What are some games like Fallout? Since its creation by Interplay Entertainment way back in 1997, all the way through to the ever-changing West Virginia wasteland of Fallout 76, the Fallout series has emitted a nuclear-bright glow at the forefront of RPGs. Tracking their history is like a lesson in the evolution of the computer RPG itself, from the tabletop-inspired originals to Bethesda’s live-service, always-online latest.
Players are drawn to the series for such different reasons – and the later titles have embraced so many diverse systems – that it’s difficult to pin down something that quite scratches the same irradiated itch. Some fans love roleplaying. Others, exploring a post-apocalyptic landscape. Some, the emergent gameplay chaos, and others, the building, crafting, and community aspects.
Whatever the reason you first fell in love with Fallout, we’ve put together a list of games we think you’ll dig while you’re waiting patiently for news of Fallout 5. From the classic RPG games revival of Divinity Original Sin 2, to the gloomy post-apocalypse of the Metro series, here’s the best games like Fallout for PC.
The best games like Fallout for PC are:
- Wasteland 3
- Divinity Original Sin 2
- The Outer Worlds
- Disco Elysium
- Metro 2033
The latest entry in the franchise that started it all, Wasteland 3 is a mammoth, deeply reactive tactical RPG set in the post-apocalyptic U.S. The series isn’t just like Fallout – it’s effectively the blueprint for Fallout. While no less comical than its nuclear cousin, it generally opts for a grittier, more incisively socio-political tone than Fallout’s broad parodies.
Read more: Miserable apocalypse games to wallow in
Wasteland 2 brought back the series in a big way, but Wasteland 3 is bigger and more confident, finding its feet with its newly built fanbase. Fallout may have the Brotherhood of Steel, but Wasteland has massive steel spiders.
Divinity Original Sin 2
We’ve seen many reverent homages to classic CRPG’s in recent years, but Divinity Original 2 stands out as the most forward-thinking. While developer Larian’s love for isometric classics like Fallout and Baldur’s Gate is on full display here, DOS 2 doesn’t constrain itself to simply replicating the same formula. The result is magical.
Memorable characters and engaging, witty storytelling join loads of lovely systemic reactivity both inside and out of its challenging turn-based combat. Combat arenas can be transformed with elemental powers and abilities, and environmental features can become your greatest allies – or most troublesome foes. All this, combined with deep character creation and co-op multiplayer make this a worthy successor to OG Fallout’s legacy.
The Outer Worlds
Late stage capitalism can have ridiculous, soul-destroying effects on the world. While we don’t always need art to remind us of this – and while not all political art needs to be too on-the-nose – sometimes it’s nice to raise a big ol’ middle finger to worker exploitation and conspicuous consumption. We’re sorry, Tim Curry, but it turns out that capitalism got space now, too.
Luckily, at least it brought with it an expansive open-world RPG with nods to beloved Obsidian gems, such as Fallout: New Vegas. The skill systems, story choices, and sci-fi environments are all noteworthy, but what really shines here is the character writing. Obsidian doesn’t let the satire get in the way of populating the Outer Worlds’ planets with believable, interesting, human characters.
Disco Elysium is one of gaming’s few true originals. Both fever-dream like in its narcotic haze and strikingly down-to-earth in its preference for folk cadence over fantasy tropes. This CRPG is every 4am house party conversation you’ve ever had, replayed with dice rolls and stat sheets. The only difference is that it’s actually as creative, thought-provoking, charismatic, and wild as all those White Claws only made you think you were.
Fans of Fallout 1&2 will feel at home in the tangled branches of extensive dialogue trees that (gasp!) actually have the chutzpah to lock you out of certain story moments or choices, depending on your character build and decisions up to that point. It stands out from other RPG games by being bitingly funny, too.
If you’re looking for something that captures the expansive bleakness and FPS systems of Bethesda’s Fallout titles, but within a more focused framework, it’s hard to go wrong with the post-apocalyptic Metro series. While Metro: Last Light has some solid ideas, and Metro: Exodus is beautiful and ambitious, neither of them quite capture the claustrophobic terror of Metro 2033.
More: The best survival games on PC
Metro sees Fallout’s molerats, and raises it the stakes with bat-faced, pack-hunting Watchmen. It sees Fallout’s radscorpion, and drops a chonking mutant gorilla on top of it. Owing as much to survival horror games as FPS, Metro 2033 is a tense, subterranean journey that makes every individual bullet feel precious. Don’t forget to check out the S.T.A.L.K.E.R and Pathologic series, plus Mutant Year Zero, for similar Tarkovsky-inspired post-apocalyptic survival.
If you’re all about the creepy 50’s, picket-fence satire of the original Fallouts, then you’ll likely have a swell time jitterbugging your way down to Bioshock’s deep-sea dystopia to give a few of its inhabitants a knuckle sandwich. Bioshock was always about exploration and atmosphere first, gunplay second, so while the combat can feel a little wooden these days compared to other FPS games, there’s still very few game settings as well realised as Rapture. Come for the parties, stay for the option to shoot bees at people.
You know that gag people always make when a game is massive? “Here’s this small indie game hur hur.” We won’t do that. We know that you’ve heard of Skyrim, because you can probably run it on your cat’s electronic collar, your Fitbit, and that old pair of light-up trainers at the back of your wardrobe. If you needed reminding for any reason, though: Skyrim is the open-world RPG fantasy sibling to Bethesda’s Fallout open-world games.
So, there’s our picks for the best games like Fallout. If you’re in the mood for some recent Fallout-flavoured indie games, and love that isometric style, don’t overlook the likes of Atom RPG, Encased, or UnderRail, either.