#1 Edited by Seppli (10250 posts) -

The guys from the Rebel-FM podcast over at www.eat-sleep-game.com asked themselves, why anyone would play Battlefield over Planetside - and they weren't able to provide any answers. That is quite baffling to me, and I think worthy of discussion. To keep my answer most broadly, Planetside 2 - to me - is a fascinating experience before it's a gripping game. The fascination comes from its enormous scale and persistent world in conflict. Which is both its strength and its biggest flaw.

The following is why I prefer playing any core Battlefield game over Planetside 2...

  • Pacing (both the moment to moment gameplay, as well as overall progression, is way faster paced in Battlefield - due to not being persistent massively multiplayer on a nigh endless landmass, and not being hampered by being free 2 play)
  • Balance (while huge battles with player controlled unrestricted vehicle spawns does lead to awesome experiences, balance too is player-driven, and not inherent to map design, and can be extremely out of whack)
  • Fidelity (the fidelity of the overall presentation, as well as of physics and ballistics, will always be higher definition with a more limited experience)
  • Breadth (there's infinite ways to play Battlefield, from tight CoD-esque CQC maps, to immense landscapes full with jets and choppers and tanks and what have you - and anything inbetween)

Most importantly however. Battlefield offers a win-state. I play competitive online games to win them. To best my enemies and strive for being first amongst my peers. Planetside 2 doesn't offer that. It does offer a great Battlefield experience, but it's no replacement for an actual Battlefield game. A game that can't be won, isn't really a game I want to play - so I'm still playing Battlefield over Planetside.

How about you guys?

#2 Posted by DefaultProphet (551 posts) -

Battlefied runs better too.

#3 Edited by RandomInternetUser (6789 posts) -

I have no interest in Planetside 2, but BF3 is probably my favorite multiplayer FPS ever. Maybe it's me not knowing/having the wrong impression of Planetside, but the only similarities from what I can tell are the vehicles, huge maps, and some game modes.(?)

Also:

FUCK SPACE GUNS. I hate space guns.

#4 Posted by Funkydupe (3321 posts) -

I've started playing Battlefield 3 again and I like it better now than I did around the time of its release. I only own one expansion but I'm having fun.

I 100% agree on win/lose conclusion to a fight. It is nice to have an ending, even though it is reset and people have at each other again. Not including a way for someone to say; We won this time around; is seriously ruining the point of any type of fighting/war game for me.

I also think that players need to lose sometimes to truly appreciate winning.

#5 Posted by buft (3320 posts) -

I liked planetside 2 when i started playing it, it offered a much larger scale experience from anything i had played before but i never quite felt i was where the battle was, like i was some slub in the army who always hid at the back and contributed nothing, the areas i would travel too often had 10 or so people there and battles where short affairs with me traveling to the new location to find more fight. I still like it i just wish it was easier to get into the action right or at least give me a tutorial to get me used to interpreting the information im presented with

#6 Posted by Athadam (704 posts) -

They're totally different types of games for different purposes. Battlefield has tighter controls and combat and Planetside is simply massive.

#7 Posted by Funkydupe (3321 posts) -

@Castermhief117: I think the massiveness of it ruins my enjoyment at times. I just feel irrelevant when I look around and I see 200 players strafing and spamming rockets. My best moments in PlanetSide 2 was with people from this forum in small to medium fights.

#8 Posted by spartanlolz92 (511 posts) -

I would enjoy battlefiield if i could ever get into a default server.

the iinsta spawn vehicles kill the balance.

#9 Posted by Funkydupe (3321 posts) -

@spartanlolz92: True there are very few vanilla servers running, at least that is my impression. They all have some sort of tweak, like faster vehicle spawns which seems to be popular but I don't know why.

#10 Posted by Zebracal (74 posts) -

I've been in Battlefield for quite awhile now. After reading this I must try Planetside 2 just to test out your opinions about it.

#11 Posted by Funkydupe (3321 posts) -

@Zebracal: Find a group to play with; if you're lucky you'll find one that has a person with a microphone calling the shots. That'll give the experience in the game some purpose. You'll be annoyed with the lack of progress in unlocking weapons; it is a free to play game so they obviously want you to fork out some money for gear, which is okay if you're having fun. Be sure to trial them first though. Use different characters to trial as one character can only try one weapon and the the trial system needs to cool down. Some of the weapons do not look nor feel different from the starter weapons. The starter weapons are pretty potent.

