Geek Bomb’s resident games expert Brad Weston is here to deliver tips on improving your play and strategies to farm your very own chicken dinners in PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds.
Play for position
This one is a no-brainer, but you’ll want to be actively looking to put yourself in good positions for the inevitable gun fights coming your way. What most people fail to do, however, is prepare their future movements for the encroaching poisonous force field, or show strategic thought in when they engage opposing players, especially in the later stages of the game.
Instead of simply firing on enemies at first sight, consider the angle at which you are attacking and what your options are in terms of movement and the element of surprise. Put yourself in a situation where you and two other teams are the last remaining. Perhaps instead of engaging an enemy straight away, consider flanking in either direction or work towards suitable cover — something not so obvious if possible — before lighting some sucker up.
This is something you’ll constantly want to think about at all stages of the game, but be careful before you try and pull manoeuvres like this off. Make sure you are absolutely certain that the people you are up against haven’t seen you yet.
Also, don’t underestimate how elusive the lay of the land can be. Not all fields and openings are as flat as they first seem, and more often than not, wider more spacious areas will have lips and small hills that can be deceptively protective from enemy fire. Additionally, use certain sounds and environmental events as opportunities to get the leg up on competition. For example, say you hear the footsteps of an enemy in a building surrounding you, but you can’t just rush them, as they’ll hear you coming resulting in a swift death. Use the sound of an overflying plane or red zone explosions to cover the sound of your approach. Of course, this isn’t always going to luckily aline in this situation every time, but you’d be surprised how many times it actually works.
Oh, and don’t underestimate prone players, especially in fog maps, or approaching footsteps in the rain — they’re a nightmare to spot.
Aggression + Intelligence + Deception = Chicken
This point is connected to the last and requires you to be a little brave and have a lot of smarts. A lot of people, especially new players to PUBG, avoid combat, often running away from the sound of gunfire. Instead of attempting to win a death match with pacifism, actually run towards the gun fire. Engaging teams or players that are already in combat is often a really easy way to rack up kills and get a bunch of free loot. More often than not, your gunfire and direction will be masked by the fire of other players.
Don’t get so trigger happy, though, as your aggressive play should be calculated. You’re a methodical killer not an axe wielding barbarian, okay? Think like one.
Say you see a target and manage to hit them once without them noticing your direction. Try not shooting straight away again, especially if they have no idea where you are. Instead, wait for them to settle and attempt to heal. This will give you the perfect chance to turn their head into a soup bowl while they remain stationary.
Additionally, if you have a silenced weapon, try to bait out enemies from cover by intentionally hitting the opposite side of a target’s cover. This will give false information to your target, who will now think you are shooting from a completely different direction. The usual reaction of this is for your target to freak out and circle around their cover, giving you a perfect line of sight on them and an easy opportunity to send them back to the main menu.
Those Who Dare, Win
Be brave and bold with your jump zones. Jump at major cities and towns and get a feel for where a lot of the good loot is. This, of course, won’t work out every time. Actually, you’ll probably die more often than not. But you know what they say: a quick game is a good game.
On the numerous occasions you do manage to survive, you’ll find you’ll have a lot better loot than you would have had from your usual jumps that probably consist of random shack in Woods 1 and random shack in Woods 2. You’ll also find that you’ll get a lot better at the game from the practice you’ll be getting during early game fights. School jumps are excellent for this, but be warned: you won’t always be lucky enough to find a gun.
Another brave way to get loot is hunting for the supply crates that are dropped sporadically throughout the map during the game. These, of course, carry a great risk to acquire, as they act like light to moths — machine gun-hungry moths. I find using crates as bait a more effective strategy, swooping in and securing all the loot once the dust has settled. Keep in mind, however, many others have the same idea. Be prepared to find yourself in the crosshairs of another team once you’re at the fiendish red crate.
