Mad Max Thoughts – Part 2
Having now spent at least 10+ hours in the wastelands of Mad Max I think I’m ready to give a few more in-depth thoughts on the game as a whole.
HOW OLD IS MAX/THE WASTELAND – In most post-apocalyptic fiction there is usually given a sign of how long ago the apocalypse was. In the Fallout universe, the bombs dropped about 200 years ago and so the world that grew after two centuries of almost nothing makes sense. But not in Mad Max. Max lived through the end of the world, he survived where so many didn’t. He’s seen the world descend into lawlessness and become barren. Max knows what the world was like before the drought. So how old does that make Max and how long ago was the drought? Max had a wife and child before the shit went down, making him roughly about 30 or so (Rough estimates). Then the world went to shit around that point, the sands took over the planet and civilisation as we knew it ended. But in the game Max can’t be less than 45 or so, meaning the world has gone through some drastic shifts in a decade and a half. Entire new cultures/cults have sprung up in this time, Chumbucket worships the angel combustion and has no recollection of the world before the sands. Let’s not forget that Chumbucket is a fully grown man (Although slightly deformed) so why does Max know of the past when Chum doesn’t? Honestly, this is one of my biggest issues with the world because it makes no sense!
Rant over about a little story point.
I really like the Car – Having such a massive open world to explore and having a lot activities involving the car makes the Magnum Opus an essential part of the game. After the mixed bag that was the Batmobile in Arkham Knight, I was wary of any game that put an emphasis on a car. Luckily for me the Magnum Opus (Hate calling it that) is a lot of fun to drive and customise. I’m probably around the half way point in the game and have yet to get all the upgrades for it, but even so I find that the act of driving it is pretty fun and the combat is usually very exhilarating. Most fights take the form of chases with the aggressor harassing the target from behind and getting in close to do damage. Whether you’re attacking or defending the fights can be a lot of fun. Firing rockets, pulling off tires, shooting gas tanks, everything you do during the fight feels powerful. But you never feel overpowered in these moments, the tide of battle can turn on a dime if you do something stupid and get yourself in trouble.
I don’t mind the on foot parts – While you do spend a lot of time in the car, you’ll be getting out and walking a lot of the time as well. While scouring ruins and looking for loot, you’ll tend to run into one or two war boys that need to be killed before you can proceed. The combat is pretty close to the system that the Arkham games introduced, one button to attack, one to parry and a few gadgetry options at your disposal. Batman is, of course, a trained fighter with infinite resources at his disposal Max, however, isn’t. When Max fights the way the battles work is a lot more scrappy and brutal. Thematically this makes a lot of sense, Max isn’t a trained fighter, he learnt the hard way how to take lives and it comes across in the way fights play out. When in a combo, enemies will try to break it up by attacking from behind, if you parry too early you block the hit but nothing else, block too late and you block some but not all damage. If you block perfectly you can stun your opponent ready to line up a few solid hits. Max can’t block every attack so you need to be aware of your position in a fight more than Batman would need to be. The game’s camera can be a bit of a nuisance in a lot of instances, hanging too close to Max and not letting you see charging enemies from behind. I’m sure this is probably intention in some ways, but it does annoy me when I get rammed from behind without seeing it coming.
Camp layouts are a bit awkward – In the post-apocalyptic wasteland there are a lot of places to search for scrap and other loot. So you’ll be spending a lot of time just looking around camps trying to find how to proceed. It’s really irritating then that sometimes the way camps are designed and layed out can be really infuriating to navigate. The way to proceed is typically subtly highlighted with yellow paint, unfortunately, the yellow can often be lost in all the reds and browns the game is so fond of.
A lot of busy work – There is a shit ton of stuff to do in Mad Max, most of it involves driving to places, getting out the car, killing some dudes, collecting loot then leaving. Occasionally blowing stuff up. The act of driving is fun, so is the fighting but there isn’t a lot to the game other than that if we’re being honest. Because I’m a freak of nature I’ll probably end up getting close to 100% because I’m just too awesome to take a 99% and move on with my life.
This, FUCKING THIS – So they’ll just let this shit fly will they?
No, I’m not annoyed that someone with less than perfect grammar is writing for games when here I am with my less than perfect grammar not writing for them! Also, the writing in this game is crap but I’ll get on to that some other time.
So there we have another boat load of my thoughts on Mad Max, you can read my other thoughts here.