Sunday, June 16
The revival of Free Fire ignites

The game will be available Sept. 5, Sea’s gaming arm, Garena, said Thursday in a statement. (Garena free fire)

The revival of Free Fire ignites the passion of gaming enthusiasts in India

Garena, a Singapore-based company, is introducing a dedicated Indian edition of the game titled “Free Fire India.” This version of the game will be accessible for download within the country starting from September 5th. Despite a previous ban prompted by security apprehensions, Garena has partnered with Yotta, a subsidiary of the Hiranandani Group, to establish localized cloud hosting and storage infrastructure for the game.

After a year and a half since the widely popular battle royale game Free Fire was banned in India, Singapore-based game developer Garena is introducing an exclusive Indian version of the game.

Free Fire India will be accessible for download within the country starting from September 5.

Garena stated, “Free Fire India incorporates unique content and features to encourage a safe, healthy and fun gameplay experience.”

Despite the earlier ban due to security concerns, Garena has partnered with Yotta, a company within the Hiranandani Group, to establish local cloud hosting and storage infrastructure for Free Fire India.

In Garena’s words, “As a MeitY-empanelled service provider, Yotta will ensure best-in-class management of personal data of Indian users on local servers and network connectivity services to support Garena’s product offerings in India, including in esports.”

Garena Free Fire was among 53 other apps banned in India by the Ministry of Home Affairs in February 2022.

As part of localisation efforts, Free Fire India will incorporate a verification system for parental supervision, gameplay restrictions, and ‘take a break’ reminders.

Gang Ye, co-founder of Garena, expressed excitement about launching Free Fire India, noting, “India is home to very passionate communities of esports enthusiasts and we are excited to be able to support our fans from Bharat with the launch of Free Fire India.”

The company also plans to launch the Free Fire India Esports Championships.

This return of Free Fire to India follows the comeback of Battlegrounds Mobile India (BGMI) in the country.

India’s gaming industry is projected to reach $8.6 billion by FY27, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 27%, according to a report by Lumikai released last year.

In FY22, Indians spent an average of 8.5 hours per week on mobile games. Time spent on top mid-core games like BGMI was double that of other leading casual games.

Aside from BGMI, Free Fire India will also face competition from the locally developed battle royale title Indus, being created by Pune-based SuperGaming. Indus has reportedly garnered over 5 million pre-registrations on Google Play and is set for a closed beta release during the upcoming festive season.