“Yeh PUBG wala hai kya?”, asked PM Narendra Modi during Pariksha Pe Charcha 2.0, when a concerned mother asked the PM how she should stop her son from being too involved in online games. PUBG or PlayerUnknown’s Battleground is an online multiplayer mobile game is a first-person shooter game that begins with 100 players being airdropped into a large play area at the same time. The aim? Use your wit, strategy and resources to be the last-man-standing. The game became a global phenomenon with over 40 crore players registered worldwide after its mobile version was launched in March 2018. To keep up with the growing craze, championships and leagues were started worldwide. But Gujarat banned PUBG and On 14 March 2019, the Rajkot Police arrested ten youths, including college students, for violating the ban and playing the game. While Gujarat has imposed a ban on the game, Hyderabad hosted a national championship for PUBG in Mar 2019. The event, which had participants from all over the country, was supported by the Telangana government.
The newspapers and the digital media these days are flooded with articles about PUBG. Death of a teenager by playing PUBG, notice of addiction-like symptoms etc. are some of the articles which are frequently heard in day-to-day lives.
Discontinuing the ban on 29 Mar 2019, police commissioner of Ahmedabad, A K Singh said, “..as the exam session is over and the direct trigger to initiating the action is not valid any more, we will not renew the proclamation. We have also taken public reaction into account“.
What is PUBG?
PlayerUnknown’s Battleground or PUBG is an online Multiplayer game of Battlefield Royale genre, that is developed by the PUBG Corporation, a subsidiary of South Korean video game company Bluehole. The game is created by Brendan Greene along with Tae-seok Jang and was first released on 20 Dec 2017 on Windows. It is available on platforms such as Microsoft Windows, Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Android, iOS The Mobile Game is offered by Tencent Mobile International Ltd. on the Android and iOS Platforms.
The game has certain similarities to the movie ‘The Hunger Games’ and other games like ‘DayZ’, ‘H1Z1: King of the Kill’, etc.
Since its first release in mobile on 19 Mar 2018, the game is able to successfully accumulate 100,000,000+ installs on the Play store. Presently, PUBG MOBILE is one of the biggest and most popular games in the mobile gaming industry alongside the likes of Fortnite, Asphalt 9 and FIFA Mobile.
PUBG is renowned for its characteristics of high-quality graphics, realistic weapons, travelling in style, teaming up with friends, and delivering an ultimate battleground experience in the virtual world.
How to play the PUBG game?
Like a typical video genre battle royale game, a player is left in a place with up to 100 other players with a map. Each match starts with players parachuting from a plane onto one of the four maps, with areas of approximately 8 × 8 kilometres (5.0 × 5.0 mi), 6 × 6 kilometres (3.7 × 3.7 mi), and 4 × 4 kilometres (2.5 × 2.5 mi) in size. The plane’s flight path across the map varies with each round, requiring players to quickly determine the best time to eject and parachute to the ground.
Solo, Duo, Squad in PUBG
PUBG Mobile is a social game. PUBG MOBILE lets players battle enemies along with friends. The game connects through Facebook or Twitter and allows up to four players to team up for a match i.e you make your squad. You can also play as a duo with another person or as a solo. Do note that while playing in a group or squad, the team claims “Chicken Dinner” as a whole after the last person from outside the team is killed. Every individual gets scores depending on the style of the gameplay and his/her role in the squad.
First-person or third-person perspective
Players can opt to play either from the first-person perspective(FPP) or a third-person perspective(TPP), each having their own advantages and disadvantages in combat and situational awareness; though server-specific settings can be used to force all players into one perspective to eliminate some advantages
First-Person Perspective(FPP) refers to be able to “see” the world through the characters eyes. This means that you will have the field of view of an ordinary “person” in the game.
Third-Person Perspective(TPP) refers to be able to see your character and the area in your general vicinity, as though another person around you is looking at you, and you’re seeing through the other person.
Every player is supposed to hunt for weapons, clothes and medical aids scattered around the large map and eventually battle it out with others doing the same. The available safe area of the game’s map decreases in size over time, directing surviving players into tighter areas to force encounters. Every few minutes, the playable area of the map begins to shrink down towards a random location, with any player caught outside the safe area taking damage incrementally, and eventually being eliminated if the safe zone is not entered in time.
