I totally agree. I always used to buy those cheap $15 logitech headsets, then moved up to a $40 Creative headset. I thought that (stereo still) headset sounded amazing. I recently upgraded to a Logitech G930 and daaaaayyuumm. Enough cannot be said for how good a 7.1 headset sounds.
I agree that progression is godawful, but the game itself is fun and I like playing it even with the base gear. Haven't come across anyone that was miles ahead of me in terms of stuff and made the game not-fun, but I could see that happening in a few months' time.
While I understand the frustration, if progression is the only thing you are getting from a shooter... that's a bad sign.
This is essentially how I feel. The progression systems in modern shooters aren't exactly "fun" to me, so I don't really see the problem.
The problem comes not from the existence of progression per se, but from the locking away of what makes a shooter enjoyable (guns, power ups, vehicles, what have you). If everything was available to him from the get-go, I'm sure he'd have no such problems with the game. Progression is the only thing most people get from shooters anymore because it's what most developers build their entire game around. And unfortunately in the case of Planetside 2, that progression is required for the F2P model to work.
I'll take the extra copy of The Ship if no one has claimed it yet. I've been intrigued by that game for over a year now, but not enough to drop the $20 asking price without knowledge of a community of some kind.
On a somewhat related note, does anyone happen to know if Blur on the PC has any sort of online presence to speak of? After the dev shut down, I wasn't sure if the online dried up overnight, or if there were still people playing it. 'Tis a shame, what happened with that game. It really did have potential masked behind some of the shittiest marketing.