The Korean game ratings board dropped a listing for a PS4 version of PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, indicating a long-awaited release is on the horizon — and not a moment too soon for the floundering battle royale game.
The listing was spotted earlier today by Twitter user @Nibellion, and clearly shows “PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS PS4” along with a description of the violence inherent in the game.
— Nibel (@Nibellion) September 19, 2018
PUBG has been an Xbox console exclusive for quite some time, even being offered in a bundle with Microsoft’s Xbox One X. It was one of, if not the most important exclusives for the console. A report from Bloomberg even indicated Microsoft was interested in extending the exclusivity further — though to what, we don’t know, as the exact length of the exclusive period was never publicly revealed.
Still, while this new release — assuming it happens — might leave the Xbox One’s prospects looking a little bleaker, it’s a smart move for PUBG‘s parent company Bluehole, if only because it needs to do something — anything — to get more people to play its game.
PUBG has been struggling to retain relevance in the face of Fortnite‘s unyielding onslaught, and that will only get worse as Battlefield V and Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 debut their own versions of the battle royale format. The PUBG player count has been steadily falling off, finally dipping below one million players earlier this month.
The distraction of shinier, newer competitors has been compounded by massive amounts of game-breaking bugs that prompted the developer to admit its game was pretty broken. It followed through with the demands of players and began a “Fix PUBG” campaign last month.
"Fix the Game."
This is a phrase we’ve been hearing a lot lately. So today, we’re announcing a new campaign entirely focused on addressing bugs, quality-of-life improvements, and fundamental performance improvements.
— PUBG (@PUBG) August 8, 2018
One of the strengths of Fortnite has been the ubiquity of the game. While it’s true you can’t have cross-platform play between the PS4 and the other major consoles, the sheer prevalence of Fortnite gives it an edge by visibility alone. Another strength is that it’s free-to-play, while PUBG isn’t.
I doubt PUBG on PS4 will be enough to save the game if its developers aren’t willing to put in the work to make it better, and especially not if it has to compete with the likes of Fortnite, BlOps 4, and BFV within a short time of its arriving on the console. But at the very least, it’ll be fun to have another battle royale game to play on PS4 in case all of the above haven’t sufficiently worked the urge out of your system.