Experiences of a newbie.

Discussion in 'PlanetSide 2 Gameplay Discussion' started by LilianaMonteclaire, Dec 4, 2013.

  1. LilianaMonteclaire

    Heh, first off... this is my second post on these forums, so hello everyone.

    I just started the game a few days ago, and I've been having fun in it with friends, but I can't help but feel completely uncompetitive compared to players who have been playing for a while. Yes, it's a MMOFPS, and therefore, needs some method of advancement (All FPSes need that these days it seems), but some of the issues are pretty glaring, and I can't help but wonder why, even after looking into patch details.

    SMG's, while definately balanced for the most part, due to their abysmal range, really lack any comparable weapon among new players. As far as I've seen, none of the factions have a weapon that can stand against SMGs within a structure. I can understand keeping them behind a certwall for sure to deny SMG infiltration spam, but so far, only NC MAXes have a weapon that can stand against them in CQC available from the outset. Assault rifles do a decent job against them to be sure, but pretty much every starting gun is a medium range weapon in a game where most capture points are indoors. They're balanced from what I've seen, but map design leaves alot of new players out of defending points. Starting with a shotgun or short range focused carbine would fix this nicely, letting SMG's remain dominant at their role, without leaving new players feeling like they have no tools to fight an SMG rush.

    Nanoweave armor needs to be less hidden. Overly long tutorials are a pain, but for players just starting out, Nanoweave armor is pretty much the best upgrade in the game. It falls off once you start actually managing to get kills and don't need the extra HP just to not die horribly, but me, and the people who joined with me didn't know it existed. Adding a "Suggested Unlocks" window for players below level 15 would solve this nicely I think.

    Harassers simply aren't fun to fight. I don't think I can really overstate this one. Newbies start with a dumbfire rocket launcher, and Harassers already counter vehicles (My face when I lost a vanguard to a lone harasser after striking it with my cannon first was probably gif worthy). I really don't know what to do about this honestly. Harassers seem designed to... well, harass vehicles, and they do that nicely, but giving newbies a lockon rocket launcher would probably render most ground vehicles pointless due to the sheer amount of homing rocket spam.

    Maxes are crazy fun to use, with or without upgrades. NC's MAX shotgun has sorta become my go-to SMG killing device. They're also a good source of newbie EXP due to repairing giving EXP. Great addition.

    The game runs quite well given the amount of carnage going on. I've been in 50 person or more battles and managed to keep a stable framerate on a decent computer.

    Instant action seems to be addicted to spawning me into bases where I am the only player on my team. Being the only player on my team getting dropped into a fight between the other two factions was amusing, but defeats the purpose.

    Armor rules need to be made more clear to new players. I can't remember if it gets mentioned in the tutorial, but the sheer difference between rocketing a Vanguard in the front, and rocketing a vanguard in the back is pretty astronomical for something you can't look up ingame as far as I can tell.

    The factions, it feels, need more diverse and unique weapons. Their MAXes play totally different, but it's really hard to tell the difference between their versions of the Light Assault, Medic and Engineer roles. Only the NC plays differently for sniper. Heavy assault is plenty diverse already with the Gauss SAW being completely different from the CARV, which is different from the Vanu's starting LMG.

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    The game's alot of fun, and the weapon handling is really good so far, but just starting out, I can't help but feel new players are dropped into the game with no real idea what to do, and an inability to really contribute offensively. Sorry for this being a negative rant post, but as fun as the game is, being totally lost and watching a collection of beginners get pinned in a base by two level 90's in a harasser drove home the fact that newbies simply can't do anything at all against certain tactics.
    • Up x 4
  2. Catch23

    great you like it. stay as along as you want
  3. CleanUpGuyCZ

    Don't use instant action, just find a good battle on the map (learning to use the map is key, and it's even not hard). Put there a waypoint and fly there with an ESF (empire specific fighter), after you die there, all spawns in the area should be enabled for you.
    • Up x 1
  4. Koldorn

    I recall Drathamus made a fairly good guide a while back... should be reasonably accurate still.

    Heavy -


    He also covers Medic, Engineer, and Light Assault if you visit the channel.
    Best of luck, and welcome aboard!
  5. Poppington

    Very fair first post. This game is rough on fresh players. I die a little inside every time I kill a rank 10 and below doing something distinctly newbie, like firing their gun at a tank. If it makes you feel any better, it used to be worse. You didn't get any tutorial and literally just got dropped into the thick of the action like you would with instant action upon character creation.

    A few things that might help/ shed light:

    Handling SMGs as a stock player: Remember that SMGs are downgraded carbines (LA/Engi weapon). As such, they are predominately on Inflitrators. The problem there lies in their ability to exploit your lack of situational awareness due to being relatively new. As you get better, they will be easier fodder. Any other class using an SMG has much better options for CQC, so you probably would have lost that firefight anyways against another gun. If SMGs are giving an issue, I would recommend going heavy assault, especially on VS or TR. Their LMGs are great for CQC out of the box, and their shield will help you win those fights. If NC, the SAW can work too, but its much more rough to manage uncerted.

