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GTA Online 1.54 update drastically reduces load times: Patch notes & details

Rockstar has listened to its fans and updated GTA Online to incorporate a recently-discovered method that will drastically reduce load times.

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gta online 1.54 update

A recent investigation by a modder found that GTA Online had a particular file that was causing excessive loading time. Rockstar has now added the 1.54 update to the game and it reduces the title’s loading screens.

For all of Grand Theft Auto’s excellence in world-building, design, and overall enjoyment, the game has always suffered from excessive load times. Players wanting to dive straight into an online game have had to sit back on their phones for a while and wait patiently.

However, a new way was recently found that would supposedly slash GTA Online load times. Instead of rejecting the invasion of the game’s files, Rockstar has embraced the idea and decided to implement it into their game via the 1.54 update. It is expected that players can experience up to 70% faster loading speeds in GTA now.

gta online gameplay

Lots of companies would take exception to an outsider tampering with their game files and exposing a gaping flaw for the whole world to see. So it’s incredibly positive to see Rockstar not only acknowledge it but also use it to make GTA Online faster.

GTA Online 1.54 patch notes

Whilst the notes aren’t official just yet, one GTA Online Reddit thread has been opened to discuss the new update

  • Improvements & Fixes: Loading the Story Mode / Online on PC is now way faster than before.
  • Test on my low-end specs: CPU: Intel Core i3 4005u, GPU: NVIDIA GT 820m, RAM: 4GB, Old HDD
  • Loading time before update: 9 minutes and 38 seconds
  • Loading time after update: 3 minutes and 15 seconds

Which platforms is the GTA Online 1.54 update on?

The newest update for GTA Online has gone live across all the major platforms. So PlayStation, Xbox, and PC owners can currently go and download the update right now.

As far as we can tell, the significant loading times boost only seems to apply to PC. Console users are reporting that there’s been no significant improvement on loading time performance. Whereas PC players are happily commenting that the update has proven to be most effective.

and one user has said, “Got the update on PS4, didn’t notice anything yet.” Another user also said, “40 seconds for changing lobby, still slow on starting up the game and I’m on Xbox Series X.”

So for the time being at least, this fix only seems to apply to PC users, and console users, even on the PS5 and Xbox Series X, will have to settle for the default times.

Grand Theft Auto players will be encouraged to know that a large update in terms of significance won’t actually take that long to enforce.

How big is the GTA Online 1.54 update?

Here is the official file size for the update on each platform:

  • PlayStation: 700 MB
  • Xbox: 1 GB
  • PC: 400 MB

So it really shouldn’t take too long before your load times are slashed thanks to the new GTA Online 1.54 update.

Rockstar pay $10,000 to modder

The modder who goes by the name of “tostercx” has actually had their work recognized by Rockstar to the point that they have paid them handsomely.

They updated their original post to say, “Just got awarded $10k through their H1 in-game bounty as an exception (usually only for security issues).”

It’s refreshing to see a company hold their hand up and also reward someone for helping to improve the game.

Image credits: Rockstar

Apex Legends

Apex Legends Arenas: Release date, maps & rewards

Apex Legends Season 9 will bring a new ‘Arena’ mode for players to enjoy, and here’s everything we know about it, including the release date.

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Apex Legends arenas mode

There is a ton of content planned for Apex Legends Season 9, including the introduction of an ‘Arena’ mode to the battle royale. Here’s everything that’s been revealed about it, including the release date, maps & rewards

Respawn Entertainment tends to introduce new game modes to Apex Legends in order to keep it fresh, like the Winter Express LTM. These bring changes to major aspects of the game, including the map, loot, and gameplay.

While they’ve all been battle royale-style modes so far, it seems that’s about to change. Now, a new game mode called Arenas has officially been confirmed for Apex Legends. Here’s what we know about it so far.

Season 9 Teaser Arena

When is the Apex Legends Arenas release date?

Thanks to a new in-game teaser, we now know that Arenas will arrive in Apex Legends during Season 9, on May 4.

