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Producer's Letter: On the PlanetSide Franchise

Hello everyone,

Since we launched PlanetSide Arena into Early Access a month ago, I feel it’s important now more than ever to provide some insight into our development plans for both PlanetSide 2 and PlanetSide Arena, as well as give some perspective on what lies ahead for the franchise.

Planetside 2 and Its Legacy

First and foremost, it’s not lost on us that PlanetSide 2 is what made all of this possible. Period.

Now that we’ve transitioned PlanetSide Arena into Early Access for community feedback and iteration, we’re providing PlanetSide 2 with some key reinforcements, in the form of several additional programmers, designers and artists. Many of the devs joining the team are familiar faces that have worked on PS2 over the years. But regardless of the time spent on the project, the common theme we all share is our passion for PlanetSide overall – past, present, and future. 

PlanetSide Arena and Early Access Goals

I want to thank everyone who has not only taken the time to play PSA, but also provide a lot of solid feedback and suggestions to help further improve the game. After months of internal playtesting, it’s been a lot of fun to finally experience it with the community; even if it means that we occasionally typically get wrecked by many of you!   
We’re pushing forward with the intention to treat Early Access as it should be: a limited phase where we gather feedback and suggestions to help refine the foundational game systems, features, content and overall stability - as quickly as possible. Our goal is to finish implementing the features and content for what we believe are critical, then GTFO of Early Access as quickly as possible and start promoting the game. This might be contrary to other Early Access games right now, but we want to get back to the original intent of why "Early Access" started in the first place.

And speaking of new features, we’re actively working on a new (non-BR) mode that incorporates many of the gameplay elements that make PlanetSide such an amazing experience, but in the form of shorter, session-based matches. It will include a new mode-specific map, capture points, ability to drop-in/out throughout the match, a broader range of vehicle types, etc. Many of the mechanics developed for this mode will be used in future modes like Massive Clash, so our focus is function over form, allowing quick iteration with your help.

The most valuable contribution I can ask for is your continued participation in Early Access. More importantly, your continued feedback on the improvements we’ve made thus far, as well as the numerous improvements we plan to incorporate in the coming weeks and months as we work toward exiting Early Access and our full launch next year.  


The Greater PlanetSide Universe

The final area I’d like to address is where we're going from here and what's on the horizon for the PlanetSide franchise overall...

We're coming up on the 7th anniversary for PlanetSide 2. In early 2020, the PlanetSide franchise will celebrate its 17th since the original release back in 2003. Over those 16+ years, we have amassed millions of passionate fans. So when we think about what the PlanetSide 3 experience needs to be, we know that there are incredibly high expectations from all of you. PlanetSide Arena is intended to be the stepping stone to PlanetSide 3, which we envision expanding from the current battlefields of Auraxis, to full-fledged galactic war with empires exploring, colonizing and conquering one another within an expansive galaxy. We envision PlanetSide Arena as a way to allow us to link present day PlanetSide 2 and PlanetSide 3 story lines, as well as providing an opportunity to try out new features, styles of play, etc.

Why wouldn't we just do this in PlanetSide 2? Quite simply, because PS2 offers a very unique experience that the current, active community enjoys. Trying to incorporate different game systems or styles of play or even trying out new modes would be disruptive - potentially catastrophically. We don’t want to upset that balance, as it would be unfair to our current PS2 community.
So as we take our next steps on this journey, I can tell you that the team and I are 100% committed for the long haul as we continue to expand PlanetSide 2, refine PlanetSide Arena, and prepare for the future of the overall PlanetSide franchise.  

On behalf of the entire PlanetSide team, thank you for your passion and dedication. We look forward to seeing all of you back out on the battlefield.

Andy Sites
Executive Producer – PlanetSide 2 & PlanetSide Arena