The later part of 2015 has turned out to be a very popular time for publishers to launch their own post-apocalyptic video game. In addition to the seemingly endless supply of independent survival titles that appear to show up regularly, there have been two big budget games released in the past few months alone that put users in a dystopian world left after modern civilization becomes destroyed at the hands of global nuclear war.
Between Bethesda’s Fallout 4 and the new Mad Max title from WB Games, players might be faced with the dilemma of figuring out which post-apocalyptic game is right for them. Fans could always play both, but those on a budget might have to decide which one to pick up first this holiday season. Hopefully, the following breakdown will help anyone dealing with that choice.
Both Fallout 4 and the Mad Max game take place in the harsh wastes of a planet that has become forever changed following the widespread use of nuclear ordinance. As a result, both games feature a similarly destroyed world to a certain degree. However, the two titles do make a distinctive thematic shift when it comes to some core aspects of how their individual societies have managed to reform after the collapse.
The Mad Max game keeps the more traditional apocalyptic setting that was largely popularized in the original George Miller films. The ruthless inhabitants of Max’s world are left with few thoughts beyond their own savage day-to-day survival.
Conversely, Bethesda purposely intended to create a world that actually gave the sense that there could be hope of turning things around in Fallout 4. This can be seen in the use of more vivid colors that are splashed throughout the ruins of Boston, where Fallout 4 is set.
Populating the Wastes
Hard times make for hard people, and the survivors of Fallout 4 and the Mad Max game know this all too well. Players will also discover this for themselves after realizing that the majority of the humans they will encounter have become raiders who would rather murder, steal, or eat someone instead of trying to work with them.
Fortunately, gamers can still find friendly survivors out in the wastes. Fallout 4 and Mad Max are filled with settlements that players can align with. In both games, users can then search the open-world to acquire resources and materials to improve these outposts. Continuing the similarities, players can also begin to earn profits off of every unlocked settlement. These locations automatically feed users with scrap in Mad Max, while Fallout 4 fans can assign vendors to run their own shops for a stream of bottle caps.
But How Does it Handle?
Each Game has RPG elements where players can level up and improve their skills. Those seeking a more traditional role-playing experience should lean more towards Fallout 4, as it features more traditional systems such as fully detailed character states and branching story paths. Mad Max, on the other hand, plays more like an action game with RPG flair. Gamers can still expect to improve Max or his car over the course of the game, but the upgrade trees aren’t as deep as those found in Fallout 4.
The Art of Scavenging
Picking off the remains of the old world is a common theme between the two titles. The act of searching for scrap materials and ammo can be found in both games. Of the two, however, Fallout 4 is the only one that offers users the chance to loot weapons and gear from enemies. This allows players to constantly find new equipment in any environment.
In contrast, users can only acquire new weapons and protective clothing in Mad Max by upgrading certain skills or completing specific story missions. However, the Mad Max game makes up for this by making the Road Warrior a better combatant who doesn’t rely as much on weaponry. To this end, Mad Max has a far better melee combat that consists of a reversal and combo system similar to those found in the Arkham series or Assassin’s Creed titles.
Bringing Out the Big Guns
In either game, players have the option to surround themselves in layers of protective metal as they face the dangers of the apocalypse. For Mad Max, this is represented as his personal car.
In Fallout 4, gamers can jump into their own suit of Power Armor.
The main difference between the two is that Power Armor is optional, but the use of vehicles in Mad Max is unavoidable. In fact, as you might expect from a game following a character who is also known by the moniker of “The Road Warrior,” at least half of all gameplay centers around vehicular combat.
Max’s personal car and Fallout 4‘s Power Armor can both be continually upgraded and modified throughout each game. Gamers will also have to find fuel to keep their machines running in either title, but it is definitely easier to keep a tank filled in Mad Max than it is to find fusion cores to charge the Power Armor of Fallout 4.
Unfortunately, Fallout 4 and the Mad Max game are both good titles for anyone seeking a post-apocalyptic adventure, so picking one over the other won’t be easy. If players have to choose, they simply need to research the differences between the two in a similar fashion as was described above. Each game will also receive additional content updates in the future. Bethesda just released the second beta update for Fallout 4 earlier this week. This means that each game will continue to evolve over time which will likely continue to give each game something different to offer.
Which of this year’s apocalyptic titles did you think was better, Fallout 4 or Mad Max?