Lean isn’t coming to Call of Duty’s Blackout battle royale, because Treyarch’s game designer director, David Vanderhaar, thinks it’s “BS.” Vanderhaar joined PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds streamers Shroud and Lirik for a few games of the upcoming game mode in a stream last night, and discussed some of the game’s design decisions.
During the stream, Shroud asked Vanderhaar whether they would ever add a lean mechanic to Blackout. In reply, the developer made his views on the matter very clear, saying “lean is very difficult to get right. We’ve tried it before many times. Bottom line is, there’s always a case where some guy can peek you, and you can’t see him and he can see you, and that’s BS. That’s the reason”
Vanderhaar goes on to say that “We even discussed it, just for PC on this game, at length, and I look at it over and over again, and I’m not a fan. I don’t like it when you can get seen, but not see, and it’s hard enough to get that right without lean.”
He does admit, however, that “I like the mechanic,” but says “I’m yet to ever see it done perfectly.” That might come as quite the surprise for fans of PUBG, or the more traditional Rainbow Six Siege, both of which incorporate peeking ways that seem to be largely successful, but Vanderhaar seems pretty set at this point.
That’s not to say that lean will never come to the game, as the dev points out – “I would never say never, because it’s day one. There’s so much time and room to grow, and you can always try it again.” That said, I’d be surprised to see a lean mechanic make its way into the game at a later point if it’s not set to arrive at launch.
You can check out Vanderhaar’s comments in the stream’s VOD, starting at the 4:46:54 mark. The Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 release date is October 12, so if you’re not in the Blackout beta, you’ve got just over one month to wait until you can access Activision’s take on the battle royale.