Changing Mindset and Surviving Late Game
There are any number of ways to play PUBG, from landing as soon as possible, to hot dropping at School to pad out that highlight reel. However, if you’re chasing that chicken dinner and want to consistently place highly.
The tried-and-true method is to drop near a road, grab a vehicle, bail at the opposite side of the flight path, and go center circle almost every time.
There’s nothing wrong with doing this, and it will get you to late game geared and ready for a fight. However, a trap too many players fall into is thinking they can bring this passive playstyle straight to the dinner table, and it just isn’t the case.
B E Aggressive
Yes, there are plenty of screenshots and videos showcasing pacifist wins where no hit points or kills were garnered during the match, but they’re far from regular. Once you reach late game you’re almost guaranteed to have to engage with enemies, and the drop-and-bail play style that got you this far is suddenly rendered useless.
Speaking with students, a common sense of frustration comes from being able to get to these late game scenarios, then feeling like they died without knowing what to do, or how they could have played it differently. The answer is almost always that they didn’t take action, and were still playing a passive style.
Seek, Don’t Hide
PUBG aims to force interaction between players during the match, even if you choose to avoid them for as long as possible. If you’re still in the mindset of hiding and never seeking, your agency is removed and the game happens to you rather than you playing the game.
Students have spoken about their anxiety in these situations; a fear of making a mistake when the stakes feel high and the game is near its end – that chicken dinner on the horizon and suddenly that’s all to play for.
This can lead to a creeping doubt that makes you dread taking any action. What if it’s the wrong action, and you’ve ruined your own chances?
Late game has no time for your doubts, in the time you’ve taken to dwell those 60 seconds you had have now shrunk to 20, and you need to move. Once again inaction has removed your agency from the game and you’re forced into making moves you may not have wanted to.
So, how do you overcome these feelings and be confident taking action and making decisions late game? Well, as with most things, hard work and practice.
There are two main barriers that prevent players from making those top 10 plays that will net them their chicken dinner, they either:
- Don’t know what the correct play is
- Hesitate to make it due to fear, anxiety, or doubt
If you fall into the first camp, then solutions are at hand.
The game plays very differently in those late game scenarios. The play area is reduced dramatically, the importance of information is at an all-time high, and positioning will be what gets you kills. There are ways you can practice improving these elements of your play without having to grind until late game to do so.
Around all of the maps, there are locations you can drop to that mimic these top 10 situations where you will be geared, have some information about where your enemy is and have time to move to take action against them.
Now, this does not mean the likes of School, Hacienda, or Paradise Resort as those areas do not replicate late game situations and will not be the most beneficial for developing the skills you need to succeed.
Instead, you want to cast your gaze towards the likes of Rozhok. This town is perfect for practicing late game encounters for a few reasons. It’s large enough that several people can drop at once and they can all get looted up with armor and weapons before they take any fights.
The buildings are spaced out so that you can catch people running between them, but they’re not totally exposed. This forces you to take action and push if you want that kill, and as you’re pushing for those fights there is plenty of cover for you to practice isolating angles.
The Art of the Drop
The goal here is to see where everyone else is dropping and go wherever they aren’t. You want to allow yourself space and time to hit a few buildings and grab gear to make yourself battle-ready so you can best replicate late game scenarios; without spending 20 minutes getting there.
From here you can start learning by doing: which pushes work, which don’t, when you should be re-peeking an angle, using grenades to create an advantage. Everything that wins you a chicken dinner you can practice in the opening 5 minutes; if you land in the correct place.
Doing these kinds of drops not only helps create a library of strategies for you to use in other matches but also builds confidence from that knowledge.
Taking an Active Role
This is no longer one of the few times you’ve tried for an aggressive push, it’s the 20th and you know what works and what doesn’t. You can cycle through the library of attempts you’ve made in those early game drops and pick the one most suitable for your situation.
You’re taking an active role in these player interactions and they’re no longer happening to you, but because of you.
So now you’ve taught yourself which play is correct and which isn’t, but this doesn’t always translate to you making those plays in these clutch top 10 scenarios. A lot of the time this stems from feeling that there is too much at stake.
The Best Way to Get Better
To remedy this we come back to our earlier solution – practice. The quickest way to get desensitized to the stress of being in late game and wanting that win is to be in that situation over and over. If you want to feel at ease being in top 10, then get yourself to top 10 regularly enough that it’s no big deal (the drop-and-bail method).
Once you’re used to being in top 10 you can utilize the confidence granted by your earlier practice for these exact situations, assured that you’re making the right play for the situation, and taking steps to bring home that dinner.
Change Things Up
One playstyle will not get you to that fabled dinner every time, just as the circle changes you have to change with it. Try moving from a passive play style to an active one from time to time. The game is going to happen to you regardless, you may as well forge your own way to deal with it through your actions.