Today we have Lead Designer Dennis Schwarz here to discuss what's in the upcoming Hunt update! Take it away Dennis…
With Update 1.1.3 - Hunters' arsenals are getting bigger, as we add a number of additional weapons that will bring an even greater variety of fire power into the bayou. The focus is on new rifle variations - namely single-shot rifles similar to the Sparks LRR already in the game.
The first of these new weapons is the Springfield 1866, a venerable design from just after the Civil War. During that period, the US Army started converting a lot of their surplus cap and ball muskets to be able to load and fire modern metal cartridges. In the game, the weapon fires medium ammo and is available from Rank 1 on with plenty of extra shots. The trapdoor mechanism makes it easy to reload, giving it a rather high practical rate of fire for a single-shot weapon.
This gives new players, and those who have just prestiged, a great third starting weapon alongside the Winfield M1873C and the Romero 77. The Springfield has a similar price point and excels at medium to long distances. Think of the Springfield 1866 as a budget Sparks, allowing players to pull off headshots at a 150 meter range - though it still carves out a niche for itself by outperforming the Vetterli's headshot range by 50 percent.
It was important for us to provide players with a proper ranged option for the early game and to allow those interested in skilled play with single-shot rifles to be able to compete in sniper duels right from the start.
The second new weapon is the Martini-Henry IC1, the carbine version of the former British service rifle. This is a single-shot weapon too, but as it fires long ammo it's a direct competitor to the Sparks LRR. Where the Sparks focuses on ranged combat and is slow to reload, the Martini-Henry prevails at short to medium distances.
The Martini-Henry fires a heavy, slow black powder cartridge with a muzzle velocity of around 400m/s - about the same travel speed of a bullet fired from a Winfield M1873 - so it will require some leading at distance. Thanks to the slick hammerless reload mechanism, the Martini-Henry makes up for its slightly reduced power and travel speed with very fast reloading that gives Hunters an edge in and around compounds. It's also available at a slightly cheaper price point than its cousin the Sparks.
Similar to how we added the Lebel 1886 as an alternative to the Mosin-Nagant M1891 a while back, we wanted to introduce the Martini-Henry IC1 as an alternative to the Sparks LRR. They both have pros and cons that help players choose the rifle best suited to their playstyle.
Both the Springfield 1866 and the Martini-Henry IC1 come with a number of variants to help specialize your loadouts further.
The Springfield 1866 Marksman adds a medium scope that turns the weapon into a full-fledged early-game sniper rifle and of course benefits from the Steady Aim trait for precise shooting.
On the other hand, the Springfield 1866 Compact shortens the weapon to fit into a medium slot, opening up many new combinations with other medium slot weapons. A Hunter with the Quartermaster trait can also rely on it as a solid mid-range fallback.
Based on the short version, the Springfield 1866 Compact Striker and Springfield 1866 Compact Deadeye variants offer melee and long-ranged variations. The Striker is a cutthroat melee option with an attached knife used for both regular and heavy melee attacks. The Deadeye packs your favorite medium scope to make for a true pocket sniper.
For the Martini-Henry IC1, there is a Deadeye variant that plays to the strengths of the rifle. This makes a specialized mid-range package, with increased reliability at said range at the expense of less accuracy when fired from the hip. As it lacks a buttstock, the weapon sways harder than other scoped variants, though the Steady Hand trait gives a helping…hand…and alleviates the weapon sway, making the Deadeye a practical second option for the trait alongside the Nagant M1895 Deadeye sniper revolver.
Finally, the Martini-Henry IC1 Riposte offers a beast of a melee option, attaching a hefty saber bayonet that not only provides a long-reaching heavy melee stab attack, but also uses the blade for regular melee attacks, allowing Hunters to chop their way through hordes of Grunts or Hellhounds quite effectively.
You can try out all of these weapons in the game now, and as always, please feel free to stop by Hunt's Discord, Xbox Club, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Xbox, or Steam pages to let us know what you think!