PUBG is now free-to-play on PC, console, and mobile. This change helped the battle royale reach big numbers on Steam today, including a peak of 625,564 players earlier and 408,869 players at time of writing.
Industry analyst Daniel Ahmad said on Twitter that these numbers are “double its usual concurrent user figure in the past month.” But this rise in popularity has come with some downsides, such as an increase in negative reviews from players who bought the game in the past or those who have been bothered by cheaters, according to Ahmad.
For the players who are directly concerned with the change to a free-to-play model, Krafton said in a press release that “players who have purchased and played PUBG: BATTLEGROUNDS before its transition to F2P will receive the PUBG – SPECIAL COMMEMORATIVE PACK,” which includes an automatic account upgrade to BATTLEGROUNDS Plus and some cosmetic items.
Even though it’s now possible to play the game completely free of charge, only players who have previously purchased the game or who now purchase the full version will be able to play ranked modes. Additionally, purchases of cosmetic items must still occur in-game.
While the increase in PUBG’s player count is significant, it’s unclear whether these numbers will hold over the coming weeks and months.
For players interested in joining this battle royale or just trying out one of the pioneers of the genre, whether you have an Xbox, PlayStation, or PC, you can now go to your digital store and download PUBG for free.