We're still seeing regular PUBG updates five years on. PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (or PUBG and PUBG: Battlegrounds) spearheaded the popularity of battle royale games, becoming a breakout hit that inspired countless competitors,
While many have moved onto Fortnite and Apex Legends, PUBG remains one of the most played games on Steam and Xbox Live. Unlike its rivals, PUBG is a more simulation-focused affair, with real-world weapons and physics to consider, such as bullet drop and variable weather conditions.
If you’ve been turned off by Fortnite’s flamboyant art style or the relentlessly fast gameplay of Call of Duty: Warzone, PUBG is well worth a go – it’s also on Xbox Game Pass. Since its meteoric rise from a Steam Early Access title to achieving the highest concurrent player count on Steam back in 2018, PUBG has made its way to many other platforms.
PUBG also receives regular updates, adding new content, features and – perhaps somewhat predictably – plenty of fixes for annoying bugs. Right now, we're in season 18 of ranked play, and here's everything you need to know about this latest PUBG update.
PUBG Update: cut to the chase
- What is it? Season 18 of PUBG
- When can I play it? Available now
- What Can I play it on? PS5, Xbox Series X|S, PC, Xbox One, PS4, Stadia, iOS, Android
What is PUBG?
What is PUBG? Well, if you’ve ever watched the cult-hit film Battle Royale, you should understand the basic idea. 100 players drop onto a deserted island and quickly scavenge for loot. You’ll need to find armor, weapons and healing items, then do whatever it takes to survive until you’re the last man standing.
To make things more interesting, you’ll have to move to a constantly shrinking zone that randomly appears on the map, via land, air or sea. If you get caught outside of the zone, you’ll gradually take damage, which increases dramatically as the game progresses. Pro tip: don’t get caught outside the zone.
Should you manage to survive until the very end, you’ll see the coveted “winner winner chicken dinner” phrase appear on screen. And due to the overwhelming odds stacked against you during every match, you’ll probably want to screenshot it as they don’t come around very often – which makes them taste all the sweeter.
Despite the game now being available on multiple platforms, PUBG continues to evolve with the addition of new maps, survivor passes and modes for players to enjoy. We’ll show you what’s new, why it matters, and what’s planned for the future of PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds.
PUBG Update: release date and platforms
PUBG mobile shares all the maps and features that players have come to enjoy. You can expect things like auto pick-up, aim assist and touchscreen controls and other mobile optimizations.
Sadly though, PUGB doesn't support cross-platform progression between platforms, so you can't just switch it up in between. However, Xbox and PlayStation players can still play online together thanks to cross-play.
Seasons tend to run for two and a half months, though the exact date for a new season is never revealed until a few weeks prior. As such, we'd expect season 18 to end around mid-August, and we'll keep you updated once we know more.
PUBG Update: trailers
While there's no announcement trailers for PUBG season 18 of ranked play and no battle pass trailers, PUBG Studios has released several videos showcasing what to expect. Initially revealed through a brief map teaser (opens in new tab), there's a new map coming in update 18.2 called Deston, which you can see below.
For those of you after a meatier breakdown of Deston, PUBG Studios hosted a new DEVTALK stream two weeks ago, outlining exactly what to expect across a 2 hour and 37 minute stream. It's pretty lengthy but if you don't mind this, that's available to watch through YouTube.
PUB Update: maps
Season 18 makes a few map changes across the board.
Update 18.1 saw Sanhok back in Team Deathmatch mode, while Paramo got updated with new points of cover. Erangel's undergone balancing for the item spawn rate. Otherwise, Mirimar's seeing some quality-of-life improvements in update 18.2, which includes smoother terrain for driving.
However, the real star is Deston, PUBG's latest map. Playable in TPP and FPP, it'll be a featured map that allows for Solo, Duos, Squads, alongside Custom Matches and Sandbox Mode. As outlined on the official PUBG website (opens in new tab), Deston marks the largest PUBG map yet and promises a diverse set of biomes.
"From mysterious underground labs to massive skyscrapers to swampland to subways to underwater buildings – we’re looking at many different locations to thrill and challenge survivors in our most diverse and exploration-focused Battleground yet," the developers explained via YouTube (opens in new tab).
Deston launches for PC players on July 13, 2022 as part of the 18.2 update. However, if you're playing PUBG on consoles, you'll need to wait slightly longer, where it'll drop on July 27 instead.
PUBG Update: modes and events
There's not many events of note in Season 18, nor is there much to report when it comes to new modes in Season 18 of ranked play.
PUBG Studios' main focus has been adding Deston and balancing changes, while Sanhok returns to Team Deathmatch. There's also much smaller adjustments to Training Mode, AI Training Match, Arcade Mode, and Custom Matches.
However, PUBG Studios has removed the Squad - FPP queue for ranked play on consoles in NA and EU.
"The monitored number of sessions during the previous Season was not enough to sustain the queue", it claims in the official update 18.1 patch notes (opens in new tab).
PUBG Update: Patch notes
PUBG season 18 update has arrived, bringing some lengthy patch notes that explain everything you need to know. Right now, we're on PUBG update 18.1 and it's worth noting that whenever a new season comes in, PUBG Studios always add the ".1" to the name. So, if you're wondering whether you've missed a Season 18.0 update, fear not.
We've had the full update 18.1 official patch notes (opens in new tab) since the end of May, and the season released a week later on PC. However, while it isn't out yet on any platform, PUBG Studios has given a full rundown of what changes we can expect in the next update, which includes Deston. You can find the full update 18.2 official patch notes (opens in new tab) right here.
PUBG Update: battle pass
No live service game is complete without a new Battle Pass, and that’s exactly what PUBG season 18 brings.
Known in PUBG as a "Survivor Pass", this follows the usual progression formula. You'll complete in-game missions and earn levels, unlocking new cosmetic items and rewards. Currently, we're on the Survivor Pass: Galaxy Squad as part of the June Store update, and this introduced a new set of galactic themed aesthetics.
You can see this in full below:
The next one is Survivor Pass: Deston, which becomes available on July 13 for PC and July 27 for consoles. Within the update 18.2 patch notes, PUBG Studios confirmed more information will be provided on this in the "July Store Update announcement". That's not been published yet, so we'll need to wait for further information.
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