This is Playstyle Royale, where I head into Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds and try to win my chicken dinner while adhering to arbitrary rules. It’s been a while and the desert map hasn’t yet received the Playstyle treatment, so I thought it’d be nice to kick off this year with some sightseeing.
As a sightseer, each round I’ll try to visit four locations I’ve deemed touristy enough to deserve my attention, and I’m forbidden to loot anywhere else. As usual, I’ve got five attempts before I have to call it quits.
I’m all set to venture out as a solo traveller, but a wild Paul Dean appears and I manage to rope him into my road trip. He’s usually spotted over at board game site Shut Up & Sit Down these days, but he’s not above a spot of Battle Royale. Once he’s up to speed on the desert-trotting plan, I suggest we drop down into the picturesque eastern islands for our first round. They turn out to be far spicier than I expected, and we’re both killed in the first minute of the chaos. My mistake was to pick somewhere directly under the flight path: I’d forgotten how swarms of fellow travellers can ruin even the most exotic attractions.
For our second game, we parachute down into… the junkyard.
Ok, so it’s not the most scenic or decadent of locales – truth be told, at this point I was plotting routes based on places I thought might look interesting rather than those where a tourist might choose to roam. I was hoping for towers of crushed cars and rolling hills of debris though, and on those counts the junkyard lived up to my wildest expectations. Paul is concerned about the lack of good loot held in the junkyard confines, but I remind him that we’re tourists first and shooty men second.
It quickly becomes apparent that we should have prioritised finding a car, with the next spot on my list – the charming and touristy sounding Cruz de Valle – too far to reach by foot before the circle of death reaches us. I improvise, and take us over to the graveyard that’s a little ways to the west. Visiting cemeteries on holiday is a thing, right? It has to be, there’s a Wikipedia page about it.
The circle has contracted three times by now, and everywhere on my list seems unreachable. Screw it, I say, and direct us towards a water treatment plant in the north. We can be… educational tourists? We find a buggy, but by this point it’s too late to head out to anywhere more interesting. We do spot a villa on the drive up though, and our wheels give us enough time for a quick stop-off. Paul poses in an archway, and I begin to think this sightseeing tour might not be a bust after all.
A few minutes later, an impressive Kar98 headshot knocks me out of the car and down to my knees.