During the course of the match, random regions of the map are highlighted in red and bombed, posing a threat to players who remain in that area. Players are warned a few minutes before these events, giving them time to relocate to safety. At random, a plane will fly over various parts of the playable map and drop a loot package, containing items which are typically unobtainable during normal gameplay. These packages emit highly visible red smoke, drawing interested players near it and creating further confrontations. On average, a full round takes no more than 30 minutes.
At the completion of each round, players gain in-game currency based on their performance. The currency is used to purchase crates which contain cosmetic items for character or weapon customization. A rotating “event mode” was added to the game around March 2018. These events change up the normal game rules, such as establishing larger teams or squads, or altering the distribution of weapons and armour across the game map.
The last person standing is christened as the winner and the prize is Chicken Dinner. PUBG celebrates your victory by calling out the celebratory phrase – Winner Winner Chicken Dinner. The more Chicken Dinner tags you claim to your name, the more points you earn for unlocking new rewards and more respect amongst your PUBG MOBILE clan.
Video explaining The Story of PUBG in Hindi
This video of 7:45 minutes below gives an overview of PUBG and how the game was developed
PM Modi reply to mother on being involved in online games
In January 2019, during his town hall with students called Pariksha Pe Charcha 2.0, when a concerned mother asked the PM how she should stop her son from being too involved in online games, Narendra Modi responded with,“Yeh PUBG wala hai kya?”, indicating that he was familiar with the game. He went on to support the youngster, saying, “Yeh samasya bhi hai samaadhaan bhi. Hum yeh chahein ki hamare bachche technology se door chale jaayein, phir toh woh ek prakaar se apni saari zindagi peechhe ki taraf jaana shuru ho jaayenge. Aur isliye usko yeh technology ke samay mein protsahit karna chahiye. Toh aap kisi ko rokein nahin.”
This is a problem and this is also a solution. We don’t want our children to go away from technology, which would be like whole life they will be going backwards. That is why we need to encourage them. So please don’t stop him.
PUBG Ban in India
In response to the severe implications that the game has on the teenagers of the country, the authorities have responded by issuing an advisory against the game and some even imposing a ban on the game
PUBG ban was implemented on March 14, 2019, post which 20 people were reportedly arrested in different cities, including Ahmedabad, Rajkot and Vadodara. The arrests were made under section 188 of IPC. It was removed in Ahmedabad on 29 Mar 2019.
Delhi Commission for Protection of Child Rights (DCPCR) had issued an advisory against games like PUBG and said that it has a harmful, negative and an adverse impact on the brain of the children. PUBG has been banned Universities(VIT) across India. In Gujarat, arrested the individuals found playing this addictive game. People are being taken into custody under the following sections:
- Section 188 of the IPC Disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant i.e for violating the notifications issued by the Police Commissioner.
- Section 135 of the Gujarat Police Act (related to prohibition of certain acts for prevention of disorder)
The company, in effect to these regulations, said that PubG is a game which is meant for Entertainment and should be enjoyed in a healthy and responsible way. The company raised its deep condolence against the issues associated with the game and also ensured that they are working in the direction of improving a healthy gameplay system in India to promote balanced and responsible gaming while limiting the play time for underaged players.
PUBG has also decided to implement digital lock for its users under 13 years of age. The digital lock system will lock out players under the age of 13 and they would have to ask their guardians or parents to open the game for them.
PUBG national championship
While Gujarat has imposed a ban on the game, Hyderabad hosted a national championship for PUBG. The event, which had participants from all over the country, was supported by the Telangana government.
There were two qualifier rounds, then a semifinal and then the finale. The PUBG Mobile India Series Grand Finals was held at GMC Balayogi Indoor Stadium in Hyderabad in Mar 2019 and instead of just ‘chicken dinner’ the tournament saw 20 teams battle it out for the grand prize of 30 lakh. There was a total of Rs 1 crore prize money at stake. PUBG Mobile team SOUL, led by 21-year-old Naman Mathur aka SOUL Mortal, lifted the trophy.
