Anti-Air: Easy or Not?

Discussion in 'PlanetSide 2 Gameplay Discussion' started by Abraham with Cheese, Aug 31, 2015.

  1. Silkensmooth

    Skyguard is overpowered, thats why it doesnt kill that much. If you could kill an ESF before it could run away then where would the air be?

    You people don't seem to understand that flak already creates massive no fly zones. ALREADY. Flak ALREADY completely destroys ESF who arent smart enough to run away immediately.

    I want to see your videos of you owning at large fights where there are flak and lock ons.


    The problem with skygaurd is that it is too strong against air, especially ESF and has too much range, but it is equally useless against ground forces.

    What should be done is to make a skyguard gun a secondary for all lightnings. Give the flak 300 meters range. Leave the damage the same.

    I drive a skyguard, almost 20 hours in one, and you know whats wrong with it? It's so strong vs air they stop coming around. No one wants to try to deal with flak. Its not fun in the least. Then im sitting there trying to kill infantry and missing 10 out of 11 shots. As you said tanks and harrassers own you.

    Even when you stay with the armor column and are safe skyguard is boring because it is overpowered vs air. You sit for long periods of time for air to come and then they are gone just as fast and you are useless.

    This we all know.

    So by making skyguard a secondary you would make it so there would always be skyguard to protect the ground and they wouldnt suck to pull and drive because you could switch to your main gun any time, just like an ESF.

    This way skyguard could defend the ground from podders and other ESF hovering while not overly intruding on the a2a game which it currently does.

    It would also make it a lot easier for people like me who mainly (except on hossin) run noseguns and Ab tanks and hunt podders to do their job which would make a lot of the problem go away.

    Lastly ill say that you should always play something before you speak about it. It's a grass is always greener type of thing. I've been on both sides of the fence.
  2. LodeTria

    Buff the ranger.
    • Up x 1
  3. Silkensmooth

  4. LodeTria

    If you think the ranger is too strong, then there is clear bias here.
    The skyguard I can understand, but the ranger is a flat out travesty.
  5. Pelojian

    1)no it destorys ESF which are not experienced enough and haven't trained their reflexes to use A2G ESF like a knife fighter, if skyguard was overpowered it would be killing many pilots both experianced and newbie pilots, skyguards only kill already damaged air or in groups the destory ESFs and sometimes libs.

    2)no AA needs the range to be as it is because of how fast and how far air can move compared to ground, AA with a limit of 300m would render it ineffective completely against experienced pilots and air could hit ground with impunity by shelling above 300m.

    i suggest you examine the scythes equipped with the light PPA you'll find they can hit infantry beyond lockon range easily.
    • Up x 1
  6. MasterDemoman

    I love Burster MAXes, and I think that in my personal, completely humble, and open to critique of any kind opinion (not)

    A single Burster MAX can easily destroy ESFs, even if they try to keep their attacks short and safe. Not many people spend enough time on an AA platform to use them with 100% effectiveness. Keeping your aim on an ESF for their entire run will generally destroy them or set them on fire. The only circumstance in which you will not utterly destroy an ESF on their attack run is if they are being incredibly careful, or react very quickly to being fired upon by flak, which wont net them (m)any kills and will not benefit their team much at all. I have limited experience with the Skyguard, but I imagine the results are similar.
    I wouldn't say outright that Bursters (and Skyguards) are overpowered, but I would definitely say that, in the hands of an experienced user, they are VERY powerful, and their damage scales RIDICULOUSLY well in groups, regardless of skill level.

    Saying that a single piece of dedicated AA is useless on it's own is blasphemous. It only takes a single Burster to destroy an ESF. I say this only because it is the number one argument I see defending the current state of AA. But...

    If you're referring to AA rocket launchers, well, there's a reason why not a SINGLE rocket launcher has a fire-mode that can only fire on aircraft after locking onto them (annihilator can lock onto both ground and air.) AA rocket launchers are meant to give Heavy Assaults a way to defend themselves from air whilst still retaining some damage against ground vehicles, MAXes, and infantry. AA launcher users cannot reliably set up areas of denial ON THEIR OWN, like the MAX/Skyguard, and they really shouldn't, because they are not dedicated anti-air pieces. This is completely 420% balanced. I literally think that AA launchers are some of the most balanced things in the game. sue me

    TL;DR AA launchers=completely balanced, bursters+skyguards=really powerful, if not OP, in the hands of dedicated users+effectiveness scales ridiculously well with multiple users regardless of skill level
    • Up x 1
  7. Demigan

    Eeh... This is pure misinterpretation. Aircraft can fly across multiple bases in less than a minute, and fire a few shots while doing so. The likelyhood of encountering AA increases simply because you fly across so much space.
    I do tons of AA, and usually I'm the only one around. When you come across a base that already has AA I'll give you a 95% chance that they were attacked by aircraft within the last 10 minutes. Even then I've seen entire airzergs stomp on entire platoons without a single person grabbing AA. The reason for this should be obvious: It's too unrewarding.

