In the quest to improve the performance of PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, the developers at Bluehole are making some significant alterations to the starting island. The developer rolled out changes to test servers overnight and will deploy them later Thursday evening for Steam PC.
The starting island in PUBG has always been a noisy and crowded place as the game spawns 100 players in the same area. Players can also pick up various weapons lying around and practice firing them or harass other players by shooting them in the face with a crossbow and having the bolt stay in the player’s face for the entirety of the match. Aside from being potentially annoying, this also had a negatively high impact on the game’s performance with so many players in such a small area combined with all the weapon fire.
Bluehole’s solution to improve early game performance is to cut down on the starting island shenanigans by removing all weapons and adding multiple pre-match starting islands on both the original Erangel map and recently added Miramar map. Spreading out the players into smaller groups will be less taxing on the PUBG servers and player’s PCs.
The downside is the starting island was a way to gain some familiarity with weapons prior to a match even if it was all too brief. There is no word if Bluehole plans to add a firing range or other practice modes to PUBG in the future.
The developers also have further performance improvements planned for the airplane ride into the map. Early match performance has been a huge issue for PUBG, so it will be beneficial to have these deployed on PC and eventually make their way to Xbox One, where the problem is even worse.
Cheating continues to be a major battle for the PUBG developers. A new anti-cheat measure is being tested with this release, but players should be aware it could cause issues. The anti-cheat method is still being developed, and the studio is using this as an opportunity to test its stability and compatibility.
The exact nature of the anti-cheat measure has not been revealed. However, some players in the PUBG Reddit forums report the possible introduction of a ping-lock to prevent players with high pings from joining a match. Depending on how restrictive a ping lock is, it could effectively solve complaints about the overwhelming number of cheaters from China without an outright region lock.
The current PUBG test build is scheduled to be released to live servers Thursday evening at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT. This will take the game offline for two hours while the servers are being updated.