Naman’s tryst with mobile gaming began in 2016 and is regarded as the best PUBG player in the country today. Naman says, “I have always been attracted to mobile games and started with Mini Militia, an intense multi-player combat game. I realised that PUBG was taking over the mobile gaming zone quite rapidly, so I automatically gravitated towards it.” He started his own YouTube channel in 2016. Talking about what the gamers are planning to do with their prize money, Naman says that he plans to use the money to expand his empire in professional online mobile gaming. “I have collaborated with another gaming maverick, Animesh Agarwal, aka 8bit Thug, to use the money to increase the online gaming arena,”
Aneesh Aravind, GM, Tencent Games, says, “Our congratulations to team SOUL for winning the India Series 2019 with a mix of intelligent squad play, clever zone movement and ability to pick up a high number of kills. With India Series 2019, we delivered a world class tournament which garnered 35 million views on social media, establishing itself into prime-time entertainment category.”
More details at Times of India Winners get a lot more than chicken dinner at India’s first PUBG Mobile tournament!
What are the causes of concern associated with PUBG?
PUBG is one of the most addictive games across the world. The game has seen a massive reach among the teenagers and gaming enthusiasts. People, across the world, are worried about the addiction to this mobile game and the possible implications it has on our future generations. The major causes of concern associated with PUBG include:
- An increasing number of death cases
People playing PUBG often report severe neck pain and other physical illness as a result of playing the game constantly for long hours on a day-to-day basis. The issue, if not treated properly leads to severe complication which eventually results in the cases of death.
The addiction to the game is yet another major source of death. For example, a child is playing the game while moving on the road. This may lead to an increased probability of accidents, etc.
- Harm on the mental health
PUBG is known to adversely impact the mental health and wellness of an individual. Playing the game for long hours results in an increased stress level, anxiety, depression, fatigue, social seclusion, and other mental health problems. The presence of too much violence also accounts to harm to their mental health.
- Escalating cases of divorces
People who are playing like a Pro are devoting ~10+ hours on PUBG in a single day. Playing the game for such long hours seriously impacts the social and family lives. As a result of this, people are unable to focus on their relationships and this eventually results in the increasing number of divorce cases.
- Poor Performance of students
The addiction to PUBG is considered more harmful than an addiction to a drug. As a result of being addicted to the game, children in school show degraded performance which is ruining the future of these people. Such individuals lose mental balance because of the unlimited time spent on playing. The game impacts behaviour, sleep and leads to psychiatric disturbances in an individual which would adversely impact their future in the long run.
- Exposure to Cervical
People who get addicted to the gameplay the game with wrong body posture and they remain in that for long durations. This results in increased exposure to Cervical related problems leading to the deterioration of health.
- Eyesight Issues
Constant playing for the long hours results in an exposure to the issues like headache and migraines. This impacts the health of a person in the long run and can be seen with the increased power of spectacles.
Why are kids getting addicted to PubG?
PubG being one of the most popular online multiplayer games has a massive reach among youngsters and gaming enthusiasts. The addiction can be understood while taking into account youngsters who are 6 years old to people who are 30-32 years old, are the ones who are most impacted by the game.
The game has so much to offer by making the kids explore a new world with high-end graphics. This gives an individual a new immersive experience and gets more people addicted to it because of its easy accessibility. Furthermore, the fantasy and victory in the game boost the self-esteem of players playing the game. The addiction boosts up when the goals are set while playing the game.
The kids have a greater probability of being addicted to it as they develop a natural gaming interest if they are already playing some game in the past.
Video on How to Stop Addiction
This 12-minute video talks about Science of PUBG Addiction and How to stop it
In conclusion, it can be said that PubG is a great game meant for boosting up the recreational activity of an individual. The popularity of the game is increasing with time as more people get aware of it. The game has good graphics which makes the game lucrative to be played by the players.
However, if an individual does not set their gaming limits then the game may prove addictive. In India, the cases of addiction have come up. Some people have died due to excessive gameplay; the extent of violence has increased. The parents in such situations need to ensure that their children are not playing the game for long hours and they should make a timetable for their children having proportionate time for different activities and it should be strictly followed while they play.
School and other authorities can also create awareness among students that they must spend their time in a proportionate amount. They should be taught about the adverse effects that they would have if they play games too long.
Further, the game developers can also add certain upgrades to the game like the introduction of pop up where players can know how much time they had spent on their devices.
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What do you feel about PUBG? Does your child play PUBG or online games? Will online games become a career alternative?