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Dev Letter: Erangel Loot Rebalance

PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) currently features several interesting maps for the players to master. Looking back on the first map released – Erangel, some people probably realize that this map is currently stuck somewhere between the main experiences in the game and a little bit of outdated. After collecting some feedback from the players on the looting and spawning rate issues in PUBG game, the development team made a decision on remastering the map Erangel in order to bring something better to the gamers.

Remastering Erangel will be not an easy task at all for the development team when they have to ensure that Erangel will still keep its own original characteristics while also receiving new upgrades in terms of graphics, effects, visuals, especially the balancing between the looting and spawning rate items. The developers want to carry out the test and examine it along with the players.

The plan will take a lot of attempts to carry out to improve Erangel, and it will be completed in phases that will occur over several months. During the project, several parts of the overall remaster will be released in order to examine and receive the feedback they finished and apply the changes. At the first step, the loot balance and the spawn rates of map Erangel will be changed, and they also aim to apply to the test server tomorrow. Let’s take a look at the direction, the thoughts and the plan of the dev team for these changes to loot.

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Prior to the commencement

Among PUBG News, remastering the map Erangel can be one of the hottest news. This project will take a lot of time to complete, and also, it requires testing and iteration. No public tests will be given out during these phases until they can be applied to live servers. The same goes for experiments, impressions, leaks and data mining! These elements should be kept as a major puzzle to the gamers throughout the course of these stages. Each test will come with player feedback and internal data. It’s very important to keep an eye on the main communications on the status of Erangel testing.

Item Spawn Rates on Erangel in PUBG PC

So what is the main goal with item spawn rates in PUBG PC? Obviously, it’s all about the balancing between the chaos of surviving in extreme circumstances and the pleasure of owing strong weapons that players want to use. The item spawn system has to be random and pull from a master table which gives out the loot for every game in a discrepant way. Erangel was created to be extremely random with a smaller spawn rate.

The play styles of the players have become much more advanced and evolved, thanks to further maps coming out. This already makes the legacy loot system of Erangel more noticed.

After receiving a lot of feedback from the players on this topic, the development team began making efforts to fix this issue. The dev team commenced trying to solve this problem after gathering some feedback from the players on this issue.

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The connection between spawn rate and acquisition rate in PUBG

Some item pick-up experience tests were already implemented by the dev team, in the collaboration with pro teams in esports mode. These tests were meant to figure out if they could repair the balance problem by altering the spawn rate. The test will be much effective if being carried out in esports mode rather than the common mode for testing the effect of spawn rate adjustments. Another reason is that the esports mode has higher item spawn settings.

The test comprises of 15 areas and studied the effectiveness of loot. Fundamentally, the dev team wanted to find out which percentage of loot was picked up and which was left behind. As can be seen from the data table above, there was up to 67.85% of the real pick-up rate of items on all areas, resulting in the conclusion that nearly 33% of item spawned where not important or duplicate spawn items.

Because of this test, the development team of PUBG understands that they need to develop the value of the items and the balance loot in areas where players didn’t find nice items conflicting with the significance and the scale of the zone they were in.

In addition, the dev team also carried out a test on the types of items that can be picked up in the large area on the map, and they singled out the features of each area, as well as even examined the favorite game styles of the players, including the favorite of which areas to balance loot of the players.

There was a clear difference in the item acquisition rate for each area on the map Erangel, and the decision of the dev team was to balance loot to make sure all the items can be well distributed across the map.

The main goal of Erangel Loot Balancing

Together with Erangel, Sanhok is also a wonderful map in PUBG game. It was also a large comparison point for the gamers when talking about the spawn rate of Erangel. Sanhok was considered as the map that has a smaller scale, lots of loot as well as a faster-paced battle. Many players wanted to have the same experience and loot balance on Erangel.

From the real data around this comparison, it clearly demonstrates that ARs are 4.75%, DMRs 0.69%, and SRs 0.26% on Sanhok, while 2%, 0.48%, and 0.12% on Erangel respectively, which indicates that AR and SR ratios in Erangel are so low, especially the discrepant size of the map. According to the feeling of the dev team, they did think that Erangel represented the original Battle Royale experience when the spawn rate of grenades, pistols, and magazines are high, but for other crucial items, their spawn rates are so low on Erangel.

The dev team wanted to adjust the spawn rate of Erangel a little bit boldly in the subsequent test, which will reduce the spawn number of pistols, grenades, and magazines while enhancing the number of weapons with the necessary equipment for the players by around 10-20%. More than that, the number of item spawns will undergo an alteration by item category to a ratio that is similar to Sanhok. It can be such a big alteration, however, modifying the spawn amount is what the team wants in order to feel much better while making sure that all the unique features of Erangel are still maintained. They want to ensure that Erangel will not be considered as a bigger Sanhok.

When putting all the things relating to Erangel together, there will be no consistent item pick-up experiences for the players as the map doesn’t give loot balance in each area. The dev team does learn that this is not the only method to solve a basic problem in Erangel, but they have a strategy to adjust the spawn rate/spawn amount incrementally in order to make the gameplay experiences of all players much more consistent so they can acquire a lot of items easily. Also, the dev team stresses the unique features of the map.

The development team is expecting to receive a lot of feedback from the players on these major changes, however, they still have to do more than that. For instance, they will implement some work to maintain the balance of the loot across lots of points of the map. A small gap in loot between some areas will be noticed by the players, but in general, the gaming experience will be much more upgraded, so players can totally loot and get more equipment at the beginning of the game. These new update contents are not set in stone as this is simply the first test. Players should send more feedback so these changes can be repeated and the map Erangel will stay balanced.

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The subsequent steps

As stated by the dev team before, the Erangel issue cannot be fixed by the spawn rate balance, for this reason, the team will never stop changing/adjusting elements as test progress. For example, if the frequency of the early combat is much increased by this developed spawn rate, there will be a chance for the mid-game to tolerate due to the fewer players in a larger safe zone. The dev team will surely be aware of the way that playing time and play pattern are affected, and of course, will solve in if needed.

The entire project is kind of personal to the dev team of PUBG. Their big goal here is to create the best Battle Royale game on the market. The team even recommits to remaster Erangel, which is their main goal. The ones, who have already sent their feedback to the team, will receive many thanks from the dev team. Players should keep sending their thoughts on the subsequent changes to Erangel and ensure that they will stay tuned for more interesting information.

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