ESF Update Update

Discussion in 'PlanetSide 2 Gameplay Discussion' started by Kevmo, Jan 8, 2014.

  1. Kevmo Developer

    This post is an update on where we stand with the ESF update, which we are targeting for release this month.

    What’s already complete?
    Based on the original ESF update forum post, here is what is already complete and on live:

    We completed a tuning pass on default and rotary nose cannons.

    We implemented the new lock-on mechanic that adjusts the lock-on speed based on the distance of the shooter to the target.

    We added the lock-on indicator for third person view and we made missiles appear more accurate on remote clients.

    We adjusted experience so that players are awarded with kills and assists for players that suicide or log out.

    We adjusted stealth so that each rank lowers the mini-map detect range and fixed the issue with it not always granting the lock-on increase. (This was fixed a few updates ago but we forgot to call it out in patch notes).

    We adjusted fire suppression certifications so they also provide a small repair over time.

    What’s Left?
    Based on the original ESF update forum post, here is what is still in the works. Some things are going as planned and other things are being adjusted.

    Creating Better Air-to-Air Gameplay
    The overall goal of the remainder of the ESF update is to create a better overall air-to-air gameplay experience, starting with the ESF. This ranges from feedback improvements, changes to help new players get into the air, and creating clearer and better roles for the ESF.

    For example, the engagement radar and feedback changes should help new players get used to how the air game works, and give them a better chance to stick with it. More new blood in the air game will do good to help keep it fresh and engaging.

    The changes to fuel tanks and the new weapons are all intended to add better and clearer choices for ESFs. The fuel tank adjustments should make the role of a highly maneuverable interceptor more distinct. There are now missiles good for long range engagements and the new coyote missiles good for close range dog fights. Liberators and Galaxies will follow suit in later updates.

    External Fuel Tank Certifications
    This is still coming, but instead of increasing top speed, they will increase regeneration rate and capacity of the fuel tanks.

    In addition, we are making some modifications to stock afterburners to coincide with the new fuel tank certification line:

    1 - Stock regeneration rate is being lowered by about 15% it will take about 2 seconds longer to regenerate from 0 to full. The first (stock) rank of external fuel tanks negates this.
    2 - Engaging afterburners while in hover mode will have a higher initial fuel cost compared to engaging them while in flight mode. This additional cost only occurs once; when the afterburner key is pressed. The amount is ½ second worth of fuel.

    The combination of these changes is intended to make the fuel pods a more powerful choice and to make how you spend your afterburner fuel more important.

    Feedback Improvements
    Some of our feedback changes we wanted for the ESF update are already live. But we didn’t get to all the ones we wanted to do.

    Displaying missiles that are tracking you on the mini-map is still coming. There will be a small red dot on the map for each missile currently locked on to you. This gives pilots information on which direction the missile is coming from, how far away it is, etc.

    We are also still working on displaying more detailed information about what is locking-on to you. Such as displaying what type of rocket it is or how many hostiles are attempting to lock-on to you. We are still finalizing what specific information we want to display here.

    Locust Cannons
    We've felt the design for this weapon made more sense as a nose cannon and have made a few changes to convert it. It will essentially be a nose cannon variant with a larger magazine size, but does less damage. It will no longer have a spin up time and it will be different for each faction.

    Although less damaging than other nose cannons, we think having less reloads will provide a bigger opportunity to land hits.

    Coyote Missiles
    These are still going to be a low damage, close range missile weapon, but we’re working on a different lock-on style for these. Instead of a lock-on, they will be heat-seeking, and will lock-on to targets if they fly close enough to them.

    We intend these to be a short range supplement to nose cannons. They should be useful in situations where a nose cannon shot is not practical.

    Mass Drivers
    We have some technical and balance concerns with this weapon so we’re putting these on hold and are no longer considered part of “The ESF Update”.

    Guided Missiles
    Instead of Mass Drivers, we’re implementing guided missiles. These missiles work like the current A2A missiles but are not fire and forget. They require the pilot to keep their target in the crosshairs until the missile hits. They are also capable of locking on to ground targets.

    These have a higher potential damage output than rocket pods against vehicles, but have several more downsides: They can’t be used against infantry; they are countered by both flares and stealth, they can’t be fired instantly because they require a lock, and because they aren't fire and forget, they require the pilot to remain engaged with their target.

    Other Stuff
    Stuff that was not mentioned in the previous post.

    Engagement Radar
    This is a new certification line coming for either the Utility or Defense slot for ESFs. This radar will cause a certain amount of enemy aircraft to receive HUD indicators, and those indicators will clamp to the edge of the screen, granting more situational awareness and making it easier to track a target once it goes off screen.

    The main intention with this certification is to help newer pilots get their bearings in the sky. Therefore the certification cost for this will be low.

    We are also considering that targets with Stealth equipped do not display on engagement radars.

    A2A Missiles

    Changes to A2A missiles for PU002 were not intentional and being addressed. After the fixes, they should be as dodge-able as other lock-on rockets.

