In response to the 15 March Christchurch shooting, many people attributed the terrorist’s violent behavior to the hugely popular battle royale game, Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG).
“The point of these video games is to mould a generation that is excited by war and violence”, said Mohd Yusof Ahmad, Mufti (Muslim legal expert) from the state of Negeri Sembilan; calling for the game to be banned in Malaysia.
This sentiment has also been echoed by Malaysia’s Muslim community, citing that the game promotes “Islamophobic imagery” when it was discovered that one of the items in the game resembles the Kaabah, a building at the centre of Islam’s most important mosque.
These developments have raised concerns for the esports industry in Malaysia as gaming there provides many pro gamers with a lucrative income – literally putting a roof over their heads.
“This game is my livelihood”, said Aiman Amirul Mohd Sahid, captain for esports team Yoodo Gank in an interview with a local daily. Yoodo Gank will be one of the teams representing Malaysia at the PUBG Mobile Club Open in Shanghai, China.
The question raised is: Is it true that violent video games like PUBG can cause something as devastating as the Christchurch shooting?