#12 Posted by Tarsier (1078 posts) -

i didnt like planetside because it is play to win. at least it was when i played. i cant stand non skill based competitive games, especially shooters.

#13 Posted by Funkydupe (3321 posts) -

@Tarsier said:

i didnt like planetside because it is play to win. at least it was when i played. i cant stand non skill based competitive games, especially shooters.

It also has some zerg to win aspects. Some servers have imbalance in faction population. This changes during the course of a day and factions often roll over territories in turn. The common tactic is to all spawn tanks, gather, and just go from one end to the other. When this happens it is pretty much impossible to stop, to a point where you have to go somewhere else to get some enjoyment out of the fights you encounter.

#14 Posted by Extreme_Popcorn (842 posts) -

I like Battlefield because I can jump on a server and play. With Planetside 2, you warp in, hang around the gate while trying to find a good squad then spend 10 minutes travelling to a fight only to get run over by your own tank then spend 5 minutes running back to the fight.

#15 Posted by Casey25 (141 posts) -

Planetside 2's combat feels looser and less refined whether it's on foot, in tanks, or in aircraft. I played it with a couple of friends and getting in a tank in planetside just made me want to play more battlefield. Where battlefield strikes a balance between fluidity (which call of duty titles do well) and weight.

I also didn't really care for Planetside's setting, audio, and visual style. The space marines looked dorky, though i guess the personal mech suit was kinda cool. The "announcer" and chatter also didn't sound that great; it's hard to beat battlefield's in-game chatter "IM GONNA TEAR EM A NEW ASSHOLE", etc.

Its scale and persistence wasn't compelling enough to cover up its shortcomings in these areas for me.

#16 Posted by OfficeGamer (1087 posts) -

@Seppli said:

I play competitive online games to win them. To best my enemies and strive for being first amongst my peers.

is this some kind of poetry? What's wrong with your words man

#17 Posted by Morningstar (2238 posts) -

I don't want to play either, but I'd play battlefield if I had to choose.

#18 Posted by Christoffer (1921 posts) -

Planetside 2 didn't hook me at all. Mostly because the lack of a win/lose state. I never felt that anything mattered. The closest you get to a clean slate is when one side takes over the whole continent, gets bored and log off or jumps to a different continent.

I was never in a good mood when I quit Planetside 2, it was always because I was bored of running between different structures.

Other than that, I thought it was pretty solid shooter. But I prefer BF3.

#19 Edited by ArtisanBreads (3982 posts) -

I'm glad to see this post. I heard RebelFM as well and felt the exact same way you do.

I've heard from many in the press "why would anyone play Battlefield?" after PS2 has released.

What they miss is that there is great focus to the Battlefield experience. As someone who has rarely had friends to play games with consistently, playing PS2 feels like I'm having virtually no impact. Yes, the scale is awesome to see. Yet on my own, I'm not really getting much done. Squads and platoons certainly can, but just joining up with one, I don't feel that involved.

In Battlefield, I feel like I can make an impact and with the scale reduced it's easy to get into a random squad and actually work together.

As well, sure, the persistance is cool, but ultimately some of it is hollow. You capture territory but next time you log in? Gone. Bases all look quite similar.

And last for me, the shooting is not nearly as good as Battlefield. All the control doesn't feel quite as good but as someone who almost always is on foot in this kind of game, the guns just don't handle nearly as well, feel as powerful, or sound as cool.

I may be going for BF3 Premium on my PC. Or may just wait for BF 4, since it's coming this year apparently. I'm willing to give PS2 a try if I can find some dudes to play with but otherwise, it's not perfect. There's still great value in Battlefield's one off matches.

Where should BF go? I think the scale is something to learn from, but I think some of the MMO-ness of PS2 is not. What they should do, is up the scale of the matches to allow more against each other, but keep the one offs and build in more meta game aspects. I think that'd work just fine and eliminate many of PS2's boring aspects.

@Funkydupe said:

@Tarsier said:

i didnt like planetside because it is play to win. at least it was when i played. i cant stand non skill based competitive games, especially shooters.