    Edit: Added Creating Better Air-to-Air Gameplay near the top. To describe an overall goal for the combination of all the changes.
    • Up x 32
  2. Gheeta

    I'm really really worried about air to air missiles, i get the feeling that nothing is going to change. As far as i know you can not dodge ground lock on's either at the moment.

    There is one massive problem with the air game play and that is the A2A lock on missile. I think it needs much more tweaking, hell people are leaving the game because of this one weapon. I would take proper lock on changes over any new weapons or afterburner certifications.

    Now if the case is that we are going to have a reliable way to dodge these then i'm bit less worried however this won't help liberators at all which worries me.

    I hope you take a good look at the lock on mechanics and allow us to try them on PTS and actually listen to the feedback.
    • Up x 11
  3. Tekuila

    Please don't go through with the coyote missile mechanics, it's just like active radar missiles in bf4 and it's a horrible idea there. They manage to be even more skill less than actual lock ons.
    • Up x 25
  4. Kapernum

    Squad based minimap player markers. This is something that has been suggested a lot of times.

    But so far no word from you.
    • Up x 12
  5. Tar

    nobody wants more guided ****, especially not such that don't even need to lock.
    • Up x 24
  6. Master

    Coming from an experianced pilot, all the things you want to put in, put in...EXCEPT for the coyote missiles. Leave those out, they need a rethink.
    • Up x 8
  7. LightningWolfTigrBer

    Edit: Wait, wait, wait, hold the phone here. I saw "ESF Update Update" and got overexcited. I'm thrilled that you're reverting the tracking on the A2AM's(though I'm not convinced it was unintentional. You guys said the same thing about the spinning droppods despite the spinning being present on the PTS prior to the patch), but what happened to having to maintain lock to keep the missile tracking, as was noted in the prior Air update post(which I can't seem to find)? Also what's with the increased AB cost while in hover mode? Who asked for this?!
    • Up x 14
  8. Tar

    and lockons with higher damage output than dumbfires?? get a clue.
    • Up x 21
  9. Gav7x

    • Up x 1
  10. Luighseach

    I will like to try it on Test before I give my judgement on them. I like the idea since I'm a scrub pilot that meets a lot of aces on my Server.

    That being said I like a lot of stuff that has been though off especially the change from secondary to main cannon of the Locust but I would like to see it become NS and have the same stats per Fighter(even though I know their will be balance issues for them) just to see how different empires will use them and how people would adapt to them. Also since they do less damage how about make them have a bit more range than the rotary but just as inaccurate so they would not interfere with the default which would remain the longest ranged nose gun.

    I would also like to see Stealth, Scout radar become more prominent against each other by letting one effect the other. Make Stealth the current longer lock-on time(even a bit longer) and make it take even longer if they are farther away making Stealth bascally negate Lock-ons unless the pilot is dumb enough to not fly away. However Scout radar should also counter this by making any target within its radar able to lock-on faster and maybe even max radar vs max stealth should have stealth players show up at like 50-75m on the mini-map.

    Also A2A missiles should not be able to lock on at close ranges at least not as close as the Coyotes could making it Long vs Short range debate.
  11. Pikachu

    I thought the idea of spin up wing mounted miniguns were cool. :L Now they're just another nose gun. The special A2G rocket sounds interesting. Like laser guided. Seems like mass drivers got the same fate as flamers. :rolleyes: Stuck in development he**.

    Anyway great to hear some news.

    Here's a crazy idea: Somehow make us pilots with A2G weapons harder to detect for those others. Or make us able to detect tgem earlier. So we be less likely to run into a fight we cant win or escape.
    • Up x 3
  12. Tar

    my impression too. Unless dodging means some magic that 5 people know about. As far as I know you can only outfly them (G2A, not A2A)
    • Up x 6
  13. Dingus148

    Would have loved for the wing cannons and nose cannon to fire all at once. OP? B*tch, it might be. But it would make CAS strafing runs a viable strategy, and that is just AWESOME
    • Up x 1
  14. Tar

    I'd love to hear this: Since there are no guided missiles in Infantry vs Infantry combat, or Tank vs Tank, why do there need to be in Air vs Air? and increasingly more and more? I just don't get it. It's a FPS game, not a freakin simulator.
    • Up x 5
  15. RHINO_Mk.II

    Any word on giving Reavers either a smaller hitbox or more hp/resistances since you normalized damage and clips to kill a while back?
    • Up x 12
  16. DJPenguin

    Didn't Higby openly admit to agreeing with the forum majority that the state of lockons is a mess and a path he regretted taking? How are more similarly related mechanics making it past the drawing board?
    • Up x 19
  17. Mastachief

    Can we not just bin every thing but the rotarys and cannons
    • Up x 8
  18. Anubis1055

    Does this mean back to the way it was before PU02, or the way it is for G2A currently? G2A isn't exactly dodge-able at this time, which isn't necessarily a bad thing.
  19. Pikachu

    Maybe the locust cannons could have paralell trajectories or some limit to their auto convergence.
    • Up x 3
  20. EMP1RE

    Just what we asked for...

    MOAR L:eek:CK ON'S
    • Up x 32