Difficulty is a gameplay modifier that can be selected before the start of each level, changing the AI's behavior to become more or less challenging depending on which difficulty is selected.
In FTP, there are 3 difficulties, impacting how much damage enemies will deal and causing them to move around, jump, and crouch more frequently.
- Easy: Least damage and movement.
- Medium: Standard damage and movement.
- Hard: Most damage and movement.
Difficulty selection is also present in Plazma Burst 1.7, but the changes are not as noticeable, and is still much harder than FTP regardless of which difficulty is chosen.
In Plazma Burst 2, there are 4 difficulties, Easy, Normal, Hard and Impossible (added in version 1.20) each of these selections will change AI behavior rather than outright increasing dealt damage, though on any difficulty AI are much better at dodging projectiles than they were in the previous game.
In multiplayer, Hard is the default difficulty. This can be changed with a trigger action, but it will still be possible for players to enter a dying/bleedout state.
Easy to Normal
- AI shoot on sight rather than firing arbitrarily and their aim is more effective.
- AI can no longer be out ranged; they can attack from a much larger distance, even when out of the player's sight
- AI are now able to attack when dying (as long as they have arms).
- Lower FPS values will not delay AI reaction times.
Normal to Hard
- Most enemies now have much higher health
- It is now possible for the Player to enter a dying/bleedout state.
- AI can see you facing away and through walls.
- AI will continue to aggro an enemy until they die.
- AI can use Defibrillators to revive their allies.
- Enemies now regenerate lost health.
- Enemies will never infight.
- Characters who are on Team Beta, Gamma, Delta etc. can now shoot through eachother, negating any team damage dealt.
Hard to Impossible
Impossible only functions properly in the campaign, otherwise it's the same as Hard.
- Player health is lowered to 130/150 in Lite/Heavy battlesuits.
- AI can become alerted by noticing an enemy through the wall like in Hard, but will not have an active line-of-sight.
- Enemy health values are at the very least 130, and at most 300.
- Acid damage is lower.
- Level 2 or 3 Heavy Railgun v04 CS-OneSOneK's and CS-BNG's carried by enemies are changed into Sniper Rifle CS-YippeeKiYay's and Portable Shield v07 CS-Quarium's respectively.
- Level 0 or 1 Alien Pistols, Lite Railgun v01 CS-HShot's, and Heavy Railgun v04 CS-OneSOneK's are significantly weaker, their new power values are as follows:
- Alien Pistol
- Level 0 : 0.45 → 0.18
- Level 1 : 0.6 → 0.36
- Lite Railgun v01 CS-HShot
- Level 0 : 2.5 → 1
- Level 1 : 3 → 1.8
- Heavy Railgun v04 CS-OneSOneK
- Level 0 : 4 → 1.6
- Level 1 : 6 → 3.6