    Also the only reason why it would be bad to have 1-2 AA ready in any base is because AA scales badly. Heavies are the most used class by far, and yet there's only 1-2 AA? Why aren't the vehicles complaining their butts off? In a base with 48 enemies they would encounter around 30 AV weapons! They don't complain because there is some sort of balance there. Aside from the fact that there's too little good AI options on vehicles and tank power has been nerfed against infantry multiple times (which they do complain about) it still takes multiple Heavies to take out a tank, and even then the tank needs to set himself up to be killed by them.
    So what can we take from this? AA is unbalanced. Too few AA and aircraft simply murder their very counter, too much AA and it murders air too quickly. There is no middle ground, no balance anywhere. this means we need to change the AA game. Not just plain damage boosts, but also reducing the 'aim into the sky and spray' mechanics that AA has to use. You can only really avoid AA by hiding, there is no real maneuvering to avoid AA except at extreme ranges or divebombing the moment a lock on occurs.

    I think that these numbers are incorrect. Even if they were correct you would still run into the problem of most infantry combat taking place inside and around lots of cover and obstacles that obscure the view. So even if there are aircraft, they won't be able to lock-on because they are unable to see them.

    Exactly why they need their flak range reduced from 4m to 0,5 or less, their COF tightened up and their damage increased. Players would need skill to hit, ESF can use evasive maneuvers to dodge AA and actually fly 10m over 5 Burster MAX's and never get hit, or get murdered by a single AA source because it had the skill to keep hitting them. This would solve tons of problems and make the game more fun for both AA and aircraft. It would also give AA a multi-role in AI capabilities, using flak rounds to kill off infantry nearby with their increase of accuracy.

    Only if they are dummies. I still kill the occasional Skyguard with a rocketpod. Strangely enough they are the easiest tank targets to kill. They look in one 180 degree circle around them and stand still a lot more than the others. You just approach them from behind, launch your rockets (they always start backing up first before looking) and by the time they realize where you are you can already outDPS them and win. If they notice you too fast... You can simply afterburn to safety and repeat. Best is to wait until they engage a fellow ESF, you can often throw an entire magazine in them before they even check behind them.

  8. Demigan

    The people whining about AA actually use it. I'm great at AA! check my stats and you'll see I score highly with it, but I still complain because it's an unfair and unfun system for both the AA users as well as the aircraft.
    • Up x 1
  9. ColonelChingles

    I did mention as much. It's hard to say whether a 10 in mobility is worth exactly the same as a 10 in accuracy. For example, the Vulcan-H relies very heavily on mobility, while accuracy isn't as big a deal (if you can quickly close with the enemy, accuracy decreases in value. To give them equal value or even different values implies a judgement in weighting them.

    I think overall the metrics I picked are fairly reasonable. The real problem is weighting them.

    Well I would measure using the weak points of an ESF... if they had any! :p

    Not sure exactly what you mean by that second part.
  10. Raysen

    The only disappointment I have about Anti-Air is that new players lack any access to that. Neither the MAX, HA or vehicles have a counter AIr, unless you try using the sundy turrets, but you generally end killed by them before you can cause them any serious damage.
    The stationary turrets are rare and generally the first things being destroyed on an attack...

    I believe at least the Max should be given a default AA weapon to select. After all, a new player can spawn a plane anytime, then why can they destroy one too from the ground?
    • Up x 2
  11. Haquim

    And those two posts pretty much show most the problems that we run into when we want to decide wether something is OP or more generally "balanced" compared to something else.
    It becomes even more complex and difficult when we want to decide balance in the context of the game as a whole, and not the performance of two pieces of equipment against each other.

    Yes, the numbers I chose were totally arbitrary. Because I have no way of quantifying them.
    Or at least no way everybody would agree on, which every scientist would agree is the first thing you need.

    The Colonels approach to set the higher value as 10 and the lower one as a fraction of that is certainly one way.
    It works really well with something like damage - twice the damage/dps means half TTK after all.

