Matt Higby, Creative Director at SOE, has revealed the membership benefits for Planetside 2, while heavily reminding players that it isn’t pay-to-win. The membership will include perks such as increased certification growth, experience and resource boosts and increased resource caps.
Discussing the proposal with players on the Planetside 2 forum, Higby shares his view on pay-to-win. “Rather than try to convince YOU that Planetside 2 isn’t pay-to-win, I want to talk about why I’m convinced it’s not, and then talk about why we’ve made the decisions we have, for membership and microtransactions while being constantly mindful of the goal of creating a “legitimately competitive” experience.”
The most important note is that players either playing for free or paying are not separated in terms of restrictions. “In Planetside 2 we don’t restrict your character from any type of gameplay based on paying money. No weapon, vehicle, attachment, continent, class or certification is unavailable to you as a free player. Everything and anything that can affect gameplay is available to unlock through gameplay.” says Higby. “This is a big deal. It would be extremely easy for us to make tanks and aircraft restricted to members only, it would be very easy for us to sell exclusive guns on the marketplace for Station Cash. We wouldn’t do those things because we have a commitment to ensuring that the game remains legitimately competitive.”
What does Higby mean by legitimately competitive? “When I say the game is competitive I meant that on a moment-to-moment basis your ability to compete with and kill my character is entirely based on our personal skill. I should never be able to acquire an item that makes it just straight-up easier to kill you, or makes it straight up harder for you to kill me.”
So what do members actually get for their hard earned cash? “Cosmetics and Convenience. That’s it. Seriously.” states Higby. “Cosmetics are pretty self-explanatory, I think everyone “gets it” with cosmetics and won’t be too upset at buying camo patterns or decals for real money. What about Convenience, what does that mean exactly? For us, convenience is purely the act of unlocking something faster, whether that means through buying a side-grade weapon directly with a StationCash microtransaction or earning certification points faster due to a boost or membership.”
Here are the currently planned membership benefits:
1 – Passive Cert Growth. This is often mischaracterized (by myself as well) as “offline cert points”. It’s actually just passive cert gain that works if you are online or offline. With the current plan all players will gain cert points passively over time at a set rate. Members will get a faster rate. The current penciled in benefit for membership is 50% increase to the speed which passive cert points are granted. This does not affect cert points earned via experience.
2 – Automatic experience boost. Members will accrue experience at a 50% increased rate. This will affect “active” cert point gain, as well as battlerank gain.
3 – Automatic resource boost. Members will accrue resources at a 50% increased rate. This will affect the rate which you can acquire consumables like grenades, spawn beacons and med kits, as well as vehicles and Auraxium unlocks.
4 – Increased resource pool caps. As Auraxium is uncapped, this only affects Catalysts, Alloys and Polymers, it’s a 100% increase to those pool sizes. This allows you to spawn some additional vehicles, grenades and consumables if you have no resource income on the map before you’re tapped out.
5 – NEW: Members will receive priority slots in the login queue over non-members.
Already some of those benefits are directly from suggestions players have left in the thread. If you want to share your ideas then pop on over to the forum, but don’t forget to leave a comment below.