Battle Royale Fortnite and Apex Legends may have surpassed by far Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds in some way, but the game came back in headlines today for a controversial new reason: it’s getting banned in Nepal.
Last month, we heard how ten students got arrested in India for playing PUBG, after some cities in Gujarat, India restricted the title, and now the whole nation has done the same. Nepal has directed every ISP and mobile operator to ban the game according to The Kathmandu Post, The Himalayan Times, and Reuters. According to the Post, Nepal is also prepared to arrest players now that the game has been banned.
Furthermore, Nepal have decided to restrict the game due to concerns about addiction and aggression — even though experts are often skeptical about the idea of video game addiction, and studies that have tried to investigate a link between video games and aggression have largely been inconclusive.
That didn’t stop Nepal’s Metropolitan Crime Division from pushing a ban through the courts in a single day, saying it had consulted with psychiatrists who do believe in the aggression theory, and pointing out that other countries had banned PUBG as well. “We have decided to ban the game before anything unfortunate occurs in Nepal,” Dhiraj Pratap Singh, chief of the Metropolitan Crime Division, told the Post.
But that bit about other countries banning PUBG isn’t exactly true. Though China was widely reported to have banned PUBG, it’s actually that the game wasn’t approved to begin with in the country — Chinese censors had stopped approving new video game releases, which meant Tencent couldn’t monetize the title, even though people were already playing the game without in-app purchases.
In fact, Tencent added a China-only age gate to PUBG Mobile just last month to appease those censors. And though a few cities in India did indeed ban the game, at least one of them has apparently already lifted that ban. Notably, Nepal also banned porn last October.
We’ve reached out to PUBG Corp to see if it has any comment on the game earning a country-wide ban.
Source: The Verge
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