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Into the Unknown (part 1)
Player Unknown' Battleground, shortened to PUBG, is still, as of the writing of this piece, in development for console gamers (PS4 and Xbox One). This review is based on the Xbox One version, which I had paid £25 (this covers you once the full game is released too) for and will explain, to the best of my ability, what I have encountered so far and hopefully will help you in your pursuit of a tasty chicken dinner.
What am I doing here and what do I do?
The start of the game will see the player on a standard menu home screen, I hit start and up comes three different options: Solo, Duo, and Squad (three or four players). I launch into Solo like John Rambo ready to unleash the fury of the original and several sequels on the other 99 poor souls in the arena, though I had no idea what to expect.
The loading screen takes places on a small island with the main island just in the distance. There are weapons present, but no damage can be sustained as it's just giving people a chance to load in, it also doubles as a quick practice area where you can learn the controls and perhaps discuss tactics if you are playing with your team, so a useful area indeed.
Next, we find ourselves on an aircraft very close in appearance to an AC-130 and depending on how many people in the game. For me, in each game there has been a full company of 100 players (including myself). This is the first to get access to the full map and can plot where we are going to jump and land. The map size is extremely large and has many different areas from which to choose.
You have the option of places like sunken city, hospital, farm, school, military, and a host of others. This gives a nice variation for different play styles and all within the one map that we have access to so far. It is rumored that more maps will become available when the full game is released.
The game is based on all the players making it into the zone, this is a large white circle on the map which appears after the first few minutes giving you the chance to arm yourself and gather other useful supplies like ammo, scopes, and medical. As each zone closes it gets smaller and smaller until you are left with no other choice but to fight till the death.
The tools of the trade…
Okay, so I have 99 people to get through in an unknown world, my first thought was to name my two fists; lefty was to be called JJ and righty shall be Arnie. The reason I had to do this was on my first jump, I had landed in an area with no weapons and I thought I might have to punch my way to number one. Though it had a frying pan (it was better than nothing), all of sudden gunshots rang out I look to my west and see that I am not alone other people had landed and equipped themselves with shotguns, machine guns, sniper rifles, grenades, more than likely equipped with all sorts of medical supplies.
Fearing that death would soon be upon me, I decided it was the best time for me and Kevin (yeah, I named my frying pan Kevin) to depart. As I make my way towards the zone, the corner of my eye catches the iron silhouette of a motorbike. On the freedom bike me and Kevin hopped, throttle open and the wind in our hair, we take off towards the zone, bullets whizzing past us like a fly with a bum full of dynamite. Kevin takes a direct hit which made me laugh as it seems unrealistic but a nice touch for such a simple item. We can smell the next zone, it's within our reach, my heart is racing, Kevin is as cool and relaxed as always and we come screeching in the next zone and find a house to recover in. We notice that we aren’t alone as there is a car and a Jeep parked outside, methinks the quiet approach is in order this time.
I equip myself with a shotgun and begin looking for more loot to resupply when suddenly, in through the kitchen busts two other players and Kevin and myself are cut down by the wrath of machine guns. I finished 46th out of 100, not too bad for my first attempt but still well short of first place and getting the winner winner chicken dinner.
The Unknown so far…
I had a lot of fun playing the solo mode and have also delved into the duo and squad mode with friends several times and apart from the few rough edges like the frame rate, vehicle control, and character controls, all of which are still a work in progress. One thing I have noticed though is the sheer amount of fun the multiplayer possesses. The serious gamer in me enjoyed the solo and the fun-loving side thoroughly enjoyed the multiplayer. It seems this game caters to a lot of players which can only be good.
Score So Far….3/5
Will me and Big Kev be back for that elusive chicken dinner?…Absolutely