“Our really rapid growth has become sort of an issue for us.”
PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds has now sold over 18 million copies, according to C.H. Kim, executive producer and CEO of newly formed studio PUBG Corp.
Creative director Brendan “PlayerUnknown” Greene added that 40 percent of PUBG players play on the game’s first-person servers.
“I was expecting maybe 10 percent of players would enjoy [First-Person Perspective servers], but it’s really shown huge numbers,” he said, adding that North American and European players are especially fond of first-person mode.
On September 5, Greene announced PUBG had passed 10 million copies sold, meaning the battle royale shooter has sold eight million copies in the past eight weeks. More recently, PUBG became the first game to hit two million concurrent players on Steam. Greene said he’s baffled by these unprecedented figures, and unsure exactly what led to the game’s runaway success.
“We didn’t expect anything like the numbers we’ve seen on PC … we’re still trying to figure that out,” Greene said. “If someone figures that out before we do, please tell us.”
Greene is also trying to figure out how to accommodate the game’s rapidly expanding community.
“We’ve expanded so quickly that we’ve essentially been playing catch-up,” he said. “For example, our server system. We experienced some instability, the reason being it was designed for a million players [concurrent], which we thought we wouldn’t hit. And now we’re at two! So we’ve had to play catch-up and stabilize that system and write whole new systems to cope with that.”
Our really rapid growth has become sort of an issue for us.
According to Kim, this rapid expansion has also contributed to communication issues with the PUBG community.
“Our really rapid growth has become sort of an issue for us,” Kim said. “We’re experiencing growing pains … our community base has grown to 18 million and we have more communicators that are in the middle to mediate communication. So it takes more time for a message to come across to our community. This is a struggle we need to overcome, and we are planning to respond to it better as we go along.”
PUBG also announced today that it will launch on Xbox Game Preview in December, which will likely cause it to gain players even quicker. Greene also told us that he personally doesn’t want PUBG to win a Game of the Year award, and dismissed accusations of unfair bans, saying “We’ve never banned anyone for honking at a streamer.”
Austin Wood is a freelance writer for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter.