I would be lying if I disagreed with the fact that the post-apocalyptic genre of entertainment is highly over-done. We’ve seen it a hundred times before on TV and the big screen, and we’ve seen it make quite an impression on video games as well. However, for a genre that can get saturated this much, there sure are a lot of gems and surprises to be found.
Most of these obviously come from great narrative experiences and gameplay. And which other platform is better for that sort of thing than the PS4. As a PlayStation fan myself, I was just recently reminiscing on the great titles the platform has shown. I was also surprised by how a lot of my favorite titles were set in a post-apocalyptic setting.
Be it an infected zombie outbreak, or the wastelands of a post-nuclear world, here are 5 of the best PS4 post-apocalyptic games to play in 2020.
1. Horizon Zero Dawn
Do you know how you can tell that a game is remarkable? When it seems to appear on just about any game review you see. Horizon Zero Dawn is a game that I have found myself reviewing so many times that I am losing count. Whether it’s in the best PS4 exclusive games or Best Open world games this game seems to fit everywhere.
It follows the story of an orphan named Aloy and is set several years after a cataclysmic event led to the apocalypse. Aloy has been living as an outcast with her step-father but now that she is of age, she sets out on a path of self-discovery. Through her story, you will come to understand how the world came to an end and be a part of rebuilding a new civilization.
But Aloy’s journey is not a smooth one. She will have to battle both man and machine before completing her quest. Speaking of which these robotic monsters form a critical part in beautifying this game. Humans have gone back to the medieval age of living where they rely on crude weapons and seeing robot machines exist in this kind of environment is fascinating.
This is a game that shines on all fronts. Whether it’s the visuals, story, gameplay, characterization or even the combats. The robot creatures form excellent nemesis with each requiring a certain level of patience to be able to exploit its weaknesses and destroy it.
Developer: Guerrilla Games
Publisher: Sony Interactive Environment
Release Date: February 2017
2. Metro Exodus
Metro is quite a popular FPS shooter series and anybody who has played the preceding two installments has been eagerly anticipating this third edition. And if you are a first-time player then it’s about time you join the wagon. Fortunately, you won’t miss anything since the story in Exodus is self-sufficient.
Okay, maybe there is something you will miss. The underground tunnels in which the previous games are set. But what you get is better since this new installment takes the action above ground.
The game is set in post-apocalyptic Russia that died after a nuclear war. In the game, you play as Artyom who together with his wife Ana and a crew of Spartan rangers are escaping the ash-ridden Moscow Metro aboard a train called Aurora. Their destination is the far east where they hope to find a new life.
The train will make several stops in the course of the journey to allow you to collect supplies and explore the open world but it is also in itself an important part of the game. It makes for some great bonding moments between the travelers. You will also love how much attention the game developers put into crafting each environment in the game. Unlike some other developers who have recently been focusing on creating a huge map but neglecting the quality of the environment.
The dynamic weather, atmosphere, and environment give the game a certain kind of realness that is hard to miss.
Metro Exodus retains much of the combat style that is dominant in the Metro series. A lot of shooting and the occasional stealth mode approach. You will have the most fun upgrading your weapons to exert maximum damage to the mutated creatures and human enemies that you will be facing.
The new mutant types in the games called humanimals, I could have thought of a better name, pose a new challenge to the gamer as they attack furiously and come in packs.
Developer: 4A Games
Publisher: Deep Silver
Release Date: February 2019
3. The Last Of Us Remastered
A lot of you might be surprised that this game is on the third spot of this list. It is considered by many to be the greatest game to be released on the PS3, and the remaster on the PS4 makes this yet again another superb exclusive title. Personally, I am also inclined to agree that this is my favorite game on this list. But it has had its time to shine for a while now, so I thought the games above deserve a bit more attention.
The fact that I even have to defend myself for not placing this at the top spot should tell you how good this game actually is. Yes, it’s setting takes place in a world where a virus has broken out and infected mankind. It’s also mainly about surviving this world. In reality, however, it’s much more than that.
