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Best Games Set In The 23rd Century

Life in 2200 is often difficult to visualize. Will the 23rd century be a shining bastion of utopia just as many hopeful artists have portrayed? Or will it be a dystopian hellscape where human beings finally self-destruct? Nobody knows, so most games set in that century can only wildly guess.


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That’s not inherently a negative notion, thankfully. That only means games set in the 23rd century are as varied as they can be when it comes to depicting a far future of mankind. From atom-punk apocalypses to dizzying cyberpunk cityscapes, these video games give players a glimpse of what awaits their great-great-great-great-gr&children, in case they plan to have one.

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8/8 Fallout 2

  • Release Year:
    1998
  • Platforms:
    Microsoft Windows, macOS, Classic Mac OS

Set in 2241, Fallout 2 is a traditional turn-based CRPG where the future world was plunged into a nuclear apocalypse a couple of centuries back. Now, people on the surface are trying to uphold what little semblance of civilization they can in this harsh & violent wastel& full of mutant cockroaches, & radiation worshippers.

The game starts off with a massive drought & a device that can solve it. Players assume the role of the “Chosen One” who must then retrieve the device in order to save his village. But since this is an RPG, players are given the option to put off that urgent task to instead walk around & rob NPCs or destabilize a military faction or two.

7/8 Fallout 3

Close-up image of a member of the Brotherhood of Steel from Fallout 3.

  • Release Year:
    2008
  • Platforms:
    Microsoft Windows, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Xbox Cloud Gaming

Fallout 4 might have had a newer coat of paint, but Fallout 3 featured a more cohesive RPG experience & a more faithful Fallout atmosphere. It takes place in the remains of Washington D.C. in 2277 where players also assume the role of a Vault Dweller. The difference is, the player character spent their life in an underground vault before the game chucks them out to the wastel&.

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Their motivation? To search for their missing father who hopes to restore sanity & order to the Washington D.C. ruins by creating a device that can purify water. Fallout 3 was a rather special cornerstone in RPG history since it was one of the most immersive renditions of a post-apocalyptic world— one set in the Fallout universe nonetheless.

6/8 Fallout: New Vegas

new-vegas-fallout-3

  • Release Year:
    2010
  • Platforms:
    PlayStation 3, Microsoft Windows, Xbox 360

Speaking of definitive first-person Fallout experiences, a lot of the franchise’s fans will swear by Fallout: New Vegas. It’s set during 2281 & follows the story of The Courier who stumbles upon New Vegas, which is a city built upon the ruins of the former Las Vegas.

Since New Vegas is a major strategic power in the wastel&, three factions were already vying for control of the place by the time the players find themselves entangled in the city’s affairs. New Vegas offers more RPG freedom for players & puts more emphasis on faction dynamics & side quests.

5/8 Anno 2205

Anno 2205

  • Release Year:
    2015
  • Platforms:
    Microsoft Windows

For those who are tired of viewing the 23rd century through an apocalyptic lens via Fallout, then Anno 2205 offers a more optimistic approach with its city-building. As stated by the title, it’s set in 2205 during a fictional time period that assumes humanity’s efforts to recolonize other space rocks, such as the moon, will have taken place.

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Thus, it’s one of the first Anno games that gave players a different scenery. They can build their cities on the moon albeit with some major challenges. At the same time, their moon cities & colonies are also connected to their Earth cities; since unsurprisingly, humans found a precious resource on the moon that could help them sustain their collective lifestyle on Earth.

4/8 Timesplitters 2

timesplitters 2 cortez copy

  • Release Year:
    2002
  • Platforms:
    PlayStation 2, GameCube, Xbox

The original time period in Timesplitters 2 is set in 2401, but since the story involves jumping to different timelines both the past & present, the protagonists & the players will find themselves in the 23rd century at one point in the game.

The game is split into ten levels for the story mode & each level is a different time period. Players are tasked with hunting down enemies called Timesplitters & retrieving Time Crystals in order to preserve the integrity of multiple timelines, including theirs. The game’s focus is more on the action & less on its views regarding the future or past.

3/8 Wipeout HD

Wipeout HD Fury ps3

  • Release Year:
    2008
  • Platforms:
    PlayStation 3

In Wipeout HD, the future is imagined in a way where racing is still one of the most intense & adrenaline-pumping sports for mankind. But instead of wheels, players Wreck speed records with anti-gravity tech, basically with hovering racecars.

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Back in its heyday, Wipeout was famed for its novel & clever take on futuristic racing. The game is set in 2206 & serves as a prequel to the events of Wipeout Pulse. The best part about futuristic racing is how it doesn’t seem to care about the modern measly contemporary grasp & defiance of physics, as most racecars here travel at dizzying speeds, usually at around 700 km/h.

2/8 Einhänder

einh&er ps1 game

  • Release Year:
    1997
  • Platforms:
    PlayStation

Einhänder paints a different picture of the future in 2242 when the moon colony of Selene rekindled its war with Earth once again. Prior to that was the First Moon War in which the Earth suffered severe destruction of its surface, eventually transforming the planet into a dystopian totalitarian empire.

Players then assume the role of the titular fighter pilot who was sent by Selene as a one-man armada to wreak havoc against the fleets of Earth. This PlayStation exclusive is also a 2.5D sidescroller shooter akin to genre staples like Contra& other frenetic shoot-’em-up games.

1/8 Deathrow

Deathrow Gameplay Screenshot

  • Release Year:
    2002
  • Platforms:
    Xbox

To balance out the list, here’s an underrated Xbox exclusive from 2002. Deathrow is a cyberpunk sports video game set in 2219 where players take control of death row inmates forced to compete in a deadly, futuristic game of rugby called Blitz.

It’s practically a blood sport version of American Football. Deathrow was also well-received for its fun & genuine gameplay ideas as well as the abundance of teams & players with distinct personalities. Like many other games set in the 23rd century, Deathrow paints a bleak, dystopian future where human lives are mostly irrelevant.

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Source link gamerant.com
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