Dev Roundtable with Matt Higby Recording - PlanetSide Universe
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The recording for our very first Developer Round Table with Matt Higby has been posted! We were also joined by Kevin Moyer and Josh Sanchez during the broadcast to talk Vehicles and Weapons! We touched on a huge amount of topics from the Mission System to Heavy Assault and more. Be sure to check out the video directly on YouTube for a table of contents to all the topics.

We also announced that PlanetSide Universe Members will be receiving a 10% discount to SOE Live! More details are coming very soon. As always please hit up the comments thread and let us know your thoughts on the show! And remember to follow us on Twitch.tv and YouTube so you never miss a show! The next episode of AGN will be announced soon.

16 comments
2012-09-09 12:19 AM
Latest Comments
2012-09-09 12:57 AM
Carbanu
Re: Dev Roundtable with Matt Higby Recording

Discount to SOE Live?! Sweet!

I am a little butt ravaged by the galaxy discussion though....
2012-09-09 03:34 AM
Tatwi
Re: Dev Roundtable with Matt Higby Recording

Thanks Hamma, Jenny, Matt, Basti, CaptainInsanio, and LunarChild for the show and the kewl codin' doods at SOE.

Sorry for bustin' yer balls about the 5 year / 5 minute player thing the other day, Matt. Getting caught up in the principle of matters is one of the things I do best! It's a tough spot, because on one hand you want to ensure that players feel like they have compelling long term progression and on the other hand, you want players to have an enjoyable moment to moment game play experience. Hitting that mark just right will stop PS2 from being, "the best game I ever played, for the first 3 months I played it", as I have read was a big problem with PS1. Personally, I don't think I would have made the comment in the first place (had I been in your shoes), but hind sight is 20-20. Going forward, I think it's fair to say that genuinely new players who only play for free will do well enough to have fun while playing as part of a team, but in certain aspects of the game they won't be as competitive. That's fine really, so long as they are able to have fun without feeling like fodder.

One thing I would suggest to give to everyone though is flares on aircraft. Start if off with long cooldown and use the certs to make it better. That way a truly new person will at least have a chance to cut and run from an AA missile, even if they are ultimately followed and destroy. It's always nice to be able to try and defend yourself.

Anyhow, I really enjoy your broadcasts, Hamma. You've got a good sense of humor and a quick wit that makes me laugh!
2012-09-09 03:39 AM
Diehard
Re: Dev Roundtable with Matt Higby Recording

Thx man
2012-09-09 05:10 AM
Helwyr
Re: Dev Roundtable with Matt Higby Recording

Great stuff! Love this sort of open communication from the PS2 development team, and Hamma and his crew doing a great job of getting it to us.

Couple of comments I have on topics that came up:

Tanks/ passenger as the Gunner: Really does sound like the best option is simply a new heavy tank that requires 3 crew. Driver (get forward mounted AI weapon, Main Gunner (heavy hitting AV cannon on a turret) Third gunner (specialized weapon including AA options). They could even make it NS rather than empire specific to begin with so people get it sooner (one tank to design rather than three)

Sunderer (my ideas for making it better): Rather than turn it into an AMS, it could have a deployable transport pad (like the ones already on bases..biolab for example). Two Sunderers on the same hex can link to one another if both are deployed and infantry can transport between them. Requires both vehicles be in stationary locked down deployed mode. This wouldn't be as powerful as a spawn point, but it could make the vehicle a much more valuable strategic asset getting troops to the fight much faster with careful placement.

Also Fire ports for all infantry on board where they can use their own rifle from the vehicle would be nice, but I imagine hard to implement.

Cert Upgrades (Hamma's last question): I understand Higby's answer about trade offs, but my problem with this, and it applies to infantry as well as vehicles, is the lack of flexibility. Take Hamma's Galaxy example, instead of having to choose 100% deceleration OR acceleration boost, why can't he choose 50% of each? There's still a trade off if your picking based on percentages or points rather than all or nothing in this slot system.

On a related note I really wish someone had asked about the class system and Higby's response to a lot of PS1 vets issues with it, and if there was hope that it would at least replicate what we could do with the inventory system. Which basically comes down to more flexibility, but not less tradeoffs.

One last thing, I want a Vanu version of the flag Higby had!
2012-09-09 06:19 AM
ringring
Re: Dev Roundtable with Matt Higby Recording

Thanks, Matt, Jenny, Matt and everyone.

But slightly disappointed because you didn't ask the big question, namely the meta game question - which is related to additional continents, footholds, sanctuary and sense of fighting in a world and not stand-alone maps - ie scale.
2012-09-09 10:49 AM
Hamma
Re: Dev Roundtable with Matt Higby Recording

Originally Posted by Helwyr View Post
Tanks/ passenger as the Gunner: Really does sound like the best option is simply a new heavy tank that requires 3 crew. Driver (get forward mounted AI weapon, Main Gunner (heavy hitting AV cannon on a turret) Third gunner (specialized weapon including AA options). They could even make it NS rather than empire specific to begin with so people get it sooner (one tank to design rather than three)
Totally agreed here!
2012-09-09 11:35 AM
EVILPIG
Re: Dev Roundtable with Matt Higby Recording

Higgles rocking his 666th Devil Dogs shirt!
2012-09-09 12:21 PM
Tiberius
Re: Dev Roundtable with Matt Higby Recording

I think a good way to get situational information to players without it being in their face and in the way is to put a small tickler alert of which bases are being attacked and those that have been captured on the HUD. Then have a more complete version of it on the map so if you see something you want to respond to, you go to the map, see the details (like troop numbers, outfits involved) and can decide wether you want to move and respond.

What do you guys think?
2012-09-09 02:53 PM
ringring
Re: Dev Roundtable with Matt Higby Recording

Originally Posted by Tiberius View Post
I think a good way to get situational information to players without it being in their face and in the way is to put a small tickler alert of which bases are being attacked and those that have been captured on the HUD. Then have a more complete version of it on the map so if you see something you want to respond to, you go to the map, see the details (like troop numbers, outfits involved) and can decide wether you want to move and respond.

What do you guys think?
Not quite like that, I don't think.

If there is a base under attack that should be about as much as the game tells you. You then find out the rest by either going there or being informed by your squad mates or outfit mates or on command chat if you have it.

In other words intelligence should human driven.

I'd say, the game should push no tactical information at you, you should be proactive about it.

I did like the idea of the ticker tho. I think it would be good to pass on information on an outfit member who has just dinged, or maybe someone on your empire who has just achieved cr5.

I didn't care for it to give congrats to an outfit for capturing a base, if an outfit deserves congrats for good work then other players should decided when to give a pat on the back or not. And from experience, players would do that.

In terms of automated pats on the back, I've thought the 'game' could award outfit merits for the big fights. On this, the game could analyse the previous days operations, decide whether a fight was big or not based on activity within the locality and award a medal to participating outfits. - It could be done, the data is already being captured it just needs to be analysed and real time analysis isn't necessary.
2012-09-09 03:05 PM
Helwyr
Re: Dev Roundtable with Matt Higby Recording

One other thing I forgot to mention from the discussion, Bolt action sniper rifles.

Higby said that it's possible that the VS/TR bolt action sniper rifles (in the shop) may not kill in one shot to the head. I think he also said to the effect that they hadn't decided 100% yet whether even the NC ones should do that.

