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PUBG Mobile becomes top-earning global game

SAN FRANCISCO: PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) Mobile becomes top-grossing mobile app as its makers earned $146 million in May from player spending, revealed a report from data insights firm Sensor Tower.

Following a government crackdown, Tencent rebranded PUBG Mobile in China after facing curbs over featuring violence.

Game for Peace has the same gameplay, but there’s no blood. When players die, they wave goodbye before disappearing from the battlefield, CNET News reported.

While coming back to the statistics of its earnings, the firm disclosed that the total is split between $76 million in revenue from PUBG Mobile outside of China and Game for Peace, a Chinese-specific version of the game that brought in $70 million.

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The battle royale game was followed by ‘Honor of Kings’, a Tencent’s multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) game Arena of Valor in the US, with $125 million.

However, the statistics were not confirmed by Tencent and developer Bluehole as yet.

Earlier on May 15, Chinese internet giant Tencent had said that net profit soared nearly 17 percent in the first quarter as the company appeared set to emerge from the battering it received from Beijing’s crackdown on gaming.

Shenzhen-based Tencent said net profit came in at 27.2 billion yuan ($4 billion) in the three months ending March 31, beating a Bloomberg average analyst estimate of 19.4 billion yuan.

Read More: PUBG maker retools overseas strategy

Revenues were up 16 percent at 85.5 billion yuan, primarily driven by commercial payment services and other FinTech, and digital content businesses.

Tencent was hammered by a Chinese government crackdown on gaming launched last year that had choked off game approvals as authorities took aim at titles they felt were inappropriate, overly violent or addictive.

Chinese regulators stopped Tencent from monetising the hugely popular battle-royale style mobile game “PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds” on the mainland with the tech giant eventually dropping the title entirely earlier this month.

The crackdown shaved around $250 billion off the company’s stock market value by late last year and battered profits towards the end of 2018.

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