Deathloop update makes sweeping improvements to enemy AI and PvP exploits

Colt kills a henchman with dual pistols
(Image credit: Arkane)

Deathloop has received a fairly substantial update, mainly focused on improving NPC reactions to the player and movement, UI tweaks, and a laundry list of minor fixes. A lot of folk love Deathloop (and PCG's review scored it a sterling 89%) but for me the enemies and combat, outside of the 'boss' and Julianna encounters at least, fell flat—and their behaviour at times can only be described as braindead.

With this update NPCs will now react to bullets that pass close by, "such as headshots that miss", and there's no more strangling someone's buddy right next to them: "NPCs now react when another is assassinated close by." The enemies now hear better and react faster to your footsteps, no longer run out of cover when you're nearby, can tell where grenades have come from, and "Numerous other small fixes and improvements to NPC behavior, reactions, pathing, and placement." Finally the AI-controlled Julianna is now more capable and reactive to Colt.

In a victory for those of us who spent a lot of time in Deathloop's menus squinting at text, "UI buttons and text in options menu are now larger, as are their selectable areas." This game loves a menu so good news there, and other improvements are a clearer UI regarding Residuum loss on death, and changes to the appearance of weapons and other items.

deathloop harriet death

(Image credit: Bethesda, Arkane)

There's also some focus on Deathloop's PvP endgame, which unfortunately had quite a few ways for players to be annoying. Colts could drop out of the game without penalty when invaded, for example, but the game now counts that as a win for Julianna. Players who go AFK will get tagged after a short spell, while Colts who try to hide in the tunnels (a lot of you, going on my experience) for too long will be tagged and the tunnel doors will open: beautiful. The antenna that Colt must hack to escape now takes slightly longer to hack, and there's a higher chance you'll invade people on your Friends list when they're also playing.

There's a whole slew of other small fixes (full notes here) which includes some amusing bugs: apparently there was one that left Colt with two guns in the same hand, players were using turret placement to clip through walls, while others were using Shift to reach ledges and just getting stuck in them.

Finally, in a fix that brings to mind Douglas Adams' theory of Resistentialism, "seemingly spiteful behavior manifested by inanimate objects", this update fixes an issue "that caused some hackable doors to become unopenable if kicked while hacking."

Rich Stanton

Rich is a games journalist with 15 years' experience, beginning his career on Edge magazine before working for a wide range of outlets, including Ars Technica, Eurogamer, GamesRadar+, Gamespot, the Guardian, IGN, the New Statesman, Polygon, and Vice. He was the editor of Kotaku UK, the UK arm of Kotaku, for three years before joining PC Gamer. He is the author of a Brief History of Video Games, a full history of the medium, which the Midwest Book Review described as "[a] must-read for serious minded game historians and curious video game connoisseurs alike."