Skip to main content

PlayerUnknown defends Battlegrounds' controversial key and crate system

"Our messaging wasn't very clear."

PlayerUnknown has defended Battlegrounds' controversial new crate and key system.

Earlier this month, PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds announced it would introduce paid cosmetics in this month's update, rolling out today.

The latest update introduces three new crates each containing different outfit items based on the film Battle Royale. Two of these crates are free to open but one, the Gamescom Invitational Crate, requires a key to open, which costs $2.50. As each crate only contains one item, it is likely to cost over $10 to get a full outfit, a system that has left many players feeling ripped off.

On top of this, players felt PlayerUnknown broke his promise not to introduce paid cosmetics until after the game left Steam Early Access.

PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds FAQ states paid cosmetics will not be introduced until full release.

Writing on Steam, Brendan "PlayerUnknown" Greene addressed players' concerns over paid cosmetics and defended the game's implementation of a crate and key system, calling it a test.

"While our intention was and still is to add the full feature to the game when we move into actual release, we do need to test it prior to launch and at Early Access so that it is stable and ready to be fully introduced to our community," PlayerUnknown wrote.

"The idea of testing, prior to full implementation, is at the heart of adding every new game feature in our game, and this includes the crate and key system which we believe will serve as the foundation of a healthy economy after launch.

"This is an economy that would and should benefit all players - both who are willing to pay and who are not willing to pay for vanity items. It is important that all our players are able to enjoy the various items that will be provided for customisation, and it is even more crucial that we have a stable self-sustaining economy that maintains the value of the items you have purchased or gained."

PlayerUnknown explained that while he understands players' concerns, "testing for a sturdy economy on the Steam Marketplace is necessary at this stage and ultimately beneficial for the game". He also emphasised paid cosmetics are optional and apologised for unclear communication. However, PlayerUnknown did reveal the full cosmetic system is being discussed internally and the team is taking players' concerns into account, so perhaps it'll change.

PlayerUnknown went on the explain the new crate system in further detail. Like the current free-to-open system, players will be limited to buying six crates per week, with crate prices being reset on Mondays. Players are free to trade crates on the Steam Marketplace.

The developer also showed images of what players could expect inside this month's two free Battle Royale-themed crates, and offered a full list of this month's changes which includes first-person servers and a feature to report players. Of note: you may now honk a car horn when sitting in the driver's seat with Left Mouse Click.

Items available in Wanderer Crate.
Items available in Wanderer Crate.
Items available in Survivor Crate.
Items available in Survivor Crate.

Here's the full list of patch notes:

Server Optimisation

  • Optimised fences, doors, and windows.
  • Optimised vehicle physics.
  • Client Optimisation.
  • Optimised memory usage for world objects.
  • Optimised terrain rendering.
  • Optimised vehicle physics.
  • Optimised User Interface.

New Items

  • Added new weapon Mk14 EBR. Mk14 EBR is a Designated Marksman Rifle that can only be obtained from Care Packages. This weapon is chambered for 7.62mm and sniper rifle attachments.


  • Added two new face presets and hairstyles to character customisation for both genders.


  • Added first-person server options to NA and EU Solo and Duo game-modes.
  • Players who choose first-person mode will be matched together.
  • Character view is set to third-person mode in starting airplane and during free fall from the airplane. This will be set to first-person only in a future update.
  • Camera will stay still while looting items to prevent dizziness.
  • Added a new feature to report players.
  • Some people killed knocked-out teammates in order to avoid giving kill count to an opponent who knocked them down. Now the kill count will still go to the opponent in this specific case.
  • Added new animation when using different consumables.
  • Improved camera transition when disabling Free look feature (Alt Key).
  • Decreased the reload time of VSS.
  • Players may now re-enter games if they have been disconnected mid-game.
  • You may now play with Xbox controllers, and we will continue to make improvements with Xbox controllers.
  • Sound volume difference from inside and outside of building is more obvious.
  • Added new sound effect while scoping or aiming weapon.
  • Added new effects when a character is running or sprinting over different types of surfaces.
  • Improved character animation without any weapon or with melee weapon.
  • Added slight delay when using the drag-and-drop feature on items in inventory UI. We implemented this delay to provide a fair gameplay environment to all players.
  • Improved post-process effect when a character takes damage outside of the blue circle.

Items and Vehicles

  • Added a lower rail attachment slot to SKS.
  • You may now honk a car horn when sitting in the driver's seat with Left Mouse Click.
  • Decreased the chance of vehicle explosion after the vehicle gets stuck in objects.
  • Vehicle driving sound will change slightly in FPP and TPP modes.
  • Added new sound effects for motorcycle tire screech while driving.
  • Eliminated firing delay of S1897 from pump action after reload.
  • Improved effects of boats.
  • Added spark effect to flat tires.
  • Reduced cast time of First Aid Kit / Painkiller to 6 seconds.
  • Reduced cast time of Med Kit / Adrenaline Syringe to 8 seconds.


  • Added more features and hot keys to the Options Menu.
  • Added new option for V-Sync.
  • You may now designate a maximum of two different keys for each key bind.
  • Added new option to set toggle on certain actions and features.
  • You may now use Mouse wheel up/down as one of your key binds.
  • Added new keybinds, such as all mute (Ctrl+M) and switching Voice Channel (Ctrl+Y), and a new option to adjust the volume of voice chat.
  • Added new keybinds to use specific throwables.
  • Added Colourblind Mode.
  • Added an FOV slider for first-person view.
  • Added some region names to the mini map.
  • Added new option to display helmet, vest, and backpack equipped on HUD UI. This HUD UI will be updated further in the future.
  • Added new option to display all equipped weapons on the right side of the screen. This UI will be updated further in the future.

Bug fixes

  • Partially fixed client crash issues.
  • Fixed an issue of weapons sporadically ceasing to fire despite being set to auto firing mode.
  • You may not use consumables in vehicles underwater.
  • Fixed bugs below while spectating another character.
  • A character appeared to be shaking when the character moves around.
  • Camera swing when a character scopes while walking.
  • Camera swing when a character peeks left or right while scoping.
  • A character appeared to be shaking when the player moves his mouse while scoping in Prone.
  • Characters farther than 500m away from a vehicle will no longer hear the tire screech sound.
  • Fixed post-process bug underwater in FPP mode.
  • Fixed an issue of the reloading sound getting played repetitively after dropping a weapon while reloading.
  • Fixed the probability of getting rainy weather to previous value.
  • Fixed a bug where a character could not equip attachment with full inventory.
  • Fixed a bug where weapons would continue to play looped reload animation even after canceling the reload.
  • Fixed a bug where a character could see through the other side of wall when scoping or crouching against certain walls.
  • Fixed a bug where a character sitting on objects inside of certain buildings could see through ceilings and walls.
  • Fixed sporadic issue of disabling in-game UI.
  • Eliminated bombing outside of Red Zone.

Read this next