PUBG Sees 486% Growth In Players After F2P Switch

The battle royale game is soaring after it became free.

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The popular battle royale game PUBG recently changed business models and became a free-to-play game. That switch proved to be very successful, with developer Krafton announcing today that the game saw a 486% increase in new players in the week after the switch to free-to-play.

That outpaces the player growth rate from back when PUBG initially launched in 2017. Krafton also announced that the growth rate for new players was higher, at 537%, in places like the Commonwealth of Independent States, Southeast Asia, and South America.

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At its peak, PUBG reached 690,000 total "active" players on Steam as part of the transition, Krafton said. Not only are more people playing PUBG now following the business model switch, but the average playtime jumped by more than 100% on PC and console compared to the week before the change. And for PlayStation specifically, PUBG saw a 400% increase in average playtime, Krafton said.

Krafton went on to say that PUBG's various tutorials were the most-played content during the F2P transition, while the Taego and the Erangel maps have been the most-played since January 12.

To celebrate these achievements, Krafton is giving away special in-game rewards for people who play PUBG for at least one hour between 4 PM PT / 7 PM ET on January 27 and 3:59 PM PT / 6:59 PM ET on January 30. People who log in between now and February 17 will get the Orbital Vanguard skins.

Prior to the F2P switch, PUBG sold more than 75 million copies across PC and console. The game's universe continues to grow with the mobile game New State Mobile and a spin-off called The Callisto Protocol from Dead Space and Call of Duty veteran Glen Schofield's new studio.

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