PUBG: Battlegrounds’ recent decision to make the game free-to-play is “in no way a reaction” to similarly successful free-to-play shooters like Call of Duty: Warzone, Fortnite, and Apex Legends, all of which similarly adopted that model.
During an interview with GameMe, studio creative director Dave Curd discussed the move to a free-to-play format on PC and consoles starting today. “We came to the decision to play PUBG: Battlegrounds for free because we think it’s the right time,” explains Curd.
“Our game is in a great place with eight maps, an engaged community and our deep weapon mechanics, so this is the natural next step and a great way to introduce more players to our universe. I know there are a lot of people out there who are interested in PUBG: Battlegrounds but never got around to playing it for various reasons – now is the perfect time to get started.”
Elsewhere in the interview, Curd explained that the decision was “in no way a reaction” to other similar battle royale titles on the market. “They’re all great games that specialize in their own unique strengths, just like us. We develop our game independently of others and are excited to see what’s to come,” he said.
The PUBG Corporation announced that the game would be moving to a free-to-play model during a segment at The Game Awards last year. During the show, the developer revealed that PUBG would have two tiers going forward: a basic free-to-play account, which “provides access to most game features”, and the studio’s premium tier, Battlegrounds Plus. Players who have previously purchased the game will automatically become part of Battlegrounds Plus, while those new to the series will have to pay $12.99 if they want the extra features the mode has to offer.
The full list of Battlegrounds Plus benefits is:
- Bonus 1,300 G-COIN
- Survival Masters XP + 100 percent boost
- Career – Medal Tab
- Ranked Mode
- Custom Match functionality
- In-game items including the Captain’s Camo set, which includes hat, camouflage mask and camouflage gloves
To learn more about PUBG: Battlegrounds, watch this video with 5 additional things you need to know about playing the game for free.
Jared Moore is a freelance writer for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter.