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Old 2012-05-06, 04:30 PM   [Ignore Me] #1
The Kush
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G4tv Article regarding populations


I was interested to see if G4tv had announced plans to cover Planetside 2 at E3. G4tv is my source along with millions of other gamers for gaming news, reviews, and of course every year at the start of June their 24/7 coverage of the E3 expo. I thought it was funny how their website has the release date of Planetside 2 in 2030.. But the reason I am posting is to further speculate on a beta release before E3. This is part of G4's most recent article on Planetside 2, these points have been brought up before but now it has really dawned on me how absolutely crucial it is that the world sees planetside for what it is, a MMOFPS, and that's something you just can't see with 50 guys running around. The article says;

"The return of Planetside is a pretty big deal for PC gaming and with what we’ve seen so far there’s no question as to why: it’s more Planetside. But there’s still questions that need to be answered and technical aspects that need to be addressed. For Planetside 2 to succeed SOE need to hit this multiple thousand player threshold, but we still haven’t seen any indication of what it will look like with more than 30 people in a world at once.

That’s the kind of thing that will make or break the experience for players, and it needs to be a primary focus for them. I’m hopeful that this will be addressed in the coming months leading up to release through a beta or some other form of exhibition. Because at this point, a free-to-play MMOFPS doesn’t mean anything if there is no one to shoot at."

Just wanted to hear everyone's thoughts on the matter. How do you think the world will view Planetside 2 if beta hasn't been released yet and there are no massive fights? SOE said it themselves that first impressions are huge. I am extremely sad to think a demonstration of the game without the massive scale is going to turn away a lot of potential customers. Where as a demonstration with the massive scale will be a smash hit, receive lots of coverage, and bring in lots of players.

Obviously the devs are working hard, and I trust their decision in the end. But I really hope the game is shown in massive scale, because I personally believe (along with other major gaming sites) that this will make or break the game. And what better time to show this epicness then the most epic gaming stage of all, E3. If beta isn't ready that's fine, then I just want to hear how big of an impact showing the game with or without the population is going to be.
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Old 2012-05-06, 06:11 PM   [Ignore Me] #2
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Re: G4tv Article regarding populations


We won't be able to see what PS2 looks like proper until we hit beta as before that the logistics of setting up and gathering enough people for even something as small as a 300 man fight (I love that 300 is small) would be a pretty massive undertaking at a single con.

I guess they could install PS2 alpha client on all the machines at SOE and link in remotely but then you'll probably have info leak problems. As long as the physics engine works, the lag is minimal, and the structure of the game is solidly in place for people to experience then I think they'll do fine.
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Old 2012-05-06, 06:58 PM   [Ignore Me] #3
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Re: G4tv Article regarding populations


I've commented on population issues in the past by predicting that like other MMOs there will be an initial boom in player numbers resulting from mainstream attention. Following this, mainstream players will begin to drop off, heading to other games, leaving many servers with half-empty populations, or worse.

If SOE are careful, and put the same amount of planning into server deployment as BioWare did with Star Wars: The Old Republic, we should be okay. If not, it is likely that we'll see some server mergers.

Going on a slight tangent, this is why I wish someone would take a long look at how a single-shard open world ground-based MMO can work. A massive persistent open world dynamically generated before the game is launched with areas being fenced off as separate but unique instances having transport instances bridging the gaps and dynamic resource allocation which distributes players around the game world in a stable manner would be my approach to that issue.
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Old 2012-05-07, 10:56 AM   [Ignore Me] #4
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Re: G4tv Article regarding populations


Originally Posted by Bluecewe View Post
I've commented on population issues in the past by predicting that like other MMOs there will be an initial boom in player numbers resulting from mainstream attention. Following this, mainstream players will begin to drop off, heading to other games, leaving many servers with half-empty populations, or worse.
The OP is talking about E3, though.

With regard to E3 specifically, if they do the same thing as GDC and have 50-100 players corralled in one area of the map, it will feel almost as impressive as launch day with maximum pops.

Just for the record, players don't have to be "trapped" in one area of the overall map, but just have a few designated spawn points in the middle of the action that sort of directs the fighting to one big hotspot.
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Old 2012-05-07, 11:36 AM   [Ignore Me] #5
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Re: G4tv Article regarding populations


Originally Posted by The Kush View Post
Just wanted to hear everyone's thoughts on the matter. How do you think the world will view Planetside 2 if beta hasn't been released yet and there are no massive fights? SOE said it themselves that first impressions are huge. I am extremely sad to think a demonstration of the game without the massive scale is going to turn away a lot of potential customers. Where as a demonstration with the massive scale will be a smash hit, receive lots of coverage, and bring in lots of players.
As I've stated earlier in other threads, I personally don't believe that a playable PS2 at this years E3 is a good idea without PS2Beta being live.

In PlanetSide, "massive" is one of the core features of the game and is also helping to "shine light" on the other features and aspects of the game as well. Without having "massive", the rest of the features and aspects of the game doesn't look as impressive and the concept doesn't really stick out as much as it currently does. If they are going to showcase PS2 at E3 this year they have to, IMO, show the real deal that is PS. They've been promising and assuring people, media and fans enough already. They have built up somewhat of a hype, they need to release the kracken and not just a fraction of it.

IF they can't do this now, I would calmly take a step back, go the secure route of showing videos, giving out content in form of interviews, pictures and all that jazz. Giving them the chance to reveal PS2 the right way, at the next major event or the event after that.

What the "right" way to do this is, I have no idea. I'm not a developer, publisher or expert in the area in any way. All I have is the experience of being a longtime gamer and an avid follower of game-development. (Sometimes it's more fun to follow the devepment of a game than later playing it. I'm sure some of you have had this feeling at least one point in their lifes.)
Since I'm a original PS-player I do not need convincing, I'll be here almost whatever they decide to do with the game. What they need to focus on is the people that has very little to no information of the game and maybe even the entire genre itself.

I've done my best in getting my gamerfriends interested in PS2, so far only two of them has been able to see the potential of awesomeness PS2 has. Whereas one of them is already an old PS-player. This says a lot, even with the current decent amount of content, videos and screenshots there is, only a fraction of my friends acknowledge PS2's existance even remotely. Which brings us back to the subject at hand, for SOE to open their eyes(the potential fans eyes) they need to bring PS2 to an event with a big bang, leaving the people there thinking "WTF just happened?!".

I have no doubt in my mind that SOE knows this, which again brings us back to the concept of "massive". They need it, however they do it, be it hosting a huge "playevent" at SOE headquarters for their employees, be it releasing Beta, I don't really care how they do it. All I care about is that it gets done and that it gets done GOOD!

TL;DR - Sorry, much rambling from my side here. I'm trying to highlight the importance of showcasing PS2 as being the massive MMOFPS they say it is and want it to be.

Last edited by Lorgarn; 2012-05-07 at 11:39 AM.
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Old 2012-05-07, 11:47 AM   [Ignore Me] #6
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Re: G4tv Article regarding populations


After giving it some thought - they don't need to have it open and playable at E3. They can get through it with carefully choreographed set-piece videos which they might even be making right now.

Massive isn't easily demonstrated by "OMG theres 300 people on the screen" because that isn't how it will be, all the time - the maps are 8km Squared, so there will be major battles and some relatively small skirmishes even on a server with 2000 people. When you log in, it won't be you with 1999 others, it'll be you with anywhere between 50-500 others, while the rest of the population fights elsewhere.

The best way to differenciate between PS2 and other shooters, imo, is by showing you what they can't - a major mixed battle with everything going on, maybe one thats exclusively air units, or en exclusive tank battle - because there are no limits on vehicle pulling at the same time.

Even 30v30 would be impressive to me, if they were all in mosquito/reaver/scythes in the same area.
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Old 2012-05-07, 12:26 PM   [Ignore Me] #7
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Re: G4tv Article regarding populations


Originally Posted by Kipper View Post
After giving it some thought - they don't need to have it open and playable at E3. They can get through it with carefully choreographed set-piece videos which they might even be making right now.

Massive isn't easily demonstrated by "OMG theres 300 people on the screen" because that isn't how it will be, all the time - the maps are 8km Squared, so there will be major battles and some relatively small skirmishes even on a server with 2000 people. When you log in, it won't be you with 1999 others, it'll be you with anywhere between 50-500 others, while the rest of the population fights elsewhere.

The best way to differenciate between PS2 and other shooters, imo, is by showing you what they can't - a major mixed battle with everything going on, maybe one thats exclusively air units, or en exclusive tank battle - because there are no limits on vehicle pulling at the same time.

Even 30v30 would be impressive to me, if they were all in mosquito/reaver/scythes in the same area.
Exactly, they can't fit 300 on the same screen. That would be a nightware both for the player and the hardware itself. I don't think anyone is asking SOE to attempt achieving this, that would be just silly.

