Anurag loves playing video games. His guides and listicles revolve around popular iOS, Android, PC, and console games.
The Last of Us (TLOU) is one of those games that inject a heavy dose of realism into the survival horror genre. Everything about this game, from the narrative to combat, screams “awesome”. Not only will you fight The Infected, but you'll also enter into a conflict with other surviving humans, who will just do anything to beat hunger and stay alive. In TLOU, The zombie outbreak has made humans refugees in their own country, but there’s hope, and this hope is what gives Joel a reason to survive the desolate world.
Gameplay/story-wise, some of the games listed below are no match for TLOU’s brilliance, but there are certain traits that share some similarity with this game, be it those emotional moments, characters, gameplay or the concept. Here are some of the best post-apocalyptic games like "The Last of Us" for PC.
1. Bioshock Infinite
In Bioshock Infinite and TLOU, it’s the deuteragonists who have stolen the limelight off of the main characters. Ellie and Elizabeth play a key role in helping their partners in trouble. Ellie is just like any normal teenager who starts off as a defenseless and poorly-equipped girl, but learns how to use firearms after saving Joel from the clutches of a zombie. 20-year old Elizabeth’s abilities seem straight from a sci-fi movie. She can manipulate space time to control objects, machinery and can teleport the protagonist to another location. She helps Booker Dewitt in many occasions and can even revive him from death.
Plot-wise, both games are poles apart. TLOU takes place in a desolate world filled with survivors and the infected, whereas the Infinite Universe is a sprawling steampunk world filled with fantastical enemies. The one attribute that connects both games is the relationship between the protagonist and his female companion and the roles they play. Both are excellent titles and a must-buy if you are fond of games with an excellent story and compelling gameplay.
2. The Walking Dead
Like The Last of Us, The Walking Dead is a game that has those big moments that will force players to take harsh decisions.
The episodic adventure series takes place in a post-apocalyptic world, where complex choices will determine the story’s outcome. Like TLOU, The Walking Dead’s story revolves around a bunch of survivors of the zombie apocalypse. It centers on a convicted murderer who tries everything to protect Clementine from the zombie horde. While the point and click adventure game mechanic may be too unexciting for The Last of Us fans, the emotional tone of the story will move them to tears.
3. Stalker: Shadow of Chernobyl
Another splendid post-apocalyptic game, Stalker does exceptionally well in presenting an alternative history of the Chernobyl Disaster. In this game, a second explosion occurs in the infamous nuclear power plant and transforms the environment into a radioactive nightmare. The game’s open-ended nature will present plenty of opportunities to interact with bizarre forms of flora and fauna. Players will also stumble upon mutants, monolith soldiers and other bizarre oddities while exploring the virtual world.
Shadow of Chernobyl is a survival horror FPS game with traces of RPG elements in it. The highlight of Stalker is the non-linear gameplay. The game has multiple endings and while the plot is a bit hard to figure out, the gameplay is top notch. Like TLOU, Stalker’s presentation of the post-apocalyptic world is flawless and extremely well-designed.
4. Left 4 Dead
Left 4 Dead was hailed as one of the best post-apocalyptic zombie survival games. And rightly so, considering how well-crafted the game is, especially in the AI department. L4D’s zombies are unforgiving and unpredictable, which makes survival extremely difficult.
Like TLOU, Left 4 Dead has its own set of zombies. The Infected come in various shapes and sizes and each zombie variant is as grotesque as the other. But the Spitters, the Boomers and the Smokers are no match for TLOU’s Infected – humans who have fallen prey to the cordyceps virus, which transforms them into hideous, ruthless zombies.
TLOU provides a realistic portrayal of the undead, unlike Left 4 Dead, which has zombies inspired by pop-fiction and classic movies. Also, one can’t ignore the real science behind the infected, which is why The Last of Us may receive more votes than L4D.
5. Dead Island
TLOU is an amazing game. What sets it apart from other zombie games is the realistic portrayal of the zombie apocalypse. Rest most games are simply hack and slash titles with zombies straight from a seventies horror movie. Dead Island is one of them.
Missions are fairly simple, ranging from reaching a designated location while killing the zombie horde to retrieving items. Missions may lack variety, but slashing down zombies with literally every object scattered around the tropical resort is extremely satisfying. You have a range of weapons to hack zombies, and these include baseball bats, axes, knives and a host of other objects scattered in the island. Gameplay-wise, Dead Island is no match for TLOU. However, if you are fond of a beat’em up zombie thriller, this game is for you.
All Screenshots, Courtesy of Their Respective Video Game Developers/Publishers