This study aims to explain the current conditions of video games in Bhutanese society and clarify the realities of the Bhutanese gaming community. Bhutan, the tiny and landlocked Himalayan Kingdom, is globally well-known as ‘the last Shangri-La’. However, over the past two decades, Bhutanese society has drastically modernised. The first TV broadcasting, Internet connection, and mobile communication services were introduced only after modernisation. Currently, the Bhutanese people enjoy the most advanced Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs, e.g., 4G networks, smartphones, and 3D mobile games). According to recent game studies, playing video games (digital games) has become regarded more as ‘social play’ than ‘child’s play’. Hence, the video game players’ community can be considered a ‘society’ in sociological terms. Before the 21st century, gaming culture was almost similar to the so-called otaku culture. Now, consumers are more diverse, and the social position of video games has improved, despite negative outcomes like gaming disorders. In Bhutan, most adults seem to believe that video games are harmful and bad. Although such hostility exists, the number of mobile gamers is increasing. Regarding ‘PUBG’, a globally popular online multiplayer game, thousands of Bhutanese players have formed a Facebook community, despite the game’s risk of being banned in Bhutan due to its addictive and violent nature.


Article metrics loading...

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error