Like plenty of other squad-based multiplayer games that have launched in recent years, such as Apex Legends and Call of Duty: Warzone, Ninja Theory’s Bleeding Edge has a ping system that allows you to communicate with your team without speaking into a mic. As someone who doesn’t always want to talk to his teammates when I’m playing online, it’s a trend I hope to see continue in multiplayer games.
Though I’m not a huge fan of Bleeding Edge’s ping system overall (most of its pings require two button presses instead of just one, making it difficult to use in combat), it does offer an option that I haven’t seen in similar games. It’s something that I’ve been hoping Respawn adds to Apex Legends one day–in fact, I hope most multiplayer-focused games steal this one aspect from Bleeding Edge’s ping system. In Bleeding Edge, you can ping your squad to suggest a retreat.
Now, obviously, you shouldn’t just run from every fight. It’s better to win than run away, but sometimes you need to flee in order to regroup so that you can win the subsequent encounter. Most ping systems handle the concept of retreat the same way they do pushing forward–by pinging in a certain direction, your character informs the rest of the team that they should move in that direction.
The problem with this system is that there’s no difference in the level of urgency. For instance, if you’re sniping in Apex Legends and you see that your teammates are about to be ambushed, you’ll just as calmly say, “We should go this way” as if you and your team are just scavenging for loot. Pinging “retreat” in this type of system is even worse if you’re actually in the midst of the fight, as you then have to physically point in the direction you want to go–so that means turning away from the fight in order to imply going away from the fight, aka retreat. Pro tip: Turning your back on the people shooting you is not how you survive.
So, ultimately, most people don’t sound retreats in games like Apex Legends or Warzone. They just push forward and hope for the best or run away and hope their teammates decide to follow suit. Neither option is good, which is why having a dedicated “retreat” ping is such a wonderful mechanic in Bleeding Edge. If you identify a situation where falling back is the right choice–say, your team’s only healer goes down or you see enemy reinforcements approaching–you can quickly and effectively sound the alarm to everyone. More squad-based multiplayer games need this feature–it provides an option that’s sometimes crucial to a team’s success.
If you’re itching to get into Bleeding Edge yourself, the game is now officially live and available for both Xbox One and PC. If you’re an Xbox Game Pass subscriber, the service offers the game to you on both platforms, making it a great “free” game to pick up and then play online with your friends if y’all are stuck inside. Fair warning though, as a MOBA-like game, Bleeding Edge has a bit of a steep learning curve. If you’re having a hard time, we do have a Bleeding Edge guide of nine helpful gameplay tips.
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