I don’t understand the drama surrounding PUBG’s soon to be paid crates

A lot of people seem to be rallying against the idea that PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds will eventually charge for crates, and I don’t quite get it. People are acting as if this is an affront against the game’s fan base, but I don’t see it. First off all, the items received in crates are cosmetic. They’re “hats”, they’re not real. Gaining these items doesn’t necessarily change the way the game plays (you can argue that certain colors may help you blend in, but that’s still not a solid argument). What bothers me the most is that people are reacting as if the crate system is core to the PUBG experience. It’s not. I can’t imagine that the most enjoyable thing about the game for people is opening crates. It’s something that you can completely ignore and still enjoy the game just as much as anyone else. Heck all I’ve gotten from crates so far are a few identical red shirts and a long sleeved blue shirt. Big deal. I’d have as much fun with the game if the entire system didn’t exist.

There is, however, a benefit to monetizing cosmetic items. I view systems like this as a way for players to essentially tip the game’s creators. I’ve already paid upfront for the experience, but I’ve had so much fun already that I’d gladly throw an extra $2 at it here and there in exchange for digital clothing. Yet the reaction this model prompts from gamers is absurd. People are crying out as if they’re completely changing what they paid for. Again, I don’t think anyone looked at the crate system and had that become the deciding factor in favor of their purchase.

Life will go on. The game will still be fun. People make video games in order to earn money, and I don’t think it’s fair to get upset when someone develops a way to do better as a business if it doesn’t have any negative impact on the core game. Everything will be alright.

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PUBG: Hanging out on a boat

Early today in PUBG I started swimming across the water toward the military base to get to where the majority of the circle was, and as I was swimming it was nice seeing the number of players tick down while I was practically in my own world. Every now and then I would hear gunshots, but no one seemed to know I existed. It was a slow swim, but it was the most peaceful time I’ve spent with the ¬†game yet. At one point I heard a boat behind me, but I was able to stop and bob in the water undetected as it drove up onto the shore. I then continued my swim toward an unused boat in the water and hopped into it once I was sure there was no one around.

I had a great view of the sunset from my little spot on the water, and I sat there for quite awhile without moving the boat. Eventually I started to move around the island and came to a stop underneath the bridge, a position that gave me over from anyone who might be on either of the shores. There I could hear plenty of action taking place above me, and it was oddly satisfying to hear it all take place knowing that no one knew that I lurked below.

Eventually I made my way around the back of the island and abandoned my boat in order to more stealthily swim toward land. I planned to stay in the water as long as possible and then make my way inward at the last possible minute in hopes that most of the other players would be dead by the time I got on shore. It didn’t help that the only thing I looted up until that point was a pistol (three other players dropped in near me early on so I sprinted through two buildings and got out of there quickly). Unfortunately I was wrong in thinking I was near an area that would lead me onto land. I managed to make it into the top ten before I died helplessly, unable to find away inside the circle.

Still having a blast in PUBG (and have tasted chicken dinner)

A little over a week ago I started playing PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS in duos, and it makes the game feel entirely different. My normal strategy of hide in a corner and wait doesn’t play well in a group, so I was forced to sweep from building to building actually engaging enemies as we moved inward to remain in safety. I actually had to take shots at people who weren’t first shooting at me (as you can tell I didn’t manage to kill any of them) which changed how I had been playing the game in a big way. It was a blast to be aggressive for once, and it made me more confident in my subsequent games.

Last night I was playing solo and someone ran up into my building without knowing I was there. I was able to take them out with an uzi and found an 8X scope on their body, the first time I’ve come across such a high powered scope in the game. I affixed it on my M16 and watched over the city below me. It wasn’t long before I saw two people engage in a firefight, and it was an awesome feeling to take out one of them from afar. The other player ducked back inside that building, unfortunately, and never poked their head back out. I decided to continue keeping watch over the city, as I had seen two other people walking around it, however this contributed to my downfall as I was shotgunned in the face while looking down the scope five minutes later.

In another game last night I found ideal cover by driving a vehicle up against a cliff and hiding prone underneath it. My backside was covered and I felt relatively safe despite being out in the open. I’ve found I actually tend to survive longer if I’m crawling in the grass than I do if I’m hiding in a building, I assume because most people gravitate toward solid cover and ignore the open grass. Unfortunately, this optimal cover didn’t last as I soon had to make the trek inward again. I eventually ditched the vehicle by a rock and began crawling slowly and carefully as I ended up well within the circle with plenty of tree and rock cover.

This turned out to by my best solo game yet, as the circle closed in on a wide open area and everyone had to abandon their buildings and work toward it. I stayed silent in the grass by the trees and watched as everyone started picking each other off. I could hear bullets whizzing over my head, but I resisted the urge to get up and just waited. Before long I caught a glimpse of someone working their way toward me, but they hadn’t seen me yet. I decided I needed to take action, and tried taking them out, but the sound of gunfire attracted more eyes and we were both put down by someone else. I finished 7th, in one of the most excited games I’ve played yet.

 

Gumballs Plays: PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS (22 May)

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Watching me player PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS is probably like watching paint dry. I tend to make a beeline for a building, stock up on whatever’s inside, and then find somewhere to hide in a cowardly manner for as long as humanly possible. This strategy has worked in my favor more often than it seems like it should, as I’ve often gotten lucky and ended up well inside the circle early on. In tonight’s game I scored 3 kills, my highest yet, but unfortunately I’m still terrible once I get out into the open as the circle contracts toward the end, and this is where I always meet my fate.

As boring as it is to watch, I love playing this way. It’s incredibly tense. In tonight’s game I heard someone pull up in a vehicle, get out and open the door downstairs. The footsteps got closer and closer and I felt sure they were going to burst through the door and kill me at any moment. Then, for whatever reason, they turned around, went back downstairs, got into their vehicle and drove off. My heart was racing¬†as I stood up to watch them drive away.

The next person to enter the house wasn’t so lucky. Unfortunately, I eventually had to leave my shelter (I probably could’ve stayed awhile longer) and work my way toward the new safe zone and my ultimate death.

What I’ve been playing

PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds

I’ve finally gotten to play a few rounds of PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, and have had a pretty good time with it. My strategy mostly revolves around finding a house early on and hiding in a corner somewhere, which might not sound exciting, but it certainly provides a tense experience. One game I was huddled behind a set of stairs as the circle got smaller and smaller, and finally I heard footsteps get closer and closer. Then a door opened. More footsteps. The intruder walked up the stairs right over me, and I debated whether to stand my ground or try to sneak up behind them. Luckily the bombs starting falling all around us and I used the cover of the explosions to scurry up the stairs unnoticed. There he was, staring out the window as I pulled out my pistol and fired a few shots into his back. Unfortunately, it wasn’t enough to kill him and he was better armed than me. He spun around and pointed his rifle at me as I quickly retreated back down the stairs and stupidly ran back underneath them again. I was backed into a corner, but I didn’t hear any footsteps. I figured he had to be at the top of the stairs looking down, using leverage to his advantage.

I hid there practically holding my breath for a few minutes, but then the circle moved away from us and I knew I’d have to move. I watched the timer tick down figuring maybe I could wait him out and if he left first I could get the jump on him. Finally with 30 seconds left until the blue circle of death would start to creep toward us, he popped off a few smoke grenades, engulfing the house in a dense fog. I decided to try to use the cover to my advantage and quietly sneak outside. I made it out the door! But my victory was short lived, as I was quickly shot in the back and killed.

Needless to say, I’ve been having a blast with Battlegrounds, even though the best I’ve ever finished is 16th place. There’s just something immensely satisfying about knowing you’re well hidden as someone runs right past you allowing you to get the jump on them. Unfortunately, it seems every time I find myself in an advantageous position, someone with more patience has been lurking just behind and takes me out after I spring on an opportunity.

Prey

I hadn’t heard much about Prey leading up to its release. I didn’t even know what type of game it was. I’m not sure whether that’s a symptom of a lack of pre-release coverage (I get 90% of my gaming news from Giant Bomb) or whether I just passively ignored any coverage out of lack of interest. I had never played the original Prey, nor have I played System Shock, which I think further contributed to my misunderstanding of the game. I ended up watching a Twitch stream on Thursday night and the game looked incredibly pleasing visually. I enjoyed watching the player explore the space station, and I figured it would be a shooter with a cool environment. I didn’t stick around long enough to see any encounters before I bought it on Steam.

Once I finally launched the game I was quite excited. It looked great, though I had to tone the settings down to a sort of medium-high mix on my GTX 1060 and AMD FX8320 (oc’ed to 4.0Ghz) to get a better framerate. Once I encountered my first mimic it scared the crap out of me. I had no clue what I was getting into, which probably worked to the games advantage, because from that point on I was absolutely on edge. I’m not huge into horror games, and I especially dislike jump scares, so after about an hour or so I had to turn the game off.

I’d like to play more, but I’m not sure how much I can actually handle.

DOTA 2

For some reason after watching Brad Shoemaker purchase the International 2017 Battle Pass on a Giant Bomb stream (Unprofessional Fridays) I decided to launch the game and do the same for myself. I haven’t played DOTA since last year’s International, and even then I found the game incredibly difficult to get the hang of, and I’ve played poorly in every match I’ve played. Last weekend I played a few matches and my teams actually won 2 out of the 3 matches I played. Unfortunately, I didn’t contribute much at all (maybe other than being a distraction), as I didn’t land a single kill all weekend. Still, I find myself wanting to play more. I’ll probably try to play a few bot matches until I can start landing kills before I jump into matchmaking again, however.

Modern Warfare Remastered

After playing some Black Ops II via backwards compatibility I found myself wanting more traditional Call of Duty, so I ordered the Infinite Warfare Legacy Edition on Amazon for $55. It was a nostalgic trip to get back into Modern Warfare, even though I’ve gotten absolutely destroyed in every match that I’ve played. I can’t seem to get aiming down with the analog stick, and I half wish I had bought it for PC instead (though I’m sure I’d still get destroyed).

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Games I still need to play

I’d like to finish up Telltale’s Batman, and after seeing Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 I picked up that Telltale game as well. I’m not sure if I’m liking it so far, however. I’ve played the first two chapters, and haven’t really enjoyed the gameplay.

I need to work on Grim Fandango and Full Throttle on PS4, and then there’s my ever growing backlog that includes: Horizon Zero Dawn, Breath of the Wild (Wii U), Tales of Berseria, Uncharted 4, Yakuza 0 and Until Dawn among many more.