Bamboozled Gray Zone Warfare players are protesting after realising their faction choices are stopping them from teaming up with friends

 Three soldiers in camo holding guns and walking through long grass.
Three soldiers in camo holding guns and walking through long grass.

Gray Zone Warfare has had an eventful launch into early access since it went live yesterday.

Players initially praised the tactical FPS game for, well, not being Escape from Tarkov. However, after a couple of hours, many more began to slate the new game for its poor performance. It's been a bit of a bumpy ride, and it's not over yet.

Like Tarkov, Gray Zone Warfare is designed to give players meaningful choices and a sense of realism and purpose to their decisions. But this has backfired, as one of those design choices means that players can't change factions once they've picked one, unless they want to start from square one again or wait for the scheduled progress wipe, which should be around July (via CharlieIntel). While the devs highlighted this feature before the game went live, it's still caused a lot of upset for people who missed the memo.

If you and a friend decide to pick different factions, you won't be able to play together. It's like Pokémon Go teams, but extra annoying as most players didn't realise what they were signing up for when they were picking a faction.

One player voiced this annoyance in a Reddit post as they discussed possible remedies to the problem: "Devs need to introduce a way to reset accounts within days or quicker [because] otherwise, this could become a disaster. Friends, not knowing they have to be in the same factions, are stuck, and many would rather quit than not play with friends." From the sounds of things this is a frustrating problem, and one that the devs should tackle quickly before it becomes a more significant issue.

One player even replied to the initial post with yet another grievance about this feature: "The problem arises when you have two sets of friends, and both groups choose different factions. Now, I am torn between which ones I can play with or not."

There are a few ways the devs could go about fixing this issue. The simplest remedy would just be to let people pick their faction at least one more time, just so friends could ensure they're on the same page a second time around. To prevent further confusion in the future, it may be a good idea to add a disclosure in the game before picking a faction. This could be a small pop-up box or a mission where players have to complete an objective and pledge allegiance to the faction afterward.

But really, how this problem is fixed doesn't matter too much, as long as it is. There have been plenty of hiccups so far for Gray Zone Warfare, which is a shame because it actually does a lot of things right, one of which is the cooperative element, something that isn't always present in other extraction shooters. It'd be nice to see all the wrinkles smoothed out in good time, so this game has the space it needs to grow and become another excellent option for players to pick up and play.