Respawn previously said that we should expect some big surprises in the coming season.

A full reveal of Arenas mode is planned for Monday, April 26. During this, we’ll get a closer look at how this mode works.

Apex Legends Arena teaser

What is the Apex Legends Arenas mode?

The first leak regarding this mode came from notable data miner Shrugtal who pointed out that this may be a 3v3 deathmatch. This fits perfectly in Apex Legends since the battle royale puts emphasis on playing in trios.

Respawn Entertainment suggested that this mode will feel like a “full game,” meaning that we can expect some unique rules, maps, and gameplay mechanics to help it stand out in the battle royale.

Apex Legends Arenas maps

Various Kings Canyon spots were said to have been tested as potential maps for the Arenas mode. These were: Capacitor, Rig, Broken Relay, Gauntlet, Cascades, Repulsor, and Water Treatment. 

A rumor began circulating around that Skulltown would also make its comeback as a map for this mode, but there’s nothing that confirms this.

The Ash teaser shows of a location that could be one of these maps, and the Apex Legends 100 million player celebration video shows another possible candidate on Olympus.

Snowy Arena map from Apex Legends trailer

Apex Legends Arenas rewards

As with other game modes in Apex Legends, you’ll be able to earn some neat cosmetic rewards such as badgers for your player card. Completing the Arena teaser will grant you the “Impress Me” badge.

While we don’t have more information beyond that, we expect Arenas to contain even more unique awards that are exclusive to this game mode.

Will Arenas mode have Ranked Play?

Apex Legends data miners have stated that Arenas will have a Ranked component, but it’s not clear if this will be connected with the main Ranked tiers of the battle royale.

We won’t know more until some more leaks or official information emerges. As Season 9 draws closer, we’ll keep checking any updates, and will inform you of anything new that we learn.

Image Credits: Respawn Entertainment

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Battlefield

Battlefield 6: Release date, leaks, rumors & battle royale

Battlefield 6 is set to release in 2021, and here’s everything we know about the FPS title including setting, launch date, and leaks.

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Battlefield 2021

The latest installment in EA and DICE’s legendary FPS is set to release this year, and with rumors and leaks building excitement, here’s everything we know about Battlefield 6.

The franchise has remained pretty quiet since the release of Battlefield V back in 2018, but it remains one of the most popular FPS titles on the market. The series acts as the perfect alternative to the close-quarters combat of Call of Duty, bringing massive battles fought across vast locations throughout history.

After the disappointing reception to the Firestorm battle royale mode, EA and DICE didn’t release a new game in 2020, but with confirmation at EA Play that Battlefield 6 was in the works for 2021, anticipation immediately started to build.

Unsurprisingly, leaks and rumors are flooding the internet, with fans desperate to find any information they can about the upcoming release. From the game’s setting, to the timeframe it’s found in, and even a potential release date, here’s everything we know about Battlefield 6.

Battlefield 4 sniper

Battlefield 6 release date

Unfortunately, we don’t have an exact release date for Battlefield 6 just yet, but in an investor’s call, EA CEO Andrew Wilson did confirm that they planned to reveal the game “in the spring,” and then “deliver the defining Battlefield experience in the 2021 holiday season.”

Most Battlefield games release in either October or November, but considering that many game developers are currently working from home, it’s possible this may push that timeline back a little.

According to DICE, the game is now in “daily playtesting mode,” focusing on “polishing and balancing as they attempt to make the best Battlefield they can.

When will Battlefield 6 be set?

There have been plenty of rumors about the timeline in which Battlefield 6 will be set, but most agree that we’re likely to find ourselves in an alternate reality of the modern-day.

According to well-known leaker Tom Henderson, the game will take place “around 10 years from now”, so that developers are able to “implement weapons and vehicles that are currently in military development today.”

Players firing weapons in Battlefield

Where will Battlefield 6 be set?