It also has some zerg to win aspects. Some servers have imbalance in faction population. This changes during the course of a day and factions often roll over territories in turn. The common tactic is to all spawn tanks, gather, and just go from one end to the other. When this happens it is pretty much impossible to stop, to a point where you have to go somewhere else to get some enjoyment out of the fights you encounter.

Last time I was in, I finally got in with a real organized platoon but we were just rolling from spot to spot as an armored column capturing bases with minimal resistance. It's like in Battlefield when you spend a few minutes capturing one or two of the points your enemy isn't defending... except it was dragged out to like an hour of play time vs 5 or 10 mins in BF. Needless to say I was bored shitless. Getting XP but bored as hell.

#20 Edited by believer258 (12184 posts) -

I have played both. While I haven't played Planetside 2 anywhere near long enough to form a conclusive opinion on it, I can tell you that I spent far too much time running around, doing nothing, and I don't want to do much more of that. It's impressive to fire up the game and see masses of people shooting at each other but actually getting to those spots and actually playing the game isn't all that fun.

Battlefield 3, meanwhile, still manages to capture that massive scale, but it's small enough to be manageable and paced well and all that fun stuff.

Damn it, , it's not like I didn't already have enough games that I've fired up for 30 minutes over the past few days. Now you've got me ready to download all 16GB of Battlefield 3 again and play it more.

EDIT: Aw, fuck. It's 18GB.

#21 Edited by seannao (232 posts) -

TL;DR Version_> The win condition in either game is an illusion, Planetside 2's win conditions from holding Tech/Amp/Bio Bases and Continent-Locking need to be made to feel more meaningful to the winning faction.

BF3's pacing is a result of map design entering into the realm of vehicle balance, where in 1942 and BF2, were more open to the terror of vehicles. Ticket limiting put a distinct win condition per map. Planetside 2's map size causes ambushes to appear more often. Player count causes a lot of stalemates and prolonged battles that will endure for as long as the attackers or defenders maintain interest.

BF3 has bad leadership/teamwork functionality. PS2 provides a lot of it, but is still unintuitive to use and most of it is behind an unlock hurdle.

-------------------------------------------------

BF3 fell short for me because of how they shed off a lot of the systems from BF2 and 2142, namely the commander system, and the how map design evolved following games like Battlefield Heroes and Bad Company, where vehicles were made to always move into claustrophobic areas, hilly areas around control points that were so advantageous to infantry that the only vehicle that could advance on them had better be in the sky or be relegated to long distance support.

Also... BF2: Spec Forces had some of the greatest ideas and it was sad not to see them return in BF3. Grappling hooks man. Map access and verticality. Amazing.

BF3 dropped in-squad chat and loads of squad functionality. This was the absolute biggest bummer for me. Back in BF2....Even in public games with complete strangers, I would scour the scoreboards for people to invite to my squad and play with, kick people out who wanted to go snipe somewhere on Wookie Mountain, and have people who were actually interested in playing together and having a good time. Even in defeat, a well fought battle would be a rewarding experience.

It could've benefited enormously from dynamic waypointing in the 3D HUD/3D Spotting System because quite frankly, the Q-Spotting system doesn't provide a simple way to tell your squadmates *persistently* that there's an enemy bad-man over there behind the cover because 1) Q-spotting has ADHD and fades out almost immediately. Bad Company solved it with their recon 007 spotting grenade. For me, as a player in BF2 and 2142, I would as a leader place an ATTACK HERE waypoint by staring at the location in the world, bringing up the communication rose, and selecting attack. POW. A permanent waypoint appears for my squad. Even if I don't speak, the Sword and Smoke and Waypoint might appear on their field of vision and catch their attention. If I keep doing it, it becomes a habit that makes them trust me and maybe a skill they'll take away later to enhance everyone's fun.

2142 made a mistake by only making the SquadLead's wp's reward points if they were control-point sensitive, which is miserable when it's more intelligent to use it for a variety of reasons instead of blindly charge the flag.

Does a game need a win condition?

Philosophically speaking: No. Looking at Battlefield and thinking about it, the conditions for a victory are much smaller.

