PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds has just kicked off Season 4, and a new post on the game's website outlines the extensive changes that have landed with PC update 4.1, where we hear that game updates will revolve around new seasons from now on, featuring new content, gameplay tweaks, and Survivor Passes. Updates will also be named differently as well, which is why Season 4's first PC patch is 4.1 (Season 4 will launch later this summer on consoles).
The highlight of this update is the Erangel rework we've known about for some time, changing the original map and how it looks in major ways, with the buildings being tweaked, graphics upgraded, and some revelations regarding the history of the island. This means there are secrets for players to find as well, along with small details like abandoned tanks, added terrain, and trenches. Overall brightness has been reduced as well, alongside grass density and colour saturation, and you can see some of the changes in the video and screens below:
The Blue Zone in Erangel is being tweaked at the same time, with a few more adjustments being added to the experimental Blue Zone trialed on the test server. The size of the safe zone in early phases has been reduced, with Blue Zone waiting time also reduced in early and mid-game phases. Movement speed in the Blue Zone during mid and late phases has been decreased too, and Blue Zone waiting time for the final phase has also been reduced.
The new Survivor Pass is called Aftermath, which is also linked to Erangel's identity, including its history. This features over 100 rewards to earn via missions and levels, and there's a brand new cooperative mission system as well, meaning players work together towards certain goals, with the mission change system tweaked too, letting players use BP to swap out more missions.
Aftermath's Pass starts on July 23 and runs until October 15, ending with live server maintenance, and level-up items are available to buy at 5, 20, 30, and 50 level amounts. Daily missions reset every day at 19:00 (all times PDT - eight hours behind BST and nine behind CEST), and Weekly Missions reset every Wednesday at the same time. Premium, Season, and Challenge Missions are available for the whole season, with Premium Missions available for Survivor Pass holders. Lastly we have Season Missions, available throughout the entire season and coming in five mission sets, and Survival Point gains have been increased significantly in Erangel, Miramar, and Vikendi.
In terms of weapons and vehicles, many have been tweaked in Season 4, with the patch including the first rebalance to vehicles. There are tons of changes, and you can read the full details in the patch notes, with changes also affecting how FPS affects rate of fire, meaning its less affected by FPS and there's an improved rate of fire consistency at low FPS.
In terms of UI, changes are inbound in this area too, including the Store, as there's now a Survivor Pass 4 page to access details, purchases, and pass progress. When buying an item from the store you can also go straight to the category screen of that item now, by clicking the button on a popup.
The plane UI has also been tweaked so it resizes dynamically when zooming in, and plenty of changes are hitting the wheel, with the size being reduced and responsiveness improved. Mouse direction indicator has been added to the wheel's centre as well, and screen blurring effect has been removed; the order of items inside the healing wheel has been changed; and the total emote wheel slots has been dropped from 12 to 8.
One of the other key pillars of this update is matchmaking changes, and there's a whole dev letter dedicated to how the matchmaking system is being altered. This has been done to resolve issues around long matchmaking times in some regions, as well as a number of other concerns.
For example, in North America, map selection options have been changed, meaning you can select from a featured map option or a random map option temporarily. A short while after the new Erangel map has released, the former option will disappear, although you can also select preset match too, which allows players to choose the map they want to play, with random squads the only option with this choice.
In terms of other world changes, the chance of Moonlight weather on Vikendi has been reduced, and PUBG Nations Cup decals, billboards, signs, and a plane banner have been added, celebrating the event from August 9 to 11. There's even a PUBG Nations Cup Pan released, available after July 31 maintenance until August 14.
There's a lot to take in here, and as mentioned you can check out the full details in the patch notes. Are you ready for Season 4?