The Battle Royale genre has undeniably gained more and more fans, after the release of popular games like PUBG, or most recent ones like Apex Legends. At first, it seemed like endless copies of Fortnite where popping everywhere, but due to competition and community needs, the BR games that followed Fortnite and PUBG started to develop new mechanics and gameplay features, in order to compete with the popular Battle Royale’s.
Thankfully, now that this genre is mature, and the genre now is mature and stable in popularity, it is safe to say that there are many games in this genre, that have deep gameplay mechanics, they are unique, and most of all, really fun to play!
The games I chose to include are decided considering their unique and fun gameplay, the viability of the games various mechanics and overall game design, as well as the popularity and gaming community’s feedback on them.
1. Apex Legends
Developer: Respawn Entertainment
Publisher: EA (Electronic Arts)
Release Date: February 4, 2019
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Apex Legends appeared out of nowhere this year and caught the attention of all the fans of the Battle Royale genre, having 50 million downloads on its first month of release. Respawn included some new mechanics, that were never been introduced in any other BR game before, along with some interesting characters ability-wise, as well as lore-wise! The game has also elements from Respawn’s previously most popular game Titanfall.
Until now, 9 Legends have been introduced to the game. Each one has unique tactical & passive abilities, along with an ultimate ability, which takes longer than tactical abilities to charge. Some Legends have the privilege of being able to take high-ground fast, others got the advantage of faster heal or immunity for a brief time and more. Overall, the characters have the class-specification, so you will find Tanks, Supports and DPS characters.
You will be thrown on Kings Canyon along with 60 players – which means 20 squads/3 players per team in total – and you will start to scavenge for loot. Some areas tend to have higher-tier loot than others. You will find guns, armor, grenades, shield and health rechargers, as well as mods to upgrade your weapons. There are also Care Packages dropping on random areas, which tend to contain high-tier weaponry and armor. As time passes, the area you will be allowed to be in will be shrunk, and you will take damage over time if you stay behind the ring that is incoming. The goal of the game: to be the last squad alive!
2. PUBG (PlayerUknown’s Battle Ground)
Developer: PUBG Corporation
Publisher: PUBG Corporation
Release Date: December 20, 2017
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Android, iOS
PlayerUknown’s Battle Ground was the first game that made Battle Royale genre popular on the gaming community, gathering many players when it was just on early access. The game reached 400 million players worldwide, an astronomic amount of people for even the most successful games!
In PUBG, you can play as Solo, Duo, or Squad (4 players). You will be dropped along with 99 other players on one of the 3 maps available right now, and the fight for survival will start soon, as long as you drop in the middle of the action. After dropping, you will start to scavenge for loot. You can loot guns and their attachments, body and head armor, ammo, grenades, and healing items. You will find loot in buildings or dead bodies, as well as in Air Drops that are dropped by airplanes flying across the map randomly, or when called by player.
As expected, the area you are allowed to be in without suffering damage will be shrunk down to increase the competition. In this case, you will find Vehicles useful, as they can get you to safety faster. You will need to stay safe and kill whoever proves to be a threat to you, in order to achieve to be the “Winner Winner Chicken Dinner!”
3. Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 – Blackout
Release Date: October 12, 2018
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 is the first entry in the franchise of COD, that did not feature a traditional single-player campaign, but focuses on Multiplayer & Zombies modes, as well as the battle royale mode we are about to recommend, called Blackout.
In Blackout, you can choose to play as Solo, Duos, or Quads (squads of 4). Up to 100 players will drop into the map and scavenge for loot as soon as they land. Besides the weaponry, players will find health kits and armors, ammunition and weapon attachments, as well as perk consumables. Your goal is to survive as the last person or squad standing, while the shrinking-ring system is getting closer over time and the competition is rising. This mode will also feature land, sea, and air vehicles for players to use in order to travel faster.
There are also zombie-themed locations (Asylum etc.), in which you will find NPC Zombies that offer loot once they get killed. You will also be able to play other modes, such as Close Quarters, in which long-range weapons are excluded, and Fast Collapse, in which the circle is moving much faster. The game mode features various playable characters from the Black Ops series and you will not miss the traditional combat style the game always featured.
