What's more popular than PubG

That's why millions of people play PlayerUnknown’s Battleground

By Thomas Porwol | November 03, 2017, 12:57 p.m.

100 players parachute over an island and fight against each other until only one is alive - that is "PlayerUnknown’s Battleground". A hit game that has delighted millions of gamers since the beginning of the year. TECHBOOK explains the hype surrounding the survival shooter.

If you take a look at the player statistics of the game platform Steam, you will notice that a game has established itself with a clear lead on the top ranking of the games with the highest number of players: the multiplayer survival shooter "PlayerUnkown’s Battlegrounds", PUBG for short. At its peak, it is played by over 2 million people at the same time and has thus relegated the former competitors for first place in the Steam player charts - "Dota 2" and "Counter Strike: Global Offensive" - ​​to their places. PUBG only appeared in March 2017 and games like “Dota” have been known and loved for years. TECHBOOK explains what the success of PUBG is all about.

What is PUBG about?

PUBG is a cross between a survival game and a shooter. A round begins with a parachute jump: All players jump from a plane over a fictional island - usually 100 players per match, who sail towards the playing field. The destination is the numerous buildings on the island. Here you can find equipment such as weapons, armor and bandages - and the faster you arm yourself in PUBG, the better. Because the aim of the game is to be the last survivor.

PUBG is based on the Battle Royale game mode: It is a survival game in which either everyone plays against everyone or teams consisting of two or four players compete against each other. They start on a playing field, in PUBG it is an island that gets smaller and smaller as the game progresses: a circle closes more and more, so that the players have to move closer and closer together and find it increasingly difficult to avoid a confrontation. Those who move too slowly get out of the circle - and die.

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Players now have to weigh up: how much risk do they want to take in search of better equipment? Do you tend to stay defensively at the edge of the field or do you dare the offensive hunt for your fellow players in order to surprise them? And do you dare to go near supply drops that promise a superior weapon, but also almost certainly mean a confrontation with fellow players?

Why is it so popular?

The great success of PUBG can be explained by various factors: On the one hand, it is a competitive shooter that can be played in the first person perspective or in the third person perspective and which does not require a team - you can also be a lone wolf have tons of fun with PUBG. Shooters like “Counter Strike: Global Offensive” require a team if you want to play successfully. Preferably with friends with whom you go into matches. The PUBG gameplay is also ideal for playing alone - you can jump into a game at any time.

The last-man-standing principle also creates a lot of tension and is a game mode that has faded into the background in recent years - now it's back and feels fresh and different compared to what " Counter Strike ”,“ Battlefield ”or“ Call Of Duty ”.

And Let’s Player on Youtube and Streamer on Twitch also play a not insignificant part in the success: PUBG is also very popular here - while this article was being written, over 35,000 people were watching other players on Twitch playing PUBG.

Early Access so far

PUBG has been a huge success so far - it has actually not been released regularly, because the game is currently still in the early access phase. With Early Access, customers can buy a game that is still in development - that is, playable, but does not yet contain all of the features that the finished game should have.

This funding model allows game developers to sell an early version of a game in order to finance further development and get it ready. Early Access is also repeatedly criticized because this model is also misused: Developers offer unfinished games in Early Access, write in the black just about the sale of this early version and never finish the game.

At PUBG, however, there are no signs of such a course of the early access phase: the Bluehole development studio is currently working on an Xbox One version, which will also be released as an early access version on December 12, 2017 for the Microsoft console should. The PC version is also regularly supplied with updates and innovations.

Only mixed reviews on Steam

Only with the Steam reviews has PUBG struggled in the last few months. Biggest point of criticism from the players: Too many hackers and cheaters are on the servers and developer Bluehole is doing too little to take action against them. As a result, only 56% of the 250,000+ reviews on Steam are positive.

A fact that many players are not deterred by: After all, PUBG are playing more people these days than the places two in nine in the Steam statistics combined.

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