Implants was a somewhat controversial system that we added to PlanetSide 2. While the system did provide players with really useful benefits, the monetization direction of the game drove certain decisions, like the usage of energy mechanic and random acquisition which was later removed and the effects revamped to reduce the number of “best in slot” options.
Below is an admittedly awkward video of me explaining and demonstrating the original system on a live stream before its release.
The system introduced loot drops to the game for the first time, with the goal of providing players incremental rewards outside of just XP. This was beneficial, since at this point in the game’s lifespan, the most engaged players were max level making XP not terribly desirable. Each drop remained useful, since players could “grind” up their duplicate implants to create energy to fuel them, upgrade an implant, or craft other implants.
Through player feedback and game metrics, we evaluated the system and revamped it later, which made it far more popular and engaged more players.
This system was indicative of the iterative approach we often took on PlanetSide 2, since the game lives in a genre all to itself. Effectively monetizing a massive free to play competitive game required taking some chances, measuring the effectiveness and feedback, then responding appropriately.