However, what they can do, and should do(IMO) is give the players a taste, or hint if you will, of the scale of PS2. There might only be smaller battles, such as the ones you're describing, but they shouldn't just happen in one very small area/location of the map. Players should be able to lift up for the first time in a mosq, gain altitude and see that there is battles going on basically in each direction they're looking at. They pop up the map, seeing that it's indeed changing all the time. Hexes and being lost, conquered and fought over constantly.
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Old 2012-05-07, 12:42 PM   [Ignore Me] #8
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Re: G4tv Article regarding populations


Devs have no choice but to let all of us hard-core players into Beta before E3 so we can get all into the game and get some fights rolling!
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Old 2012-05-07, 12:45 PM   [Ignore Me] #9
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Re: G4tv Article regarding populations


Originally Posted by SniperSteve View Post
Devs have no choice but to let all of us hard-core players into Beta before E3 so we can get all into the game and get some fights rolling!
Brilliant Idea
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Old 2012-05-07, 12:54 PM   [Ignore Me] #10
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Re: G4tv Article regarding populations


Originally Posted by SniperSteve View Post
Devs have no choice but to let all of us hard-core players into Beta before E3 so we can get all into the game and get some fights rolling!
QFT

But honestly... they can chose to show off a 30 vs 30 man battle close up, and it'll look massive and cool. Or they can show off a 300 vs 300 man battle in true PS style, from a far away over view type thing... and that'll seriously blow minds. So no, it's not just as good a first impression with the smaller scale battle.

But like OP said... if beta isn't ready in time for E3, I'm fine with that as well. Don't rush any aspect of this game, please.
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Old 2012-05-07, 01:12 PM   [Ignore Me] #11
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Re: G4tv Article regarding populations


Originally Posted by Lorgarn View Post
Exactly, they can't fit 300 on the same screen. That would be a nightware both for the player and the hardware itself. I don't think anyone is asking SOE to attempt achieving this, that would be just silly.
No it wouldn't. I would expect and hope SOE achieve a number as high as that on one screen.

PS1 had a limit of 60(?) before it stop rendering players on one screen.
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Old 2012-05-07, 01:13 PM   [Ignore Me] #12
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Re: G4tv Article regarding populations


Originally Posted by SniperSteve View Post
Devs have no choice but to let all of us hard-core players into Beta before E3 so we can get all into the game and get some fights rolling!
I wish!
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Old 2012-05-07, 01:31 PM   [Ignore Me] #13
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Re: G4tv Article regarding populations


Originally Posted by IronMole View Post
No it wouldn't. I would expect and hope SOE achieve a number as high as that on one screen.
I don't see it being needed - even if there's a 300 man battle in my immediate vicinity, I wouldn't expect them to be all huddled together in my viewing angle.

There'd be people in front, behind, and to the sides. There'd be vehicles in the air, in the distance, middle distance and close up.

Now if you're IN the air, or you're a sniper with a good position on a ridge, I'd expect you to be able to see a lot more going on, but even then - while you're still close enough to pick out infantry, I can't see you being able to see more than 60-100 units even being optimistic. Doesn't mean they won't be there, it just means battles will be spread.

Of course, the exceptions to that rule are outfits/empires getting together for screenshot purposes or generally assembling troops for a co-ordinated movement - and giant clusterfucks around a doorway. Though base design and what we've heard about capture mechanics this time around suggests that its designed to keep people spread out a bit more.
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Old 2012-05-07, 01:31 PM   [Ignore Me] #14
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Re: G4tv Article regarding populations


Originally Posted by IronMole View Post
No it wouldn't. I would expect and hope SOE achieve a number as high as that on one screen.

PS1 had a limit of 60(?) before it stop rendering players on one screen.
What I'm trying to say is that the number of players on the screen isn't necessarily the most important aspect to this game. (Again, IMO) For me it is that "massive" aspect I was talking about earlier that is important.

Instead of thinking "X amount of players on the screen", I prefer to think of it as "X amount of battles going on simultaneously". While naturally, each of these battles can either be as large or as small as the situation calls for.
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Old 2012-05-07, 01:55 PM   [Ignore Me] #15
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Re: G4tv Article regarding populations


The point isn't tho jam as many visible players on the screen as possible together at the same time, it's to show off the actual size of the battle taking place. Fine... 300 was a tad over exaggerated, but you get the point. Showing off the massive scale of the battles isn't achieved by showing one guy running around in first person mode. They'll most likely show that as well, but to show how incredible large a battle can be, which imo is one of the main things that sets PS apart from other FPS games, they need more players than on a 64 player BF3 server....
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