    Nanoweave: first off, I like your idea for suggested unlocks. Secondly, assume everyone runs nanoweave, at least for now. Most of the it me, you'll be right. Secondly, it is being changed in an upcoming patch. Check out balance pass 1 for more info.

    Vehicles in general: First thing to remember is that it's a numbers game in vehicles. A 2/3 harasser will almost always beat a 1/2 tank. However, a 2/2 tank, especially vanguard, should win. Secondly, when coming to vehicles, you need to spend a lot more cents to make them competitive outside of zergs compared to infantry, especially in the air. Again, it comes back to balance. I'm sure you've seen the vehicle spam and kow why those cant be amazing out of the box.

    Harassers: They are getting nerfed. See balance pass one. For now, practice your rocket aim and steer clear as infantry.

    Instant action: a good trick is to only use it while alive. This way, you are shown where you are going with a 10 second countdown. Look at the area on the map, and see if you actually want to fight there. Using it while dead instantly puts you there, wherever it may be.
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    Finally, once you settle on a faction, try to settle on a class or vehicle that you like and focus your certs on that. That way, that've at least one way to play that is competitive no matter what. I would recommend heavy or medic, as their kits can be made competitive very quickly and cheaply, and they are useful no matter where you are. Also, YouTubers such as Wrel are a great resource for finding it answers to some questions have about the game. These forums are great too as long as you steer clear from the buff/nerf/whine threads.

    Hope this has been helpful, feel free send me a PM with any questions or if you just want someone experienced to play with.
    • Up x 1
  6. pintle

    Welcome to PS2! It is nice to see a new player offer such well balanced and thought out feedback :)

    As far as CQC weapons go, there are several pretty cert-cheap options available.

    First on my list would be the TR's TAR for the medic (250 certs) . Granted the Cycler TRV is even more weighted for CQC, but the TAR is a very well rounded weapon, with a marked increase in short range effectiveness over the default weapon. The same is true of the Carnage BR for the NC (arguably the best Assault Rifle in the game). I have not tried the VS equivalent weapon (H-V45 I guess? though that seems closer to the Cycler TRV...), as I favour the Orion (default LMG) though I presume it will be similarly effective. Playing a medic while trying to hold a point has the obvious manifold benefit of being able to revive team mates as well.

    As I stated above, the default Orion for VS Heavy Assault is a very strong CQC weapon, it is my favourite LMG in the game. TR have access to the short range focused MSW-R for 100 certs, and NC... I have a hard time putting down my "God Saw" to be honest, and tend to alternate to the (certainly not cheap @ 1000 certs) empire specific heavy weapon, the Jackhammer if I really need a CQC advantage.

    As for Harassers, heavy nerfs are incoming. The vehicle has quite a high skill cap, which can provide a lot of fun for an experienced duo, but I agree that they are incredibly punishing for less experienced tank drivers, and see how this can have a negative impact on newer players. Personally I think that their position in the game is ~ok~ but I have the luxury of a well certed out character, and a large pool of in game allies/friends to help me deal with them.

    Instant action has been tweaked numerous times, the central issue for balancing the system is that if it is made too reliably, or of too much utility, large groups of organised players can "abuse" it, to negate a large part of the mobility-warfare aspect of the game. The best way to get around the lack of reliability of the instant action system is to join (or indeed start) a squad. The first responsibility of a squad leader is generally to ensure that there is a spawn point available in close proximity to the current objective.

    Nanoweave armour is also coming up for a rework. The flat extra health benefit is due to be change to a % resistance increase. This should make it less of a "go to" option, and mitigate some of the direct escalation of power that comes with investing certs into it. A lot of experienced players that I run with as a TR on Ceres prefer flak armour, as it allows you to survive prox mines, play much more aggressively with infantry explosives, and provides a better survival chance when attacked by most vehicles. Suit certs are one of the areas where an experienced player definitely has a substantial advantage over a brand-spanking new level 1 player, and I can see this being a source of frustration, particularly in a close fought 1v1 clinch fight over a cap point or something similar.

    I will assume, from your post, that you have not spent much time in the air yet. ESF (Empire Specific Fighters) are the one aspect of the game where both cert investment, and experience (as in human experience/flight hours) make a very obvious and immediate difference. A new player in a stock ESF would need to completely out-skill a BR100 ace in his fully certed aircraft. The fact that it is next to impossible to disengage from a dogfight exacerbates this quite a lot. The same is true to a lesser extent for Liberators. Honestly though, I think this is the only way that air can be acceptably balanced in the game: if it is made too easy to be effective in aircraft (as was the case a while ago, when rocket pods did substantially more damage) then infantry and vehicles can have a very hard time, to the point where the game is not fun. Aircraft are still incredibly vulnerable to their hard counters, and those counters tend to be readily available and relatively abundant. I feel that flying an ESF is one of the most engaging parts of the game, but there is effectively a substantial barrier on entry for the newer player.

