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Mad Max Preview

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Scheduled release date:

September 2014


Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment


Avalanche Studios

Number Of Players:




Release Date:

September 1, 2015

"Mad Max" is a the very definition of "cult classic" in the film world. Developer Avalanche Studios has decided to bring us back to that arid wasteland, where resources like water and gas were all that mattered. Mel Gibson won't be lending his voice to the new action/adventure game for next-gen systems but otherwise, the developers are preparing an authentic homage to a memorable movie series. Max's iconic car, The Interceptor, is stolen at the start, and you're given the aptly named Magnum Opus. Hence, your journey starts with a new vehicle that needs lots of upgrades.

As you might expect, there will be plenty of driving. Attempting to strike out on foot in this barren, inhospitable environment is akin to suicide. Therefore, we'll have a myriad of vehicle customization options for your Magnum Opus, such as tires, engine, suspension, chassis, ramming ability, etc. Avalanche has guaranteed us "millions" of possible mechanical combinations for our vehicle, which may sound daunting to some. Given the amount of depth involved in this facet of the gameplay, action aficionados are worried that it'll feel too much like a driving simulator. I've got only one response to that: "Avalanche made Just Cause."

Yeah, just because there are a ton of vehicle customization options doesn't mean it'll feel like Gran Turismo. No, this studio is well known for producing entirely unrealistic, over-the-top, balls-to-the-wall adventures that focus squarely on impossible action. They're simply tossing in next-gen freedom and depth, that's all. The main character will have access to a wide variety of weapons, and he's even pretty effective with just his bare hands. From sniper rifles to the mechanical hook attached to your car, obnoxious, badly dressed enemies will be dying much-deserved deaths.

Evidently, that hook can be used for a variety of purposes, and that includes latching on to other cars and tossing them out of your path. As for how it pertains to combat, it all depends on your approach. As is the case with most open-world games, you'll often have a decision to make when facing a new objective: Do you stay away and pick 'em off from afar, thereby making the approach easier, or do you just go in guns blazing? Max will have binoculars that can help him scope out fortified bases. It'll point out weaknesses and possible infiltration points, which can depend on the upgrades you've given your Magnum Opus.

Given the sheer size and scope of the environment, Max can take his time and plan out of a strategy. If you want to get down and dirty, you'll experience brutal melee attacks in the third-person view, which ought to be definite crowd-pleasers. Knives and bricks accompany a robust arsenal, as does a ridiculous electric prod that quite literally causes foes to explode. When involved in car combat, there will be a few extra gameplay mechanics, such as a slo-mo effect when you draw up alongside an enemy vehicle and use your shotgun. The possibilities are almost endless, and one wonders just how big this surprisingly attractive wasteland really is...

Provided the gameplay is solid, I'd say this one could be excellent. I've never been a big fan of the very loose control in the Just Cause games; I hope Avalanche stabilizes the mechanics in Mad Max. I also hope you don't end up overusing that obscenely powerful harpoon gun, a favorite of the Just Cause faithful. Yeah, as I said above, it can be a highly effective weapon in multiple situations, but let's not rely too heavily on that, shall we? If the designers can offer up a balanced, diverse, stable sandbox adventure, "Mad Max" fans should be satisfied. Still don't get the BDSM outfits in the movies, though.

1/27/2014 Ben Dutka

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New Comment System

Legacy Comment System (9 posts)

Tuesday, January 28, 2014 @ 1:41:49 AM

I was really excited for this before i saw the trailers and game play. Such a missed opportunity... I really hope I'm wrong.

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Killa Tequilla
Tuesday, January 28, 2014 @ 2:30:18 AM

Use a .jpg file and a rather small avatar in size. 80x80 my good sir.

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Killa Tequilla
Tuesday, January 28, 2014 @ 2:34:21 AM

Try clearing the cache on your browser. Or use a different web browser.

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Killa Tequilla
Tuesday, January 28, 2014 @ 2:43:49 AM

Glad I helped you sir. Your image is bigger than everyone else's because you uploaded using a mobile device. Anyway, next time give me thumbs up when I actually helped you, good night.

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Tuesday, January 28, 2014 @ 4:26:38 AM

watching the devs play this at the eb expo last year put such a smile on my face brought back memories of just cause 2.
total ridiculous over the top outlandish childish FUN!
you know, the crap GTA use to give us.
so cant wait for this to finally release!

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Lawless SXE
Tuesday, January 28, 2014 @ 4:57:53 AM

Never been much of a fan of Mad Max... but this looks pretty awesome. Not saying that I'll be getting it; it doesn't seem to have that particular factor that makes me sit up and really take notice of a game, but it's one of those wait-and-see-maybe-pick-it-up-at-$40 type of game.

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Tuesday, January 28, 2014 @ 7:44:51 AM

Ok that looked too much like Just Cause with a Mad Max mod.

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Tuesday, January 28, 2014 @ 8:05:55 AM

I hadn't really been paying any attention to this game but that trailer looks pretty good. Of course it's not Mel Gibson, which takes away 90% of the authenticity right there, but oh well. Could still be a good game if done right.

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Tuesday, January 28, 2014 @ 2:06:56 PM

I saw the original Mad Max over the summer for the first time in decades (maybe ever, front to back.) it was AWESOME. Much better than I remembered it. I didn't care for the sequel as much, and Beyond Thunderdome was pretty terrible in my opinion. Regardless, this is a world well worth exploring in games.

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