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Looking Ahead with Higby at PAX East

Michael Bitton Posted:
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MMORPG.com: What are your plans for Outfit specific progression?

Matt Higby: We’ve talked a lot about it; it’s definitely something that we want to do. Our concerns when we talk about Outfit progression are the differences between Outfits as a social group vs. Outfits as a role specification.  If we do Outfit specialization, you’re in an Outfit with your buddy, your best friend, and he loves driving tanks and you love being a medic. If you’re in the Outfit and he says let’s get the tank benefits, we want to be a tank specialized Outfit, that kind of fucks you as a medic. Those are the kind of problems that we’re trying to work out.

MMORPG.com: Light Assault is set for a revamp fairly soon here. What can you tell us about it?

Matt Higby: Whenever we do any kind of class revamp, generally they’re going to feel roughly like they fit within a template of abilities. Some new ability or some new capability for that class. A couple of new weapons that hopefully have unique mechanics and hopefully expand the weapon offerings for the class. And cosmetics and some cool special case cosmetics. Things like that. As well as a plethora of quality-of-life issues. I want to be able to see my cloaking bar in a certain way, things like that.

The cornerstone of the Light Assault revamp is doing akimbo weapons. They’re going to be able to dual-wield SMGs, dual-wield pistols, essentially. That’s sketchy for a variety of reasons in terms of player power, because Light Assaults are already incredibly deadly, so them having access to two of those weapons is going to be tough.  It’ll probably be a tradeoff of not being able to use your Jump Jet.  So now you’ve gained a lot of lethality, but you’ve lost a lot of your maneuverability.  We’ll do new weapons; we’re actually releasing new carbines with our update next week. Those would be the kind of weapons we would do for Light Assault, too.

MMORPG.com: How about the PS4 release?

Matt Higby: We haven’t really talked about any dates externally yet, but it will be sometime this year. The biggest thing we’re doing is going through and making sure it’s optimized and running perfectly on the PS4 hardware and then making sure all the UI gets converted over to make sure it works well with the console control. Especially for PlanetSide, PlanetSide is an MMO behind an FPS game, so it has all the UI and all the character advancement screens that an MMO has, and so getting all of those to fit on a console is an enormous undertaking.

MMORPG.com: Anything you want to say directly to your players?

Matt Higby: Well, I’m excited for the Valkyrie that’s coming up. We’ve scheduled that in our roadmap for July. A lot of players are stoked about that.  In general, the thing I want to tell players is that if you want to have a say in what PlanetSide becomes, go to the roadmap and comment on the threads. We, no bullshit, really read those threads and we really listen to what people are saying on there. And the people who are actually participating in that process are actually driving the future of the game.  So, a lot of times people are cynical and say this game’s not going anywhere, if you want to help it go somewhere, please come to the roadmap. Please give us feedback .Jump on the test server and let us know what works. We really cannot develop this game without players giving us input on what’s going on, because I don’t want to just try and make the game that I think is the coolest game in the world. I’m trying to make a game that all the people who are playing PlanetSide love.

Michael Bitton / Michael began his career at the WarCry Network in 2005 as the site manager for several different WarCry fansite portals. In 2008, Michael worked for the startup magazine Massive Gamer as a columnist and online news editor. In June of 2009, Michael joined MMORPG.com as the site's Community Manager. Follow him on Twitter @eMikeB

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Michael Bitton

Michael Bitton / Michael began his career at the WarCry Network in 2005 as the site manager for several different WarCry fansite portals. In 2008, Michael worked for the startup magazine Massive Gamer as a columnist and online news editor. In June of 2009, Michael joined MMORPG.com as the site's Community Manager. Follow him on Twitter @eMikeB