By Nasir Nawaaz Nov. 01, 2018
My girlfriend and I are far from setting relationship goals, but I’m just glad she’s cool about threesomes – she, PUBG, and I. All’s well in paradise now that the rules of the game have changed a bit.
For over a year now, for a lot of us, being dropped off on an island and battling others for a winner-takes-all fight has become a way of life. This is no real-life Hunger Games. What I’m referring to is Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds, aka PUBG, a video game that has turned many of us into addicts since last December. PUBG is to teens and young adults what Tupperware dabbas are to our mothers – something we just can’t live without. Sure, there was Pokémon Go! in 2016 which saw players roaming wildly on the streets catching Pikachus, but like Salt Bae and man buns, we cringe about it today.
The PUBG epidemic, however, looks like it’s going to last.
The game has been downloaded and played by 400 million players. If you’ve played PUBG, you’ll know there is no greater thrill today as being dropped on an 8x8km island with 100 other people, for a battle royale winner-takes-all fight. Sign me up, please for this orgasm that lasts longer than a couple of minutes!
It’s hard to stay away from something when everyone around you is into it. Much like celebrating Halloween in India. Most of my friends and peers spend more time on PUBG these days than on Instagram; in fact we also have a dedicated PUBG WhatsApp group where we discuss gaming strategies and time of play.
I remember a time when weekends were about drinking at a cheap bar and heading to a club with my friends, then jamming on some random dude’s terrace until the sun started hurting our hungover eyes. And there would always be that one guy from our group who’d hook up with a complete stranger at the club and bring her along. This is back in the day when meeting girls at a pub was still a thing. Today, weekends are not about girls but about gaming.
Instead of picking between pyaar and PUBG, he convinced his girlfriend to just try playing the game once.
But there are always some party poopers, who bring up the World Health Organisation study that classifies gaming addiction as a disorder. But I am not an addict, nor do I consider PUBG a disorder. After all, isn’t cursing complete strangers over the internet at 3 am every night the hallmark of an orderly lifestyle? I could be getting a good night’s sleep, cuddling with my partner, but I’d rather unlock a better sniper rifle. In fact, I’ve lost count of the number of times she’s threatened to ship me off to Bengaluru, where there is now a clinic dedicated fully to treating people with technology addictions. What next? A clinic to treat people wearing white sneakers?
Still, I’m not as bad as some of my fellow PUBG enthusiasts. My best friend had his house all to himself for two whole weeks while his parents were vacationing. He chose to have his friends over to play PUBG every day for two weeks, and did not meet his girlfriend even once. She dumped him of course, but it’s the most PUBG I’ve ever played, so I have no regrets.
Another friend was smarter. Instead of picking between pyaar and PUBG, he convinced his girlfriend to just try playing the game once. Not only did she give it a shot, but she’s what I would call a fulfilled PUBG premika now. They don’t just play the game together; they organise dates where they order dinner and play the game whenever one of their houses is empty. Move over #DeepVeer, this is what I call relationship goals.
The couple once told me they were up all night, and on seeing my awkward face, quickly clarified that they were playing PUBG. They’ve asked me to join their in-game team a number of times, but I’ve done enough third-wheeling in college.
My girlfriend and I are far from being the ideal clan, but I’m just glad she’s cool about our new kind of threesome – she, I, and PUBG. All’s well in paradise now that the rules of the game have changed a bit. So all I can say is, “There’s nothing better than sex” might have been true in a pre-PUBG era. But today I can find at least 400 million people who’d disagree.