(NOTE 1: I am a huge fan of "Planetside 2" (PS2), am a Premium Member, and have been playing since launch. I don't know a lot about "W40K: Eternal Crusade" (WEC). I've only learned about WEC today and skimmed their website and some forum posts and the 2 vids linked below. But I am a longtime fan of the 40K game and book series.) Planetside 1 & 2 have long ruled the MMOFPS genre (much like EQ ruled MMORPG). But what does the development of W40K: Eternal Crusade mean for the future of PS2 Gameplay and the MMOFPS(/MMO3PS) genre? This post is to explore how Eternal Crusade might affect PS2 Gameplay. This is not a WEC ad or FAQ, I'm only exploring how it impacts PS2 and what PS2 can/might get out of it. (NOTE 2: PS2 is an MMO-FIRST-PERSON-SHOOTER while Eternal Crusade is an MMO-3RD-PERSON-SHOOTER. So they are not in the same exact genre. But there is a lot of overlap and they can be bundled into the broader MMO1/3PS.) WEC Reference Link: Vid #1 (Angry Joe's vid) Vid #2 (some footage from a live stream) PS2's Future: Renaissance? ===================== PS2 is now in the hands of a new owner (Columbus Nova), PC PS2's Roadmap is reportedly getting back on its feet after a long hiatus, and we also have PS4 PS2 about to hit the public scene. PS2 looks to be positioned for a potential new Renaissance (aka "time of growth and prosperity"). Will they be more nimble now and able to borrow ideas from upcoming MMOFPS titles and respond to a potentially changing (and crowding) MMOFPS landscape? MMOFPS Genre Future Landscape ========================== But "in the grim darkness of the far future" (that's a well known 40K quote), looms the emergence of "W40K: Eternal Crusade" and potentially other challengers onto the MMOFPS scene. How will this affect or motivate Daybreak and PS2, and how will this potentially influence the direction of PS2's Roadmap and PS2 Gameplay? 40K & Games Workshop History ======================== Many of us know the tremendous influence Games Workshop (maker of 40K license, Warhammer, etc.) has had on the game industry across genres (Warcraft, Starcraft, etc.), and on the longstanding epicness of the 40K theme. But we also know GW has struggled to get themselves any dominant toe hold in Video Games industry.... for like forever. Based on the GW licenses in vid games track record, Eternal Crusade may not be a true threat/competitor for PS2 or anyone. And since Eternal Crusade is only on PC/Mac, it doesn't look to be any direct threat toward the PS4/Console PS2 game. Design: Planetside 2 vs. Eternal Crusade: Innovation vs. Renovation ================================================= (NOTE 3: I tried to put the proper features in Innovation or Renovation, but the amount of stuff got carried away so I apologize for stuff put in the wrong section of each) Potential Renovation ------------------------------ A lot of Eternal Crusade looks like it is just copying PS2 (NOTE 4: I am not an FPS vet, so I apologize if I credit PS2 here with stuff that is from other games). Vid #1 shows a Troop Carrier that "deploys" as a "spawn point", they have light assault troops with jet packs, each character has a "loadout" screen, players capture lettered points, etc. These are things PS2 already has in their game, so any influence in this area would be from potential *changes* or additions that Eternal Crusade makes which add something new and interesting to the existing recipe: potential "Renovation". Off hand, I noticed these changes to some of the "PS2 borrowed" systems in Eternal Crusade: Light Assault - duel wields, and also carries a fulltime, full melee Weapon (chainsword seen in game, powerswrod and power hammer seen in loadout screen). I think both these have been discussed as additions to PS2, perhaps this will motivate them being implemented sooner. Duel wield + chainsword gameplay Power sword + power hammer inventory images Looks like Melee Weapon can have a 3 stage attack combo. Chainsword 3 stage attack combo Light Assault - while airborne with jetpack, a reticule will show on the ground where their trajectory would have them land if they cut thrust. Jet pack landing Reticule Light Assualt Jet Pack Dive Attack Footage Light Assault Wall Spring Off Footage + Voice Commentary Footage Command - Per Commentator in vid, WEC will give Command more power than PS2, a different UI, and you can be "shot down" (not sure if Commander's are in Dropships or the Strike Cruiser) Commentary Bases - each Base has cosmetic touches that reflect the Faction which controls it. Base in video is controlled by Chaos Space Marines, and the base is covered in skulls and spikes to reflect their "evil" theme. Once it's captured by a different faction, it will change the cosmetics of the new faction over a span of time (hours? minutes?) Footage of Base w/ Chaos Cosmetic + Commentary of Base Faction Cosmetic Changing Knife - can use a knife for more than just a single strike. Looks like it can have a 3 stage attack combo. Footage Classes - 1) Tactical (like PS2's Engineer) 2) Assault (like PS2's Light Assault) 3) Devastator (like PS2's Heavy Assault?) 