Ring of Elysium, a recent free-to-play addition to the increasingly crowded battle royale genre, straddles the unique overlap between extreme sports and to-the-death combat. While players have thus far been limited to slinging guns on snowboards and snowmobiles across a single snow-covered map, "season two"—which launches January 16—moves the action to warmer climes.
Europa, one of the maps included in the original Asian release of Ring of Elysium, combines Mediterranean-style greenery with active volcano jeopardy. BMX bikes, hand gliding and a grappling hook round out the new abilities included with the map, the latter of which makes for some entertaining acrobatics.
New weapons include the MG4 and PKM machine guns, while an improved dynamic weather system flits between sunny days, heavy rain, thunderstorms, typhoons and everything in-between. There's even underwater travel, complete with all manner of marine creatures to study, thanks to the addition of a cross-harbor tunnel submersible.
Where rivals expound increasingly larger maps and player counts, Ring of Elysium remains a focused affair. Each game is limited to 60 players, while the inclusion of a rescue chopper that carries up to four people to safety lends an air of cooperation to combat, even if human nature means it inevitably descends into chaos.
To celebrate the release of Ring of Elysium: Season Two, developer Aurora Studios has also updated its corporate logo. According to Aurora Studios the "'A' represents the first letter of Aurora, which can be considered as a symbol of inheritance" while "the shape is similar to a mountain that represents climbing to the peak."
Ring of Elysium is available now as a free download through Steam Early Access. Season Two—which includes Europa Island, as well as three new characters named Alfonso, Bradley and Sylvia—launches January 16.