    But some attributes don't scale in a linear fashion.
    Like range. Most people seem to forget that "range" is not really important.
    What is really important is what or who you can shoot at.
    The difference between 9m range and 10m range is not 10%.
    The difference is being able to shoot anybody within an area of 254m² and anybody within 314m².
    Thats 23% more area covered. 60m²!
    On the ground its not actually that important/powerful since you will never have 360 degree vision, and even if you do have that there will still be boulders, trees and other stuff for your enemies to take cover.
    But if you're shooting at aircraft? Aircraft can't use cover in the conventional sense and any obstacles limiting your view have to be HUGE.

    And then there are things that simply can't be compared.
    Top speed is certainly a big factor in mobility, but what value do you put on the ability to fly (move in 3 dimensions)?
    The Lightning may be able to drive 70 km/h, but its still bound to the ground.
    I'd even go as far as to say that the Magrider is quite a lot more mobile than my Prowler, although my Prowler is without a doubt faster.

    Something like the "ease-of-use" metric that I used is simply impossible to accurately quantify. It is pretty much meant to show how difficult your vehicle is to handle (remember - #1 ESF killer is the ferocious and indestructible auraxian tree) and how common and dangerous random threats on the battlefield are.
    Skyguards only really have to deal with Harassers and the occasional enemy tank breaking through the frontline (assuming they don't charge the frontline themselves). They shouldn't be close enough to the fighting for LAs or HAs to be a serious threat.
    ESFs? Other ESFs, Libs (and their ******* Dalton), Skyguards, G2A lock-ons, occasionally when attacking ground MBTs, Bursters, ASPIS and I hope thats about it.

    So, in conclusion we can only try to argue why we put a certain value on a performance statistic and why we think its balanced (or not) in comparison with a different item. We cannot really deal in absolutes here.

    PS: Colonel, I know you don't like aircraft but don't you think you're being unfair to the ESFs performance and inflating it a tiny little bit?
    Using the afterburner top speed, which is rather short.
    Using accuracy stats against a static target, especially because the Skyguard doesn't even need to hit - it just has to be close enough. AND the skyguard is worse at attacking a landed ESF because every shot your CoF would put under it becomes a miss that hits the ground
    And the worst one of them all. Hornets vs rear armor. :confused:
    It is certainly possible to kill a Skyguard in 4 seconds, but it requires you to go unnoticed, fly VERY low (thus risking getting shot by MBTs and whatnot) and the enemy driver has to keep showing you his rear instead of turning his tank while you reload.
    Not every guy driving a tank is braindead you know. ;)
    • Up x 1
  12. freeAmerish

  13. Silkensmooth

    I dont think ranger is too strong, but i do think that G2A is too strong, or i should say has too much range.

    I think i should die if i get too close to a skyguard, but by the same token i dont think they should be able to hit me from 1k meters when im dogfighting.

    Buffing the ranger would make the G2A situation even worse for pilots.

    There are already walker sundies everywhere, skyguards and turrets cover every major battle, G2A locks.

    We dont need more G2A we need less.

    Or we need to modify the G2A to prevent it from interfereing with the A2A game as much as it does.

    One very simple solution would be to add inherent abilities to different ESF loadouts, like making flak only explode in the presence of A2G weapons. So if you are running an AI nosegun or rocket pods or hornets then flak will explode around you. If you are running an A2A loadout like nosegun and AB or yotes or A2A missiles, then flak would have to directly hit you to do damage.

    This way you could increase the damage of flak some without penalizing people unecessarily who arent pounding the ground.

    My problem with G2A is that it is more effective against high flying A2A pilots than the ground pounders against which it was intended to be used.

    I also wouldn't mind seeing ESf only able to afterburn if they equip AB tanks. That would put a damper on the ground pounding which is quite cheesy.

    Unless the airplanes are pounding tanks, because imo nothing is worse than the tank zerg farming infantry.
  14. Granpajo

    I don't fly a lot, but I do fly my valkyrie for my squad quite a bit. The only time I die in my Valk, from ground fire is from a skyguard, and thats usually when I don't know its there before it opens up on me. If you start firing your skyguard at max range, you're not going to be very effective. Wait until the enemy air gets well into your effective range, THEN open fire on them. Then they have to run through your zone of effective range to get away and you get to plug them all the way out with tasty HE goodness. If you open fire on me at max range, I'm just gonna dive out and get out of your range and come back later.

    Edit: should say, I don't fly SF's a lot.
    • Up x 1
  15. Silkensmooth

    All maxes get a burster to start, they have to buy the second one, so they already do have AA.

    Also a new player can spawn a plane, but it certainly wont have rocket pods or an AI nosegun, and he certainly wouldnt be able to hit anything with it until he spends many hours flying it. He will die badly to everything in the game for a long time before he begins to accumulate points.