As for where we’re going, that also remains a keenly guarded secret. Henderson has started to leak alleged information from the game’s first teaser, sharing drawings of what it will look like. One of the most detailed drawings is taken from the viewpoint of a pilot, flying towards a space station surrounded by trees.

Another drawing showed a zoomed-out look at this location, with the leaker then sharing a link to Google Earth, revealing that the space station appears to be Tanegashima Space Center in Japan.

When will the Battlefield 6 trailer release?

The good news on this front is that it appears we’re not far away from the release of the trailer. Henderson believes it is “imminent,” but wasn’t able to give an exact date.

We do know that EA has an investor call on Tuesday, May 11, so it’s possible we see it around that date. Otherwise, we’ll likely get our first glimpse at Battlefield 6 at E3 2021 in June.

Will Battlefield 6 have a battle royale?

All signs point to yes. In a leak posted to the Battlefield 6 subreddit, it was claimed that the game will have a battle royale after DICE tested the waters with Firestorm in 2019, but were unable to say whether it will be free-to-play like rival Warzone or only available to those who buy the full game.

The appetite for a battle royale is certainly there, with popular streamer Dr Disrespect clearly excited by the prospect, but we’re still awaiting official confirmation from the developers.

Battlefield 5 Firestorm

Will Battlefield 6 be on PS4 and Xbox One?

No. In an official reveal on April 22, DICE confirmed that the 2021 edition of Battlefield will only be available on PS5, Xbox Series Z & S, and PC. There will be no support for PS4 or Xbox One.

DICe say the game will be “brought to life” with the “power” of next-fen consoles, which would line up with rumored reasons as to why there was no 2020 release in the Battlefield franchise.

In a statement to GameSpot back in May 2020, EA confirmed that they would be releasing the game’s on the new consoles in an attempt to target “new innovation that will be enabled by next-gen platforms.”

This was the main reason EA and DICE decided not to release a Battlefield game in 2020, as the amount of people who would have had either a PS5 or Xbox Series X would still be small compared to what it will be a year on.

Image Credits: DICE / EA

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Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War

How to unlock Ballistic Knife in Cold War & Warzone Season 3

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War and Warzone players have the opportunity to unlock the fan-favorite Ballistic Knife during Season 3.

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Unlock Ballistic Knife Cold War Warzone Season 3

Players who want to score some highlight-worthy kills when playing Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War and Warzone during Season 3 will want to unlock the Ballistic Knife.

The Ballistic Knife is a fan-favorite weapon that was first introduced in Call of Duty: Black Ops and quickly became known for providing the opportunity for players to put together some impressive highlights.

Now, Cold War and Warzone players have the opportunity to unlock this new weapon during Season 3, and we have everything you need to know to do so covered for you.

Unlock Ballistic Knife Cold War Warzone Season 3

How to Unlock Ballistic Knife in Cold War & Warzone Season 3

You will find that two different challenges can be completed to add this weapon to your inventory. One of these challenges must be completed when you are either playing Cold War Multiplayer or Warzone.

This challenge tasks players with getting a One Shot, One Kill medal, and a melee kill in the same life in 15 different matches.

The start of Season 3 for Cold War saw this weapon become available for players to earn immediately. However, it will not be available for players to earn in Warzone until mid-season.

Unlock Ballistic Knife Black Ops Cold War Warzone Season 3

It is important to remember that you must complete the match you are playing for progress towards this unlock challenge to count. All progress will get lost if you do not finish the match.

Zombie players can acquire this weapon by killing a total of 300 enemies while using a Special or Melee weapon. However, the Special or Melee weapon must be Epic or Legendary quality.

The community also can get two other new weapons during this new period of content besides the Ballistic Knife when they unlock the PPSH submachine gun and the Swiss K31 sniper rifle. The best loadout for the PPSH and Swiss K31 will pair perfectly with the Ballistic Knife and allow for some impressive performances by players.

For more on Call of Duty, check out the fastest way to level up this season’s Battle Pass and stay tuned to Charlie Intel for future news and guides.

Image Credits: Activision/Treyarch

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