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PlayerUnknown's Battleground - Hunger Games with Machine Guns?

When you look at this game you may think at first, is this Hunger Games for PC? Well add assault rifles to the mix and you wouldn't be too far off. There is no immersive story or any other smoke and mirrors to disguise the fact that this is a "kill your neighbor" survival game. This is unlike games that follow Day-Z, which seemed to be more geared towards survival, where encounters with other players are often easily avoided due to  the size of the map.

It is very obvious that the combat engine is a large part of the game development and encountering players is the overall goal. Sure you might be able to wait it out for a while, but unlike most survival games PUBG begins to close down the map like a noose, wrangling all the remaining players into smaller and smaller play zones while the initial 100 player count dwindles, until you are essentially on top of each other fully loaded for battle. The end goal is not only surviving, but being the last man or woman standing, taking your friends out along the way to ensure your victory!

You might be saying to yourself, well that sounds fun for about twenty minutes! This is exactly what I was thinking after my first few drops (they didn't last long because i was terrible at the game). Then I got a random friend request from a player that had just killed me with a well place shot through a window with his AKM (AK-47 like assault rifle). I jumped in his Discord channel and we queued up for Duo queue, this is where things got interesting for me. Again going back to games like Day-Z, you could party with friends and then hope to find each other on a huge map, probably losing a few in your party along the way before finding everyone. Well PUBG fixed that problem. Now you can queue together, drop out of a plane together, and parachute to your starting point... TOGETHER!

This added an awesome element to the game, having someone to talk to and survive with made it much more fun and that much more intense. You always have to think do I give my partner this first aid kit because i already have one or do I save and never say a word until it is needed. It is a dark place but one you will eventually visit while playing. We all have more than two friends I hope, so naturally duo queue just won't cut it for some nights, enter squad queue.

Now imagine the same one hundred people dropping from a plane, but this time everyone is in a squad of four. This adds an exciting element to the game, and will be the reason I personally will put a few hundred hours into PUBG. This became my favorite feature as soon as I experienced my first 4v4 squad battle, as we were running to the next batch of houses to loot, I spotted a figure running across the front yard of our next target house. No sooner did I call it out did the fire fight start, one of my friends was caught out in a bad position but was able to down one before being downed himself, left on the ground bleeding out giving us call outs from the ground. Then the two other party members, who happen to be behind a shed when this all started, went to work, downing the guy that shot our point man, and making quick work of the third, but the fourth member was patching up one of his partners and we were going to have to fight round two. Not knowing if we would survive a second fire fight, I pulled out my pistol and charged the last target. This did not end well for me as he had an M4 and mowed me down giving the rest of my team time to take him out and heal us up.

At that moment I forgot I was even in a survival game and my FPS instincts were kicking in, but what was most surprising is the game allowed that to happen, the smooth combat system really puts this game in a new category of games, this is a true FPS Survival game and not the other way around.

Now this game is an Early Access Steam game, which, after the Day-Z debacle, I vowed to not even mess with anymore. I received so many recommendations to try this game I felt I had to give it a shot, but I went in with very low expectations. Man was I surprised, this game is not only very stable, but it is beautiful and has amazing developer support. Sure there are small things, like a buggy starting zone and some audio artifacts, but overall those are very tiny gripes for the what stage this game is in. I am very impressed with PUBG overall and I can not wait to get back into it! 

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