Battlegrounds Mobile is bringing back India's beloved yet infamous PUBG Mobile game. The new name is not just to push a new identity, it is likely to address several issues that indirectly led to the ban on PUBG Mobile last year. Krafton, the South Korean company that owns the PUBG IP, is already making efforts to minimise the possibility of drawing similarities between Battlegrounds Mobile and PUBG Mobile. That is because of the fear of a potential ban, especially after the changes Krafton has ensured to allay the fears.
There are three aspects to how Battlegrounds Mobile will deal with players under 18 in India.
To be able to play Battlegrounds Mobile India, you, someone who is under 18 by law, will need to get express consent from parents or guardians. According to Krafton, Battlegrounds Mobile will need you to provide one of your parents' or guardians' mobile number "to confirm that you are legally eligible to play the game." Now, India does not have a law where one requires parental guidance to play games, but given how PUBG Mobile last year faced huge backlash for "promoting" violence in children, Krafton is mandating parents' permission for the game.
The method through which Battlegrounds Mobile will ask players to get confirmation from parents or guardians is not clear. Krafton may send a one-time password to the mobile number you will enter, and it is only after verifying using OTP that you will be able to enter the game. There is a high chance this method may fall victim to misuse because many children now own smartphones and have unsupervised access to cellular services on the phone of their parents or guardians.
A large fraction of parents, guardians, and health experts lambasted PUBG Mobile for being addictive, causing problems with both the mental and physical health of children. Krafton is restricting prolonged playtimes in Battlegrounds Mobile India. According to a report, you, someone who is under 18, will be able to play the game for only three hours a day. This means that the playtime limit in one go is three hours.
Another big concern among parents and guardians over PUBG Mobile players was the reckless spending, often leading up to police arrests and leaving folks in ultimate despair after a huge amount is spent on the game. Krafton is putting an end to that with a new feature that will restrict in-app purchases to Rs 7,000 for minors in the game. This limit may be valid for a month. However, there are no clear details about this yet.
Battlegrounds Mobile India is already up for pre-registration on Android devices through Google Play Store, while an iOS counterpart is in the works, according to Krafton.
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