All those who are familiar with the online gaming world are familiar with the popular games like Dota 2 and Counter Strike Global Offensive. These are the modern iterations of age-old and extremely popular games like the Defence of the Ancients mod of Warcraft III Frozen Throne and the long line of Counter Strike games that have been launched since the first Counter Strike in the year 1999. Incidentally, the first Counter Strike was also a mod of the game Half-Life.
These classic games have reigned supreme in terms of the number of players who have played them since the inception of multiplayer gaming. Counter Strike, in particular, has been one of the biggest proponents in the invoking of the online multiplayer gaming era. In a broad sense of the term, Counter Strike was the first game to gain popularity as the game that was professionally accepted by the gaming community. And by that I mean, that Counter Strike gaming competitions were one of the first to award players in monetary terms.
This gave rise to the popularity of Counter Strike and gamers flocked to this game to earn some fame and money while doing something they enjoyed. And during this time another game came to the forefront as one that held potential to take the crown as the most popular game. Defence of the Ancients was introduced as a modded map in Warcraft III in 2002 and it immediately hit off with the crowd.
It all went uphill from there as more and more people understood the potential of the game and gave these extremely popular games the reincarnations they needed to be where they are now. Counter Strike and Dota 2 tournaments have dominated the gaming arena as the most remunerative and the most popular in terms of players. nothing came close to the prize money of the Dota 2 tournament called The International. The International finances the prize money from the sale of ingame items that players around the world buy. And the huge amounts of prize money that this tournament has garnered is a directly proportional to its popularity.
These two games have been reigning top until March 2017 when Korean game publisher Bluehole came out with Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds. Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds is a player vs player battle royale style game where players are dropped in an 8 by 8 km island where they have to collect supplies and weapons. The ultimate aim of the game is to kill other people and survive as the safe area closes in and be the last person standing.
The game was released on PC for Windows using the Steam Early Access system, which essentially means the game is not officially launched yet. And it is at this time that the game has beaten the likes of CSGO and Dota 2 in terms of the concurrent players by a significant margin. Dota 2 used to hold the record of 1,291,328 concurrent players of Steam which has been broken by Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds which saw 2,915,723 at its peak (which is today). The number keeps increasing everyday.
Apart from this feat, Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds has broken seven other Guinness World gaming records this year. All this even before it is officially released in December 2017. So we come to the golden question; What makes this game so popular?
To understand this we must understand that the concept behind this game is novel and extremely attractive. The creator of the series a person whose alias is Playerunknown has tested this game format in other games like H1Z1 and Arma. Players dropping on an open island with an almost open world and collecting items while battling others is rather exciting. This increases the number of possibilities of the things that one can perform. And involves considerably more skill than just aiming or timing something well. That and bragging rights for beating out 100 other players to be the number one if you win.
Apart from that the game is closer to real life than any of the other competitive games and almost feels like battling it out in person. Dota 2 and CSGO players are migrating to PUBG (Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds) and this is a present threat to the games. Apart from these, other reasons include the involvement of the top game stremers on Twitch and YouTube who actively played the game which in turn worked as promotion. And one must admit that the luck and timing are a factor as well when it comes to these things. But all we know is that PUBG is here with a bang. But the question that time will tell is whether it is going to stay this popular.