Countries that have banned PUBG Mobile – Where is PUBG banned?

The mobile gaming space was taken by storm in March 2018 when Tencent released PUBG Mobile around the world. The game was rumored to be under developments for a few months, while most people questioned how such a huge game can be made for mobile devices.

PUBG Mobile shunted all the competition, particularly Rules of Survival, to become the leading Battle Royale in mobile. As the game celebrates its fifth anniversary this month, it has been downloaded well over a billion times globally.

best pubg mobile settings

Image Credits: Krafton

However, this success has come with many negatives as well. With such a large playerbase, the game has attracted scrutiny from governments for being “too addictive” or “violent”. This has even led to the game’s ban in several countries. takes a look at the list of countries who have banned PUBG Mobile.

China: PUBG Mobile banned for not being patriotic enough

This is a country you might be surprised to see on this list as Tencent is a Chinese company itself. But yes, the original PUBG Mobile was banned by the Chinese government back in 2018. While the exact reason wasn’t revealed, it was likely due to the country’s strict regulatory laws with video games.

Tencent wasn’t going to let the game die off in China, though. So, the company replaced it with Game for Peace – a patriotic Chinese version with no gore. Game for Peace / Peacekeeper Elite has almost no differences with PUBG Mobile, and players from China regularly participate in the latters tournaments.

Game for Peace

Source: Tencent

Pakistan: Game called a waste of time

PUBG Mobile in Pakistan is available and currently thriving, but it was banned for a brief period back in July 2020.

The country’s telecommunication authority said in a statement that the game is “addictive, a waste of time, and poses serious negative impact on physical and psychological health of the children.”

These claims weren’t based on any study but one-off incidents based on addiction.

The country’s Supreme Court pulled the ban a few months later.

Afghanistan: Taliban says PUBG Mobile is too violent

Over in Afghanistan, the Taliban has ironically banned the game for “promoting violence.”

The country’s Ministry of Telecommunications issued the ban order on the game shortly after the Taliban seized control over the country.

India: Data privacy is the reason

The biggest saga when it comes to banning PUBG Mobile comes in India. The game was banned in September 2020 for a reason different from other countries in this list: data privacy.

The game later came back with a new publisher in the form of Krafton in July 2021. The re-release saw the battle royale title take a new persona of Battlegrounds Mobile India (BGMI). However, even this localized version was banned in July 2022 for data privacy reasons again.

The game still remains banned, but according to a new report, it could be coming back soon. It remains to be seen if that happens, though.

Nepal: Addiction is blamed

PUBG Mobile was banned in Nepal as well for a short period in April 2019. This was because of addiction amongst children and teenagers. Just like the other countries in this list, Nepal didn’t provide any data to back this claim up.

Thus, the country’s Supreme Court ordered that the ban be lifted just 10 days later, stating that it impacts the freedom of the country’s residents.


Source: PUBG Mobile

Jordan and Iraq: PUBG Mobile ban wave hits the Middle East

The ban wave doesn’t just end in South Asia as two Middle Eastern countries have also banned the title. Both Iraq and Jordan banned PUBG Mobile in April 2019 and July 2019, respectively, for negative effects on the country’s youth.

Given the nature of the countries’ governments, these bans are very opaque. It’s unclear if the game will ever come back.

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