Valkyrie over a Galaxy.

    As for the Dune Buggies, I see them coming into conflict with both the massively armored Sunderers and the Harassers (which no one seems to remember were also meant to be transport units). Until there is a clear reason for them to be added to the game and a unfilled role for them to fill... one really does have to ask why they need to exist.
  7. PurpleOtter

    ...and by "Walkers" you mean AI controlled Zombies bleeding over from the H1Z1 servers, right?
  8. P4nda

    Umm. What are these "Walkers" you're talking about? I've been around since you could buy your way into Beta and I have to say, I watch this game's development like a hawk and I haven't seen anything official mentioned regarding AT-STs. Hell even if they teased it, I can dig up 30 other ideas that were mentioned in an official capacity, then shelved. ESF buggies, The Bastion fleet carrier, Interlink Facility, Dynamic Weather systems... If this is just a community discussion, well more power to you guys then.

    I personally disagree with a mech vehicle and I always have since people asked about them on the Beta forums (most of us if not all were PS1 vets and had bad memories of BFR's). They had a role to play in the first Planetside, but not this one. The huge uproar about BFR's in Planetside 1 wasn't the concept, it was the implementation. They were launched massively OP, and were therefore spammed for months on end until SOE finally nerfed the life out of them, which a large portion of players didn't like and left the game before that balance pass came through.

    Planetside could support the vehicle and had a role for it, but Planetside 2 cannot unfortunately. The continents are not big enough, and the gameplay is waaaaaaaay too fast. In PS1 fights over a base would last hours, bridge fights could last hours as well, mid-base fights usually lasted around 30 minutes during peak hours and this was generally where the BFR's excelled at.

    In Planetside 2 you're extremely lucky if you can manage to hold onto the same "farm" for anything longer than 10 minutes outside of a Bio. Inter-facility combat is next to non existent, BFR's would not work on Hossin, and the AA BFR variant would be spammed out the *** on Esamir and pilots would hate that continent even more than they already do.

    I don't actually hate mechwarriors/BFRs/Gundams. I've played all of the Armored Core games, that one shady Gundam game from like 5 years ago and Mechwarrior online or like a week. They're fun. They just don't belong in Planetside 2 at all and that's my opinion.
  9. CriticalThinker

    ps2 sucks compared to ps1. if they modernized ps1 with better graphics and engine i would be gone.
  10. Abraham with Cheese

    Thankfully, no, I'm referring to a squat, four-legged robot that moves very slowly and whose primary role is harassing/dealing with enemy liberators and galaxies.
  11. MikeyGeeMan

    Tr call dibbs on



  12. Sebastien

    You're gonna get wasted by hairy children that crave longpig.
    • Up x 1
  13. TerminalT6

    So, going to the OP's dedicated AA vehicle idea...
    It really doesn't seem dependent on the 'walker' aspect. Why should it walk? Because it can?
    I guess you can throw me in the 'practicality' boat because I don't think that how the vehicle's method of locomotion really matters.
    • Up x 1
  14. Abraham with Cheese

    Well, there was the idea that it could scale any terrain surface with the legs, allowing it to perch on top of mountains and along cliff walls. Of course, this would likely be either difficult to implement, or even more so to balance, especially with some of the mesas on Indar being only approachable by aircraft.
    • Up x 1
  15. Dethfield

    Yes get on top of that mountain so the Lib can get an better angle on your rear armor.

    I like the idea of a better AA vehicle but the legs seems largely pointless to me.
    • Up x 1
  16. CursoryRaptor

    +1 for this guy.

    Something I've noticed during the ongoing development of PS2 is the cavalier disregard for in-game logic. Sure, the Valkyrie looks cool, and in the real world, that was more than enough reason to incorporate them into the game. Look! Something flashy that has attachments that people can purchase for real world money! Obviously, I'm not saying that the devs shouldn't develop without any regard for money.

    What I'm trying to say is that very little consideration for role and effectiveness is apparent when it comes to certain vehicles and weapons in this game, and due consideration should be taken to ensure that any new vehicle should fill a unique role, and do so effectively enough to be able to have a significant (but not game-breaking) impact on the game.

    The Valkyrie is the most obvious example of what I'm talking about. I'm not really sure how the developers thought it would distinguish itself beyond novelty and asthetic appeal. It doesn't really shine in any role.

    The Ranger (a secondary weapon flak gun for vehicles) is another example. Yes, it has a definite role, but its effectiveness within that role falls short. The Walker is, in my experience, more effective in the anti-air role than the Ranger, and unlike the Ranger, the Walker can also be used in the anti-infantry role with at least a moderate degree of effectiveness. Some say that the Ranger makes up for this with a sort of fear factor, citing that a pilot hearing the distinct BOOM! of flak is likely to bug out. While there is some truth to this, I would argue that hearing the rapid PINGPINGPINGPINGPING! of a walker's rapid fire is also intimidating. Even if anyone disagrees with me, the "fear factor" argument is entirely subjective and therefore cannot be proven either way.

    MBTs are, in my opinion, perfect examples of role and effectiveness. Each have their forte role, and are far more effective within that role than their counterparts in the opposing empires. Perch a Lockdown Prowler on top of a hill with good sight lines on a nearby fight, and it'll bring overwhelming and (with a lot of practice) accurate fire to bear. The Vanguard is able to soak up damage that would easily scrap any other tank (especially with the Vanguard Shield), and can be simply unstoppable under the right circumstances and in the right hands. The Magrider is the tank I hate fighting against the most. I've lost count of the number of times I've fired what felt like the perfect shot on a Magrider only for it to jink to either side and fire off a round right down my tank's muzzle.

    The Harasser is another success story in this list. Unfortunately, it didn't start out that way (see reasons the quoted post by ColonelChingles above). Now, however, Lightnings and Harassers only have role overlap in the broadest sense. Harassers fill a role of highly mobile skirmishers, able to defeat heavier vehicles in certain conditions, but unable to compete in a straight up fight. Lightnings, on the other hand, have an easier time in sieges and heavy fighting due to their heavier armor, (arguably) more powerful weapons, and a profile so low they can hide behind a speed bump. It also bears mentioning that Lightnings are great force multipliers; it takes at least two people for a Harasser to really be effective, but a Lightning is fully effective with just one.

    If you want players to like a vehicle for more than novelty and appearance, it'll need a unique role within the game as a whole, and it'll need to be effective enough within that role to make its presence felt (but not so effective that it breaks the game).
    • Up x 1
  17. Taemien

    Fair enough...

    NC calls:




    Let the VS have their.. things...
    • Up x 1
  18. Abraham with Cheese

    Well, the reasoning would be that, because of the legs, they can traverse such variable terrain, just like a spider. Not even Magriders can fully climb sheer walls and make their way up on top of a mesa. Besides, it's not meant to take on ESFs, but liberators and galaxies, so good luck with that lib when a rocket nails you in the face and the side gunners shoot mercilessly in your direction.

    That, and the whole point is that it's not meant to be on its own, like a liberator (well, two or three-man crew, but still just one vehicle). It's supposed to have infantry supporting it, like the two side gunners and anyone else using it, or engineers keeping it repaired while it drives off waves of enemy aircraft.

    It promotes cohesion and cooperation amongst a faction... hopefully, anyway.
    • Up x 1
  19. ColonelChingles

    I dunno... I mean if it relies on infantry support... and it is meant to mountains like Spidey-tank...

    How are the infantry supposed to get to the top of the mountain with it?
    • Up x 2
  20. Abraham with Cheese

    Well, they aren't, unless someone in a valkyrie or galaxy drops some up there. Besides, the whole "sit on a mountain" aspect would be more suited for squads and platoons, seeing as random lone-wolves aren't likely going to be pulling this. That, in turn, will help reduce the overall amount of them on the battlefield, thereby easing the fears of (many) liberator pilots of being insta-gibbed by five of these things just waiting for enemy air to pass by.

    I mean, I suppose one could add a feature to cert in extra seat slots, but then it'd be encroaching on the sunderer's territory, as well as that of the potential dune buggies.
    • Up x 1