Last week, PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds creator Brendan Greene detailed a new update arriving to the game on August 3. This update will add the long-awaited hardcore mode to PUBG, along with something else players weren’t expecting: paid cosmetics. Though some cosmetics will continue to be free to unlock through simply playing the game, a select number of new outfits will only be available through Gamescom Invitational crates, which can only be unlocked by purchasing a key for $2.50.
Bluehole’s intention was originally to add this crate and key system after PUBG entered full release, but the developer decided that it needed testing before it was rolled out in the finished game. Enter these Gamescom Invitational crates, which feature outfits inspired by Battle Royale, the movie which itself inspires the core gameplay concepts of PUBG.
The reaction from fans, as you can imagine, was not so great. This has led Greene to take to the PUBG Steam Community once more to clarify a few things. Though Greene and Bluehole are sticking to their guns when it comes to rolling out these Gamescom Invitational crates as a test for the “crate and key” system that will be present in the full game, Greene admits that the initial message wasn’t very clear. He used this post to the Steam Community to elaborate.
“Like the current free-to-open system, you will be limited in the number of crates you can receive each week, with the crate prices being reset each Monday,” Greene wrote. “Currently, this limit is set to 6 crates per week, and you are free to trade them on the Steam Marketplace.” So, it sounds like we’ll earn paid crates by playing the game, and then those of us who would rather not purchase keys to open them will be able to trade those crates on the Steam Marketplace.
Greene also clarified that Bluehole is still hammering out the details of PUBG’s cosmetic system, and that it’s listening to fans who say they still want a free way to earn new cosmetics post-launch. Greene doesn’t seem ready to commit to one system or another, but it sounds like paid and free cosmetic systems will be allowed to coexist once PUBG exits Early Access. Greene also shared images of which cosmetics you’ll be able to find in the two new free crates, which you can see above.
So, it doesn’t sound like Bluehole is backtracking on its plan to introduce paid cosmetics while PUBG is still in Early Access, but it’s good to hear that it’s reconsidering the kind of cosmetic system the finished game will have. You can read the full statement from Greene here, which is accompanied by the full patch notes for the August 3 patch. That patch is going live on the PUBG test servers tomorrow, so check those out if want an early glimpse at hardcore mode.