Christmas in PUBG Mobile isn’t all about zombies and fights to the death. Daryl, Michonne, and the rest of the Walking Dead gang have presumably been called back to Georgia to film the next half of Season 10, leaving a hole to be filled in the usual crossover spot – a spot quickly filled by non-other than the Angry Birds. Judging by social media interactions, the average PUBG Mobile player isn’t upset by this seemingly unrelated crossover – which comes as a surprise. They’re not happy, but not because of its mere existence.
It’s not uncommon for any crossover or announcement to be buried under the rug by the vocal minority of PUBG Mobile players claiming the work done on “cashgrab” events could have been used to “fix” the game in any number of ways. Cheat detection, bugs, and lag are issues constantly under the microscope of players who feel like they’re being taken for a ride when they go unfixed for weeks at a time.
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Yet, ironically, the Angry Birds have managed to quell the rage of these players. They’re still mad, but not for the usual reasons. News of the crossover has gone down well, but it’s the non-stop chirps of Rovio’s famously round avian characters that have players reaching the boiling point instead. The birds are angry at pigs, yet PUBG Mobile players are angry at the birds for their inability to shut their mouths.
When the event landed on Dec. 12, each and every lobby was inundated with the loud screams of the furious flock. If you ever stepped foot in a public place at the start of the decade, the squeals and squarks of them are no-doubt burned into your brain, ready to trigger and linger for days at a time the moment you’re reminded of the franchise’s existence. It’s not an ambient sound being piped in for environmental effect, but the sound of themed grenades being tossed around as players sit on Spawn Island waiting to charter a flight to their own deaths – the only true way to avoid the noises plaguing the ears of PUBG Mobile’s 600+ million players.
The in-game event is nothing spectacular — like most others, players complete tasks to earn tokens and turn them in a chance to receive other items. But it’s the recreation of an Angry Birds puzzle in the lobby that amounts to both the best and worst parts of the event. Sure, everyone gets to pelt a wooden tower with throwable Angry Birds, but the collective squawking of 100 players launching birds at a shaky structure isn’t easy on the ears.
After plenty of complaints on social media, the PUBG Mobile team responded to say a fix was on its way. But rather than silence the birds once and for all, they’ve just had their screams turned down a notch. Going off feedback on the patch notes thread on Reddit, it’s still not the quiet PUBG Mobile players were hoping for.
We’ll get it fixed soon. 🙂
— PUBG MOBILE (@PUBGMOBILE) 15 December 2019
While the existence of the event may seem out of place in a game like PUBG Mobile, it’s hard to deny the brand awareness Angry Birds commands on the very same platform PUBG has excelled on. Rovio’s classic played a monumental role in the growth of mobile gaming in the early days of the smartphone. The blissfully simple physics-based puzzle game took the world by storm in 2009, with its original title and subsequent sequels being downloaded billions of times over the years, and even making the jump to merchandise and film soon after.
There’s something to be said on the whole matter. It’s impressive a crossover has finally managed to divert attention away from some of PUBG Mobile’s more pressing gameplay issues, but players getting riled up about a hot minute spent listening to birds chirping (loudly) just screams misplaced priorities.
Disclaimer: Fanbyte is owned by Tencent, which also runs Tencent Games, developer and publisher of PUBG Mobile. Tencent also subsidizes much of Fanbyte’s PUBG Mobile coverage by covering freelancer budget costs. Those covering PUBG Mobile for the site have no contact with Tencent, however, and are given complete creative control to write whatever they wish.