However, the map resets and a new battle for the same territory is fought over and over again. Why is it upsetting to have that reality plainly shown to the player in Planetside 2, that the territories they're fighting over will not have ultimately been won?

The conditions for victory in Planetside 2 are very lackluster, with the majority of longer-time players saying that the continent ownership bonuses provided don't impact their game almost ever. The exception would be Indar's infantry bonus, and the hard-to-notice impact that holding your own bio/amp stations has on the course of battles (it typically doesn't impact it given that vehicles aren't affected by the loss of either). Even losing a Tech plant isn't a huge deal on most maps, nor is holding it.

So as the game continues to be developed, hopefully they'll have a wider array of bonuses to provide so that bases aren't seen as simple Cert Farms, and as tactically important, emotionally important.

#22 Posted by ArtisanBreads (3982 posts) -

Well thought out post man.

One thing, a lot of the bonuses you suggest for PS2, I think they make sense. However, I don't anticipate them ever going that far with bonuses because they are going to be too focused on maintaining more or less a 33% balance to the three factions. I doubt they ever upset that and in some ways I do agree with it. It's kind of an impossible situation in my mind. If you favor any side too much, even deservedly so by winning, there could be too much piling on and people would complain.

#23 Posted by JerichoBlyth (1044 posts) -

Battlefield has better environments, runs better and the weapon choice is a lot more interesting too.

#24 Posted by Mirado (1054 posts) -

Sound design.

Don't get me wrong, I think the shooting in BF3 is better, I think it looks better, I think the vehicles hand better, and I think the treatise on having a "win-state" as @Seppli

#25 Edited by clstirens (847 posts) -

@DefaultProphet said:

Battlefied runs better too.

I've heard many people say that. What's strange is it's never been true on my systems. I know that hardware can differ, but I always struggle to run BF3 at 60fps on good settings, but planetside 2 runs splendid on mostly high.

@believer258: Worth Every Kilobyte

@seannao: Dude, you've nailed it. Definitely miss the Squad commands from 2 and 2142. Didn't even get a chance to play those two games until after BC1, and even then I didn't play them much before BC2 ( I did play 1942, though). Even then, I feel like DICE has taken a step back on leadership abilities.

Hell, just giving PC players Squad voice chat would have been great :/

#26 Posted by CheapPoison (742 posts) -

I completely agree. It is interesting cause it doesn't have a winstate, but it is also dragged down by now having a clear set goal that could bring you victory.

#27 Posted by Ravenlight (8011 posts) -

I feel like, by merit of its design, it's much easier to get straight to where the fun is in BF3. In contrast, PS2 is sort of like the Dwarf Fortress of large-scale shooters. It doesn't really do a good job of guiding the player to where fun experiences lie. But if the player is willing to put in some work to understand what the bloody fuck is even going on, I think that Planetside 2 has more potential to offer awesome emergent experiences.

That said, I don't think that it's reasonable for the majority of its audience to have to seek out how to actually have fun in PS2. But it's still an evolving game. Eventually there will be much better tutorials and tools to help players have a good time. So if you're not really into PS2 right now, check back in six months and see how the game is changed.

#28 Posted by Gruff182 (875 posts) -

I enjoyed PS2 for a few days, but all it ultimately did was make me go back to Battlefield 3 after a long break.

The Battlefield series is peerless.

#29 Posted by Funkydupe (3321 posts) -

They're working on Battlefield 4. I hope it takes a bigger step forward than BF3 did. Of course trends and demands shift but still, there are no real competition and that is really surprising to me.

#30 Edited by Seppli (10250 posts) -

@Funkydupe said:

They're working on Battlefield 4. I hope it takes a bigger step forward than BF3 did. Of course trends and demands shift but still, there are no real competition and that is really surprising to me.

I think Crytek will try to break into the combined arms market with Homefront 2 - and it could actually be really good too. Crysis 1's multiplayer was kinda geared towards being a Battlefield competitor, but bearly anyone was able to run it, so it never stood a chance.

I'm still sad that neither Halo, nor Crysis took a proper stab at the largescale combined arms genre - just thinking of playing with such empowered infantry within the context of a combined arms game gives me the shivers.

#31 Posted by clstirens (847 posts) -

@Gruff182: I always thought Battlefront rivaled Battlefield. Not quite as good, but very, very close.

