Microsoft Pulls PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds Ad That Appeared to Steal a Fan's Concept

Microsoft Pulls PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds Ad That Appeared to Steal a Fan's Concept

Intellectual property battlegrounds.

Welcome, one and all, to 2018. If you thought game industry drama took a vacation along with the rest of us, you'd be wrong. Drama never rests. It never sleeps.

At the tail-end of 2017, redditor "Macsterr" made a troubling post on the PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds subreddit. A mock-up ad they made for the Xbox One release of PUBG was seemingly lifted, slightly altered, and used as an official ad for the game. Both pictures feature an armed player standing alone in a field planted on top of an Xbox One console.

Indeed, when you look at the images side-by-side, there's no denying the official ad appears to be more than a little inspired by Macsterr's work. When Macsterr posted their mock-up it quickly garnered over 63k views on the PUBG subreddit, so it's not a stretch to believe whomever worked on the official ad saw it before working on their own iteration.

Microsoft moved quickly to try and make things right. Shortly after Macsterr's thread exploded, Xbox spokesperson Larry "Major Nelson" Hryb posted to say Microsoft has pulled the ad, and will be following up with Macsterr in the future. The swift attempt at a resolution caused redditor "TxColter" to wonder what PUBG fans are supposed to do with their pitchforks, and Major Nelson responded, "I am sure there will be plenty of opportunities to pull them out again in the future."

Wait around for a bit. 2018 has only just begun.

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Nadia Oxford

Staff Writer

Nadia has been writing about games for so long, only the wind and the rain (or the digital facsimiles thereof) remember her true name. She's written for Nerve,, Gamepro, IGN, 1UP, PlayStation Official Magazine, and other sites and magazines that sling words about video games. She co-hosts the Axe of the Blood God podcast, where she mostly screams about Dragon Quest.

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