H1Z1 update adds new nighttime skirmish and team scoring

H1Z1: King of the Kill's latest update introduces a bunch of tweaks, changes, and additions to Daybreak's battle royale shooter. Most notably for those who enjoy playing with friends, team scoring has arrived, which will display alongside individual performances at the end of the match. And, the matches will be ending in lots of new spots from now on: changes to the encircling cloud of death-gas means the final circle will end up in "thousands" of new spots, while other areas, like the edges of the map, have been removed as possible final showdown zones.

The developer video above highlights many of the changes the update brings. There are three new 'points of interest' to fill in a few more empty areas of the map, like a salvage yard and grocery store that served as a military HQ during the zombie invasion. A new skirmish mode has been added, which takes place at night and is restricted to the Pleasant Valley area only. And, Daybreak is working to cut down on cheaters, though details are vague: it simply says it's added "additional measures" in addition to its 24/7 cheat monitoring team. There's also a button for reporting cheaters when you see them.

The pickup truck has been buffed, taking 50 percent less damage from ramming non-destructible objects, and now capable of smashing through fences without taking any damage at all. It's also had its acceleration and top speed increased, all of which should make it a more desirable ride. Meanwhile, the Offroader will no longer lose power when climbing hills, whereas the police car's speed has been nerfed when driving up steep inclines.

Have a look below at the change list, which also includes improvements to the UI and inventory, player spawn locations, and certain loot drops such as laminated armor.

Team scoring

  • Match end screens have been completely reconfigured to show individual and team performances at the end of each game. These end screens will apply to all game modes, including Skirmish.
  • Duos and Fives will have the same tiers as Solos, with their own set of Top 10s and leaderboards.
  • Master Tier - A new tier has been added between Diamond and Royalty.
  • The highly elite Royalty 1 now has its own unique emblem.

Gas and match pacing

  • Spawn placement is now based on the location of the initial gas ring so that you’re not too far away from it.
  • Initial gas ring start and end progression has been randomized to provide thousands more possibilities than before.
  • Certain areas that are unfit for the Final Showdown, particularly on the edges of the map, are excluded from the system.
  • Text has been added to the HUD to indicate if you are in the safe zone or not.
  • The gas phases will now dynamically adjust their duration based on the number of players that remain.
  • Placement in consecutive phases are now much more random.

The Arena

  • New POI: Coy’s Car Salvage – Nestled up on a large hill just west of PV you will find a large salvage yard dedicated to the collection, dismantling, and shipping of unwanted vehicles.
  • New POI: Ponyvale Equestrian Estates – A rustic community for the most hardcore horse enthusiasts can be found on a large peninsula just west of Cranberry.
  • New POI: Emerald Hydra, Site 7 – This repurposed Romero’s grocery store east of Cranberry was taken over and fortified as a military HQ during the zombie outbreak.
  • Several smaller POIs and loot spots have been added to a number of areas.
  • Trees should look a lot more realistic from above, particularly when parachuting into The Arena. See if you can spot them!

New skirmish: Pleasant Valley Nightmare

  • Players spawn in the vicinity of Pleasant Valley, which is already surrounded by toxic gas.
  • The game begins in the middle of the night and will slowly transition into early morning.
  • The gas will close in faster than in traditional games.
  • There is now an end game score screen.

Game tuning and quality of life

  • Laminated Armors will no longer spawn within 250 meters of each other and make finding multiple armors more difficult and time consuming.
  • Laminated Armor bulk has been increased from 500 to 1000.
  • Laminated Armor can now be found in Airdrop Crates (doubled in Fives).
  • Pickup truck now suffers zero damage or slowdown from destructible objects
  • Pickup truck now suffers 50% less damage from non-destructible objects (trees, etc.)
  • Improved the acceleration and top speed of the pickup truck
  • Offroader turning radius is tighter and more responsive
  • Offroader no longer loses power on slopes steeper than 40 degrees, making it the best climber
  • Police cars will be slightly slower when climbing hills than before
  • Voice chat has been added to the lobby for teams.
  • Group invites received through steam will persist longer. If you accept an invite without the game open, it will launch the game and put you directly into the lobby.
  • There is now a panel that shows the players you recently grouped with.
  • Members of a lobby can now suggest invites to the group leader, who is now clearly identified.
  • When using “Find a Group,” there is now an option to stay with your group. Default “G” to opt-in during gameplay (will be shown in an HUD element on the left side of the screen).
  • Bombing runs will no longer occur when there are fewer than 20 players remaining.
  • Inventory and containers will no longer “auto-sort” when items are moved or removed. Instead, an empty slot will preserve the spot where the item was moved from so that all other items remain in the same location. This should help prevent shredding or dropping the wrong item.
  • Container UI will gray out when you’re unable to loot it (because someone else is looting it, or you’re using proximity to examine an Airdrop Crate).
  • Bandages, medkits, and procoagulent can now be inserted into either medical slot.
  • Adjusted the acceleration and deceleration rates for lateral speeds at low altitude for better control while parachuting
  • Report Player button has been re-added to the death screen UI
  • A new panel has been added to the main menu to make it easier to discover Events, Skirmishes, and anything else going on in the game. The images in the panels are links to the appropriate areas in the UI.
  • Slightly increased the duration of Kill Receipts
  • There is now a brief delay between the final kill and the victory screen so that you know who your last victim was.
  • Inventory “More Info” panel now has better (and visual) information to help new players.

Game diagnostics and infrastructure

  • A new diagnostics and network panel can be brought up using the "N" key. Using this while streaming will help us diagnose network and hit registration issues.
  • We’ve made some fairly significant server infrastructure improvements that should further reduce server downtime during updates. These enhancements will take effect after today’s game update.

Bug Fixes

  • Vehicles should always break through destructible objects
  • Vehicles should no longer temporarily disappear after dying and spectating a teammate
  • Vehicle skidding sound effect should no longer continue to play when the vehicle isn’t moving
  • Explosives should no longer do damage through doors
  • Objects that aren't completely protecting the player should no longer block explosive / AOE damage.
  • The kill feed should no longer disappear during gameplay
  • Team Spectate “Next” and “Previous” buttons should no longer occasionally go missing
  • Cleaned up the delay between hotwire and vehicle responsiveness
  • Vehicles no longer take damage from punches
  • Voice chat should no longer unexpectedly increase in volume as players spawn into parachutes
  • End screens will no longer display error strings after exiting a match
  • Death screen should no longer display a series of W’s as the player name
  • Character names will no longer be cut off after an underscore in voice chat
  • Fixed an issue causing the 3D scene in the main menu to be missing after a fresh install
  • Various fixes in text descriptions for items
Christopher Livingston
Staff Writer

Chris started playing PC games in the 1980s, started writing about them in the early 2000s, and (finally) started getting paid to write about them in the late 2000s. Following a few years as a regular freelancer, PC Gamer hired him in 2014, probably so he'd stop emailing them asking for more work. Chris has a love-hate relationship with survival games and an unhealthy fascination with the inner lives of NPCs. He's also a fan of offbeat simulation games, mods, and ignoring storylines in RPGs so he can make up his own.