PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds 1.0
I think this Steam review by a random gamer sums it up quite succinctly:
“One, if not THE, most thrilling gaming experience I’ve ever had.
Used to take a shower and then do some relaxed gaming after work?
With PUBG, game first and then shower – the sweat is real.”
As just about everyone already knows, PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds hit the gaming world earlier this year like a bolt of lightning, personally cast down by Zeus himself. At that time, what I initially kept asking myself was, “why hasn’t anyone ever made a game like this before? Such a simple concept.” Indeed, several developers had tried similar Battle Royale-type games, such as the ill-fated and abandoned The Culling, and of course the much maligned and heckled H1Z1.
However, no one has included all of the aspects that make these other Battle Royale games interesting, into one slick, great-looking package—until PUBG came along. Since its debut, PUBG has broken all sorts of records, but has also been involved in lots of controversy. While all of the drama surrounding PUBG plays out like a tawdry soap opera on a daily basis, I’m not going to be touching on that since it’s all well-documented elsewhere. Rather, for the sake of this review, I’m going to concentrate on the gameplay itself. Let’s start with my first couple of PUBG games…
PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds 1.0 just exited Early Access and just launched today. Personally, I put off playing on the PUBG test servers because I wanted to wait for the full enchilada. And I’m glad I did.
To my delight, my first game consisted of being dropped into the new Central American map called Miramar. Right away, I noticed how absolutely huge this new map was. I located my three squad mates and we began clearing a small shanty town on the outskirts of a city called El Pozo. After gathering what we could and getting our hands on our first weapons, we jumped into one of the new vehicles, which I dubbed the “party van,” and drove off in the direction of the next safe zone.
Safe zones by the way, have nothing to do with sheltered, entitled, millennials—in PUBG they are ever smaller circles of safe spaces (couldn’t resist) that are encroached upon by an electrical barrier. In this way, the game focuses all of the action into tighter and tighter confines as the game goes on.
And go on it did. As my motley gang sped over the arid desert plains of Miramar, we began taking fire from random assailant’s firearms. Whereas with other vehicles we might have ended up smoking from the sustained fire, the van soldiered on, confident in its heavy chassis. We eventually emerged unscathed from the plains on the outskirts of another city called Los Leones.
Just after arriving, we spied a group of enemies running towards a nearby building and gunned our van, running over two of them. We then popped out and began firing at the remaining two. We heard the rapid staccato of LMG fire and suddenly realized that one of our foes was in possession of a new PUBG weapon: The massive DP-28, a Russian-built light machinegun that can really put some hurt on you with its 7.62 ammo. I quickly utilized the game’s new vaulting mechanic, jumping over a low wall in order to escape being perforated by the LMG fire. My buddies weren’t so lucky.
From there, I experienced a sustained firefight which played out like a game of cat-and-mouse with my last two adversaries. It was then that I realized just how different PUBG’s new game mechanics had fundamentally changed the game. As I played round after round, it became apparent that being able to vault and climb offered a new set of tactics to my overall battle strategies.
For instance, not being the most accurate shooter in the world (I just can’t compete with hyper-twitch 12 year-olds), being able to vault and climb allows me to sneak up on enemies in different ways. I can now climb through windows, or climb the outer ladders on warehouses in order to get the drop on foes. These new factors greatly help to circumvent the dastardly efforts of both hackers with their aimbots, as well as the aforementioned fast-twitch, tween contingent.
PUBG 1.0 also runs a lot more smoothly. Besides some occasional server lag (because it was day one after all) I didn’t experience any frame drops or rubber-banding at all. This makes movement, and especially combat, much more responsive and fluid. Hit registration also seems to have been improved as well, making the few people I aimed at and shot at, much more dead.
The devs also worked on the graphics, such as adding in more anti-aliasing. In short, PUBG looks very crisp now and the view distances are extremely far. And you’ll need them. Many of the engagements you’ll become involved in are over vast distances, especially on the new Miramar map, which hardly has any tree concealment and cover at all.
The new weapons, such as the sawed off shotgun and the mighty M249 LMG; as well as the new vehicles, like the pickup and jet ski, are all fine and dandy. But what really makes this game great again is the fact that not only does it play a lot more smoothly, but there also seems to be less hacking going on. Apparently this is due to the developer’s insistence that they are constantly adding measures to counteract hacking.
PUBG is a great pick-up-and-play Battle Royale game that sets the bar high for all others to aspire to. It combines teamwork (unless playing solo), extremely fun combat, fluid and optimized gameplay (finally!), and that addictive x-factor that keeps you coming back over and over again. I, for one, am definitely excited to be playing PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds once again.
PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds features outstanding graphics that make its fast-paced shooter gameplay truly shine. However, you want to have a pretty beefy gaming PC or gaming laptop in order to play it at a decent framerate. So, you may just want to invest in a decent gaming rig:
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