PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds now lets you fulton your friends, Metal Gear-style

The best bit of Metal Gear Solid V (ie, strapping balloons onto unsuspecting soldiers, sheep and shipping containers) is coming to PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds, by way of a new "Emergency Pickup" item that'll let you fling your entire team skywards.

Now playable on the PUBG public test servers, patch 11.1 introduces a deployable fulton balloon for you and your teammates. Similar to something like Apex Legends' redeploy balloons, the Emergency Pickup deployable gives you a shot at rapidly hurling yourself across the map.

Once deployed, the balloon will hold in the air for 60 seconds, letting you and your team strap yourselves in. After a minute, a plane will catch the Fulton, pulling your team into the air and making its way towards the centre of the safe zone. At any point, you can jump off and parachute back to earth—and you might want to, considering you can be shot down at any point during the flight.

As a means of rapidly escaping danger, it sounds neat. But I'd be keen on seeing PUBG lean even further into Metal Gear-style antics. C'mon, guys. Let me strap a balloon onto a downed foe and send them flying off outside the circle. That'd be a laugh.

Patch 11.1 also reintroduces Paramo with improved terrain and better cover, but bids farewell to Haven and Karakin maps. PUBG Corp says it's been rethinking the way map rotations work, and has decided to keep Erangel and Miramar as permanent fixtures while the remaining maps cycle in and out of the three remaining spots.

"We know that our players have very different tastes when it comes to map size, but the consensus has generally been in favour of the large 8×8 maps," PUBG Corp wrote. "Cycling out maps also gives us the opportunity to work on them a bit for when they make their return."

Natalie Clayton
Features Producer

20 years ago, Nat played Jet Set Radio Future for the first time, and she's not stopped thinking about games since. Joining PC Gamer in 2020, she comes from three years of freelance reporting at Rock Paper Shotgun, Waypoint, VG247 and more. Embedded in the European indie scene and a part-time game developer herself, Nat is always looking for a new curiosity to scream about—whether it's the next best indie darling, or simply someone modding a Scotmid into Black Mesa. She also unofficially appears in Apex Legends under the pseudonym Horizon.