I’ve explained the merits of tactical spawning, and now that you know where and how to spawn the question remains. What class will you spawn as?
There are several factors to consider when choosing the class you will spawn in as. I will do my best to explain the various classes, the merits of playing as that particular class, and which situations are best for which class.
The classes in Planetside 2 are all highly specialized to their own particular brand of warfare,though some classes provide more flexibility than others.
The Infiltrator is a support role at its finest, this class comes with a cloaking device that makes them all but invisible (unless you play on low settings) and are typically equipped with a sniper rifle though thanks to the recent update, Infiltrators can now equip an smg as can the other classes but I feel the smg fits best with the infiltrator class. As an infiltrator you can often choose one of two jobs to perform. You can sneak behind enemy lines hacking terminals, setting generators to blow, and just generally sowing chaos wherever you go. Infiltrators functioning in this position work best on their own or in tandem with a second infiltrator but never in the same place at the same time. The ability to become nearly invisible and sneak past unsuspecting enemies to cause trouble can be very helpful. A more direct approach to this same style is running with a squad and turning vehicle and weapon terminals as well as turrets when you and your team occupy an enemy base and dig in. The second role a sniper can play is a support position, snipers (when possible) should never directly engage the enemy. They are capable of taking extremely long shots and can be indispensable during all out attacks as they are often near the rear of the attack and can remove pesky players who are plaguing your team’s armor or infantry.
As you level your player up you will unlock multiple loadout slots for each class, it is best to set each of them up according to your preference in playstyle and geared towards situations you may come up against. Personally I have a loadout with a long range scope, a short range scope on the same bolt-action rifle, and one that utilizes the smg for sorties into enemy bases to support my squad by getting vehicle and weapons terminals turned as well as enemy turrets. Setting up these loadouts beforehand allow me to change roles on the fly and adjust to whichever situation I find myself in.
Light assault are the gnats of all the classes, these players are equipped with a jetpack and can often get into hard to reach areas that other classes cannot hope to access. Light assault classes are best utilized in locations such as bio domes, tech plants, or amp stations as these places often only have a handful of ways inside the base. The ability to jetpack over a wall to destabilize a generator that will in turn allow your teams armor to roll into the base in force will often change the tide of battle. This class is most effective in Bio Domes as the key part of these facilities are infantry only parties and feature many rooftops which can only be reach via jetpack. Utilizing out of the way nooks and crannies will allow light assault to literally get the drop on enemy players and also afford the player with a means to evade and heal up if an attack goes wrong. With this class it is best to choose a weapon suited for close quarters combat, or in the very least a weapon suited for close to mid-range fighting. I would also recommend unlocking C-4 as soon as you can afford the certs as it gives light assault a means of taking out large targets such as groups of enemies, tanks, aircraft, and maxes.
The medic is probably one of the most important classes in the game (and often the hardest to find) They are capable of reviving downed teammates or patching up the damage that has been received. They are equipped with an assault rifle that can be lethal in the right hands though like the other classes can also equip an smg. The medic also has access to amazing grenades like the heal grenade and revive grenade. When situations get particularly hairy a medic can be the difference between taking a point or being pushed out.
The heavy assault is the toughest class of them all (excluding maxes) These players come with a light machine gun with a clip size taking down multiple enemies before needing to reload, a rocket launcher useful against armored targets, and their special ability gives them a second short term shield which allows them to soak up a lot more damage. The heavy assault class becomes even more dangerous once players invest some certs and upgrade their weapons. I would personally recommend choosing an lmg capable of functioning decently at all ranges and upgrading to either the more powerful, yet slow-firing, rocket launcher or the type that locks onto enemy ground and air vehicles. A squad of lock-on rocket heavy assaults can destroy a tank column or air unit quickly and efficiently. These abilities also suit them equally well to attack or defense. Again, I would recommend customizing loadouts to suit various situations and setup one of them to be an “all around” type that will allow you to fight in any setting.
The engineer is my personally favorite class to play, this class is integral to any offensive or defensive action. They can deploy turrets for both anti infantry or anti vehicle, ammo packs to resupply soldiers on the battlefield, repair damaged turrets, terminals, vehicles, and maxes they can also deal quite a bit of damage with their carbine which allows them to play just about anywhere on the map. The engineer can also unlock both anti tank or anti personnel mines that round out this classes play-ability nicely. The engineer shines the most as a support role, defending or fortifying a position. They are also vital in keeping the devastating maxes up and running. The best way I have found is to setup a loadout with anti tank mines and one with anti personnel mines to change on the fly as you fight in different scenarios. Anti-personnel are extremely useful for players trying to keep the enemy for capping out of the way bases, this is often done with one or two players and an engineer with mines can easily hold out against multiple opponents. A useful trick for the engineer class is to not bother equipping or putting certs into the ammo pack. The turret that can be placed can be turned into an ammo pack by simply pressing B from the default key layout. This allows the engineer to carry a turret, mines, repair gun, primary weapon, and a sidearm a veritable toolbox of goodies to keep you up and going on the battlefield.
The max suit is different to the other classes is that it can only be equipped from a weapon terminal after the player has spawned in. After dying the player’s class is often switched back to light assault so that is something to keep in mind. The max suit is essentially a walking tank, with some certs and station cash invested can be devastating on the battlefield, even more so if he is supported by an engineer and a medic. The max can equip one weapon to each hand, which would allow the player to mix and match or double up on a particular weapon to make it even more dangerous. The max has an anti air, ground, or infantry weapon that can be equipped to either the right or left hand, or both. Default maxes come with a basic anti infantry for the left hand and basic anti ground and anti air for the right. Additional weapons types or for the opposite hand can be purchased but are quite expensive costing 700 station cash or roughly $7 in real-world cash. These can also be earned in game for the hefty sum of 1000 certs.
Just starting out
For the new player, I would personally recommend playing the engineer class to get your feet under you. Not only are you easily able to repair your own vehicles you choose to take you, you can also repair things in bases away from the front line earning you a lot of certs. You won’t gain the certs as fast as you would if in heated battle taking down enemies, but repairing bases away from the frontline allows the player to learn base layouts, get accustomed to the controls and just generally get used to playing the game without the sting of earning nothing while doing it. It is also advisable to experiment with all of the classes to see which best suit you and get accustomed to using them and to earn certification points to improve all of them at least minimally.
What to spawn
The key difference between Planetside 2 and most other shooters out there is that you cannot play as a lone wolf type. It is essential that you stick with the rest of your team and constantly adjust to fill the various roles that are needed. Most often choose a couple roles they prefer to fill the most, but it is wise to be prepared to spawn in as any of the classes as you need to.
For example, if you notice that your team are being killed a lot and no one is reviving you may need to spawn in or change to the medic class to start reviving and healing the other players. Or a base has had all its turrets destroyed and this has allowed enemy vehicles to park right on your doorstep. Another example would be as your squad is taking objectives and capturing bases there are no infiltrators turning terminals for your squad to re-deploy vehicles or change classes. The key to playing the game is to remain flexible and try to support your team in the best ways you are able. If you are absolutely no good as a medic then find a way to help out as a class you are good at. Maybe flank the enemy as a heavy or light assault, or set back on a ridge and pick off heavy assaults firing rockets at your teams armor. The biggest thing to remember is keep your head on a swivel and understand that you won’t always get to be the hero, sometimes you have to be the grunt.
- Smedley announces PlanetSide 2 server merges (massively.joystiq.com)
- Six Things I’d Like To See In Planetside 2 (rockpapershotgun.com)
- Planetside 2 patch guards against spawn camping (vg247.com)