4) Apothecary (like PS2's Medic?) 5) Terminator (like PS2's Max) 6) Chaplain ("Hero" Class - see "Heroes" below) 7) Librarian ("Hero" Class - see "Heroes" below) Class Loadout screen Inafntry POV - PS2 Infantry is 1st Person and WEC Inafntry is 3rd Person. This makes for a very different player experience, and different genres. Each genre has pros and cons, including mechanics that can go with them. It's probably a personal preference thing for each player. (NOTE 5: both PS2 and WEC have 1st & 3rd Person for Vehicles) Vehicle POV - Footage of 3rd Person Crosshair in Vehicle Footage of 1st Person Crosshair (only for zoom?) in Vehicle Flying - Flying as stated won't be in until post launch (which is weird cause they stated having Drop Ships...). So no influence on PS2 there... other than the lack of Air maybe, and how much ground players like or don't like that. They do say they want to bring in Flying vehicles that move at speeds much greater than those in PS2. But they sound like they have not work and no real problem solving into how to do it. Commentary Big Tank - In WEC's Big Tank (or at least the Space Marine one), you can't drive and shoot. It also has 5 Tank Guns and what looks like 5 occupant/crew positions. This is a massive change from PS2's 2-man Big Tanks (MBTs) that are often played by just 1 person. I suppose PS2's Sunderer is more similar in operation layout, but WEC's Big Tank doesn't deploy like the Sunderer. For the solo player (like myself) this WEC design seems scary because it seems like playing the Vehicle game might be shut off for solo players. Also, there are issues about how many XP/$ it would take to Cert out a WEC Big Tank (5 guns!) *if* they have the same type of XP/$ Cert system as PS2. And also it asks what the power level different will be between a 2-man WEC Tank and a 5-man WEC Tank. Big Tank footage and commentary Troop Carrier/Mobile Spawn Point - WEC version has 1 Driver, 1 Weapon position, and 8 Passenger seats. Seems like it would be vulnerable with it's only 1 gun. 40K tabletop game allows up to 2 guns and also has hatches that passengers can use to fire their own guns. Footage Entering and Driving Footage Deploying Start Location - PS2 in Delpoy Sreen or VR. WEC in Strike Cruiser in orbit w/ Strategarium (Command? or like PS2's Map?), Sensorium (is that like PS2's Map?), Training Cage (like PS2's VR for melee?), Shooting Range (like PS2's VR for Vehciles/Projectile Weapons?) Commentary Drop Pod or Tomahawk (drop ship) - Not sure what a Drop Ship is or does Commentary Scope-In Scopes - In PS2 they have Clear Visible area and the rest is black. In WEC they have Clear Visible aea and the rest is transparent so you can still see around. Footage Innovation -------------- Taunt - Players can animate a Taunt/Cheer in game. Footage Footage 0 life is notDead. 0 Life players are near dead players and are incapacitated and other players can choose to Heal (ally) or Execute (enemy) them. Icons to Execute or Heal them is located above their heads of Near Dead players, and performing each leads to the corresponding effect plus an animation sequence. Explanation of Near Death Execute and Heal Execute Cover system - I think they're talking about players activating terrain to enter states of less vulnerability to enemy fire. Commentary about Commentary mentions the term Block vs. Fire: protects you Commentary Break Blocks: kick, bash, shoulder charge, aerial attack Commentary Heroes - "extremely powerful" can do things like opening rifts to summon demons on 200 advancing troops. When spawn a hero there is an angelic chorus and everyone knows, When he exhausts power he is very vulnerable and gives lot of loot and requisition points if killed. need requisition points from the whole squad to spawn, have to decide who will spawn as him. Once spawn, everyone on Map (Base or Continent?) will know: allies must protect and enemies will try to kill. Footage in Game Footage in Game Loot - They mention look from killing Heroes. I don't know what this entails. Is there loot on the Hero corpse? Is it just Requisition points? (and if so, will a lot of stuff be locked out of player use by Requisition points? PS2 is Resources are currently VERY easy for many players to get an run their Vehicles full time) Or is Requisition just for Heroes? Commentary mention of Loot Commentary mention of Loot Races (Factions) - 1) Space Marines ("Astarte" = modified super soldier humans) 2) Chaos Space Marines (Ex-Space