Gamers battle online over banning ‘PUBG’ in Oman
April 25, 2019 | 12:14 PM
by Times News Service
Photo for illustration purpose only

Muscat: Fans took to the internet in response to a trending hashtag online that is asking for a ban in Oman on the bestelling game, PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds (PUBG), developed by PUBG Corporation.

According to the developer's official website, PUBG has more than 3.2 Million concurrent PC users, and has seen over 50 Million downloads. It also holds the Guinness World Record for “Fastest Early Access Game on Steam to Reach 100 Million Dollars in Sales.” It is a ‘battle royale’ game where 100 players are dropped into an area and then must fight with guns until only one player is left standing.

Musallam, one critic of the game, wrote online, “Is there any good that can come from wasting your time and your mind? Our ancestors traveled through land and sea to spread their culture and now we have these games that destroy the mind, your time, and your morals.”

Ire against the game rose after a number of social media influencers spoke out about employees playing during work hours or neglecting time they could instead spend with their families. “This can be addictive to children,” a user added.

Ali al Araimi, a part-time college student and employee in Oman, told Times of Oman, “All of my outings with friends are now filled with PUBG. Instead of talking, they simply connect their phones to power banks and play all day. As long as they don’t ban Fortnite (a similar game), then I am fine with losing PUBG.”

Omani fans of the game responded to the online trend with jokes and denials, with some saying that whoever started the trending hashtag should download the game and “Come join us in the arena so we can fight out our differences.” Others claimed that it was made by a disgruntled player who had a low score.

Skroob, a popular Omani video game personality, told Times of Oman, “It is as simple as culture. Do I think that the game is inherently harmful? No, but it definitely is something that can take up your time, just like social media and messaging friends through your phone. You shouldn’t do it while at work, but I don’t think a game should be banned because it is too popular.

Regarding the trending hashtag, he said, “It’s just a media wave of people voicing their opinions.”

Recently, Nepal’s Supreme Court has stayed an order that had been meant to ban the game in Nepal, with the Supreme Court arguing that Nepali people had the right to play it.

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