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‘PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds’ on Xbox One tips and tricks

Get that chicken dinner with our guide to 'PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds' on Xbox One

PLAYERUNKNOWN'S BATTLEGROUNDS Xbox Game Preview launch trailer
PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds is now available on Xbox One through Microsoft’s Xbox Game Preview program, bringing the free-for-all “battle royale” shooter to consoles for the first time. In some ways, the experience is nearly identical to that on PC, from the weapons and vehicles you’ll find to the enormous map, but playing the game on Xbox — even if you already have experience with the PC version — has a few unique quirks, which lead console-specific challenges. We’ve been playing the game, and have some tips advice for players looking to get that delicious and elusive chicken dinner in Battlegrounds on Xbox One.

Prioritize framerate on Xbox One X

If you’re playing on an Xbox One X, you’ll be greeted with an extra options menu when you boot up PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds for the first time. This will give you three different choices for how to make the most of the console: prioritizing resolution, prioritizing framerate, or prioritizing graphical features. As tempting as it might be to guarantee you’re playing the game in full 4K resolution, we highly recommend prioritizing framerate. Battlegrounds is far less stable on Xbox One than it is on PC: Its framerate can drop to horrendous levels right now, which will affect your ability to compete. The slight boost you get from the One X’s extra horsepower could be the different between life and death during a match.

Don’t assume you’re jumping alone

Battlegrounds Chaos 93 people jump at exactly the same time

PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds has quite a few technical problems at launch, from disappearing shadows to lag that makes characters suddenly teleport several feet. One of the most consistent technical issues we’ve found occurs right at the start of each match: After jumping out of the plane at the top of the round, it is often impossible to see other players floating down with their parachutes until you are very close to the ground, limiting your ability to adjust your starting location mid-descent. You are generally able to see players jumping when you are in the plane, so you should have a general idea of how much trouble to expect right off the bat.

To compensate for this, you should screen the ground carefully as you’re approaching your destination to make sure others haven’t already set up camp, and you can increase the speed of your descent by pressing forward on the analog stick as you make your approach.

Obviously this is a technical issue — one that we hope will change soon — but you should pay attention for the time being.

Learn to love the triggers

Given the fewer number of buttons available on an Xbox One controller than on a keyboard and mouse, it can be tricky to figure out the many inputs in Battlegrounds while you’re actively trying to avoid getting murdered. One of the most important to know early on is how to properly aim down your weapon’s sights.

By holding in the left trigger, your character’s weapon reticule will shrink just slightly, giving you a more accurate shot, but without the precision to take out distant targets. In order to do this, you need to aim down your sights in a first-person perspective using the left trigger. Tap and release the trigger and you’ll aim down the sights indefinitely, which is perfect for when you’re guarding the entrance to a building. For quicker firefights, double-tap and hold the left trigger, which will allow you to only aim down the sights until you release it. Just be warned: Getting caught on objects in the environment will automatically pull you out of this view, which could lead to some cheap deaths.

The right Xbox One trigger is more of a liability than an asset in Battlegrounds. As a console exclusive, the game’s developers chose to make use of its “impulse triggers,” which rumble whenever you fire a shot. It’s a pretty intense effect that can throw off your rhythm in the middle of a fight, so be ready for the controller to fight back in addition to your victim.

Climb, climb, climb

PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds climbing, vaulting, and weather Trailer E3 2017

In November, climbing and vaulting over obstacles became available in the Battlegrounds PC test server. Though the Xbox One version is technically prerelease, these features are enabled in the game on console, as well. Whenever you see a waist-high fence, you don’t have to look for a way around it – just hit the A button and hop right over! You might have to press the button a few times, as the feature is quite unpolished, but it works the majority of the time. Any obstacle shorter than your character should also be climbable, giving you a new place to lie in wait as your unsuspecting victims approach.

Use first-person mode

At any time in PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds on Xbox One, you can press the RB button to enter a first-person perspective. This isn’t the ideal way to play the game most of the time, as it lowers your environmental awareness, but there are a few times when it can be extremely useful.

When guarding a staircase, your character’s head will be blocking nearly half of the screen, limiting your ability to take our enemies entering in front of you. With first-person mode turned on, however, you’ll be able to see the entire area without even having to aim down your weapon’s sights. Just remember to turn third-person mode back on whenever you change positions again.

Keep your inventory clean

When you come across objects on the ground in PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, you have two options for picking them up. The first it to aim at them with the analog stick and press the X button, which will instantly place the item in your inventory, and in the case of gear, equip it for you. But items are often located next to each other on the ground, so this option can lead to you accidentally grabbing unwanted equipment.

Instead, press the “menu” button (aka “start”) to pull up an inventory management screen. On the far left, you can check out a list of all the nearby items on the ground, including the contents of any dead players’ crates. To the right of that column, you’ll see your current inventory. On the far right, you will be able to look at your equipped clothing and weapons. To switch between these categories quickly, tap on the LB and RB buttons. This menu is also where you’ll go to attach accessories to any of your current weapons. Just select the accessory you want to attach, click it with the A button, cycle through the compatible weapons, and press A again to equip it.

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Gabe Gurwin
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Gabe Gurwin has been playing games since 1997, beginning with the N64 and the Super Nintendo. He began his journalism career…
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