Marines Sould Corrupted by Demons) 3) Eldar (Space Elfs, like Protoss) 4) Orks (Space Orcs... hence the "k") 5) Tyranid (like Xenomorphs in Aliens license, like Zerg)(Non-Playable Chracters - NPC) So they have 4 different playable Factions instead of 3... unless they are going to run mixed Ally events/conditions to reduce them to less than 4. Not sure how 3 (PS2) vs. 4 (WEC) compares. I'll cover the NPC faction below. (Note 6: this is my understanding of what are in it, I may be wrong) Sub-Factions -Each Faction will additionally offer a choice of 4 Sub-Factions to play as. Each of these factions will have custom versions of Weapons to choose from. This sounds like PS2's Empire Specific notion taken to extreme lengths. Can you imagine the nightmare of choosing the "wrong" Sub-Faction and get stuck having leveled up a weak version of your Class? And what kind of Design + Art Team nightmare in making (and balancing) 16 Versions of every Sub-Faction Weapon variation? And think of all the Characters and Character Slots you'd need to be able to play all those different characters. This also makes a 40K game that adds more factions (Nercons? playable Tyranids? Dark Eldar? Imperial Guard? etc.) or Sub-Factions, into either an Exponential Development nightmare or a game that just isn't balance policed. Commentary on Sub-Factions Melee Attack: Kick - Infantry player (or at least Space Marines) have a Kick attack Footage Movement - Roll: can role forwards, sideways, and backwards. Footage Lore & Writer - Graham McNeil (Writer for GW books) is doing the lore, tying it in to 40K book universe. PS2 has some great lore, but they don't bring it into the game much. I like Graham McNeil's writing, but I have no idea in what capacity WEC will use their lore, or if it will be used more than PS2's Lore. Commentary Elite Player Bling (aka Progression System) - Purity seals, head of enemies, chaos blessing Talk about Progression System Talk about Progression System Revenue Model (aka how game makes money) - PS2 is F2P, Eternal Crusade is Founder System with full cost pre-order game (different tiers, $40? base buyin) + buyable cosmetics. Average player prepaid so far is stated as $100. These are 2 very different Revenue Models. I don't think PS2 can really get much from this, unless it's what influences the Revenue Model for PS3. Also, Eternal Crusade is still in early development and may never come to market, and it may also change it's Revenue Model at some point as well. Commentary Commentary Commentary Squad Leader AoE Bonus - Squad members near the Squad Leader get a mitigation bonus Commentary Infantry Model Interacts With Objects - Infantry plants his hand on and leaps over boxes Game Footage Campaign System - lasts from 1-2 weeks, changes the pace, everything is based on positive reinforcement. I'm not really clear on what it is from the explanation. But it sounds like a system that we should find out more about so we can figure out the pros and cons. Commentary Commentary Squad Member "Engagement Radar" -Shows symbols for Class and relative position, or each member in the Squad. Game Footage Destructible Base Components - Shoot a gate (vs. activate a Generator Self Destruct to destroy it) Game Footage PvE -They will have an NPC Faction (Tyranids) and Instance PvE player content options. Commentary on NPCs PvE in PvP: thematic - they will have fodder NPCS that are in bases to flesh out the theme (like Chaos Cultists in Chaos Bases) Commentary on NPCs PvE in PvP: punishment for bad play - If a faction does not protect their captured territory and gets over extended, NPC Tyranids will spawn and eat up the empty bases and attack the player forces Commentary on NPCs PvE in PvP: Hero Players can summon Demons that will attack enemies. I assume these Demons are NPCs. Commentary Super Big Tanks - Land Raider (for Space Marine) in WEC... maybe? Unlcear. Also not sure how it's different from PS2 Vehicles. Commentary Asymmetrical Balance -PS2 attempts to balance Factions, give them different but comparably powered Empire Specific weapons/units, and allow each Faction access to key strategic type Weapons/Units (with some exceptions like VS Lancer which has no Equal on TR or NC), In WEC it sounds like they're just gonna make wildly different weapons/units across Factions and let players work it out. Commentary Conclusion (Questions) ================= So how does all this impact PS2 and what can/might PS2 get out of it? Which WEC ideas are worth borrowing to the PS2 Roadmap? Even if WEC is never more than Vaporware, it's still a neat fishbowl situation to see some alternative ideas that might be great for PS2. And if WEC does come to fruition and joins the MMOFPS shelf space, what does that mean for PS2 (or PS3?) and the future of the MMO1/3PS?