Progression in PlanetSide 2 means unlocking new equipment, and upgrading what you already own to open new playstyles, gameplay options, and new ways of helping your team.
Whenever you spawn, the cost of consumables is deducted from your Nanite pool. However, this happens only if you have actually used up those consumables in your previous life.
For example, if you throw your Frag Grenade and die, when you respawn you will pay 50 Nanites to get a new one. However, if you die while still having your Frag Grenade on you, you will not have to pay anything when you respawn.
Same thing happens when you resupply at an Infantry Terminal.
- If you don’t have enough Nanites, you will simply spawn without the consumables.
- You can have up 750 Nanites at a time.
- Nanites are automatically generated at a rate of 50 per second.
Doing almost anything related to capturing territory, killing enemies or supporting allies will grant your character Experience Points (XP), which will increase the Battle Rank of your character, and grant Certification Points.
Doing a lot of one activity will earn you a ribbon. For example, getting 10 kills with any weapon will earn you a ribbon with that weapon.
Ribbons grants you 250 XP. First five ribbons of the day will grant twice as much. Many Directives require you to earn ribbons.
Accumulating a certain amount of XP will increase the Battle Rank (BR) of your character.
Battle Rank is mostly cosmetic, and just shows how much Experience Points this character has accumulated. There are a total of 120 Battle Ranks. You continue to gain XP and certs after reaching the maximum battle rank, but it can take years.
- For each Battle Rank up to BR15 you will receive 100 Certification Points.
- Increasing Battle Rank unlocks new rank titles and shoulder decals with your rank emblem.
- Battle Ranks 5 and 15 unlock additional Loadout Slots.
- Battle Rank 100 is required to enroll into Advanced Specialization Program.
Battle Rank 15 Milestone
Battle Rank 15 is an important milestone for your first character:
- On your first death, you will be given an option to refund all certs you spent on everything, except for weapons and implants.
- You will lose the ability to bypass continental population queue.
- For the next 72 hours, you will have an option to purchase an exclusive Elite Recruit Bundle.
Elite Recruit Bundle costs 2000 Daybreak Cash, which is the equivalent of $20 USD.
While it may seem rather costly, it has an outstanding value, and really helps new players to jump start their character. Consider buying it if you truly enjoy PlanetSide 2. You shouldn’t feel forced, though. It’s totally possible to manage without the bundle.
Either way, you have 72 hours after reaching Battle Rank 15 to decide. If you don’t buy the Elite Recruit Bundle right away, you should be able to find it in the Bundle section of the in-game store.
2000 Certification Points. This is the only time you will get an option to buy Certification Points. It takes an average veteran about 20 hours of gameplay to earn that many certs. It is enough to unlock many meaningful upgrades for most of the infantry classes, or a vehicle of your choice.
7 Day Squad Experience Boost – when equipped, it will increase your XP gain by 50%, and for your squad members by 5%.
Solid Dark Green Camo – one of the less exciting items on the list. It looks okay, and can be useful on Amerish or Hossin.
MKV-P Suppressed – this is a cosmetic variant of the MKV Suppressed, which is a passable suppressed SMG. It could prove useful, because by default you don’t have access to a close quarters automatic weapon for Infiltrators. MKV fills that niche adequately.
There is no other way to get this exclusive platinum variant of the MKV, if you fall for this kind of thing.
- It can lock on to both ground and air vehicles. It can fire only when a positive lock is established, so it can’t fire at MAXes or infantry. While this is a noticeable downside, it makes Annihilator very simple to use, and hard to mess up and fire too soon or hit an ally by accident.
- By default, you don’t have access to a decent ground-to-air weapon, and you don’t have anything that can hurt ground vehicles at medium and long range. Annihilator fills that niche nicely.
A second NS-10 Burster for your MAX. Bursters are ground-to-air flak guns, and by default your MAX has only one of them unlocked, and you really need both Bursters to deal meaningful damage to aircraft.
That said, Bursters also require Extended Mags upgrades, which cost 500 Certs for the each Burster, and even after that Bursters are only good at relatively close range. Burster MAX isn’t something you should really care about as a new player.
It’s worth noting that the three weapons in this bundle are unlocked for all your future characters of all factions.