A good craftsman never blames his tools. Luckily, we’re not carpenters building chairs here, we’re bloody murderers so we can definitely prioritise what implements we use to get those chicken cinners. In the following slides, I rank my personal tier list of weapons and outline some of the positives and negatives of each. Here, I’ll give every weapon (including supply crate weapons) a grade. But keep in mind everything here is based on my opinion. Likewise, you should factor in the fact you won’t be able to grab the superior supply drop weapons every game.
Bullet Speed: 715
Rate of Fire: 0.080s
Of course, I rank this bad boy at the top of assault rifles. It’s a supply crate drop, of course. This AR is a real savage up close, tearing anything and everything to shreds with its full auto setting. Its impressive power and decent fire rate mean it’s a solid choice whenever you can get your hands on it, and as an added bonus, its iron sites aren’t bad, either . If this weapon has any downsides, it’s that its velocity isn’t great, meaning you’ll probably want something better for long-range fights.
Bullet Speed: 900
Rate of Fire: 0.075s
This rifle is my current favourite of the ARs and, in my opinion, is the most effective weapon in all of PUBG. What it lacks in a full auto mode it makes up with its excellent weapon velocity and efficiency without attachments. Along with the AK, the M16A4 only takes three modifiers: the muzzle, magazine, and upper rail. The beauty in this is that you don’t have to worry about finding a tactical stock or bother your teammates with the constant question of “anyone got a spare… ahhh… vertical grip?”
This gun just does the job, and it does it well. Up close, you can use its burst mode to fire three shots in a rapid accession, or simply test the speed of your trigger finger in its more-than-impressive single-fire mode. At a medium distance, this gun lasers its targets down with ruthless precision, and due to its bullet speed, leading shots on a target is a breeze at greater distances. Because of this, I rank this rifle my number one pick among weapons outside supply crate drops.
Bullet Speed: 870
Rate of Fire: 0.096s
With the 5.56 ammo-typed ARs, you can’t really go wrong. But for a similar reason to the M16A4, I rank the SCAR-L the second best. This rifle takes all the attachments the M16A4 does, and brings in the added bonus of an under-rail augmentation like an angled foregrip or a vertical foregrip (which is the better of the two by the way, trust me). This weapon is a great one for those who are newer to games like PUBG, as it has an extremely low recoil rate and a full auto mode that spews bullets at an impressive rate. In fact, this AR beats out my baby M16A4 when it comes to extremely close fights, and has gotten me out of some sticky situations.
Bullet Speed: 715
Rate of Fire: 0.100s
Due to its stopping power, the AK was the old go-to for most players in PUBG. Nowadays, that’s not the case.
Due to recent recoil animation changes and increased time between shots, the AKM is, in my opinion, awful in comparison to every other AR in the game. Its recoil in full automatic is intense, making it incredibly hard to track targets in medium ranges, especially when stuff gets crazy. And on top of that, its bullet speed is lower in comparison to all other ARs (bar the Groza), meaning it’s not even a good long-distance fill-in if you’re lacking a sniper rifle. It still deals more damage than its 5.56 ammunition brothers, but it’s just too much of a liability in comparison. If you can, give this weapon a skip.
Bullet Speed: 880
Rate of Fire: 0.086s
This gun theoretically should be the best, given the ridiculous number of modifiers it has. It’s the only AR that can take a tactical stock, of course, though this can sometimes be a nuisance. You’re not always going to have your bag brimming with attachments, meaning you’re really not going to get the full optimisation out of this weapon.
The M416 did, however, recently receive a nerf to its body hit impact power, putting it well below its fellow ARs. For that reason, I rank this weapon the lowest out of the 5.56 powered rifles, but if you relish the idea of being totally decked out with everything the game offers in terms of items, this is the gun for you.
Grade: S+ God Tier
Bullet Speed: 910
Rate of Fire: 1.850s
This is simply the most powerful weapon in PUBG. If you get it in a crate, keep it. Its range and power are unparalleled, and because of its immense strengths, its ammunition supply is limited to a mere 20 shots. That’s okay. That’s all you will need. Use this weapon whenever you find it. It will bring you many, many chicken dinners.
Karabiner 98 Kurz (KAR98/K98)
Bullet Speed: 760
Rate of Fire: 1.900s
The K98 is the sniper rifle you’ll mostly be on the hunt for, as it’s the most powerful sniper that can be found normally around the map. It’s a bolt action rifle that has a five-round magazine with a nearly two-second delay between each shot. Its stopping power is incredible for a rifle that can be found outside of crates. You don’t have to risk your life and go hungry without chicken dinners with this vintage rifle, and I, myself, have won sniper duels using the K98 against people with higher powered SRs. Just make sure you remember to bolt back a round between shots and swapping the weapon. There’s nothing more annoying than snapping off a shot with the K98, swapping to a side arm, and flipping back, only to realise you haven’t got a bullet in the chamber. That’s a good way to find yourself dead.
Effective Range: 1-400m
Bullet Speed: 715
Rate of Fire: 0.100s
The M24 is the most neutral sniper rifle in terms of its damage, reload time, and amount of attachments it can take. I like to think of it as a better K98, as it operates in the exact same fashion but with greater effective range, damage and bullet speed.
Bullet Speed: 853
Rate of Fire: 0.090s
The MK14, which can be found exclusively in crates, is a unique sniper rifle, as it has the option to be swapped to a fully automatic mode, which, at close distance, puts out a large amount of damage per second. Its hit damage sits 12 points of damage beneath the K98, but makes up with it with a higher velocity and body impact damage. You’re also able to fire off shots a lot quicker with the MK14, and because of this, it might be a greater option for more situations than rifles like the K98. I only put it beneath the K98 due to how rare it is, but if you manage to find one and actually like it, you’ll find it’s an extremely effective weapon.
Bullet Speed: 990
Rate of Fire: 0.100s
“Mini 14 on me!” is a new sound that brings great joy and jealousy to my Discord. This weapon is so, so fun to use with its ridiculous 990 bullet speed (higher than any other sniper rifle, even the AWM) and its super-fast fire rate. This weapon is even effective with a red dot site in closer ranges, and, like the M16, can whittle down a target very quickly. The downside to this weapon is, of course, its bullet damage, which sits at a mere 44. This means you’ll drop a level 2 armoured target with four shots, which can feel like 30 in a fire fight. Regardless, it’s a great weapon to accompany any 5.56 AR and makes an amazingly satisfying noise when fired.
Bullet Speed: 800
Rate of Fire: 0.090s
The way I like to describe the sensation of firing the SKS is like you’re trying to shoot a pool noodle. It’s a strange description and imagery, but once you’ve used the SKS in comparison to the rest of PUBG’s sniper rifles, you might understand what I’m saying. This weapon has wicked sway and less than average damage compared to the rest of the roster, but on the plus side, due to its semi-automatic design, it can be fired nearly every second. It’s a great weapon if you need to fire several shots off at a longer distance compared to say the K98, but doesn’t come close to its stopping power.
Bullet Speed: 330
Rate of Fire: 0.086s
The VSS is the only weapon in PUBG that comes with an inbuilt silencer and scope. It fires a subsonic 9mm round that has a higher body impact than the K98. This all sounds good, but in practice the VSS feels like you’re lobbing pebbles are your targets. This weapon has crazy bullet drop, but if you manage to somehow master it, this weapon might be devastating in the right hands — “might” being the key word.
Bullet Speed: 350
Rate of Fire: 0.048s
Despite its small stature, the Micro Uzi is a deceptively good early game weapon. If it wasn’t for this small bullet-spewing gun, I wouldn’t have survived many hairy early game drops, and because of that, I’m rating this weapon perhaps a little higher than I should. The Uzi also makes a great side weapon when you lack options, especially if you manage to find a stock attachment to increase its stability.
Bullet Speed: 400
Rate of Fire: 0.092s
The UMP9 is my personal favourite among the submachines due to its accuracy and the amazing sound it makes when silenced. It’s a greater than the Uzi in all aspects except bullet speed and also doesn’t suffer from the Vector’s low-base magazine. It’s also not bad at a longer distance compared to all other submachine guns.
