Once we gave up on the vision of lustrous future we replaced them with post-apocalypse. The brutal, unforgiving wastelands and restructured societies are a good fodder for video games. This article discusses some of the best games taking place in post-apocalyptic worlds for quick reference.

What is post-apocalypse in the first place?

In broad strokes, any story set some time after the previous status quo of the world has fallen to a cataclysm is post-apocalyptic. Whether the cataclysmic event was an asteroid, a nuclear war, or an invasion of demons, the old world is gone. Maybe some remnants remain, maybe the local population was scattered and changed their way of life entirely.

Most post-apocalyptic worlds, especially in video games which thrive on conflicts, are very dangerous, with bandits, crazed cults, monsters, and wild animals. If you play a post-apo game be prepared to fight with tooth and claw to survive in a world that is in shambles.

Now that we have established a common ground we can move on discussing the games.

Best Post-Apocalyptic Games
GameReleaseGenreDeveloperSale
Rage 2 Deluxe Edition 2019-05-14 Action Bethesda Softworks 94% Read more
Rage 2011-10-03 Adventure id Software 71% Read more
Far Cry New Dawn Deluxe Edition 2019-02-15 Adventure Ubisoft Read more
Wasteland 3 2020-08-28 RPG inXile entertainment 93% Read more
Wasteland 2 Directors Cut Classic Edition 2014-09-18 Indie inXile Entertainment 46% Read more
Mad Max 2015-09-01 Adventure Avalanche Studios 78% Read more
Darksiders Iii 2018-11-27 Adventure Gunfire Games 93% Read more
Horizon Zero Dawn Complete Edition 2020-08-07 Adventure Guerrilla 77% Read more
Fallout 4 Game Of The Year Edition 2017-09-26 RPG Bethesda Game Studios 85% Read more


        

Rage 2

Release date:2019-05-14
Genre:Action
Developer:Bethesda Softworks

Although the original Rage didn’t gain much traction, Rage 2 seems distinctive and lively enough to carry the franchise to success. The intensely colorful designs of the Rage 2 apocalypse brings to mind Mad Max if it was made by graffiti artists.

Rage 2

Rage 2 is going to be a no-holds-barred first-person action game, with superpowers, power-boosting Overdrive mode, devastating weapons, deranged enemies, and no regard for the limits of a human body. It’s definitely worth checking out.

Key features
  • Distinctive visual identity
  • Special Overdrive mode giving you a burst of power
  • You play as one Ranger Walker
  • Nanotrite-fueled superpowers
        

Wasteland 2

Release date:2014-09-18
Genre:Adventure
Developer:inXile Entertainment

Wasteland is an old franchise, it not only predates Fallout but can be pointed at as one of the biggest inspirations for that series. Wasteland 2 is a Kickstarter-funded, demanding role-playing game with turn-based tactical battles.

Wasteland 2

Build your team of Rangers and start investigating the death of one of your colleagues. Track the mystery from Arizona to Los Angeles and solve the troubles of communities you find along the way. The ending will tell you what your actions have wrought.

Key features
  • Engaging, tactical turn-based battles
  • A story based around investigating a murder mystery
  • A resurrection of a series which inspired Fallout
  • Choices have consequences, sooner or later
        

Mad Max

Release date:2015-09-01
Genre:Adventure
Developer:Avalanche Studios

If you enjoyed Mad Max: Fury Road, you’re likely to have a good time with this adaptation of George Miller’s classic series. This open-world action-adventure has brawling and vehicular combat in spades.

Mad Max

Max’s Interceptor has been stolen, and he’s in need of a new ride to defeat the crazed warlord of the wasteland and recover what’s rightfully his. The dried-up sea floor making up the game’s map is a unique and surprisingly diverse locale for this adventure.

Key features
  • Excellent vehicular combat
  • Improving the bases of several allied communities
  • Impactful hand to hand combat system
  • Car-building and ability progression
        

Darksiders 3

Release date:2018-11-27
Genre:Adventure
Developer:Gunfire Games

The kingdoms of Hell and Heaven invaded the kingdom of Earth, responding to the alleged signal to begin the apocalypse. Between their arrival and humanity’s demise, seven deadly sins took root on Earth. Kill them, would you?

Darksiders 3

in Darksiders 3 you play as Fury who, like her brothers War and Death, has a mission which would escape the bounds of what she thought she knew about the world… and kill many enemies with her deadly barbed whip in fast-paced, action-heavy combat.

Key features
  • Exquisite art direction typical for the Darksiders franchise
  • A beautiful vision of ruined cities and demonic demesnes
  • Several forms you can assume, each providing unique abilities
  • A continuation of an excellent franchise
        

Far Cry New Dawn

Release date:2019-02-15
Genre:Adventure
Developer:Ubisoft

Far Cry New Dawn is a sequel to Far Cry 5, taking place 17 years after the bombastic ending of FC5.

Far Cry New Dawn

New Dawn is set on FC5’s map of Montana reimagined to reflect what happened in the meantime. There are even some returning characters, who may offer commentary on the last 17 years. New Dawn presents a vibrant and lively view of the post-apocalypse, which, like in aesthetically similar Rage 2, meshes well with the series typical intense, often ridiculous, player-instigated action.

Key features
  • Vivid and colorful image of post-apocalyptic Montana
  • Characters from Far Cry 5 make a comeback
  • Player-generated action as entertaining as ever
  • Upgradeable base and recruitable Specialists
        

Horizon Zero Dawn

Release date:2020-08-07
Genre:Adventure
Developer:Guerrilla

One of the singleplayer hits launched on PlayStation 4 in recent years, Horizon Zero Dawn takes place in a stunning post-apocalyptic world overgrown by nature and ruled by both small and massive robots with bestial shapes.

Horizon Zero Dawn

As Aloy, a young hunter, you’ll track and hunt the animalistic machines, craft tools using their parts, and get to the bottom of the recent wave of attacks from the robots. The world of HZD is beautiful and its history is quite interesting.

Key features
  • Creative designs of animalistic robots
  • Interesting lore of the setting
  • Hunting monsters give a lot of satisfaction
  • Stunning vistas with a photo mode letting you easily capture the best scenes
        

Fallout: New Vegas

Release date:2010-10-21
Genre:Adventure
Developer:Obsidian Entertainment

One of the most famous role-playing games of the last decade, Fallout: New Vegas takes place on the sun-scorched Nevada desert, torn apart by a conflict between the Caesar’s Legion, New California Republic, and the city of New Vegas.

Fallout: New Vegas

Developed by Obsidian Entertainment, New Vegas offers the players a lot of freedom in many aspects, including what kind of character they play, with whom they want to ally, and what is their chosen approach to solving problems.

Key features
  • A large map worth exploring
  • Several routes for the main storyline to follow
  • Deep and broad character progression, with many perks and items to pick from
  • Players can quickly switch between turn-based and action-based combat.

Supplementary apocalypses

The games listed above are by no means all productions with post-apocalyptic themes out there. Below you’ll find an additional list with a few more suggestions which didn’t make to the main list.

Other Post-Apocalyptic Video Games

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This is the end

This concludes our selection of games the events of which take place in post-apocalyptic settings. There are many more out there (such as Fallout New Vegas’ predecessors’ Fallout 1 and FO2), and most likely there are many more still to be imagined and created, as post-apocalypse is a fertile ground for making games full of danger and with stories about restructured societies. The cause of the apocalypse being natural or man-made, scientific or mystical, doesn’t change that fact.