I think it's pretty fair to say that without the ability to kill in one shot to the head those rifles will be pretty useless, and players will just gravitate en masse to the semi-auto sniper rifles.
2012-09-09 03:13 PM
derito
Re: Dev Roundtable with Matt Higby Recording

If bolt action loose its one shot ability but gets no damage reduction at range it might have a niche.
2012-09-10 03:15 AM
Khorneholio
Re: Dev Roundtable with Matt Higby Recording

I'd like to add a thought to the bolt action sniper discussion. Here's what I would want to see out of that type of weapon:

A bolt action non-one shot rifle with a unique optics system which allows the shooter to see enemy health levels. "Battlefield cleaner" would be an awesome sniper role. Pick off wounded targets of opportunity without placing full health soldiers at risk of becoming the victims of a One shot kill.
2012-09-10 07:24 AM
CutterJohn
Re: Dev Roundtable with Matt Higby Recording

In regards to the last question, regarding vehicle upgrades(and infantry, for that matter).

I think it would be very beneficial to be able to combine two upgrades, rather than just one.

With two, you get far more permutations for customization. Using the vehicle defenses example, for instance..

-Top armor
-Side armor
-Rear armor
-Smoke(eventually)

Thats 4. So you can swap between four possibilities here.

If you can pick 2, however, there are 6 different combinations. If there were 5 options, there are 10 combinations. With 6 options, you get 15 combinations, etc, etc. Each new addition adds a ton of new possibilities and playstyles.

This makes the vehicles much more customizable, and it also allows players to be... faithful, i suppose, to a particularly favored customization without feeling like they can never pick another.

Cloakers for instance, have the singular camo that allows them to stay permanently cloaked without the sniper rifle. Which is going to be a very popular one. It completely changes the class up. But that also means that people playing that style of cloaker will rarely be able to enjoy some of the others.

I don't think you should be able to wear ALL of the upgrades at once, but using two should make for much, much more diversity in builds.
2012-09-10 09:06 AM
derito
Originally Posted by CutterJohn View Post
In regards to the last question, regarding vehicle upgrades(and infantry, for that matter).

I think it would be very beneficial to be able to combine two upgrades, rather than just one.

With two, you get far more permutations for customization. Using the vehicle defenses example, for instance..

-Top armor
-Side armor
-Rear armor
-Smoke(eventually)

Thats 4. So you can swap between four possibilities here.

If you can pick 2, however, there are 6 different combinations. If there were 5 options, there are 10 combinations. With 6 options, you get 15 combinations, etc, etc. Each new addition adds a ton of new possibilities and playstyles.

This makes the vehicles much more customizable, and it also allows players to be... faithful, i suppose, to a particularly favored customization without feeling like they can never pick another.

Cloakers for instance, have the singular camo that allows them to stay permanently cloaked without the sniper rifle. Which is going to be a very popular one. It completely changes the class up. But that also means that people playing that style of cloaker will rarely be able to enjoy some of the others.

I don't think you should be able to wear ALL of the upgrades at once, but using two should make for much, much more diversity in builds.
One problem with such customisation would be threshold effects. For example, in the case of armor upgrades chances are that it could make either the full or half bonus useless. The reason is that, since vehicles can sustain very few hits, a slight difference in damage mitigation will either do nothing or drastically increase the survivability.


To illustrate lets say a tank has 100 hp and rockets deal 25 damage points. It would take 4 hits to destroy a tank. Now imagine an upgrade reducing damage received by 20%. Rockets would inflict 20 damage points and it would take 5 rockets to destroy the tank. However with a half bonus of 10%, rockets would deal 22.5 damage points but it would still take 5 rockets to down a tank.
You could of course make it so a half bonus would be enough to require 5 rockets and the full bonus enough to require 6 but then you're giving a really big survivability bonus (50% more hits) that the devs may not want to give for balance purpose.

Of course it may be possible to include the double specialisation nonetheless, but the work required to balance it may very well not be worth it.

Edit: I should read better and stop using a phone for this :banghead:
2012-09-10 11:50 AM
Hamma
Re: Dev Roundtable with Matt Higby Recording

Two slots for customization 100% agreed I would love to see this. The UI also needs to make it clear you can only use one (or two) at a time.
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