You play the game as the character known as Joel. Joel lost his daughter when the Cordyceps Fungus started to infect humans. After several years, you run into a child immune to this disease/virus. Your job is to help this girl, Ellie, travel throughout zombie infected, terrifying, and dark picture of the United States.
The story is absolutely phenomenal, with a lot of twists and turns. The game has a tendency to catch you off guard, and the encounters with the infected are nerve-wracking, to say the least. It’s a game that has a lot of heart poured into it, while also being deeply emotional and terrifying.
It also couldn’t be a better time to play this game, with this The Last Of Us Part II coming out in 2020.
Developer: Naughty Dog
Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment
Release Date: July 2014
4. Death Stranding
It doesn’t matter if you are a video game fanatic or just a casual player. You have probably heard the name of Hideo Kojima uttered a dozen times before. He is the great mind behind the Metal Gear Solid series and the Silent Hill series. When Kojima announced his departure from Konami and told us that he’d be making a game where he could express him fully, the fans were excited.
The result is Death Stranding. A game with which a lot of people have a love/hate relationship. But clearly, I liked most of the game and that is exactly why it earns a spot on this list. This game is very divisive and for good reason. However, it’s hard to overlook the quality and amount of intellect put into this game.
You play as Sam Bridges, who works as a Porter in this game. Now if you don’t know what that means, I’ll put it simply: Yes, you basically deliver packages. Sam even says it so himself: “I make deliveries. That’s all”. However, a lot of people are being a bit ignorant about this game. The world is all but destroyed, and your role is to try to connect society back together. I’m being vague with the story because I think you should understand it on your own to enjoy it.
First off, the graphics are absolutely phenomenal. Easily the best I’ve seen on PS4 so far. The world-building here is absolutely gorgeous, the enemies known as “BTs” and the bosses you encounter throughout the game are terrifying yet beautiful in a dreadful sort of way. My personal favorite part was the soundtrack, which I still listen to all the time. The story here is gripping, the complexities woven by Kojima are quite mind-numbing at times.
Kojima definitely has a lot to say in this game. But even though I personally found the simple walking and shooting elements relaxing, it’s not everyone’s cup of tea, which is completely fine. It’s not a game for everyone, but if it does interest you, you will absolutely love this game.
Developer: Kojima Productions
Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment
Release Date: November 2019
5. Days Gone
Days Gone is another post-apocalyptic game that was teased all the way back at E3 in 2016. It’s developed by Bend Studio, the minds behind the Siphon Filter games. It was finally released on 16th April 2019. People were quite surprised by this game, for better or for worse.
It is a first-party exclusive game for the PS4. So as you can probably guess, the bar was set high for this game before it even launched. A lot of the times it does hit the mark, but there are a few flaws to be found here. The open-world here is actually quite large, and there is a lot to explore and do.
The game mainly focuses on survival. There are hunting, crafting, and other things you’d expect in an action/survival game. There are also a lot of zombies in this game, which are referred to as Freakers. You play as a biker called Deacon St. John. The game takes place two years after a big crisis in which America is overrun by these Freakers.
When the game really gets going, things can get pretty intense. I can’t think of a lot of things more nerve-wracking than the horde system in the game. As the name implies, zombies can gather into a large horde and chase you all at once. As you can probably imagine, it’s absolutely nail-biting. Being chased by over 300 zombies with only 15 bullets in your AR is not exactly a wholesome time for the player.
Another interesting aspect of this game was actually the main character, Deacon. He presents himself as a very paranoid yet distant person, who is just trying to survive this world. He has an interesting outlook on life, and I felt attached to him throughout the game. You don’t feel like you are playing the game yourself, but rather listening to Deacon throughout this journey.
Ultimately, This game is a lot of fun even though the gameplay can get a bit wonky at times. While it may not hit reach the bar set by games such as God Of War, Uncharted 4, or even Horizon Zero Dawn, I still think it’s well worth playing.
Developer: Bend Studio
Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment
Release Date: April 2019
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