After Battle Rank 15, it will become much harder for you to gain certs, especially if you do not invest real money into Premium Membership or Experience Boosts. So you should be very picky about what you spend your early certs on.
Certification Points or Certs are used to unlock and upgrade equipment for your character. A large portion of PlanetSide 2 gameplay revolves around earning certs to improve your character, and give you more playstyles and combat options.
1 Certification Point is granted for every 250 Experience Points.
There are temporary Experience and Resource (Nanites) Boosts. Each character can have up to two Boosts active at the same time. Boosts are purchased separately for each character. Once activated, they will last for a certain amount of time, and cannot be deactivated until they run out.
Overall, Premium Membership is a better way to progress your character than Boosts. That said, combining Experience Boosts with a Double XP Event for Members is a nice way to make A LOT of certs over the course of just a few days.
What to spend certs on
Daybreak Cash (DBC) is purchased with real money via in-game shop or the official site. Daybreak Cash can be used to unlock weapons, weapon attachments and cosmetic items for all characters on your account. You won’t lose these items even if you delete all your characters.
DBC can also be spent on temporary Nanite or Experience Boosts, which are purchased and activated for one specific character.
Overall, it’s perfectly possible to fully enjoy PS2 without ever spending a dime. Daybreak Cash mainly serves to customize your character, and increase the speed of progression.
Premium Members receive many benefits related to Daybreak Cash and in-game store.
Sales, Bundles and Promos
From time to time, PlanetSide 2 has sales that affect a certain category of items, for example, “30% off Infantry Gear”.
Daily Sale – each day, one item goes on sale and can be purchased at a discount.
In-game store contains many Bundles that offer good value for their money – IF you actually put all their contents to good use.
PlanetSide 2 also has yearly events, such as Halloween, Auraxmas (Christmas) and 4th of July, as well as PlanetSide 2 anniversary in November. Exclusive items are often sold during those events.
PlanetSide 2 Anniversary Bundle is especially noteworthy, as it contains a 6 month Experience Boost for one character, as well as a set of unique gear and/or weapons.
Each year brings a new Anniversary Bundle, and the previous ones also become available for purchase.
Most directive lines are comprised of multiple tiers: bronze, silver, gold and auraxium.
Each directive tier has a number of objectives you must complete in order to move to the next tier. Completing directive tiers grants you rewards, which usually include a certain amount of Directive Points.
It’s worth noting that some directives can be much harder to complete than others. For example, MAX directives require you to get 1160 kills with MAX’s melee attack, which can easily take months of what can only be described as mindnumbing gameplay.
Directive Points are account-wide, and they are displayed on the enemy Death Screen whenever you kill someone. Directive Points are entirely cosmetic, and mostly serve to demonstrate your dedication to completing Directives and being proficient at a variety of playstyles.
You get full Directive Points whenever you complete a Directive, even if you have already completed that Directive on another character.
In the context of Directives, the word “kills” is mentioned a lot. Know that destroying any vehicle will count as a “kill” too.
ISO-4 is a special currency, used to upgrade and unlock new Implants. ISO-4 is important for character progression, as many implants offer unique bonuses and open new playstyles. More about it in the dedicated Implant Guide.
Scoring 10, 60, 160 and 1160 kills with a weapon will reward you with a bronze, silver, gold and auraxium medal respectively. For each medal you get a certain amount of Certification Points. Many Directives require you to earn an auraxium medal with a specific weapon.
The game keeps track of your character’s stats, such as overall accuracy, the amount of kills and deaths, and much more. Your stats can help you judge where you stand among other players, and keep track of your progress over time.
A lot of people get frustrated and even enraged when they find themselves in situations that interfere with their attempts at getting good stat.
It is extremely important to understand two things:
1) Stats don’t determine your worth as a human being. Just how good you are at getting stats in an online game.
2) Stupid shit happens to everyone. If you play this game enough to care about stats, then you should focus on long-term improvement. Everyone has bad days, but they don’t matter in the long run. Compare stats from week to week, or month to month, and not day to day, or Higby forbid, hour to hour.
You can monitor some of your stats in-game, but there are a lot of websites that can do that:
Be mindful that there are many ways a player could adjust their playstyle to artificially get better stats, which is a sure way to make the game more stressful and less fun for themselves, and usually it comes at a cost to other stats, or at the cost of becoming less useful to the team.