Massively: Can you go into some of the logistics of adapting PlanetSide 2 to the PlayStation 4?
Clint Worley: PlanetSide 2 has its own identity, and it is important for us to stay true to that, even on the PS4. Our main focus has been on a redesigned user interface that makes navigation easier for players using the Dualshock 4 controller. Player customization, navigation, and organization are all critical elements that require intuitive controls. The team has done a few passes on the user interface, and now it is time to get it in front of the players. We are looking forward to getting player feedback and tuning the experience for the launch of the game.
The PS4 has an enormous FPS playerbase, and PlanetSide 2 has the ability to bring massive communities together in epic battles, so the PS4 is a perfect match for the grand scale of PlanetSide 2. We are targeting 30FPS at 1080p on the PS4, so graphically it will look similar to PlanetSide 2 running a PC at maximum settings.
What goes into preparing a beta on a console? Will this beta version be the same as what's currently on PC live?
Though the beta is still an unfinished version of the game, all the core gameplay mechanics are there, and additional features will be added throughout the beta period. It's ready for players to get into and work with us on improving the game to make it feel like an epic console shooter. Once players get into the beta, they will have access to post in a PS4 beta forum, which allows us to directly communicate with the players and work together to improve the game for everyone.
How is SOE attempting to spread the word about PS2 to the console market (other than interviews with sites like Massively, of course)? How is SOE making the case that PS2 is something more than a standard console shooter?
PlanetSide 2 is defined by its massive size and camaraderie amongst players, so when we began working on the console version, it was important that we deliver the one-of-a-kind experience that players have come to expect from the game. We made sure to keep this distinctive identity in mind, especially given that it will be the only PlayStation 4 game that brings massive communities of players together to fight simultaneously in a battle.
(Because that question was marketing-oriented, SOE Senior Director of Global Communications Michele Cagle added the following: PlanetSide 2 on the PlayStation 4 is receiving top-level marketing and PR support for both beta and launch. This includes harnessing the power of progressive marketing efforts through social media and related activities, coupled with long-term traditional marketing strategies.)
Are you doing an ongoing beta or limited beta tests? How long do you anticipate the beta to last?
Our goal is to use the beta as a technical test to work with the players to make sure we launch as a full console experience. We don't want to stay in a closed beta any longer than needed, but we also don't want to rush the game. With its massive battles and enormous continents, PlanetSide 2 is a one-of-a-kind experience, and we want to make sure we do it justice on the PS4.
The initial invitation phase will be limited to a couple thousand players to ensure stability and performance. We will send out additional batches of invites throughout the beta as needed to make sure players have the best possible experience at launch. We really want to interact with the players during the beta so keeping it smaller initially will also help foster those relationships and communication. It's important to note that invites will be distributed based on chronological order of when they signed up, which can be done though our website.
Will there be any rewards that players can earn during the beta to carry with them to the live release? Will you be holding any beta events or contests?
We really value the players that take part in the beta, and their feedback will be a huge help in making the game better for everyone. We are still discussing options, but nothing has been decided on yet.
What are your primary goals for the beta?
We are using this beta to evaluate the performance and stability of the game. We also are encouraging players to interact with us on the PS4 beta forums to give us feedback on how the game looks and feels, and we'll make adjustments where needed. We will also be rolling out a new tutorial zone at some point during the beta and are looking forward to getting feedback on that as well. We have a ton planned, and we are excited to share what we've been working on with players!
Thank you for your insight, and good luck with the test!
When readers want the scoop on a launch or a patch (or even a brewing fiasco), Massively goes right to the source to interview the developers themselves. Be they John Smedley or Chris Roberts or anyone in between, we ask the devs the hard questions. Of course, whether they tell us the truth or not is up to them!