- Related Games:
- PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds
Earlier in the month a first-person only game mode was added to PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds. Widely requested among the community, the game mode was initially considered an interesting new way to play that provided a new angle on the game’s battle royale experience.
However, over the course of the past two weeks, first-person has become an increasingly popular way to play the game, to a point where there’s a chance that it’ll become the preferred way to play before the end of 2017. Although it might seem surprising, there are a couple of good reasons for this.
First and foremost, the popularity of first-person stems from the concept of fairness. When played in third-person, PUBG‘s camper-friendly style of play offers a huge advantage to players who find a high cover location within the containment zone, and avoid moving locations. There is nothing more dangerous than running around in an open field, leaving you highly visible and open to attack.
While PUBG‘s health pools are reasonable, combating time-to-kill (TTK) being a major contributing factor toward the camping metagame, in third-person game modes players can peer around corners using their camera without revealing their character. This makes virtually any location, even tree trunks and smaller rocks, powerful defensive positions that offer incredible visibility.
In the image above, a player is shown standing in Pochinki, a relatively standard town location in PUBG near the center of the map. In front of him you can see the walls and floor labeled with one of two colors: red or blue. While the blue areas are where he’s visible from an enemy playing in first-person, the red areas are places where someone would be able to see him in third-person.
Put simply, there’s a sense of anxiety that’s common among players in PUBG, as they know that someone can be watching them from virtually anywhere nearby without being visible. It’s quite common to die unexpectedly, and without being able to retaliate. In some circumstances, players die without ever having seen the enemy.
First-person addresses this head-on by requiring that players have line of sight of a target before they’re visible; if you can’t see the enemy, they can’t see you. This is particularly important when combat takes place in high brush, where in third-person visibility and cover are equally strong. In first-person, you can hardly see three feet in front of you thanks to all the blades of grass.
But that’s not the only reason first-person is becoming the increasingly preferred way to play PUBG. In addition to the above, first-person is advantageous during shootouts. For one reason or another, the angle of the crosshair in third-person isn’t precise enough to inspire confidence. In addition, you have to transition into first-person to utilize scopes and other telescopic sights, which are tactical equipment that offer incredible visibility of enemies during gunplay.
Prior to a third-person only mode existing, most veteran players would toggle into first-person when combating other players, offering the best of both worlds. By playing in the first-person exclusive mode, toggling is no longer a thing, and the game feels standardized.
As PUBG heads toward a future where it seeks to make a great impression in the eSports scene, first-person appears to be the way to go. Players are increasingly turning to the mode for a more balanced experience, even if the game wasn’t necessarily built from the ground up to be a first-person shooter.
Third-person will be employed for PUBG‘s upcoming Gamescom Invitational, but we could see a transition in tournaments that follow.