4. Battlefield V: Firestorm
Developer: Criterion Games / DICE / DICE LA
Publisher: EA (Electronic Arts)
Release Date: March 25, 2019
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Battlefield V is an FPS video game, the sixteenth addition in the Battlefield series, that included several new multiplayer modes, including the modes Tides of War, Grand Operations, and Firestorm. Firestorm mode was developed by Criterion Games and introduced us the biggest map created by the franchise so far.
Up to 64 players, among Solo, Duos, and Squads, will be thrown on Halvøy map, to fight against each other. The first objective is to equip yourself with armor and weaponry that you will find across the map. Firestorm mode also features several objectives that award players with the loot they need. You will find items like Strongboxes and Safes, that will contain items from Common, Rare, or Epic tier weaponry and shields, as well as healing items and various gadgets. The map also features over twenty Resupply Points, that once they are active, players have to capture points that reward players will high-value loot.
Finally, you can use Vehicles that you can find inside Vehicle Lockups. Of course, the name of the mode indicates the “firestorm” that gets closer and closer to the players, forcing them to face each other and fight. The firestorm will move on until the last squad or solo player alive.
5. Ring of Elysium
Developer: Aurora Studio
Publisher: TCH Scarlet Limited
Release Date: 19 September, 2018
Ring of Elysium is a free-to-play, multiplayer online battle royale game, which is by far the most unique battle royale, in terms of mechanics and gameplay. Almost nothing that the game features will be what you expect from a battle royale game and this is not bad at all. Since the developers are determined to get the game to its full potential, the game until today remains on early access.
Players are trapped in a tropical place with an active and full-of-lava volcano. Unlikely the usual battle royale scenario, in which you will have to scavenge for loot, in ROE you can choose your equipment before you spawn, but you can also use the loot you will find across the map and the Air Drops. You can carry up to three weapons with ammo and attachments, body and head shields, health items, and also use vehicles for transportation purposes.
Another thing that does not follow the standards of the battle royale genre, is the method you get into the fight. Instead of falling from a plane or something, you will be able to choose your spawn area from the map, and you will just teleport there. The only way to leave this place is a rescue flight which can only save up to four people, and these are the winners. Players must stay ahead of the approaching lava and eliminate anyone who tries to take his place on the rescue flight.
Release Date: April 29, 2019
Mordhau is like playing an excellent designed medieval swordplay game like Chivalry: Medieval Warfare but with intense combat and a BR mode! Mordhau managed to get massively positive reviews from critics and players, due to its deep and skill-based melee combat system and its realistic and core graphics on the first look. But this game has even more to offer!
The game has three main modes, the Horde mode, the Frontline mode, and the BR (Battle Royale) mode. In the BR mode, the concept is pretty much what expected to be. You spawn somewhere in the map and you scavenge for loot in order to survive. There are numerous mechanics to attack and confuse your enemy, as well as defensive mechanics that can be also deadly to your opponents. Besides melee combat, you can use bows and grenades, and even eliminate enemies while on horses, by using lance while riding.
Combat will be different from BR games that mostly revolve around guns, as melee combat strategies might feel a bit strange if you are not familiar with it. While players are dying, the playable area will be smaller over time, making face to face fights inevitable to avoid. As expected, the last person standing enjoys the victory!
7. Fortnite Battle Royale
Developer: Epic Games
Publisher: Epic Games
Release Date: September 26, 2017
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Android, iOS
Fortnite is an online multiplayer game, developed by Epic Games and fully released during the year of 2017. The game’s Battle Royale mode faced remarkable success, reaching more than 125 million players before even the first year of its release. Fortnite has three modes, that share the same gameplay mechanics and in-game engine (Save the World, Battle Royale, Creative).
Fortnite Battle Royale, follows the standard logic of Battle Royale concept, besides the buildings involved. You and 99 other players will fall from a plane on an island and scavenge for gear, weapons, resources, and more. You can dive in as Solo, Duo, or Squad (team of three). As previously mentioned, learning to build defenses is what makes this game to differ, as it is the skill you need to master first in order to survive the battle and be the last one(s) standing!
Besides guns and armor, ranging from common to legendary tier, you will also find explosives, traps, healing items and more. Characters have no in-build skills, and all the customization revolves around cosmetics.
8. Realm Royale
Developer: Heroic Leap Games
Publisher: Hi-Rez Studios
Release Date: June 5, 2018
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch
Realm Royale is a free-to-play battle royale game developed by Heroic Leap Games, and a spin-off of the hero shooter Paladins, where it originated as a game mode known as Paladins: Battlegrounds, which is something that Paladins players really miss a lot until today.
