With the rise of PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds esports on an international scale, PGL unveiled it’s push into the popular battle royale title with their very first invitational event. Called the PGL PUBG Spring Invitational 2018, the event will see 16 teams from around the world compete in a 64-player all out onslaught to claim the chicken dinner prize a share of the $100,000 prize pool. Tainted Minds, an ANZ organisation who has been heavily invested in the PUBG scene were selected to represent Oceania. This will be one of the first events an Oceania team will compete at the world stage and Tainted Mind’s PUBG Captain ‘Joshiie’ was gobsmacked at the news on being invited.

“We are humbled to be invited to PGL, it still feels a bit surreal at this point.  The team has been working really hard,  everyone involved is thrilled with the opportunity to compete.  It is a huge privilege to be considered, and I think the experience the boys can gain from an event like this is priceless.”

As with all esports titles, having an invite only process and no local qualifier will always be met with some people disapproving of the team’s spot especially for a new title like PUBG. Joshiie however keeps things focused and positive saying that “we have been met with an overwhelming amount of support from both players and neighbouring orgs, and cannot wait to represent OCE on the global stage.” And regardless of what the qualifier process is – “they will always be naysayers” as Joshiie mentioned.

The PGL PUBG Spring Invitational 2018 is one of two PUBG internationals our region will represent at and without knowing where we sit on the global scale – we’re not sure on what to expect. For captain ‘Joshiie’, he’s staying humbled believing they will make a mark on the international level. “I trust that every member is going to be giving their absolute best.  Regardless of the talent going, we will be striving for a seat at the top.”

With over a month out before the event, I asked Joshiie about training as a squad for a game like PUBG where the competitive level is different to standard solo queue and the lack of creating your own private server to strat on.

“With PUBG’s limited server access it can be a challenge to practice. We are extremely lucky to have the PUBG OCE community on our side. They run custom scrims a few nights a week, specifically for the top tier Oceanic teams to train.” The PUBG OCE community is a massive one if fact and has helped shaped the scene locally by providing custom server access and tournaments.

Joshiie explains that these organised scrim nights organised by PUBG OCE are where the teams train. “This is where majority of our strats are planned and practiced, and with regular tournaments also being run in the region, most nights are dedicated to PUBG.”

Quickly touching on the topic about the game’s issues, many question whether the game is actually ‘esports ready’ running that joke when a glitch or bug happens. Tainted Joshiie agrees that “It’s no secret, the game definitely has some issues” but he did mention that he has “the utmost respect for the PUBG devs, considering how far this game has come since the early days of development and the impact the game has done globally in such a small time.”

“They have proved that they are not going to stop at mediocrity, and are continuously pushing updates that help this game progress on the competitive level. I’m truly excited for the future of the title.”

The PGL PUBG Spring Invitational 2018 kicks off from March 22nd 2018. The invitational will see 16 teams fly to Bucharest in Romania to compete for a $100,000 USD prize pool.