Zwift has recently launched Pack Dynamics 4 (PD4), a new feature aimed at improving the overall Zwift experience for users. PD4 has been in development and testing since October 2022, and now it has been officially released across the entire game. But what does this mean for Zwifters?
Zwift began working on PD4 with specific goals in mind, including reducing pack speed for large packs, making it easier to bridge back up if you’re dropped, increasing the chances of breakaways sticking, reducing the number of bunch sprint finishes, and minimizing churn and rider movement in large packs. With these goals in mind, PD4 is designed to provide a more dynamic and realistic racing experience for users.
One significant change in PD4 is the modification of the supertuck feature. Supertuck now only activates if you are outside of a pack and not drafting, making it more realistic and in line with how it’s used in real-life races. This change also gives breakaways a bigger advantage on descents.
PD4’s new supertuck restrictions require three previous requirements to be met for the feature to activate, including traveling at least 36MPH, a gradient’s decline of at least -3%, and a power output below 11 watts. Solo supertucking is now a key weapon in the attacker’s (or bridger’s) arsenal.
PD4 may cause your power number in the top-left to flash red when riding in a group. The red indicates “autobraking,” which slightly slows down your rider to keep you from moving forward in the pack when that’s not what you’re looking to do.
While the transition from PD3 to PD4 may not be as noticeable as the previous update, Zwift is getting closer and closer to the pack physics that users want. PD4 should lead to more dynamic and realistic racing, with a better chance for breakaways and a reduction in bunch sprint finishes.
Zwift plans to conduct some drafting tests with PD4 to see if there are any changes in the numbers. The game client shouldn’t change the speeds for solo riders, but the team is running a few tests to confirm this.
Overall, PD4 is a significant step forward for Zwift and should improve the overall experience for users.