The Battle Royale genre has been pretty popular as of late and everyone is itching to play the best one that their gaming system can offer for them. As I mainly use the PlayStation 4, the only battle royale game available to me was Fortnite. While fun and enjoyable, I was getting a bit tired of playing it over and over again and wanted something else to spice up the variety.

Imagine how excited I was when H1Z1 Battle Royale released for the PS4.

H1Z1 does a lot of things differently than what I’m used to. And I’d like to share those thoughts of what I like and what I didn’t.

Choosing Where You Start

First of all, there’s no plane to drop the players off on the map. H1Z1 Battle Royale would have you drop to a random area of the map along with other players.

You can’t just choose where you go. You have limited control of the area you land in because your parachute doesn’t really have a wide distance of travel and skydiving is nonexistent in this game.

H1Z1 Battle Royale would have you drop to a random area of the map along with other players.

I can’t safely say that I like this part of the game. First of all, there’s a chance where you’ll get dropped off into the woods much like me a handful of times, far away from any buildings. While you can try to get as close as you can and then make a run for it, time is being wasted and that’s a problem. I’ll get more to the time thing later.

Other times, you’ll get dropped off far away from the circle of which you have to find a vehicle to immediately get closer in.

The Closing Circle

Battle Royale’s main premise is that it puts at least 100 players on the map to battle it out. As times goes by, the circle gets lower and anyone who is outside of it takes damage until they die. This stops the game from being a boring hide and seek game and forces the player to keep moving and taking risks.

The problem I had with H1Z1’s circle closing in, is that it moves much too fast. A full minute for each time the circle gets smaller and smaller. The problem is, is that players are more inspired to scramble for weapons and items and shooting as fast as they can at other players than thinking strategically to survive. When you put it like that, the game becomes more of a glorified third-person shooter than a survival match.

In H1Z1’s Battle Royale, there’s almost little to no time to think. You have to keep moving, constantly. While that adds a bit of excitement, it can get rather tedious when you have to make players move too fast.

Weapons and Equipment

H1Z1 has a good variety of weapons.

Although at the start, you’ll most likely only find three: the M9, the riot shotgun, and an MP7. You’ll find a crossbow if you’re lucky too with explosive arrows.

The good stuff doesn’t really come until much later. Inside dropped crates, you’ll find better weapons and equipment to help you survive. And the more the game goes on, the rarer these equipment get and the risk also increases of getting them as the game goes by.

I generally, don’t have a problem with the weapons they provide for the game. Though I do wish there were more common weapons at the start of the game to find as there are high chances that you’ll always end up with the same arsenal every game. That can make things rather stale after some time.

Control Mapping

Of course, this is a console port. So you can expect that the controller will have some inferior qualities to that of the keyboard. So the question is: how comfortable is the button mapping for H1Z1 Battle Royale?

All in all, it’s actually pretty good. Controls are easy to get used to and are pretty basic. But if you carry more than two weapons, it can be difficult to switch immediately from one to the other. This makes close quarter fights intense and over in a blink of an eye. It’s clear that H1Z1 is better suited for long-to-medium distanced firefights.

Atmosphere

There’s just something about H1Z1 that gives it a “dead atmosphere.” Everywhere you go is feels dead. There is this thick fog everywhere you go that blocks your view of the skies and makes everything seem cloudy.

It prevents you from seeing too far into the game, and my guess is that they added that to hide obvious imperfections at the moment as they don’t really have a heavy fog on the PC version. Perhaps this will be removed as the game progresses.

Server Issues

This is really what frustrated me the most.

Admittedly, H1Z1 Battle Royale for the PS4 is new as of the moment. So it’s expected to have some issues when connecting. But it really takes a grand while when the server is trying to connect you in and keeps failing, causing you to keep trying again and again to get in.

While I can’t speak that everyone has the same experience, I have met with “Failed to Connect to Server” screen more times than I would’ve liked. While it’s not damning in any way, it’s still worth a mention.

Final Opinion:

This game is great! Despite all my critiques, this is one of the only battle royales on the console and is very much a welcome addition. We can expect that they do fix some issues in the nearby future, but as of the moment, this is my first impressions regarding the game.

If you have a PS4 and are interested in the battle royale genre, there’s really no reason for to avoid H1Z1 seeing as it is a free game. Go ahead and jump in!