PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, most commonly referred to as PUBG, is without a doubt one of the most popular multiplayer games released in the past decade.
And despite being banned in India, China, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Korea, Jordan, Nepal, Israel, and Iraq, it remains popular in other countries, even in the countries where it has been banned because players just use a VPN to get access. If anything, getting banned has made the game more popular, as you would expect.
Internationally, the game’s steam PC port attracts an average of 400,000 active players per month. Its all-time peak is 3 million players. Interestingly, it still has a greater monthly player count than Apex Legends, despite the latter’s recent major update. As a battle royale game, it’s built on the principles of “survival” and “last man standing.”
PUBG has sold over 70 million PC and console copies to date, with PUBG Mobile accumulating over 1 billion downloads. When it was released in 2017, it sparked a worldwide craze. Millions of copies were sold before the game left Early Access on Steam, triggering the current mania over battle royale games.
PUBG, while not the first game of its kind, truly ran with the ball that H1Z1 had so emphatically dropped, shattering records everywhere. Its net worth is estimated to be around $5 billion, and by the end of December 2020, it had earned $4.3 billion from mobile devices alone.
The concept of battle royale games comes from a Japanese horror movie called Battle Royale, released back in 2000. The movie follows a group of students who are forced to kill one another in order to survive under the Battle Royale act. It’s a similar concept to The Hunger Games or Squid Game.
This type of game has become so popular because it forces you to think and act quickly, so it’s very engaging. Every single decision you make can have a massive impact on your chances of survival and the outcome of the game. You need to set priorities, scavenge for resources and master the art of balancing aggression and stealth, all while surrounded by players trying to kill you.
In PUBG, you get on a plane with 99 other players. When you get dropped off, the moment your feet touch the ground, the fight for survival begins. You need to start moving and looting while the circle is closing in on you. If you’re outside the circle, you start to lose health.
The winner is the last man standing. It’s not who makes the most kills. Even if you don’t kill anyone, you can still win the game. Stealth meta reigns supreme. Many of the top players use tactics like waiting offshore on boats until the climactic gunfight at the end of a round. Instead of risking their lives, they’ll wait for the other players to kill each other, thereby increasing their chances to win.
But, as you might have guessed, it’s not that simple. It wouldn’t be as much fun if it were, would it?
Combat allows you to practice and enhance your skills. The combat mechanics are a little unusual at first, but if you get the hang of them, it will have a massive impact on your performance once you’re up against the last few remaining players.
Kills also provide you the opportunity to level up your equipment. PUBG has a ranking system for each season, and your ranking depends on your kills and assists. That’s to encourage the players to form alliances, making the game more engaging, and discourage them from hiding out and waiting.
The first major decision you’ll have to make is when to jump out of the plane because where you land will affect your odds of surviving. The loot in big towns is better, but you might only last thirty seconds before getting killed.
PUBG Mobile offers many of the same features as the PC version, and it’s free to play. You can either log in with your Facebook or Twitter account or play as a guest. You’ll gain experience and battle points through gameplay and daily login incentives, which can be used to buy crates with random clothes for your character.
This is one difference between the PC and mobile versions. In the mobile version, you don’t have clothes when you start playing, but it doesn’t take long to find at least a pair of pants.
There’s a built-in voice chat, and most players simply use their phone’s microphones. Virtual joysticks are used to move the player and control the camera, and a large button on the right with a bullet shoots your gun. The game provides a variety of control options to improve the overall experience and eliminate the discomfort of searching for buttons you can’t locate by feel.
You have a floating shoot bottom that keeps moving wherever you last tap with your thumb. This will make your life easier because it means that when you want to fire your gum, you don’t have to reorient your hand. The game automatically picks up, sorts, and equips items, which eliminates some cumbersome menu management. It is worth noting that PUBG Mobile follows a slightly different season structure than the PC or console versions.
PUBG Mobile is a demanding game, so you need a high-performance mobile device. It’s important to turn off auto-brightness to avoid screen dimming during the game. It would be best if you also quit other apps you may have running in the background, turn off night mode, battery saver, and data saver.
Before you start playing, make sure you have a good connection to the PUBG servers and run a speed test. Use headphones if your phone’s speakers aren’t up to the task. PUBG Mobile’s audio is top-notch, and using headphones will also help you locate enemies.
Over the next several years, PUBG Mobile is expected to earn a few billion dollars and will continue to dominate YouTube and other platforms.
Even if the PC market abandons the game entirely—which is unlikely since they’re pumping out so much fresh content—PUBG Corp will still have their very successful mobile version to fall back on. Plus, PUBG: New State was just released on November 11, and it already has tens of millions of players.