PUBG's first release was specifically for Microsoft Windows. This was in March 2017, done via an early access model powered by Twitch. The first full release happened in December 2017, with releases for Xbox Game Preview and Xbox One later in the same month. The full release occurred in 2018. In the same year, a free-to-play PUBG version was released for iOS and Android mobile devices alongside a PlayStation 4 port. In 2020, a more potent version was released to accommodate stadia streaming.
Following its full release, over 50 million copies of PUBG were sold by June 2018. Today, there are over 400 million players registered on PUBG. It often hits peaks of over 3 million concurrent players. The mobile version recorded more than a billion downloads by March 2021, raking in more than $6.2 billion.
At the start of play, players are dropped on an island with a map. Here, they immediately set out to search for weapons to defend themselves and attack rivals. They must remain within the map at all points. As the game progresses, the size of the safe area continues shrinking.
A player must strive to be in a safe place at all times to reduce the chances of fatal attacks. Quick thinking and responses are essential skills to win. Reviewers have praised the games capability to accommodate players of slow skill level while at the same time remaining a challenge for those with advanced skills.
The battle royale genre owes a lot of its popularity to PUBG. It popularized the genre so much that immediately after its initial release, Epic moved to create a Battle Royale model of their game, Fortnite. Its effect also led to the creation of clones in China in an unofficial capacity. The game's success has been recognized with several nominations in the Game of the Year category.
The game has won awards like the Mobile Game of the Year (PUBG Mobile) at the 36th Joystick Awards, Esports Game of the Year at the 2018 2018 SXSW Gaming Awards, Best MultiPlayer Game at The Game Awards 2017, among many others. Some countries like Gujarat (India), Iraq, Nepal, Jordan, and the Aceh province of Indonesia felt that people were playing it too much.