PlayerUnknown’s BattleGrounds Fever
The millennium dawned the advent of India’s online gaming industries when console and PC gaming made it more accessible for Indians to get on digital gaming platforms. Cut to 2017 and the Indian online gaming market was pegged at $290 million (expected to touch $1 billion by 2021)
Puzzles, action and adventure are the most preferred genres across demographics and platforms. Once such action based game that has the millennial glued is the PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds or PUBG. An online multiplayer game published by PUBG Corporation, a subsidiary of South Korean video game company Bluehole.
In the game, up to one hundred players land onto an island and scavenge for weapons and equipment to kill others while avoiding getting killed themselves. The safety area in play keeps reducing overtime- forcing players into tighter areas and increasing encounters. The last player or team standing wins the round.
The game was initially made popular by professional gamers in its console and PC version. The popularity of the game snowballed in a short span of time and PUBG soon came out with its mobile version. What clicked was the simplicity of the game. It does not require hours of play and neither does it have to be played daily.
Bluehole Corporation was right on the money, the game recorded more than 100 million downloads on android in a span of 8 months in 2018. It now stands in the top five list of most downloaded games in India as per the Google play rankings.
Taking the game to a whole new level in India was the PUBG Mobile Campus Championship. A tournament exclusively for college students with a total prize pool of over Rs.50 Lakhs! The event had 250,000 registrations from over 1,000 colleges proving that events like these are an indication of the growing number of online games in India.
Among other online games gaining popularity in India is poker. Marked at $120 million dollars the game is slowly moving away from the social stigma of gambling. With smart phone users on the rise and lucrative prizes up for grabs, poker is soon expected to grab a significant share of the Indian online gaming industry.