    On the other hand flak is so easy to use a new player can jump in an AA turret and do very well for themself.

    Thats a lot of the problem. Flak is stupid easy to use. Get within 10 meters which is 39 feet and the flak will detonate.

    G2A locks are equally skilless.

    No one complains about walkers or basis because they take skill to use while being nearly as good as flak if you can aim.

    People that complain about the supposed lack of power of AA are people who expect to jump in a solo vehicle and kill entire airwings so that they can then return to whatever ground activity they were formerly engaged in which is almost always sitting in a tank farming infantry.

    If it wasnt for the occasional airplane taking one out, tanks would have nothing to fear in the game except overextending. And this from someone who has many days spent in tanks.
  16. Alox

    Nope, you get very few kills with AA.
    • Up x 2
  17. ColonelChingles

    I think that it's fair to include afterburners. First, Afterburners are stock, meaning that they require no upgrades or investments to use. ESFs will always have access to them no matter whatever else they are carrying. Second, those are top speeds. The Lightning usually can't get to 70km/h because there isn't that much level ground... bumps and curves will slow it down. The same is true for ESFs. For both cases I used the maximum speed for stock vehicles, so the standard is equal and fair.

    Which is why I added an extra 100m to the Skyguard range to compensate. This is what I meant by "ground intercept". The original 50% hit range was actually shorter than the Hornet's effective range. ;)

    Well if ESFs had a weaker rear spot, I'd use that too! But pilots have it easy because there are no weak spots to speak of... there is no part that the pilot must hide from enemy fire. If cockpit, engine, or tail hits took an extra 68% damage, then certainly I would have used those. :p

    DPS is simply a measure of the firepower the weapon is capable of unloading. A Skyguard will have a maximum DPS that's the same against an ESF, because the ESF has no weakpoints. Try as a Skyguard might, it can't possibly do any more damage than the DPS I listed. The same standard is true of the ESF. No matter how skilled the pilot is, they cannot do more damage than the listed DPS. So that's a fair comparison to use the maximum DPS.

    I do agree that if we had more solid data on where Hornet hits happened then we might come out with a more useful metric (reflecting what the "average" user does). I could also simply multiply theoretical DPS by average accuracy, leading to practical DPS. For example, a Skyguard's theoretical DPS is 610.91, and that is multiplied by the Skyguard's average accuracy of 28.1% to get a practical DPS of 171.67 (doing the same for the ESF Hornets would get 497.52 practical DPS).

    In the end, it does come down to figuring out which metric to use. Top speed versus cruising speed. Theoretical DPS versus practical DPS. Maximum DPS versus minimum DPS. I feel that my metrics were pretty fair, but others might disagree.
  18. Alox

    Nah, no AA user wants to wipe out entire air wings, in fact most AA users are quite happy with not having super long range AA like it was once the case.

    The problem today is that even as an experienced AA user with double burster and extra magazine capacity it is still quite hard to punish a ground farmer that is hovering at close range, the damage at very close range could use a small buff. And that lock-on timers don't scale with range vs stealth is also tragic.
  19. ColonelChingles

    Statistically, per hour of use, this is how many aircraft each weapon will kill:

    Dalton- 11.44
    AA Phalanx- 7.94
    Skyguard- 5.40
    AA Lock-on Rockets- 3.53

    It is likely that the stats of the Phalanx turrets are inflated because no one sits in them unless there are targets nearby (AV Phalanx turrets have an unusually high VKPH as well). The same is true for AA SAMs... HA's are unlikely to equip them unless there are aircraft nearby.
  20. jmdafk

    Very few esf pilots actually go for tanks or sundies, they all seem to be more interested in farming hapless infantry.

    As infantry its very hard to take out any pilot short of a noob. The second they get a lock on they are gone. Often only returning to pick off the poor fool who dared threaten them.
    The time to lockon for the AA rockets is so long it is quite literally painful. Infact ive given up with my grounder and anhilator and pull a skyguard. kills are still hard to come by but atleast you can properly scare them off!

    Air is to easy. In real life Air dominates, as it does in PS2. Difference is a 13yr old with an I3 cant jump in a harrier and lay waste to an entire infantry platoon.
    We will never stop the genuinly skilled pilots evading destruction and farming, but with a higher skill base to piloting it may make the core game - infantry - more fun. And of course when a pilot does show some skill, even if its while farming, then we have to accept it. Atleast everyone wont be doing it.

    I certainly dont want to see Air easier to shoot down, as frustrating as it is if they took less damage to destroy, flew slower, rockets did more damage etc it would severly shift the balance.