- Posted by Giaco Furino
- On September 3, 2015
- 0 Comments
- mad max
There’s a moment in Mad Max: Fury Road where Max, mouth covered by a metal mask, narrows his eyes and leaps onto a speeding car. That thrill, that speed, and that sense of danger are alive and well in Mad Max for Xbox One, PS4, and PC. I played the PS4 version, and while it’s completely different from the movie, the game wows this tough-to-please open world fan.
Made by WB Games and Avalanche Studios, the game picks up at an unknown time in Max’s journey through the Australian wastes. Max has been beaten up, and his beloved car has been taken and completely dismantled. So Max stumbles upon Chumbucket, a hunchbacked “black finger” (aka mechanic) who believes Max is a mythical hero who will drive a car into victory. Through a partnership between the player and Chumbucket, you set out to create a new car and storm Gastown for your revenge.
The game is very open world. There are quests to be completed, wasteland camps to take down, and lots to collect. You set out collecting scrap, doing side-quests, upgrading your car, your Max, your garage, and more.
The game itself is a fun mix of Arkham-style melee combat (hit a button multiple times to do a combo, hit another button to parry, roll out of the way when a warboy tries to knife you) and driving. The care given to the cars is pretty nice, too. Your car feels solid but could use upgrades, and you can customize it as you progress based on your play style. I, for instance, am really bad at maneuvering, so upgrading my car’s handling is crucial.
It’s not all glorious, though, the game relies heavily on fetch-quests. You’ll fetch a piece of equipment for Chumbucket only to hear him tell you to fetch something else on your return. It’s like, come on Chum, I was just out in the wastes! The controls when you’re on-foot are also a little floaty. You don’t stop as quickly or on-a-dime as you’d expect, and there were several times I died when I tried to stop at a ladder I planned on climbing down. That’s frustrating, no matter how good the rest of the game is.
The most impressive part of the game is the art direction. I expected a game of just orange, orange, orange, but there are brilliant blues, brilliant whites, fluffy clouds, expansive mountain ranges, and incredible vistas across the game map. This may be one of the most beautifully-rendered worlds I’ve ever seen in gaming.
The game’s getting criticism from some for rehashing old ideas. I don’t see it that way. Sure, there are some GTA-esque cues that this game takes. And the base-capturing is almost directly ripped from Farcry 3, but there’s also a lot this game does that’s original. And even if there wasn’t anything original in this game, I’d rather play Farcry in George Miller’s Mad Max playground than on a far-flung, culturally-appropriating island.
Finally, don’t go into this game expecting a Fury Road–style storyline. Max and Chumbucket chat idly back and forth, and the game’s solely about Max’s journey (well, Max and his dog, Dinki Di). But that’s not a bad thing, a video game with as little dialogue as Fury Road would be boring as hell! So try this game out if you like open-world, roaming, grandiose games. There’s a lot of fun combat, a lot of hard-driving, some clever game mechanics, and a lot of pretty scenery to look at. Besides, who doesn’t like smacking the crap out of a warlord?