Thanks to a childhood wasted in virtual velociraptor fighting pits, I will never not hear the words “Danger Zone!” in the chipper yet exasperated tones of a struggling 90’s game show jingle singer. I lured you in with a dash of raptor chat, there, but sadly even after the latest update to Counter-Strike Global Offensive‘s battle royale mode, the dinosaur count remains at nill.
The new map, jumpy boots, springy mines and respawn system counts, on the other hand, have shot right up. I have had a good (brief) bouncy time.
The new map, Sorocco, is the main dealio. I don’t like that it’s drab, washed out and generally aesthetically bland. I do like that there are interesting features like big pits in the ground. And nice palm trees.
More exciting to me is the new perk system. Those shoes aren’t an item you find in game, they’re one of four perks you can choose to spawn in with at the start. There’s also a close range instakill gun, a reusable parachute, and a syringe that gives you a combined health and speed boost. At the moment it’s a bit broken because you always pick the jumpy boots. I haven’t tried the other three starting perk options and they may well be tactically superior choices, but they’re not, yunno, jumpy boots. They let you go twice as high and make a ‘pshhh’ noise.
I haven’t come across a Bump Mine yet, but I’m looking forward to the first time I see one send an enemy hurling into the sky. You can also jump on them yourself, but the update page recommends bringing a parachute. More items, including a shield and a gadget that lets you remote control your drone, are “coming soon”. Here are the patch notes in full.
I’m also very pleased to see that Valve have taken two juicy leaves out of Apex Legend’s book, and added both a respawn system and rudimentary pinging. I have absolutely no problem with Valve’s “yeah, I’ll take that” mentality towards such things. I mean, I wrote this when when I gushed about Danger Zone last year: “It feels like Valve have sat down and taken a good look at problems with other royales, then addressed them through systems that introduce interesting decisions while simultaneously pushing players towards conflict.”
I’m delighted they’re looking at other game’s solutions too.