In this competitive industry, it’s super rare for a developer or publisher to own their mistakes. Deceptive PR speak, damage control, positive spins on the most dire of situations… that seems to be the way forward. Not for the team at PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, though. They hear us, and they’re embarking on an epic quest to Fix The Game™.
Seriously. They’ve got a website and line graphs and everything. They are not messing around.
Now, there’s no questioning that something went really wrong for PUBG. How the battle royale mighty have fallen. When the ever-popular Fortnite came along, it boasted an accessibility, a ludicrous sense of fun and an ability to launch on EVERY DANG SYSTEM EVER. All of this amounts to one of the biggest deals in gaming since the likes of Angry Birds, and PUBG has largely been left in the dust.
Abortive court cases and such aside, there’s been little that PUBG Corp has been able to do to hit back. The game has been a phenomenon in its own right, of course (Fortnite’s battle royale began as nothing more than a side-mode, after all), but the statistics with regards to the player base make for quite grim reading.
But all of this is well-documented. The important thing is that the devs are listening to the (constructive) criticism from players. So committed are they to that cause, Fix PUBG (the very words that aggrieved fans have been throwing at them on an hourly basis) has become the title of a long campaign of fixes and improvements, all coming to the game over the next few months.
In the introduction of the official site, the team concedes that PUBG has been held back from reaching its true potential by a series of issues. No denial, no shifting the blame, just a blunt statement that it’s time to do something about it. “We've created a roadmap with specific details about our plans, and we intend to update it as we go, checking things off as we deliver on our promises,” they state, before getting straight to demonstrating how they want all of this to pan out.
The extensive list of improvements will relate to five primary aspects of the game: client performance, server performance, anti-cheat, matchmaking and bug fix/quality of life. Within these categories, there are specific plans laid out (faster and smarter matchmaking, for instance, and a report result notification system).
There’s a (subject to change, no doubt) timescale for each of these to implemented, as those fancy graphs show. There’s also an in-depth fix log beneath them, going into all kinds of details about these changes, where they’re at and why they matter.
Sure, only time will tell whether this is just a lot of big talk or not, but it’s a very positive step for the future of the game. Kudos to them for striving to be better.