Granted, the last entry in that series is very dated, but it beat anything BF could do on consoles at the time.

#32 Posted by big_jon (5782 posts) -

The combat is better, along with the vehicle controls, also I don't like the Planet Side art style.

#33 Posted by Luca717 (130 posts) -

i have both and like both for their own reasons. Battlefield has a smaller scale map and just enough players to constantly keepp you within the action but planetside, until you fully understand how the bio labs work and everything else the game isnt the best. i disnt start to fully enjoy it until i understood the squads and how to approach the battles, this made the game very fun. idk, both are good

#34 Edited by ProfessorEss (7518 posts) -

I just don't think Planetside 2's gameplay is tight enough to compare to Battlefield. 
 
Don't get me wrong, both are competent, but I feel like you can really feel the endless testing and tweaking the Battlefield teams have done over the years to really nail that gameplay.

#35 Posted by Bollard (5838 posts) -

Planetside is boring? That was the main problem I had, and why I never touched it after beta.

#36 Posted by Jrinswand (1711 posts) -

I don't play either of those games, but if I did, it would be BF3. I tried to give Planetside 2 a shot, but I couldn't play it for more than an hour or so.

#37 Posted by Zebracal (74 posts) -

@Funkydupe: I will gladly take your word for it. Thanks for the tips!

#38 Posted by ajamafalous (12147 posts) -

PlanetSide 2 win state: capture the territory you're currently fighting over. It's not that difficult.
 
 
That's the only input I have here, because, although I don't think BF3 is any good (at all, really), it still does most of the other things you mentioned better than PlanetSide 2. Physics/ballistics are a personal preference, though, not something BF3 simply 'does better.'

#39 Posted by Giantstalker (1726 posts) -

BF3:

  • Runs better, looks better, sounds better
  • More balanced, more content
  • Superior shooting model, terrain destructibility

PS2:

  • Large scale emergent gameplay
  • More infantry classes and vehicle customization
  • Bigger, more persistent maps

I think they're both good. I've played a ton (many hundreds of hours) of BF3 in the past, and within the past couple months have switched over to Planetside 2 for variety. Got up to BR 45 so far.

Battlefield is hands down the better game currently, but Planetside 2 does offer something unique and has a lot of potential as they balance stuff and add new content. A proper meta game - something which SOE has promised - could really propel it into something else.

#40 Posted by Branthog (5597 posts) -

Honestly, I don't play either one. I thought that, by this time in BF3's existence, I'd have put in a few thousand hours. I'd been looking forward to it for so damn long! Instead, I find that Dice has somehow managed to completely fuck up the community aspect of it and fragmented the entire user base. I gave up on finding great servers and great communities and stopped playing with a whopping 60 to 70 hours to my name. There are so many different game modes and servers and game types and types of maps and stupid rules and limitations and it's hard to find a solid community with a really great set of maps and game types that don't make you feel like you're only experiencing a small chunk of the game, with a friendly and consistent community that feels like it's different from all the other servers . . . . every time I've tried to find something, I just run into mostly empty servers with a few heavily populated servers that have shit rotations, shit admins, and shit rules. If I wanted to play only two maps, non-stop close-quarters, and have shot-guns and all explosives banned . . . . well, shit why the fuck would I be playing BF3 in the first place?

In short, it just has absolutely none of the appeal of BF2 or CS/CS:S (but not CS:GO which also suffers). In older iterations, I found homes. Homes with fantastic groups of people that were on every day or night that I got to know. With good admins. Great sets of maps and modes and mods. It just felt like I belonged with a group of strangers having a good time for months at a time. Even after hundreds of games of BF3, I never found anything that felt like it was more than just a place to play one round and then jump out because it was kind of shitty.

On the other hand, Planetside 2 . . . I looked forward to that for a very long time, too. Then I played it. For one sitting. I assumed I was going to love it so much that I paid for a month before even logging in. After one sitting of about four hours, I never logged in again. In fact, I forgot about it until Sony charged me a second $15 and I had to remember to find my credentials and log in and disable my account before they charged me a third time.

