Responding to players’ feedback given over the course of the beta, Treyarch addressed different areas of Blackout that’ll be changing or staying the same either during the beta or when the game mode is fully available in Black Ops 4. While discussions of Armor and whether it’s overpowered or not have come up often in the Blackout discussions, another concern that’s been brought up is that players don’t know when their Armor is nearing its breaking point. Acknowledging this lack of clarity, Treyarch said that the full game release will include a health bar that shows how long players’ Armors have until they break.
“Armor Damage Indicator: Several players have asked for a clearer method of showing how much damage their Armor has taken,” Treyarch said in the Day 5 Blackout beta notes. “In the launch version of the game, players will see an Armor Health Bar that appears above their own Health Bar in the HUD when wearing Armor. The Armor icon will continue to break apart as it does now.”
The Armor icon does indeed break apart in its current state to reflect damage that players take when equipped with the defensive gear, but with the beta and the Armor being so new, players haven’t fully recognized what each stage of the icon degradation means yet for their Armor status. You can hear the Armor taking damage with an audio indicator signaling when the Armor has totally been destroyed, but the icon doesn’t help much between fights when trying to figure out how much “health” the Armor has, especially when compared to a traditional health bar. The addition of such an HUD element will make it much easier to track the status of the Armor and know when it’s better to swap out that damaged Level 2 Armor for Level 1 gear or keep it on for a bit longer to make the most of it.
Outside of improvements for the clarity surrounding Armor’s lifespan, those sharing feedback on the beta have also raised concerns regarding how strong Armor is. Level 3 Armor, the highest-quality Armor that players can find, has specifically been in players’ sights for nerf requests as players lament how strong it is. Armor in general greatly increases the time to kill aspect of the game, players have pointed out, with the difference between an Armor-clad opponent and a no-Armor player feeling particularly imbalanced.