PlayerUnknown Battlegrounds is the massively popular, at times controversial Battle Royale game that started off the most recent trend in video games.
100 players jump out of a plane landing spread out all over a massive open-world map in which weapons, gears, supplies, and armor must be scavenged from abandoned homes. Poison Gas is released in an ever-growing area eventually surrounding players until the survivable zone becomes a smaller and smaller circle. All of the players are drawn to this shrinking area as they battle it out to the death in a Last Man Standing shoot-out. The winner is the last person alive.
PlayerUnknown is the nickname of a developer who once was a modder from the ARMA II days in which this Battle Royale style of gameplay which has spawned many, many clones – most notably the enormously successful Fortnite: Battle Royale by Epic Games and with a special deal through Sony.
Other original Battle Royale games created by this developer include H1Z1’s BR mode later renamed ‘King of the Kill’ and now known as ‘H1Z1 Auto Royale’. Although Sony Online Entertainment went broke and got split off into a company called Daybreak Games, this modder turned developer has left a trail of broken hearts in the likes of DayZ and H1Z1 which never really got the finishing touches, polish, or respect they deserved – leaving many gamers feeling ripped off.
PUBG exploded in popularity, seemingly out of nowhere, but began to feel stale and the lack of improvement over optimization alongside an extremely slow roll-out of features began to worry players with console versions were announced before the PC version even ran well. Once Fortnite: BR released pushing PUBG to become frantic and competitive, Microsoft came in to sign a deal with the development team and now PlayerUnknown Battlegrounds has regained its ability to push forward with a new map, redesigned gameplay, and slowly but surely it’s hoping to fight back and save its stake in a sub-genre that its creators arguably gave birth to.
Over this weekend Microsoft has announced that PUBG has surpassed 5 million players on the Xbox ONE (a console which has sold around 37 million units versus Sony’s 77 million PS4 sales). And while it might sound like a lot, Epic Games’ 40 million Fortnite players across the PC, PS4, and Xbox One with 3.5 million concurrent players last weekend all playing at once on PC alone, PUBG still has a lot to prove in its own self-made market.
Excerpt from the Official Press Release: “The PUBG5 jacket will be rewarded to all players who own and have activated a character in the game on Xbox One as of March 22, 2018 at 12:01AM PST.”
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