WEBTOON today announced three genre-spanning new series in a collaboration with KRAFTON’s massively popular video game, PUBG: BATTLEGROUNDS. Launching on January 29th to English readers exclusively on WEBTOON, the new series – “The Retreats,” “Night of Silence,” and “100” – will transport readers to the high-stakes, dystopian PUBG Universe in a digital comics format.
The three new digital comics series are based on the fantasy world of KRAFTON’s wildly popular video game PUBG: BATTLEGROUNDS, which has sold more than 75 million copies worldwide and recently transitioned to free-to-play. PUBG: BATTLEGROUNDS pioneered the “battle royale” video game style, testing players’ survival skills to be the last one standing in a high-stakes, large scale battleground setting. The three new webcomics set in the PUBG Universe highlight the thrill, horror, and action that occurs as characters try to navigate the dangerous battleground that is the world around them. Each story will feature a different character, with some trying to break free of the poverty and destitution by fighting in the Battlegrounds, while others watch the Battlegrounds for entertainment while living in a utopian paradise called the Retreats. The webcomics explore these stories as the characters navigate this treacherous balance between the coexisting, yet polar opposite, societies and their places within each.
The full synopses for three new series are as follows:
In “The Retreats,” in the distant future, people live in abundance in the Retreats, a so-called Paradise on Earth. This prosperity is made possible at the expense of an impoverished underclass in the surrounding slums of Brine, who must either serve the citizens of Retreats or fight in the dreaded Battlegrounds for a shot at becoming a Retreats citizen. For Brine resident John Canty, whose father and grandfather died in the Battlegrounds, the desire to rise to the Retreats seems like a hopeless pipedream. All that changes when his new job takes him into the Retreats and he encounters Edward, a boy who looks identical to his own son Gable…
In “Night of Silence,” when Leah finally returns to her small town after several years, she doesn’t find the warm welcome she’s expecting, as she opens the door to find her father’s corpse hanging from the ceiling. The police rule it a suicide, but the longer she stays in town, the more she suspects that it was anything but. In the middle of it all is a violent book her father was writing called Battlegrounds, which has half of its pages missing. But the townsfolk don’t appreciate Leah snooping around, and there’s no limit to what they’ll do to stop her from uncovering the truth.
In “100,” armed only with a gun and a frying pan, Hoyoung Cheon must survive Battlegrounds: a battle-royale style game with 100 participants, where there’s only one way to win: kill the 99 other players, all of them death-row convicts. Hoyoung has another objective besides survival, though — he must find an assemblyman who was captured while investigating the game, and is now an unwilling participant. Can Hoyoung complete his mission on an island with 99 people willing to kill to survive, and emerge the last one standing?
“As the universe of PUBG expands, we want to ensure that we are providing a continuous stream of stories that create a comprehensive entertainment experience that isn’t limited to just our games,” said Zion Lee, VP and Head of PUBG Universe. “Whether we are working on video, written, or illustrated content, we are always looking for the best in their respective industries, so WEBTOON was a natural choice for partnership. Together, we look forward to expanding our universe with new stories to tell and reaching a new audience through WEBTOON’s global platform.”
“With our massive audience and passionate global fandoms, WEBTOON is the perfect home to grow the PUBG Universe,” said David Lee, Head of Content at WEBTOON U.S. “WEBTOON fans around the world love the variety of innovative comics and genres found on our platform, which is why so many incredible entertainment brands work with WEBTOON to reach a new generation of comic-lovers. We’re thrilled to work with PUBG: BATTLEGROUNDS and KRAFTON to expand the PUBG Universe in a new digital comics format.”
Each of the new PUBG Universe digital comics series will launch on WEBTOON in the US on January 29th, with the first three episodes available for free on the platform. The PUBG Universe digital comics series previously saw enormous success on Naver WEBTOON in Korea after launching in November 2021.