Helldivers 2 player explains devs unique way of balancing the game

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Balancing an online video game can be incredibly challenging, and it is a never-ending uphill battle trying to ensure that no weapon, items, or ability is too overpowered or too weak and not viable to use. This is more of an issue in PVP games such as Call of Duty and Fortnite where an overpowered can make the game unfair for players not using it. But, it is still important in PVE games such as Helldivers because if a weapon is too powerful then it can make the game too easy. On the flip side, if all of the weapons are too weak then the game can be too difficult to complete, which was the case earlier this week when Helldivers 2 players were unable to complete the latest Major Order. This can also put players off if it is too unbalanced as it becomes unenjoyable. Arrowhead Game Studios understands this and have been carefully balancing Helldivers 2, regularly releasing updates and hot fixes to make sure the game is a good state, and so far they have been doing a good job.

In a Reddit post, u/VIRUSIXI2 explains Arrowhead Game Studios’ direction when it comes to balancing Helldivers 2 and how the studio is seemingly doing things different from the norm. Typically, games are balanced vertically, meaning that as you progress through the game you will unlock weapons and items that make you more powerful, until by the end you have everything as your disposal and are unstoppable. This can be seen in games such as Resident Evil where you usually start with a handgun or knife and just enough ammo to see you through the opening section, and by the end you have a rocket launcher, shotgun, machine gun, and an inventory full of more healing items than you will ever need.

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Instead, Helldivers 2 keeps things balanced throughout, with the starting weapons being just as viable as later unlocks in certain situations. This is highlighted by u/StavrosZhekhov who stated that they were “told that the starting liberator was bad and that you get better weapons soon.” so they decided not to use it. However, after trying it later on in their journey as a Helldiver, they were “floored at how good it is. It’s definitely not bad.” Every weapon seems to have a purpose in the game, with some being better for picking enemies off while others are perfect for run-and-gun. When it comes to the stratagems, these are the elements that become more powerful as time goes on due to some not unlocking until later. When you start the game, you have access to very few, but once you level up you are able to purchase many high powered support items that can turn the tide in your battle against the Automatons and Terminids.

With the constant balance changes that are made to Helldivers 2, it can be hard to keep up with what is the meta and what loadout you should be using to be able to defeat every Automaton and Terminid that stands in your way. In order to have the best chance at victory, we highly recommend checking out our Helldivers 2 best weapons guide and best armor guide which will put you on the right track to bringing democracy to the universe.