Planetside 2 is just so much random bullshit that it's not fun for a second. A bunch of random people spawning randomly and firing a bunch of times until someone very quickly kills you (or spending forever waiting until something happens . . . and then dying as soon as some action starts). And it's set up in that same tired bullshit "oh noes, nobody can ever have an advantage, because then it's not fair!' way that drives people out of other games. I spent most of that four hours in my one play session helping take over this giant dome center thing. Then we took it over. And . . . what the fuck?! There were two spawn points inside a building inside our base that just kept letting the other guys swarm in. What the fuck sort of shitty base design is that? Who the fuck says "let's build our headquarters with two teleporters that let the bad guy just spawn into our building so that we're constantly having a bottle-necked fight right here int his corner of the dome, until they eventually squeeze past us, take over, and then we start over on the outside and reverse the roles"?! It was just so utterly fucking boring and repetitive. And, on top of it, I never heard a single person use a mic the entire time. Shit, I barely ever saw more than two people from our squad in the same section of the map. I don't even know if they fucking realized they were in a fucking squad.

So. . . packed my shit up. Regretted I spent so long looking forward to the game.

At this point, I guess BF4 is the next thing I'm looking forward to. Unfortunately, it's sounding to be an even bigger DLC shit-fest and probably will cater even less to building communities and allowing diverse server experiences than BF3 did, so . . . I should probably temper my expectations.

It's really too bad Red Orchestra 2 has such a small player base.

#41 Posted by Bubbly (258 posts) -

Battlefield 3 is definitely tighter and you get to the action quicker, but man, those times in PS2 when you're part of multiple coordinated platoons and you drop from galaxies/roll up in sundies in a super hot area (we're talking multiple factions and platoons here) and fight like crazy for an objective is why I keep playing. There can be a lot of downtime depending on what time you're playing, but there really isn't anything out there like it. Since Destiny will be on current gen consoles I don't think it will be able to compete with the scale of PS2 and scratch that large scale itch that I've always come to MMO's for. I still have my reservations about the F2P model and the stuff you can buy (pretty sure I made a post on it somewhere here), but I ended up spending $30 (which is very little considering how much money I spent on the original) and was able to acquire most of the stuff I wanted. I played the original for years so I'll probably buy a membership for a bit just to support them like I did back then. I am a bit worried for SOE when it comes to their financials for this game. I think they still have a VERY long way to go when it comes to resources and the meta game, and there will always be problems inherent to the scale of the game (population during certain times, downtime, etc.), but there is so much more potential and I believe the game can become truly great.

To be a tad more relevant to the topic, I think they are pretty different games that are accomplishing different things. I like them both, but for different reasons. I've never really had a huge problem when it comes to the win state in PS2, but it seems like a lot of people are in a different mindset than me. It's awesome when my faction takes over a continent and my platoon played a big part in it, but whenever my faction wins a big battle for a Bio Lab or something it's always a satisfying victory for me. Still, I agree that that stuff or the game as a whole isn't anywhere near perfect, and hopefully SOE can fix it. I do like some of the stuff they're doing with the Roadmap though.

#42 Posted by Hippie_Genocide (729 posts) -

@seannao said:

Does a game need a win condition?

Philosophically speaking: No. Looking at Battlefield and thinking about it, the conditions for a victory are much smaller.

However, the map resets and a new battle for the same territory is fought over and over again. Why is it upsetting to have that reality plainly shown to the player in Planetside 2, that the territories they're fighting over will not have ultimately been won?

The conditions for victory in Planetside 2 are very lackluster, with the majority of longer-time players saying that the continent ownership bonuses provided don't impact their game almost ever. The exception would be Indar's infantry bonus, and the hard-to-notice impact that holding your own bio/amp stations has on the course of battles (it typically doesn't impact it given that vehicles aren't affected by the loss of either). Even losing a Tech plant isn't a huge deal on most maps, nor is holding it.

I think anytime there is conflict without resolution its ultimately unsatisfying. But saying that the win-state in BF3 is an illusion because the game iterates on itself, to me is false. I don't associate a lack of persistence with a lack of a win-state. That makes as much sense as saying there is no win-state in Poker because another hand will be dealt with the same players. The fact that you can replay the same map on the same team over and over again is part and parcel with the suspension of disbelief that we all must have when we play an online game.