Review Impressions On “Planetside 2” Construction Update

“Planetside 2” has gotten one of its largest and most anticipated updates in recent memory- a base construction system. The update now allows players to harvest a new resource, Cortium, with specialized vehicles, and use it to build their own structures across the battlefield. With this new system comes an interesting new way to capture continents- generators that over time accumulate points which can allow the faction that built them to take control of a continent.

For the uninitiated, “Planetside 2” is a more than three- year- old game that revolves around powerful factions waging eternal war for the control of four continents on the fictional planet of Auraxis. The war for dominance rolls back and forth across the massive maps, and players for each faction can capture bases to gain temporary control of areas. To capture a continent, a faction must amass 15 Victory Points by capturing bases and winning Alerts (timed events that give the winning faction additional points).

Until now, fights raged primarily at persistent bases wherever the front lines were, bases that were part of the map design. Players could man vehicles and turrets, but had no control over how their bases were designed. If enough time was put into the game, players found themselves fighting dozens of fights- if not more- at the same base. That can get tedious after a while.

All this has changed. Player built bases now dot the landscape, and make for much more interesting fights with new variation. Using an ANT, or Advanced Nanite Transport, players harvest Cortium crystals in the wilder areas of the game, and can transport the resources to wherever they want to build. When they arrive, they can deploy their ANT and choose what structures to erect. The default buildings include a wall, bunker, anti-infantry turret, a silo for harvested Cortium, a repair module, and a HIVE, or Hardline Interference Volume Emitter (the game’s fancy way of saying Victory Point generator). Also available is a Decon Tool for taking down misplaced or unnecessary structures.

Also unlockable with in-game currency are Sunderer Garages, Structure Shield Modules, Skywall Shield Modules, Repair Modules, Turret AI Modules, anti-vehicle turrets and anti-air turrets. With the wide variety of available structures, limitless possibilities exist, making for a much more engaging and varied game.

While messing around with the system, a friend and I built a small base to test what was possible. Within a few minutes of getting some walls, two turrets, a silo and a bunker up, along with a deployed Sunderer (the mobile spawnpoint of the game) a large fight had begun over the base, with more than a hundred players fighting for both sides. Outnumbered 2-1, our side held out for a half hour before being overwhelmed.

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The battle gave me an insight into what the update changes within the game. Now fights can be much more fluid, moving right from a static base to a player-made staging area and then moving on to assaulting a massive fortress constructed by a dedicated platoon. The building area of the game may not have the staggering possibility of something like Minecraft,” but it does what the game so desperately needs: makes a more varied user experience, with memorable battles over constantly changing fortresses.

I can’t wait to see the creative ways players utilize the new system.

See you on the battlefield.

For Vanu!