PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds has only been out for a couple of months on the Xbox One and it is already getting a free play weekend. PUBG Corp and Microsoft made that announcement at PAX East this past weekend while the developer revealed its upcoming roadmap for improvements to the console version of the battle royale shooter, including the introduction of the Miramar map.
Xbox One owners with an Xbox LIVE Gold subscription will be able to download and play PUBG from the Xbox Store completely for free starting Thursday, April 19 at 12:01 a.m. PT, per an announcement on Xbox Wire. The full version of the game will be available to play through Sunday, April 22 at 11:59 p.m. PT.
Players will have access to all multiplayer modes and will be able to keep and spend any Battle Points earned during that time. Any items purchased in-game will also carry over if the full game is purchased.
The Free Play Days promotion is a good chance for those who have been on the fence about PUBG to give the $30 game a try. The title has understandably been filled with bugs and performance issues since it was first released in December and was just recently updated with patch number 12 with a focus on improving optimization and stability.
PUBG Corp has admitted the game has not run particularly well on the Xbox One stated “improving crashes is our highest priority” in a forum post detailing the upcoming roadmap of changes for the next few weeks.
“Stability is the most basic element that determines gameplay quality, so we’re taking it seriously and focusing on it with every patch. All of these changes will hit the test server first so we can make sure the above-mentioned optimizations run well before pushing them to live,” the studio added.
In addition to improving the performance and stability updates, PUBG will see the addition of the desert-themed Miramar map. It will hit test servers first by the end of April and is expected to be launched on official servers sometime in May.
The Miramar update will introduce new weapons and vehicles along with other new features. PUBG Corp teased a new asset streaming process to make buildings and other game world objects load more quickly and appear correctly. Additionally, the character movement system is being optimized to help with the shooter’s performance and stability as well.
Custom matches and events will eventually arrive in PUBG. First, the studio will upgrade the out-of-game menus and screens as part of the Miramar update to support those.
PUBG’s popularity has taken a hit due to the overwhelming success of Fortnite: Battle Royale due to Epic Game’s spin on the last man standing shooter being free to play and the fact it runs relatively well on consoles. It will be interesting to see if the Xbox Free Play Days experiment can attract more paying players.