It’s one of the fastest growing trends in gaming. Seemingly overnight “Battle Royale” went from a fledgling genre in gaming to a household name. This is truly one of those rare occasions when a new innovation becomes so popular that it dominates the discussion around an entire industry.
Naturally with the huge success that Battle Royale games are currently enjoying, there are more popping up all the time. From brand new titles to historic franchises adopting Battle Royale modes, gamers are going to be seeing more and more attempts to cash in on the wild popularity of the genre. Here are five of the top Battle Royale games currently available.
Let’s be honest—it may not be the first, and it may not be the newest either, but there is one undisputed king of Battle Royale right now—and that’s Fortnite. It’s the game that has taken over playground conversations around the world. Fortnite is infiltrating the cultural consciousness so thoroughly that Saturday Night Live even did a full sketch around the game!
Even though it’s a free-to-play game, there are still plenty of great Fortnite gifts for the gamer on your list. Every major gaming platform has a bundle out this holiday season with exclusive Fortnite content. You can also pick up digital downloads featuring even more customizations and additional content for the game.
Finally, don’t forget digital currency cards for use on the platform storefront of choice. The Fortnite player in your life will always appreciate the opportunity to use them for V-Bucks (Fortnite’s in-game currency) to grab some new skins or the latest battle pass.
Get the Nintendo Switch Fortnite Bundle
Buy the Xbox One S 1TB Fortnite Bundle
Get the PlayStation 4 Fortnite DualShock 4 Wireless Controller & Bonus Content Bundle
Check out the Fortnite: Deep Freeze Bundle digital download for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch
The “winner-takes-all” death match format that Battle Royale roots itself wasn’t entirely brand-new when PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (or “PUBG”) hit the scene. PUBG was definitely the first game to elevate the genre to its current level of popularity however. Initially releasing as an early access game on PC, PUBG made a huge splash as more and more players had their first experience of dropping onto an island with 99 other competitors.
While its early success has since taken a backseat in overall popularity to the towering juggernaut that is Fortnite, PUBG still has a very large and passionate fanbase. Many prefer its realism compared to the more cartoonish art style of Fortnite. And of course, for many it is still the “original” Battle Royale experience.
PUBG was until recently an Xbox One console exclusive, but a recent announcement has the game slated for release December 7th 2018 on PlayStation 4. For now you can pick up the game for Xbox One, or check out a cool limited edition controller. You can also pre-order for the PlayStation 4.
Call of Duty Black Ops 4 – Blackout
With the competition already very fierce, it’s hard to imagine what type of game might have a chance to make a dent in the Battle Royale market. That is, until you consider one of the most popular and lucrative gaming franchises of the last decade throwing its hat in the ring. The Call of Duty series adds a brand new Battle Royale mode known as “Blackout” with the release of Black Ops 4.
Prior to its release, the most popular Battle Royale games were newer titles that cut their teeth on the genre. With Black Ops 4, gamers are getting their first taste of what Battle Royale can be like when its part of a AAA franchise with years of development resources and dollars already behind it. Needless to saym the buzz so far is very, very good.
In Blackout players can take to land, sea, and air as they enjoy a Battle Royale experience within the Call of Duty universe. Since it benefits from the extensive development already put into the series, and features mechanics familiar to millions of players around the globe, it’s safe to say that Black Ops 4 features the most polish of any Battle Royale game out there.
Battlefield V – Firestorm
Not to be outdone, Call of Duty’s chief competitor is naturally developing its own Battle Royale mode as well. The “Battlefield” series from Electronic Arts will eventually feature its own Battle Royale mode, which they are referring to as “Firestorm”. Firestorm is in development for the series’ impending release “Battlefield V”.
That said, Battlefield V releases on November 20, 2018. Yet developer DICE says that the Firestorm mode will not be available until March 2019. Their spin on the delay is that Battlefield V is so laden with great content already, adding Firestorm from the start would overwhelm players with too much content.
That may be a tough PR pill for gamers to swallow. Still, the Battlefield series does have a strong fanbase that may give the benefit of the doubt.
What remains to be seen is if this delay in release will ultimately lead to a better product. Perhaps one that even outshines Blackout? It’s possible that developer DICE is merely taking the extra time to make a good experience even greater. If so, Battle Royale fans may eventually find themselves rejoicing.
Finally rounding out our list of five Battle Royale games you need to play is H1Z1. Much like Fortnite, H1Z1 initially had a different focus entirely—it was a MMO survival game set during a zombie apocalypse. Later on H1Z1 began experimenting with a Battle Royale mode in the form of H1Z1: King of the Hill.
Eventually, in the face of the growing popularity of King of the Hill along with Battle Royales in general, developer Daybreak Game Company elected to drop “King of the Hill” from the title and re-brand their Battle Royale game as simply “H1Z1”, (and re-branding the original survival mode of H1Z1 as “Just Survive” in the process), shifting their focus to developing a Battle Royale game that can compete with the heavy hitters in this lucratively trending genre.
Five Battle Royale games you need to play
That’s our list of must-play games in on of the industry’s most popular emerging genres. The holidays just around the corner. You’re sure to make the gamer on your list happy with hardware or content for any of the titles above. Be sure to check out Best Buy for even more great gift ideas for the gamers in your life!