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PUBG reached a new milestone this week, hitting 30 million units sold to date. However, the active player base is declining.
Bloomberg tech reporter Yuji Nakamura revealed via Twitter that the number of active players has been steadily declining since January. This looks to be PUBG‘s biggest drop in active players since the game debuted on Steam Early Access in March 2017. He proposes that cheaters are to blame for the drop in active players and that the developers have not been taking them seriously enough. Intense competition from rivals like Fortnite could also have contributed to the drop in active players.
PUBG has banned over one million cheaters in January alone. This problem continues to escalate as more players use cheats that allow them to withstand damage, see the location of enemies on the map and other game-breaking exploits. These cheaters make it difficult for other players to enjoy the game. It is possible that the decreasing active players could be some of the cheaters themselves, of which more are getting banned from the game every single day.
There are also two mobile versions of PUBG, which have so far only been released in China. PUBG Exhilarating Battlefield and PUBG Army Attack have been taking the nation by storm, with over 75 million pre-registrations and jumping to the top of the iOS download charts.
PUBG is a multiplayer online battle royale game developed and published by PUBG Corporation, which is a subsidiary of Korean publisher Bluehole. The game is actually based on mods by Brendan “PlayerUnknown” Greene for other games, inspired by the iconic Japanese film “Battle Royale.” Up to one hundred players parachute into an island and scavenge for weapons and equipment, with the objective of being the last man standing. It was finally released as a full game in December 2017, after being in Steam Early Access since March 2017.