PUBG or Player Unknown’s Battle Grounds, Battle Royale style, is an action-packed game started in 2017 for PC and Consoles. However, in 2018 PUBG Corporation, a subsidiary to Bluehole, a South Korean Video gaming company launched PUBG mobile. It became the talk of the town and almost engulfed the whole world, as it provides console quality gameplay experience in smartphones. Apart from that, it has been designed in such an amazing way that it hooks a person with its realistic features, sounds and graphics, making it nirvana for gaming enthusiasts. However, PUBG has had a huge backlash because people across all age groups have have become addicted to it. After seeing so many of my friends involved in this game, I became very curious. So, I wanted to know more about it and how it impacts a person’s psyche. My quest started with noticing my younger brother and a couple of friends whose eyes were always glued to their phone screens.
My encounter with the gamers took place coincidentally. Once a friend of mine and a stranger started talking about the game; I was next to them. The stranger told my friend, “I had a chicken dinner a couple of minutes ago.” Listening to this, I was confused. It was around 4 pm and I thought,“What type of dinner is it?”It was the first time I had heard about the virtual feast, the so called, ‘chicken dinner.’ They soon started Playing PUBG and what happened outside their virtual worlds hardly mattered to them.They didn’t even speak a word to me, so I decided to leave. These things hamper social interaction and possibly can lead to losing years of friendship. Undoubtedly, PUBG has turned into an obsession; people can skip a real dinner for a virtual one. And according to WHO giving precedence to a game over daily activities is a symptom of Game Addiction Disorder, which is dangerous and detrimental to health.
The second time, a guy playing PUBG inside a shop was intensely immersed in the game. I decided not to disturb him while he was playing.
So when he finished, I asked, “How much time do you spend playing PUBG.” He replied, “The whole day, when I am at home”.
“Do you play at night as well”, I asked again.
He answered, “Yes, and I don’t stop playing until my eyes start aching.”
His answer shocked me. It is quite evident that this game disturbs the sleeping pattern of an individual and a person is likely to suffer from insomnia and the harmful effects associated with it.
The third PUBG anecdote which I am about to relate happened at my home. One day, as soon as my brother came back from his tuitions, he asked for a Wi-Fi connection to play PUBG. I was reluctant at first, but I agreed and gave him the password. I wanted to know how he would react. I acted like I was turning the Wi-Fi off. He was irritated and fiercely shouted that there were still three enemies alive. He would never talk like that. It was a clear-cut case of addiction to this game that changed his behaviour. One can compare the instance with a drug addict craving for some drugs but not getting any. Also, teens can easily acquire extreme thoughts from a game crammed with violence and brutality, which is even more horrific.
Nowadays, cases of PUBG addiction are not uncommon in the news. Recently, a fitness trainer in Jammu landed in the critical care unit of a hospital because of PUBG. And in Delhi a teenager insanely addicted to PUBG killed his entire family.Besides, the Doctors Association of Kashmir describing the game as “Spoiler of Future” and more dangerous than drug addiction is known to everyone. Moreover, China has already banned PUBG claiming that it is “not conducive to the physical and mental health of young consumers”. Now, one can easily grasp the gravity of the ill effects of the game.
In conclusion, I would say the level of addiction that PUBG causes is the same as that caused by Cocaine and Alcohol; you just want to win that chicken dinner again and again. And shouting insanely at your Smart phone something like “mea bachav!” “mea bachav!” with no regard for time or place can very well cause someone to think you are off your onion.I am not against playing online games; playing an odd game once in a while helps in many ways. But when it becomes an obsession, it is dangerous. And if the ill effects of a game exorbitantly outweigh its benefits, getting rid of it lest it devours and dooms us should be our utmost priority.