Meta: Are you a fan of PUBG or mobile Esports? Continue reading to familiarise yourself with the rise of the growing franchise within the wider Esports industry.

In recent years, the burgeoning Esports industry has exploded in popularity to become one of the most popular forms of entertainment around the world for regular gamers and non-regular gamers. It is the rise of PUBG, or PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds as it is otherwise known, however, that has clinched the title as one of the industry’s most prolific success stories.

It was released in 2017 and achieved world domination overnight as both existing and new players scrambled to get their hands on the latest and greatest game that was highly playable and suitable for both experienced and inexperienced gamers. If you are interested in finding out more about the rise of PUBG as a mobile esports, continue reading.

1bb The Rise of PUBG as a Mobile Esports | VGLeaks 2.0

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It kickstarted the battle royale trend

If you have personally dabbled in Esports in the past or have just done your research, you may be familiar with the global phenomenon that is the battle royale trend and its gradual adoption into mainstream gaming circuits in recent years. It is, in the simplest of terms, a survival-based game that is played by multiple players with the winner determined by the last player standing within an increasingly shrinking circle.

It has revolutionised the online gaming world in its short tenure so far and was a welcome addition to the gaming industry which was, at the time, overrun with games centred on shooting or fighting that relied on quick reflexes and a steady feedback loop in order to survive. It was the subsequent release of Fortnite in 2017, however, that confirmed that battle royale was a trend that was here to stay and that Esports had well and truly broken into the mainstream.

It has capitalised on mobile gaming

In the past decade, mobile gaming has grown and developed to become one of the most popular forms of gaming for a growing number of players, in multiple demographics around the world. It is, essentially, the process of playing games through a smartphone, smart device, or tablet from the comfort of your own home or on the go with a valid internet connection, often all that is required in order to do so.

In capitalising on this emerging trend, it was recently announced that PUBG would be releasing a number of titles for mobile play including PUBG: Exhilarating Battlefield and PUBG: Army Attack. In doing so, however, it has led gamers to question what is esports and how does a game become an esport with the boundaries between a mobile game and an Esport increasingly blurred in today’s digital landscape.

In November this year, for example, PUBG also announced that the winner of their Mobile Global Championship 2021 would walk away with a $6 million prize fund, the largest in battle royale mobile Esports history.

It has expanded to become a franchise

In the four years since its initial release, PUBG has continued to grow and adapt to emerging technological advancements within the wider gaming industry with almost flawless precision. In doing so, it has expanded to become one of the fastest-growing franchises within the global gaming industry and an entertainment company that is now estimated to be worth upwards of around $25 billion.

It has also been rumoured that there are a number of PUBG-related developments currently in the works including the basic shell of a project simply titled Prologue from the game developer behind the PUBG franchise, Brendan Greene, and a sci-fi horror game that is reportedly set in the PUBG universe called The Callisto Protocol that has been designed in collaboration with the executive producer of the award-winning horror video game series Dead Space.

Evolution – the future is here and now

In addition, a successor to the mobile versions of PUBG named PUBG: New State is currently under development and will be set far into the future and over 17 million players have already registered to download the game as soon as it is released on the App Store and Google Play.

This has convinced a growing number of players that a PUBG expanded universe may be on the horizon and could even expand into other forms of media, such as television and animation, in the not-so-distant future.

In recent years, the explosive popularity of PUBG has revolutionised the global gaming industry as it continues to straddle the boundaries between a mobile game and an esport. It did, after all, kickstart the battle royale trend when it burst onto the scene in 2017, capitalised on the growing trend of mobile gaming, and expanded to become one of the fastest-growing entertainment franchises of the past decade.