PUBG, or PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, has been taking out the competition and rising to become the last man standing. In every sense of the term, PUBG wins ‘chicken dinner’ compared to the other online games out there, and almost a certified kill in terms of popularity.
As game keeps garnering even more attention, a lot of it is directed to its players – and the stories that come from the game. One, in particular, stands out.
A photo which went viral in August because of PUBG had an inspiring tale to tell.
“Finally married my PUBG squad mate ” said the caption of the viral Facebook post by Mohammed Rasheen.
However, while falling in love and getting married to someone you meet off an online game because you’ve bonded over strategy so many times over may seem like the ideal for some, this couple’s story is a little different.
Speaking to News18, Salwa Ahamed, the bride in the photo, reveals.
“We didn’t actually meet over PUBG,” she says. “It did, however, save our marriage which was going to be called off.”
Salwa and Rasheen had known each other for four years and had been dating for most of it. “Of course, we had the usual ups and downs, but it’s because we are poles apart, in most cases.” Rasheen was addicted to gaming, and Salwadidn’t play much. Before PUBG, Rasheen would spend long hours, sometimes even nights on FIFA and Age of Empires.
However, when Salwa was in the final year of college and Rasheen moved away to UAE for a job, things got difficult.
“Long distance turned out to be a problem for both of us. Time zones played the villian in our lives,” Salwa says, recalling the months. “Fights got to a point where we were about to call off the wedding.”
Then, PUBG happened. At a time when all the Voice over IP(VOIP) calls were blocked in UAE, including Skype and Whatsapp, Salwa and Rasheen resorted to PUBG to talk.
“All our ego, and who calls first after a fight just melted away. Instead, our conversations were overrun by who’s going to win the game, or ‘Should we team up?'” Salwa shares. In the spirit of the game, they gradually began to forget the fights.
PUBG became a medium to communicate, and gradually what overcame the long-distance. While Salwa and Rasheen were physically miles apart in person, the game let them be together. What worked best for them was that they could talk to each other in it.
Rasheen adds how he liked its “physics, and balanced challenges and various strategies involved in winning a chicken dinner.” Rasheen is a little more well-versed in the game, and they usually play Duo, where Salwa plays a cover. But Salwa says that she’s won lots of medic medals during her early games for reviving Rasheen.
When asked about the viral photo, she says that while it went viral soon after it was posted on social media, they did not know about their new-found Internet fame for a while. Salwa and Rasheen got married in Thrissur, Kerala, where they are both from, and that sidelined them from social media.
“It was only later, when our cousins and everyone told us, and lots of people messaged us, that we realized,” Salwa says. Their friends and cousins also started playing PUBG after reading their story, she adds.
Rasheen is an architect in UAE, and Salwa works as an IT security professional. After they moved abroad, they don’t play PUBG as much anymore. But Salwa says that they recently bought a Playstation, and both of them have intense gaming sessions, over FIFA, Injustice or Mortal Kombat.
“Both of us still love gaming,” Salwa adds. But they’re not as competitive as you would think. “It’s the process of playing together, that we love, winning chicken dinner is just the added bonus if we win.”
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