The mobile version of Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds, popularly known as PUBG, one of the most played PC games of 2017, is now available on Google Play Store and App Store. Developed by Tencent Games, a subsidiary of Chinese tech company Tencent, in collaboration with Lightspeed & Quantum Studios, the PUBG Mobile has been optimised very well for the smaller screen. It doesn’t feel clunky during game sessions and is surprisingly smaller in size—the Android version needs just 777 MB of space to install. It is a multiplayer game and works best on Wi-Fi networks.
PUBG gameplay is the same as the PC version. Over 100 players are dropped on a remote island and must survive until the end using whatever weapons they could find to kill others. As time passes, the playable area in the island shrinks and anyone outside it dies automatically. Players must remain within the area and that is what makes the game more challenging.
Players can arm themselves with weapons and protective gear they find on the island. The rate of survival and killing rivals depends on the quality and range of weapons one has. Navigating through the game on the smartphone can be challenging compared to playing with mouse and keyboard on PC as all the controls are scattered over the same screen. Aiming at a target is not easy but the game has a precision mode, which allows players to zoom in on targets and get better shots. Tencent Games hasn’t left out any of the control options in the mobile game. Players can duck, dash, pick objects, drive vehicles, throw grenades, and even jump over obstacles using on-screen controls. The on-screen map needs improvement and the option to zoom out for a more expansive view. The fact that the map doesn’t show any of the rival players in the vicinity adds an element of surprise and makes the game tougher.
It can be played solo, with one partner or with a team having multiple players. During multiplayer games, players can also chat with their team members using the app’s built-in messenger. Players can dress up them in-game character/avatar using rewards points earned after every game. Surprisingly, there are no in-app purchases or advertisements in the game, as of now. PUBG Mobile is as challenging and a little more frustrating than the PC version due to the controls, but it is immensely addictive and hard to put down.
PUBG Mobile is a remarkable technical achievement and deserves commendation for being a fully playable, feature-packed, and stable iteration of a demanding PC and console game. Touchscreen controls can be finicky, and it will never be as accurate as playing with a mouse, but the probability and accessibility of PUBG Mobile more than makeup for it.