PUBG Mobile Axed in Second Wave of Chinese App Ban: Don’t Lose Hope, Says GE Founder
After the TikTok ban in India, the inevitable has happened. PUBG Mobile has been banned in India, along with 117 other Chinese apps. The ban, which is a direct consequence of the ongoing Indian-Chinese border dispute, is likely to disappoint 50 million Indian users.
The Founders of Global Esports (GE), an Asian eSports organization are asking players not to lose hope.
Read more: Triller Looks to Fill TikTok Gap in India
“While we all as gamers are rooting for a dialogue and corrective actions in terms of data security and privacy concerns, we want to remind the community of gamers to not lose hope. We have a fair share of gaming titles to choose from, across mobile, PC and consoles and a lot of these can benefit from the gaming skills PUBG players have developed over the years,” says Dr. Rushindra Sinha, Co-Founder of GE.
There is also a sentiment of patriotism attached, which might allay the general spirit of loss of one of the most popular mobile games in India.
While we all as gamers are rooting for a dialogue and corrective actions in terms of data security and privacy concerns, we want to remind the community of gamers to not lose hope
“Globally, the eSports industry has been booming and a lot of its growth, especially in the last three years, is attributed to the Indian gaming community. There’s no doubt that PUBG Mobile has accelerated the Indian eSports scenario to a whole new level, where the world is now taking notice of Indian gamers and teams. However, at this point in time, our country’s security and sovereignty should rightly precede every other action,” says Mohit Israney, Co-Founder of GE.
Will India’s FAU-Gs Fill the Gap?
The recent TikTok ban resulted in much shift in the video-sharing ecosystem, gaming and eSports being a part of it too. It left a vacuum that India made companies like Chingari and Mitron as well as foreign brands like Triller rushed in to fill.
In response to PM @narendramodi call of #AtmaNirbharApp, @nCore_games is proud to announce our action game Fearless And United: Guards FAU:G with mentorship from @akshaykumar 20% of net revenues donated to @BharatKeVeer trust for India's Bravehearts #JaiHind #FAUG #gaming pic.twitter.com/OZTKj2mdFl
— Vishal Gondal (@vishalgondal) September 4, 2020
Will the current ban on PUBG Mobile create a similar opportunity for other games? Games such as Call of Duty: Mobile and Free Fire are just as popular in India. Others such as Black Survival, Rules of Survival, and Knives Out, are being touted as PUBG Mobile alternatives.
Not two days later, several Indian game developers have introduced battle royale alternatives to PUBG. One of them called, FAU-G or Fearless and United: Guards, was announced by nCore Games. Mentored by Bollywood star Akshay Kumar, the game is already garnering interest. It remains to be seen if India’s homegrown games can outshine the success of PUBG.
Chinese or Not?
PUBG, a battle royale game developed by PUBG Corporation, has been one of the few games hosting nation-wide tournaments in India. A subsidiary of South Korean video game company Bluehole, the game is available on PC, Xbox, PlayStation and Mobile. It was Brendan Greene (PlayerUnknown) who created the game and released it back in 2017.
While so far, you might not see the Chinese connection, in 2018, Tencent Games and the PUBG Corporation joined hands to release a mobile version of the game for Android and iOS.
There’s no doubt that PUBG Mobile has accelerated the Indian eSports scenario to a whole new level, where the world is now taking notice of Indian gamers and teams. However, at this point in time, our country’s security and sovereignty should rightly precede every other action
After becoming extremely popular on the PC side, Chinese conglomerate Tencent Games and the PUBG Corporation partnered up to release a mobile version of the game for Android and iOS in 2018. Mobiles fell in love with PUBG and the rest is history.
There must have been some lack of clarity regarding the Chinese-ness of the game, which is why PUBG Mobile was able to slip by during the first wave of Chinese app ban. This is also why gamers can still enjoy PUBG on PCs, as it is Korean.
Call of Duty: Mobile seems to be enjoying this lack of clarity, as it is not among the banned games, even though it’s published by TiMi Studios, a subsidiary of, you gussed it, Tencent Games. However, it’s Activision Blizzard’s subsidiary, Activision, who published the app on Android and iOS. Maybe they should be careful though.