With over 24 million copies sold, PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds is a true gaming success story, and with good cause; it’s some of the most ‘legit’ fun you can have on PC. Over the holidays, we spent some quality time with the new Xbox One version and found that it’s not all it’s cracked up to be. Not yet anyway.
See Xbox One has this feature called Xbox Game Preview where games still in development are made available for purchase. You can test them out in their current state and receive the updates along the way, assisting the developers with feedback and a cash boost from sales. It’s similar to Steam’s Early Access on PC but more expensive.
When PUBG launched on PC, it was rough as guts. Thanks to a steady stream of updates and improvements, it’s finally the game everyone expected it to be: Fun, mostly bug free and easily one of the best online shooters of 2017.
Sadly the Xbox One version hasn’t received any of these improvements. It’s the same buggy experience that released on PC in early 2017, just with 4K support. It’s also more expensive, coming in at AUD 39.95.
PUBG on Xbox One will continue to receive new content updates, optimisations and the new desert map, “Miramar.” If you can’t wait for those updates to roll out, you can still enjoy the incredible online multiplayer experience right now, with bugs and lag intact.
If you’ve managed to avoid the hype, and have no idea what I’m talking about, PUBG is a massive online deathmatch where 100 players parachute into an island terrain, scrounging supplies, weapons and vehicles, fighting to be the last man standing to earn bragging rights and the elusive “chicken dinner.”
The island is huge. It’s 8 x 8km of farmlands, towns, camps and industrial complexes stocked with randomly generated weapons and supplies. Its size is overwhelming at first, as you wearily explore the terrain; hoping experienced players won’t gun you down. Then a countdown begins, before the map shrinks, funnelling players into a confrontation at the centre.
It will take hours before you’ve familiarised yourself with the island and built the confidence to take players head-on. I suggest you grab a few friends or make some new ones in-game and tackle it as a squad, but going solo is doable, also ridiculously tense. It’s the freedom to play anyway you choose, plus the chaotic encouters with other players that will have you queing for ‘just one more game’ over and over again.
When Microsoft first sent us a copy of PUBG for Xbox One, it was almost unplayable. The lag especially ruined the experience. Since then, Oceanic servers have gone live for Australia and New Zealand, and the game’s received two updates featuring performance optimisations, bug fixes and additional localisation updates. It’s still rough, but also one of the best and most unique online shooters right now that will only get better over time. PUBG also supports HDR and 4K resolution for Xbox One X owners.
Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) is available now on PC and Xbox One in the form of a Game Preview Edition. For more gaming goodness, take a look at Razer’s premium Wolverine Xbox One Controller.