One of PC gaming’s biggest hits is finally making the leap to consoles when PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (read my early access review) goes live on Xbox One on December 12 for $30. The unfinished battle royal shooter will launch as part of the Xbox Games Preview program, which is similar to the Early Access portal that PUBG is available through on Steam. This console release will then exist separately from the PC version.
PUBG on Xbox One will have its own development roadmap and won’t reach its 1.0 version when its Steam counterpart does so in late December. It will get Xbox One X enhancements, and PUBG Corp., the Bluehole subsidiary that develops the shooter, plans to add in some upcoming PC features into the Xbox version before its December 12 launch.
“We’ll be adding vaulting and things like that,” PUBG creative director Brendan ‘PlayerUnknown’ Greene told GamesBeat. “We hope to make some improvements to the game before releasing it. I can say, 100 percent, vaulting will be there, and it should be a pretty good version of the game.”
Greene and Bluehole (prior to the creation of PUBG Corp.) announced the Xbox One version in June at E3 (the Electronic Entertainment Expo trade show event) in Los Angeles. PUBG Corp. chief executive officer C.H. Kim explained that it was a lot of work to get to a December release date.
“For Steam Early Access, we are refining the game,” C.H. told GamesBeat. “And we didn’t expect the game to be so popular before the 1.0 version, so then to take on the console market — where few Korean gaming companies have a lot of experience — so it was a lot to take on. But with Microsoft as our partner, we were able to leverage their resources to launch the Xbox Game Preview version as quickly as possible.”
Microsoft isn’t just a partner, though. The company stepped in to publish the game on Xbox One as well.
“That’s been really great,” said Greene. “We have had quite a small team working on the Xbox version, but with Microsoft we can get support from their user-experience teams giving feedback on the game to them sending folks out to South Korea to work with us there. They really want to see the best version of battle royal that they can on their console, and they’re doing everything they can to help us get there.”