The game partially follows the standard BR concept, in which 100 players drop down from an airship and must collect equipment such as weapons, armor, and more items, in order to be able to fight, eliminate opponents, and be the last one(s) aline! You can play as Solo, Duo, and Squads (4 players). Realm Royale includes a crafting system, which allows players to craft materials out of looted items, to make better items or abilities at Forges that are located across the map. Players who have been knocked-down by other players are transformed into a chicken for a brief time. If knocked-down players manage to avoid incoming damage and survive while they are chickens, they will be transformed to normal again.
There are 4 classes, and each class has talents that you can earn by leveling your character. Talents revolve around cooldowns and damage buffs on certain weapons and abilities. The game is still on early access and has some way to go, but still, the experience is more than fine for its state.
9. Darwin Project
Developer: Scavengers Studio
Publisher: Scavengers Studio
Release Date: March 9, 2018
Platforms: PC, Xbox One
Darwin Project is a free-to-play, yet still on early access, multiplayer online battle royale, which also stands out of the all-time-classic BR scenario. This game has a fun vibe due to the role of the “Show Director” which is a Drone controlled by a player, that will affect the progression of the game, with a very unique way!
Ten prisoners are spawned into a snowy arena made up of 7 hexagon tiles, all of them surrounded by different environmental elements (Lava, etc.). The fate of the game is partially controlled by the 11th player – previously mentioned – the Show Director. These players can control elements like Zones, Gravity Storms, and of course, the players! These skills all require Action Points, which will be awarded every 45s. Show Directors fly in the form of a drone, teleport to players and talk to them using voice chat, but they cannot be killed or win games. Players can connect to their Twitch account with their Darwin Project account, so they can stream the game and interact with their stream viewers to vote for the actions of the Show Director.
Prisoners are equipped with an Axe, a Bow, and Arrows. There is also additional equipment, such as bear or cage traps, snowballs, etc. Builds are fully customizable, including your arrow type, abilities and more. Gathering materials such as Wood or Leather is important to craft arrows, cloak, and other equipment. Besides gatherable materials, the Show Director can spawn Electronics across the map, that players need to create their special Powers (Arena, Camo, etc.)
10. Cuisine Royale
Developer: Darkflow Software
Publisher: Gaijin Distribution KFT
Release Date: June 16, 2018
Cuisine Royale started as an April Fool’s joke from the developers of squad-based MMO shooter, Enlisted, but after its release, the game’s first players starting to enjoy it! So after the community’s feedback, Cuisine Royale became from April’s Fool prank to an actual stand-alone, free to play, “all-kitchen-warfare” Battle Royale!
The concept is pretty familiar in terms of gameplay. You can play as Solo, Duo, or Squad (team of 3), and you spawn along with 29 other players, in a random spot of the map, wearing only your fancy underwear. You will have to scavenge for guns, sharp melee weapons, or even pans, in order to be able to attack opponents, while the playable area is shrinking down over time. Kitchenware will be your armor, shopping bags will play the role of your backpack, and buffing items have the form of bunny slippers that increase your jump height, to eyeglasses that reduce the recoil of weapons, and many more. A collection of vehicles are also provided for transportation purposes.
The game claims to have ” the most honest system for Loot Boxes“, as you can find them across the map, they are free to open, and the drop chance of the labeled content is 100% guaranteed. The game is still in early access, but far more polished than its starting days.
10+1. Super Animal Royale
Release Date: December 12, 2018
Platforms: PC / MAC
Super Animal Royale is an upcoming indie, 2D overhead perspective, battle royalε game, still on early access since December of 2018, but a free-to-play demo released on the January of 2019. The gameplay might differ from the First Person Shooter Battle Royales that all of us are used to, as the gameplay is more strategic than aim-based.
Up to 64 players compete to be the last person standing using a variety of weapons. You can play as Solo, Duo, or Squads (team of 4). Each player jumps off a flying eagle onto a battlefield containing weapons, protective armor, and health restore items. You will find automatic and semi-automatic guns, along with ammunition and grenades. The “ring system” comes in a form of poison gas, forcing players into progressively smaller areas until the last one survives.
Animal DNA is awarded after the end of every match, which can be used to customize your character, as well as EXP, which will give access to new animal species. You can customize your character by choosing among different breeds and colors of various species.