PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds has been out on Steam‘s early access program since March now, and while it’s only map, Erangel, is pretty big (8km x 8km), folks have had plenty of time to learn its ins and outs.

During last week’s Game Awards event, the upcoming desert map, Miramar, was finally showcased to the world and fans are keen as fuck to get their hands on it. Luckily, anyone who owns the game also has access to its test servers, on which the brand new map has been available to play.

Having played a few games in the new world over the weekend I can tell you, above everything else, Miramar feels fucking enormous. There’s a few reasons for this, the first and most obvious being that it is actually bigger.

Reddit user thoumyvision made this pretty clear in his comparison below.

That’s nearly 20 per cent more land for killing, pals, and it definitely feels that way. On top of sheer available land, the cities and towns in Miramar are also bigger. Even the smaller ones on the map feel larger and much denser compared to Erangel. There’s way more building variety here and some of them are actually pretty tall. One building (well, more like the shell of a building) goes up about 6 or 7 stories, giving you one hell of a vantage point. Cop an 8x scope and go to town.

Being in a dusty desert, there’s nowhere near the amount of shrubbery or foliage you’d be used to by now, making it much more difficult to simply hit the deck when shit hits the fan. If you’re lucky, you’ll be in the midst of rocky terrain, allowing you to either slip behind a boulder or into a ditch, but if you’re in the open, you’re pretty much toast.

All of this amounts to two things. Firstly, Miramar requires a totally different play style when compared to Erangel, favouring long-distance kills over close-quarters combat. Secondly, it brings back the incredibly tense situations from the early days of the game, simply because of the new and unfamiliar surroundings. It rules.

In other words, Miramar breathes new life into the game, both via a new setting, as well as mixing up gameplay. Of course, this will fade over time as it has with Erangel, but the third map will likely receive the same response when details of it eventually emerge.

The desert map will be available to everyone when the game’s full version is released on the 20th of December on PC and Xbox One.

Image: PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds