PUBG Corp ends ties with Tencent for PUBG Mobile in India; to work with government for a solution
In a dramatic turn of events, PUBG Corporation has ended its association with China's Tencent Games for the distribution of the PUBG Mobile game in India. This comes within a week of India banning the viral app over national security reasons.
"In light of recent developments, PUBG Corporation has made the decision to no longer authorise the PUBG MOBILE franchise to Tencent Games in India. Moving forward, PUBG Corporation will take on all publishing responsibilities within the country,” the South Korean gaming company said in a statement.
“As the company explores ways to provide its own PUBG experience for India in the near future, it is committed to doing so by sustaining a localised and healthy gameplay environment for its fans," it added.
The company said that it is "actively monitoring" the present situation around bans, and is looking to work "hand-in-hand with the Indian government to find a solution."
PUBG Mobile had over 175 million downloads in India
PUBG Corporation also revealed that it has received overwhelming support for the game "from the country’s player base," and thanked the community "for their passion and enthusiasm" about PUBG Mobile.
The statement further said,
"PUBG Corporation fully understands and respects the measures taken by the government as the privacy and security of player data is a top priority for the company. It hopes to work hand-in-hand with the Indian government to find a solution that will allow gamers to once again drop into the battlegrounds while being fully compliant with Indian laws and regulations."
PUBG Mobile is the mobile version of PUBG, an intellectual property owned and developed by PUBG Corporation, a South Korean gaming company. China's giant Tencent Games was franchised by PUBG Corp to publish and distribute the game in India, a country which accounted for 24 percent of the app's lifetime downloads.
Now there's a healthy chance of the PUBG ban being revoked in India
Following India's rising geopolitical tensions with China, the game was banned in the country under Section 69A of the Information Technology Act, on grounds that "they are engaged in activities which is prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of state and public order."
But, with PUBG Corporation severing ties with Tencent, there's a good chance of the ban being revoked in India.
"PUBG Corporation is committed to providing its unique battle royale experience to a global audience and hopes to continue engaging with its passionate player base in India. In addition to regular content updates, the company is exploring different ways to engage its community in India through various region-based activities, including esports and community events," the company added.
Shortly after the PUBG ban, Bengaluru-based game developer nCore Games announced FAU-G, a desi version of the popular action-adventure game. It is slated to release at the end of October. A bunch of other battle royale games like Call of Duty, Garena Free Fire, Battlelands Royale, and ScarFall are also gaining in popularity.