Incoming text wall....
This is the old DICE routine of making weaker things too powerful, and powerful things too weak.
I was fine with jets and choppers being made more effective, but tanks die ridiculously quick. I was always for the TV killing in one hit, as it takes more skill to use it than just about any other weapon in the game, but the sum of the changes makes tanks feel almost worthless on air maps. As was said, it just feels like it went too far in the opposite direction.
All the talk about "it takes a team to operate the vehicles now" is all fine and great, but it takes a team to do just about any of this IRL. I don't think we have legions of solo javelin wielding engineers out there in the field, but there it is in this game...little to no teamwork or skill required to look in a target's general vicinity, wait for a lock sound, and click a button for a kill...so given the huge variety of things that are viable as a solo player in this game, making tanks ridiculously hard to keep alive unless you have 2 dedicated repair specialists seems sort of excessive, especially since those two repairers probably still aren't even enough to keep you alive for 2 minutes in the open.
The fog of war was/is a very important aspect to survivability in BF2 that a lot of people don't discuss regarding BF2/BF3 differences, but it was one of the key balancing features between ground and air units. It's absent from BF3, and coupled with the spotting system and all of the other recent changes, most ground vehicles get simply reamed. If you see a jet or heli lining you up, there is very little you can do to avoid outright death, even with 2 engineers with you. The rockets will still kill you, and likely them, if they get out pre-emptively to heal you and you hold fast in the vehicle. If they both pull out stingers there is a good chance they will flat out miss their target, nullifying that as an effective option as well. APCs are a little faster/agile, so I seemed to survive just a bit longer, but they are also weaker, and it's really hard to get teammates willing to sit at those puny port machineguns while you drive around, who are willing to hop out and instantly heal you if needed.
The result is that it now seems MUCH harder to keep a tank alive than an attack helicopter, and even as a certifiable heli whore that bothers me. The helicopter has always seemed like the most specialized vehicle in BF games - fragile, but very deadly if you know what to do. I was fine with having to often hop out and repair as heli gunner, but in a tank that pretty much equals a death every time if you're going against air. Another problem is vehicles remaining disabled until they are at 100%...not 90, not 99, but 100% (and the increased reverse speed while disabled never seemed to make a difference in my survival post-patch). By the time an engineer has you back to that point and you can move full speed again, the fast jets on these small maps will already have you lined up again. Rinse and repeat....not fun. Jets and helicopters don't run out of munitions, either, so they never have to break off to go reload over the airfield. It's just repetitive circles of ownage all day. Great.
Yes it should require some element of teamwork to keep vehicles going, but the tanks have become a bit ridiculous. Even mobile AA and Huey miniguns can disable a tank in well under 10 seconds. A small caliber minigun, disabling a tank with a foot of armor plating. Fuck's sake.
I killed probably 10 tanks last night using mobile AA and APCs. They weren't even close engagements. The tank is even weaker against air, and now against ground units too. They are vulnerable to everything but small arms, and give it a patch or two and maybe that will change as well.
The word "tank" has become synonymous with something very hard to defeat/kill, and in this game, it simply does not hold true.
Last edited by -CARNIFEX-[LOC] (2012-03-30 09:52:50)