Bullet Speed: 300
Rate of Fire: 0.055s
The Vector is a bit of a hassle to get to a reliable and function state in PUBG. It’s got a much higher fire rate than the UMP, with only four fewer damage points, but only has a base mag size of 13, meaning you need an extended magazine attachment to even consider using this weapon. I have friends who swear it’s a great side weapon once fully equipped with modifiers, but because it’s so hard to get off the ground for such a small advantage statically, I just can’t say it’s better than the UMP.
Bullet Speed: 280
Rate of Fire: 0.086s
Ever see that scene from Ali G where the guy tries to shoot Ali and completely misses every bullet, spraying everything except Ali? That’s the effect you’ll get with this weapon. This gun is terrible. I don’t care if you see Dr. Disrespect and Shroud on Twitch tear people up with it. It’s awful. Unless you are a god or it’s your only choice, don’t even bother with this weapon.
Bullet Speed: 915
Rate of Fire: 0.075s
I personally don’t like to use this weapon compared to other crate drops, but the lethality of this weapon is undeniable. I’ve shredded four targets clumped together in a mere second with this beast, as well as witnessed its stopping power in terms of vehicles; it can eviscerate a UAZ in no time, reducing it to nothing but flames with a single magazine.
Ahhh… does it really need a grade?
Bullet Speed: 160
Rate of Fire: 0.75s
If you feel like playing on hard mode or consider yourself a Darryl Dixon fan, the Crossbow is for you. Seriously, though it’s not that great. I mean, if you want to set yourself a challenge, go for it.
In a death match, things that make you not die are generally pretty damn important, and that’s 100 percent the case here in PUBG. Having the superior armour is paramount if you’re hunting for a juicy chicken roast, especially if that dinner sits between you and another opponent locked in a one-on-one duel. I, myself, have won (and lost) many fights due to differing armour, which is a lot more in-depth than you’d originally think.
Armour comes in three tiers, with helmet and vest as the two slots to fill. And, of course, each higher tier is better than the last. What’s a little more complicated is when you factor in already damaged armour. A tier 3 vest has a durability cap of 250 and a damage reduction stat of 55 percent. This means even if you find a damaged level 3 vest, it’s still probably going to be better than your full-health level 2 vest.
This is even more the case when it comes to helmets, with the level 3 helmet acting as the only one in the game that can completely nullify a headshot, even from a sniper rifle. My personal general rule of thumb is if I find a level 3 helmet, even if it’s heavily damaged, I will put it on. It has saved me countless times, and I highly recommend you do the same. Also, if you can, try and not have a level 1 armour in the later stages of the game. You’ll find you will be shredded incredibly quickly.
Beyond this, there is technically a legendary level 4 armour, and armour so powerful it can even be used to fry eggs in. I, of course, am referring to “The Pan.” Pans are a common melee weapon pickup in PUBG that actually offer protection when slotted on the back of your characters model. They completely block bullet penetration and have no durability, meaning they can never be destroyed regardless of how powerful the weapon that hit them is. Pans will save you countless times and are a guardian angel disguised as a kitchen utensil.
When it comes to meds, everything is pretty self-explanatory. Med kits are obviously amazing, as they heal you to 100 percent, First Aids will send you to 75 percent HP, and bandages heal for 10 percent over four seconds. If you want to heal yourself beyond the 75 percent health cap after an injury, you need to use a booster in the form of an energy drink, or the greater version, painkillers, which are heavier than energy drinks but have a greater boost length.
The only real tips I have here is make sure you carry plenty of meds (but not too many; there is such a thing and it will take up all of your capacity). Also, learn how to optimally use bandages if you’ve got limited medical supplies. How do I do this you may ask? It’s very easy: Simply wait two ticks between each use of bandages. This will maximise the amount you heal from each bandage without wasting those precious supplies you’ve works so hard to find.
So, to surmise all above, the ultimate key to victory is kill them before they kill you.
Now go, my chicken-hungry children. Feast on the breast, thighs, and nuggets of your chicken dinner spoils. Good hunting.