The Blackout beta ended Monday afternoon after a very busy week, and Treyarch has detailed some of the changes they’ll be making for the game’s launch next month thanks to player feedback.
The armor system in Blackout was met with criticism, with players feeling that Level 3 Armor provided too much defense and made some gunfights unwinnable. During the beta, armor underwent numerous adjustments.
- Level 3 Armor saw its spawn frequency reduced by 75% and was relegated to stashes and supply drops, although occasionally spawning as floor loot
- Level 3 Armor now breaks sooner, and Level 2 Armor saw minor adjustments to health
- In the future, players will be able to see the condition of the Armor they are wearing as well as their teammates’s Armor in the HUD
Audio was another common complaint during the beta. Things were way too loud, and things like vehicles sounded much closer than they actually were. Luckily, Treyarch detailed the audio changes they’re planning for launch.
- Sounds will be properly impacted by walls, ceilings, floors, and other objects. Now enemies a floor above or below players won’t be as loud
- The plane, punching, and other loud sounds are being looked at. Treyarch pointed out the game has not yet had its final audio mix
- Teammates’ footsteps won’t be as loud as enemy footsteps
- The Awareness Perk will make friendly footsteps even quieter while amplifying enemy ones
- The final game will feature audio presets
Console players also complained about Blackout’s inventory management and looting systems. Treyarch heard all the feedback and laid out some changes.
- Treyarch is evaluating the interface for looting stashes and crates
- A method will be added to quickly strip a weapon of all its attachments
- There will be a way to swap attachments between two weapons if both weapons support the attachment
Blackout saw some performance issues on Xbox One, but thankfully Treyarch acknowledged the problems and is currently investigating the choppiness. Of course, Blackout wasn’t all bugs and problems, far from it, actually. Treyarch released some fun statistics to cap off the past week.
- 7.5 million Zombies were killed
- 26 million teammates were revived
- 3.3 billion items were picked up
- 64 million stashes were spawned
- The longest Combat Axe kill was 698 feet
- There were a total of 123 basketball kills
Most kills by an individual player:
- Solos: 25
- Duos: 29
- Quads: 25
Most kills by a team:
Blackout will launch with Call of Duty: Black Ops III on October 12 for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. The game will be the first in the series to ditch a single player campaign in favor of a completely multiplayer experience.
At E3 2018, CD Projekt Red demoed their highly anticipated RPG, Cyberpunk 2077, to press behind closed doors. Today, they finally made that footage public. Check out the full 48 minutes gameplay video here.
Epic is being weird again.
Yesterday, lightning started striking cacti in the desert section of the map. Players reported these strikes happening at regular intervals, but the lightning kept coming faster and faster. One huge final bolt of lightning hit, and it left something.
This is now the latest piece in the puzzle that is Fortnite’s season by season narrative. The purple cube is located just outside of Paradise Palms. Nobody knows what it is or what it’s for or who sent it, but Fortnite players have discovered one key trait the cube seems to possess: it’s bouncy.
Like usual, this event will only get more complicated as the season comes to an end, but until then you can go see the cube yourself. Just be sure to thank the bus driver on your way down.
Epic just added a groundbreaking feature which is sure to shake up the battle royale landscape. You can now thank your bus driver in Fortnite Battle Royale.
A popular change.org petition entitled “Add the ability to thank the bus driver before jumping out of the battle bus in Fortnite” has now become a reality. All you need to do is press down on the d-pad on console or the B key on PC to show your gratitude.
Now this is quality content.
Epic Games dropped some big news on us in this month’s State of Development post.
“We are aware of a strong desire from competitive players for more opportunities to compete directly against one another within the same match. Development recently began for a robust competition system which will allow for all players to compete with one another and be recognized for their accomplishments.”
Most people are expecting some kind of ranked play similar to other games’ competitive modes, with divisions like bronze, silver, etc. The exact details of the mode aren’t available yet, but Epic stated it would be looking at the Summer Skirmish as a blueprint.
“Our weekly Fortnite Summer Skirmish events have proven invaluable as a testing ground, providing a high-stakes environment for some of the best players in the world to showcase their skills. We have learned a lot from experiments with scoring schemes and formats, attempting to find the best balance between simplicity, entertainment, server performance and competitive integrity.”
On top of competitive news, Epic also announced other changes coming soon to the game, like custom control mapping, slight changes to the pump shotgun’s equip time, and higher resolutions on PS4 Pro. Input-based matchmaking is also being implemented, causing many console players to let out a sigh of relief. If anyone in a Fortnite squad is using a keyboard and mouse, the squad will be matched with PC players. This was especially an issue on PS4, where keyboard and mouse are officially supported, and players who have these peripherals had a distinct advantage over those who don’t.
Fortnite’s competitive mode is slated for this fall.
Microsoft may be planning a service similar to a cell phone plan for their Xbox ecosystem. Windows Central reports that “Xbox All Access” will be a monthly subscription service that will net customers Xbox Live Gold, Xbox Game Pass, and an Xbox One console. The service will also offer a choice between an Xbox One S or the more powerful Xbox One X, with a price tag of $22 per month for the Xbox One S plan or $35 per month for the Xbox One X plan. After a period of two years, you’ll completely own the console. The service seems to be U.S. only, which would explain why it wasn’t announced at Germany’s Gamescom 2018.
Right now, an Xbox One S bundled with a select game costs $229 on Microsoft’s website. An Xbox One X will run you $499. Xbox Live Gold is $60 for a year, and Game Pass is $10 a month. Xbox All Access should make things slightly cheaper overall for both options.
This service falls in line with Microsoft’s strategy for the later half of this generation: providing attractive services and a connected ecosystem to draw in new players. Xbox Game Pass continues to grow, with huge titles like Halo: The Master Chief Collection coming soon, as well as every first party Xbox exclusive launching day and date on the service. Backwards Compatibility sees new titles added monthly, with most titles seeing enhancements on Xbox One X. The Xbox Play Anywhere program promotes cross buy and cross play between Xbox and Windows PC. All of that in combination with Xbox All Access makes the barrier of entry into the current console generation much lower than it has ever been. Lowering the cost of entry into the Xbox ecosystem should give Microsoft’s console a much needed boost in market share against the leading PlayStation 4.
Microsoft is planning to officially unveil the service later this month. Microsoft is also reportedly working on a new controller codenamed “Washburn”, so expect more Xbox news soon.