    Sorry for the wall of text, I just felt that as you made your post in such a clear and rational manner, it would be worth responding in an "in depth" way myself. I cannot stress enough how much this game improves when you find regular squad mates, be that in a large outfit, or with a group of friends: solo in this game is significantly harder than group play.

    On a final note: greedy Harasser drivers circling a few infantry can quite often fail to notice a few well placed anti-tank mines in time to avoid some explosive karma. They are also very very vulnerable to the nose gun on an ESF, provided you are able to stay on target, and in the air.

    Good luck with your time in Planetside! I hope you stick with it, and continue to have fun :)
  7. LilianaMonteclaire

    I'm mostly an NC player myself, and the gauss SAW really cannot be fired from the hip, and has a higher TTK than SMG's (I ran the numbers). I've been upgrading heavy assault so far, and it certainly works (The Gauss SAW is great once it's got its upgrades, but I'm still learning, and yeah, no match for an SMG at sub 15m.

    the issue is more learning this stuff and new players, myself included, having massive holes in what they can do.

    Glad people aren't getting mad at my wall of text... I... tend to wall of text for any game I give any balance commentary on XD.
  8. Outake

    100% with you on this. new players have no way at all to counter some attacks unless you can dumb fire a rocket better then a aim bot. I feel its super hard to counter fast vehicles or far sniping tanks. its hard to counter vehicles but I cant even think of a way to counter sniper tanks... maybe if they gave LA C4 to start with
  9. SinerAthin

    Just putting it in here, I believe the Orion is around just as good as a SMG in terms of damage, with slightly worse hipfire but better ADS.
  10. CleanUpGuyCZ

    I just want to mention, try to join an outfit, or at least try to join platoons and always follow the orders and follow the waypoints.
  11. Poppington

    As for your SAW, slap a forward grip, compensator and sight of your choice (1x or 2x) and always use your sights. That should get you by for a while.

    However, another option for the same cert price as what I just listed is the 250 cert semi-automatic shotgun. You should be able to rip SMG users apart with that and heavy shield.


    As for newer players, the problem lies in the fact that there is just so much to be explained to the point where you would need an I game encyclopedia, which might be handy. However, there is a PS2 official-ish wiki that already exists and could suffice. So maybe adding a link to it in game would be a solution?

    As for having holes what newbies can do, there are two things to consider. First off, NC is generally regarded as the most unfriendly to newbies due to their faction traits and general lack of good weapons for "all-rounders". Secondly, a new player can do anything in infantry combat out of the box, the problem is that they are not specialized. SMGs are specialized CQC weapons, for example. So, it makes sense that you will lose to them as you have a longer ranged weapon as a heavy out of the box.

    Due to the low TTK, the most important thing in this game to winning fights is initiative, or who gets the first shot or jump. Due to your lack of knowledge about the in-game world, it is very hard for you to have initiative and thus lose fights you should have statistically should have won. The type of weapon used or what cents are invested help, but not enough to counter simply being snuck up on.
  12. Koldorn


    Weapon wise; if you're set on the Heavy, your first weapon unlock should probably be the EM6.
    After you fill out a few basics like shield and nanoweave; but most NC I know swear by the EM6. Give it a shot in the VR!
  13. Takoita

    I agree, the 'tutorial' the game gives you is inadequate. Core game mechanics such as the way the game calculates directional damage (and for what vehicles it does that), map and minimap functionality (those Infiltrator sensor darts, man!), class abilities ('turret ammo pack', for example), etc, etc.

    I am no longer a new PS2 player, but from what I have gathered after creating fresh-new characters of the other two factions I didn't play previously, the real hole in the default arsenal is the lack of effective Anti-Air. The Ground-to-Air launcher for Heavy Assault is only 250 certs currently, everyone should really grab that one. You have one Burster arm for MAX by default, but that is inadequate for the purposes of breaking up aircraft spawn camp. Skyguard - a turret for the Lightning tank - is currently the most effective Ground-to-Air available, but that's 1000 certs + a bunch of upgrades for the Lightning itself. There are also Walker and Ranger weapon turrets for the Sunderer and MBT secondary gunner position, but those aren't as effective.

    Everything else comes down to investing certs into your class abilities, defense slot and utility slot. Yes, your repair tool/heal-revive tool/AOE heal/Sensor Darts/Jetpack/Overshield of your choice, Nanoweave/Flak armor/Kinetic armor/Sunderer AMS/Gate Shield Diffuser/etc and C4/Mines will give you more bang for your buck than most new weaponry ever could.

