Great news for PUBG Mobile fans! The creators of PUBG, or PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS game confirmed earlier this week that there is a new version of the game called PUBG Mobile India that is in the works. Gamers in India can breathe a sigh of relief, after a torrid time over the past few months without their favorite battle royale game, after the Government of India banned the game as part of a crackdown on Chinese owned smartphone apps. PUBG Corporation says that PUBG Mobile India has been created specifically for the Indian market, with data privacy and the security of Indian gamers being top priority.
Needless to say, PUBG Mobile was incredibly popular in India before it was yanked away from the lives of gamers in India. In fact, around 25% of all of PUBG’s global gamer base came from India—with online analytics firm SensorTower confirming in numbers over the summer that PUBG has seen more than 175 million game installation in India—these are numbers from September, just before the ban was announced.
The stream of good news came first on November 12, when PUBG Corporation announced that a new game called PUBG Mobile India is in the works. They say various aspects of the game have been tweaked for India. “Various aspects of the game will be customized for Indian gamers, such as the game now being set in a virtual simulation training ground, new characters automatically starting clothed, and green hit effects to reflect the virtual nature of the game. More importantly, the company will include a feature that places restrictions on game time to promote healthy gameplay habits for younger players,” says the developer, in an official statement.
PUBG Corporation’s parent company KRAFTON will also be investing $100 million in India to push video games, esports as well as the entertainment and IT industries. Also, the PUBG Mobile India game will be under a new Indian subsidiary.
As soon as the PUBG Mobile India announcement happened, as sure as day after night, gamers couldn’t keep calm anymore. Social media erupted in a joyous celebration with memes setting the tone for the trends and the hashtags on social media. A few even had fun at the expense of TikTok users who still are without their favorite social media app. We are not exactly sure if that is a good idea!
Soon after the announcement, the official teasers started coming in. The first teaser shared by PUBG Mobile India shows three famous Indian PUBG Mobile gamers who go by the names Dynamo, Kronten, and Jonathan being bored, probably thinking about PUBG Mobile and missing it while doing regular daytime tasks like cooking, having tea, or just sitting on a couch. Each clip is supported with subtitles saying ‘Missing the excitement?,’ ‘Missing the Pan?,’ ‘Missing the Thrill?,’ and ‘Missing the Chicken Dinner?’. Each clip is separated by a PUBG Mobile India logo and a ‘coming soon’ chapter plate.
At this time, we do not exactly know when the PUBG Mobile India game will actually release. The developers have only said the game is “coming soon”, at this time. It is also not clear at this time whether PUBG Corporation or its Indian subsidiary have the necessary approvals and permissions from the Government of India, or await the same.
It was in September that PUBG Mobile was banned in India as part of the third crackdown by the government on Chinese apps. As many as 118 more Chinese owned apps were banned in India, including Ludo World, APUS Launcher, Ulike, AliPay, Super Clean - Master of Cleaner, Phone Booster, Tencent Weiyun, Baidu, FaceU, AppLock Lite and Cleaner - Phone Booster. Earlier, the Government of India banned 59 apps on June 29 and followed that up with a second crackdown almost a month later by banning 47 more apps that cloned the apps previously restricted in India. The crackdown has been done deriving powers under the section 69A of the Information Technology Act read with the relevant provisions of the Information Technology (Procedure and Safeguards for Blocking of Access of Information by Public) Rules 2009 citing the concerns about India’s security, integrity and defense.