Ridiculous game that barely runs on PC is coming to your phone

Tencent is officially bringing PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds to mobile phones -- and there's a surprisingly fun clone called Rules of Survival you can play right now.

Jason Parker Senior Editor / Reviews - Software
Jason Parker has been at CNET for nearly 15 years. He is the senior editor in charge of iOS software and has become an expert reviewer of the software that runs on each new Apple device. He now spends most of his time covering Apple iOS releases and third-party apps.
Jason Parker
2 min read
PUBG Corp.

PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds has been a runaway hit over the past several months, selling a staggering 20 million copies worldwide -- in spite of being an unfinished, buggy game that makes beefy gaming PCs weep. But according to a Chinese press release from publisher Tencent, you'll soon be able to play the hit game on your phone. 

The catch: It's coming to China first. 

Known as PUBG for short, the game has you and 99 other players parachute onto an island filled with deadly weaponry and fight to the death. If you're the last person standing, you win. It's a game where winning is about strategy as much as aiming a weapon, and where even cowering in a bathroom can be a nail-biting experience. 

Tencent gave no details on release dates in China or plans to expand to other markets, but it's probably safe to assume a game with such a huge following will hit western markets sometime in the future.


Rules of Survival has a similar feel to PUBG and you can touch a button to go prone, letting you lie in wait in the tall grass.

Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET

Why wait?

But if you're dying to play PUBG on your phone right now, we may have a solution. Today marks the release of a clone named Rules of Survival (iOS | Android) that shows a lot of promise. It shares a lot of the same characteristics of PUBG: a huge island map, vehicles to drive, and the same cutthroat playing style where there can only be one winner. 

In my testing the controls were spot on, I had little to no lag and graphics were smooth as silk on my iPhone 7 Plus. It's a lot of fun to play even on the small screen and miniaturizes PUBG's core concepts well -- even if it didn't give me the same feeling of fear I felt playing the original.


Just like PUBG, you'll need to manage your inventory and it's easy to do using drag-and-drop touchscreen controls.

Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET

One small difference in Rules of Survival is that it increases the player count to 120 players total -- impressive, and different from most other PUBG clones we've played on mobile. (We've tried roughly a dozen, but none have impressed us as much as Rules of Survival so far -- and some ask for way too much personal information.)  You can fight alone or create a squad of up to four players. 

Amazingly, in my first game, I had some trouble finding weapons early, but I managed to pull it together and hold out to the end. Chicken Dinner for me! 


Maybe it was luck, but I managed to hold on all the way to the end and win the game.

Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET

Rebooting the Reef: CNET dives deep into how tech can help save Australia's Great Barrier Reef.

The Smartest StuffInnovators are thinking up new ways to make you, and the things around you, smarter.