    Yes, SMG/shotguns can wreck your day, but so can the default LMG/Carbines/Assault Rifles. By no means 'any of the factions don't have a starting weapon not able to stand up to those in an indoor fight'. They can and do so daily. The same goes for the Basilisk guns on ground vehicles too, by the way.

    Harassers are a problem. But they are a problem regardless of your 'certs earned' total - it's just a #$%&! up on SOE's part, plain and simple. Practical advice for in-the-field everyday use would be 'don't go anywhere alone, ever; manned Basilisk guns on a Sunderer focusing fire on one Harasser forces the thing to flee or die very quickly'. Ground-to-Ground lock-ons miss moving Harassers very easily, try to get to higher elevation and don't shoot at angles approaching 90 degrees.

    When you decide to update your arsenal with a weapon or attachement, use the Virtual Reality room first and 'Try out' blue button on the weapon purchase screen first if possible. There are some bugs that cause some equipment to function differently in VR room when compared to the actual game proper and 'Try out' doesn't allow you to put any attachements on the weapon, but both are immensely helpful regardless.
  14. LilianaMonteclaire

    Adv forward grip. Comp. 2x reflex Already on my SAW. I took to maxing it out ASAP, and it's the gun I have far and away the most kills on. Saving for the AntI air rocket first, then was going to grab the shotgun. I took the time to look this stuff up after having some issues.

    I agree that SMG's should be the dominant CQC weapon for offensive play. I suggested new players should get a shotgun because they're defensive oriented in this game it would seem, and much harder to lone wolf with. Just handing new players a SMG out of the gate would lead to alot of new players making alot of poor decisions (Rushing across open ground with a SMG isn't as terrible idea on paper as a rushing across open ground with a shotgun).

    NC's not that bad for new players from what I've seen, but me and m friends have a fair amount of shooter experience. High recoil weapons aren't too bad to deal with I find. I miss a fair bit, but that's me making the mistake of moving with the Gauss SAW due to instincts, over poor weapon handling.
  15. zukhov

    Some people have been playing this game for over a year. They have had lots of practice. Of course new players are going to get owned. They could make all new players BR100, give them every weapon, camo and 1 million free certs and they will still get pounded for a while.

    Glad the OP is having fun, when PS2 was first released they just drop podded people into the battle directly from the intro. It took me about a week to realise I wasn't in the tutorial.
  16. RykerStruvian

    I don't know, the argument against SMGs is too generalized on too many variables. You're assuming that:

    Users are experienced players
    Users are experienced players with SMGs
    Shotguns are effective against SMGs
    Etc

    I think the argument is kind of moot. There are too many existing conditions which would offset any particular instance for your statement because it's too specialized. An 'SMG' rush could include too many things which could be easily overlooked such as people playing over VOIP, pre-established players, etc. Making changes to it doesn't really make sense.

    Besides, you're also assuming new users = 'experienced' users, which isn't the case, or that shotgun = SMG at CQC, which isn't the case, it's entirely based on the individual player.

    I think it would be better to simply structure or encourage new players to compete with new players as opposed to simply tweaking any form of weapon loadout. The issue isn't 'one gun is better than the other' its 'new players playing against pre-established players'

    Note: The only time it's an issue of actual x > y is when it's obviously grossly overpowered. ie zoe, pre-2013 liberators/ESF/rocket pods, etc

    Example: When you are playing with one of the developers against the best outfit in the game and they're openly admitting to something being overpowered, and actively using while taunting/insulting said developer, you know something is overpowered :)
  17. Poppington

    I would disagree with the shotgun sentiment, as they are bad in most scenarios and newbies should have guns that can work in almost any scenario they wander into. Also, there is a fair amount of shotgun hate in this game. Giving them to newbies would serve to make that problem much worse.

    Also, there is a bundle called the fresh meat bundle for 199 sc that gives you the NS SMG, a camo, and a boost. Since that SMG unlocks for all factions and classes on any server since you get it with SC, it's an amazing deal for new players. Of course, you can only buy SC in at least 5$ amounts, but still. It's another route if you don't mind. Personally, I like to support F2P games I spend a lot of time on such as Dota2 and PS2, so that bundle was a no brainier for me.
  18. Xasapis

    SOE gives via their welcome kit program a second SMG on all three factions. All you need is an invitation link from a friend to get it. If you don't have any friends yet, just use mine. Keep in mind that you are eligible only if the account is less than 6 months old.

    https://recruit.soe.com/recruit/smlanding.action?iId=C3ALT7J4PTHST2OHEDPS&gamecode=PS2

    (in case you're wondering, I only get something in case somebody actually spends money on the game, which hasn't happened yet ;))
  19. Poppington

    Damn it! I missed an opportunity to post that. Well played.

    But wait, it's a free LMG, not SMG.
  20. Andrea SKye