PUBG has never felt old to me. I’ve played it substantially more than any other game this year, and yet it continues to draw me in. But this past weekend, the second long-awaited map came to Xbox One players via a test server, and for the first time in long while, PUBG felt new again.
The Miramar map plays so differently to the original that it almost felt like playing a different game. The landscape is more open and barren. The buildings are taller and more complex. The ground is bumpier and harder to traverse. I was so out of my depth, that I reverted to my early PUBG tactics of 1) find a gun, 2) hide in a corner.
I felt more alone on the second map. When playing Erangel (the first PUBG map), I would be able to identify a shooter within seconds based on direction of sound, and the limited number of viable vantage points. Seeing players constantly running, driving and engaging in combat made Erangel feel alive. When playing Miramar, I felt so stranded. In the larger settlements, identifying the direction of gunfire is difficult due to the verticality of the structures and undulation of the terrain. I found myself fleeing for cover time, and time again. I was hopeless.
It gets worse as you traverse the open plains. Towering cliffs and large rock piles jut out of the ground, providing ample cover for lone snipers. Vehicles won’t help you either, as the off-road surfaces are unbearably rough. This limits you to the roads where you’re exposed to ambushes and other passing vehicles. Everything in the Miramar map feels more threatening, and for that, I am grateful.
I’m sure with time I will grow accustomed to both maps, but never before have I been so amazed with a new map in a multiplayer-shooter. I know Fortnite is the current craze, but after dipping my toe into Epic’s Battle Royale game a few weeks ago, I’m certain that PUBG is the one for me, and that its future is bright. I’ll definitely check back in when the new map goes live on public servers to give you a more developed consensus.
Best wishes y’all.
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