PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds is incredibly popular and only just hitting its stride, and it seems as though Microsoft is willing to do whatever it takes to be a part of that. Not only will the online multiplayer battle royale shooter be coming to Xbox One as a console exclusive, at least initially, but Microsoft could even be willing to help with the game’s development, as developer Bluehole may use its partnership with Microsoft to explore using exclusive tech.
As an example, in an interview with Games Industry Brendan “PlayerUnknown” Greene himself talked about using Sea of Thieves’ tech. Specifically, he mentions how the Microsoft partnership allows Bluehole to consider using Sea of Thieves‘ water tech for PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds‘ water:
“I was at the Microsoft event last night talking to the Sea of Thieves guys. They said they loved the game, they play it a lot, but, ‘Oh, your water.’ I mean, our water is not very good, but Rare has great water tech. They said, ‘We should share some knowledge.’ That’s a great thing about being part of a network of studios. We can get that water tech, essentially for free, and we can share stuff with them. That’s just invaluable, because their water is great. Having that would really finish off our world nicely.”
Greene doesn’t cite any other examples of the Microsoft and Bluehole partnership, beyond the process of adapting the game for console (and considering cross-play), but does make clear that his studio is focused solely on the PC and Xbox platforms for the foreseeable future.
Clearly no promises are being made by Greene, and no official announcements have been made regarding significant reworks of PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds‘ water. After all, Greene is just citing a conversation that came up at a social event that has yet to result in any action, and in a way the dream of Sea of Thieves‘ huge, physics-based waves in Battlegrounds is likely a pipe-dream. But it’s a good dream, nonetheless.
If there’s a realistic use of Sea of Thieves‘ water technology, it’ll be in solving PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds current bugs. Right now, water in Battlegrounds can’t be penetrated by bullets, as there’s just no tech in place to figure out how bullets work in the game when they go in the water. Since Sea of Thieves already has tech in place that allows players to shoot into the water, it’s exactly what Battlegrounds could use right now – especially since it’s already on the game’s “In-Progress” development task list.
PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds is available now on PC in early access and launches on Xbox One later this year. Sea of Thieves is planned for release early 2018 on PC and Xbox One.
Source: Games Industry