PUBG Mobile is back in a new avatar, Battlegrounds Mobile India, in the country due to the months-long ban. While Krafton claims the new game is designed to ease concerns about the original version, it’s nothing new — it’s exactly what Chinese audiences have always had. Battlegrounds Mobile India has emerged as a marginally modified version of PUBG Mobile, with only a handful of (unnecessary) differences. And there are no India-specific changes here, with those three-color posters relegated to the marketing teasers.
This week, host Akhil Arora talks about Battlegrounds Mobile India on Gadget’s 360 podcast Orbital with Deputy Video Head Cyrus John, who played Battlegrounds Mobile India, and Deputy News Editor Veer Arjun Singh, one of the most experienced PUBG Mobile players on the team.
Battlegrounds Mobile India is currently available in early access for Android users. Game publisher Krafton claimed just hours after the battle royale title’s release that it crossed the 5 million download mark. But it was not a smooth initial success for the game.
Weeks before the official launch of Battlegrounds Mobile India, Legislative Assembly Member Ninong Ering Arunachal Pradesh urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to ban the game. The government has not publicly responded to Ering.
Shortly after its release, PUBG Mobile’s Indian avatar was found to be sending data to servers outside the country, even in China. However, that data sharing issue was resolved when it was reported online. It’s funny because ties to China were one of the concerns that resulted in the original title being banned last September. Traders’ body Confederation Of All India Traders (CAIT) has also demanded a ban on the new game because it sent user data abroad.
Battlegrounds Mobile India First Impressions: PUBG Mobile Similarities and Differences
The gameplay in Battlegrounds Mobile India is essential as it was with PUBG Mobile. The changes are only due to the porting of the Chinese version. For example, the effects of gore and violence have been removed because the Chinese government does not allow it in its games. Green leaves have replaced even the traditional red animation of blood. Yes, leaves.
Krafton has allowed existing PUBG Mobile users to move their original game save data to Battlegrounds Mobile India. However, it is important to point out that friends you played matches with on PUBG Mobile are not automatically added when you go to the new game – the friend list was lost during the switchover.
What further hurts the community is that many PUBG Mobile players have switched to PUBG Mobile alternatives, such as Call of Duty: Mobile and Garena Free Fire, in the months it was banned. Those probably won’t move to Battlegrounds Mobile India easily – given that they’ve already created their communities on those other games.
PUBG Ban in India: Young Indians’ Aspirations Hit the Pause Button
Krafton has not yet given any details on when exactly Battlegrounds Mobile India will be available from beta or on iPhone. However, the gaming community does have some information. You can check that out in our discussion.
You can listen to the full Orbital episode on PUBG Mobile’s India avatar Battlegrounds Mobile India by hitting the play button on the Spotify player above. You can also follow the Gadgets 360 podcast on Amazon Music, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, and wherever you get your podcasts. Could you rate us and leave a review?