There's something extremely satisfying about being the last man standing from a pool of 100 players, and something immensely frustrating, yet rewarding, about the journey there. That's the battle royale game in a nutshell — and the hottest thing in video games right now.
PC players have many options to choose from, and this is from a genre that sprung up from a mod for an existing game. Battle royale games are making their mark now on the Xbox One, so let's get to the hunt!
PUGB has almost single-handedly been responsible for the huge rise in popularity of battle royale games. Its creator, Brendan Greene (or PlayerUnknown) started out making a battle royale mod for popular PC shooter Arma 3, and the rest is history. PUBG has set records on the PC for the most ever concurrent players on Steam and sold over 20 million copies while in early access.
It's now on the Xbox One in Game Preview and attracted over a million players in its first week. The hype for this game is unreal and it's pretty much the quintessential battle royale game.
100 players drop into a huge open world map and you have to loot weapons, gear and medical supplies to survive and be the last man standing and win that all-important chicken dinner. It's rough around the edges (it's still in the fairly early stages of the preview program), but it's the one you want to play. It's the one everyone wants to play. ($29.99)
Fortnite Battle Royale
Fortnite is a game of two halves, and the battle royale portion of it has been broken off and is completely free to play. Developer Epic Games is monetizing through cosmetic pack in-game purchases, but if you don't want to spend, you don't have to.
It follows the traditional battle royale formula of dropping 100 players into a large map to loot, survive and emerge as the last man standing. It uses the same tech underneath as PUBG, but on the outside, it's quite different. What's important though is that it plays really well and it's a lot of fun.
Fortnite is somewhat cartoony in appearance, with a cutesy charm that doesn't necessarily fit with blowing someones head off. The unique aspect to Fortnite is that you can scavenge resources to build quite elaborate structures as you move around the map. Building can give you the edge in the later stages, for sure.
Fortnite has enjoyed a recent massive surge in popularity and Xbox players can now squad up with their buddies on PC and on the newly launched mobile version. It gets patches with new content and fixes almost weekly, and is now Xbox One X enhanced and has both 4K as well as a lower-resolution 60 FPS mode. (Free)
GTA V: Motor Wars
Delivered to GTA V Online as part of the recent Smuggler's Run update, Motor Wars is essentially Rockstar's first attempt at a Battle Royale mode in its games. And let's face it, the map in GTA V is so massive it's absolutely perfect for it.
You still drop in from the sky, and you still have an ever decreasing battlefield to command and take out your opponents. But there's a heavy focus on vehicular combat, hence the name.
Future Rockstar games will no doubt expand on the idea, but for now, it's a free update to one of the biggest, baddest games in recent years. You know it'll be good. ($59.99)
If ever The Hunger Games were to become a video game it would probably end up as The Culling. It shrugs off the standard battle royale formula of huge maps and 100 players for a smaller, tighter experience with just 16 players at each time.
With the smaller map and pool, winning is a different process than other massive battle royale games. Long-range gun battles are few and far between, with close quarters combat instead being a focus as you hunt down your enemies.
The Culling is no longer in active development, which means no further new maps or features, but the servers will continue to run for the foreseeable future. It's an interesting take on battle royale, though. ($24.99)
Wait. Seriously, wait! While you may not be a fan of the block building game, Minecraft actually has an unofficial Battle Royale/Hunger Games mode, which is a bag of fun.
It's a similar concept, in which a number of players are spawned in to find loot, gear up and take down enemies. Better yet, since this is Minecraft you're bound to find active servers with a large number of people online.
It's a simple, more basic form of battle royale, restricted by Minecraft's mechanics, but what map builders and modders have been able to achieve is impressive. You'll want to stick to recognized, larger servers like Mineplex to get the best, but go on in and have a blast. ($19.99)
The Darwin Project
The Darwin Project is battle royale, but not like you know it if you've played any of the other games on this list. For starters, there are only 10 players, not 100, and there's a heavy survival element to the game.
If anyone had made a video game version of The Hunger Games, Darwin Project would be a close fit.
What's also extra special about Darwin Project is the role of the Show Director. This can have profound changes on individuals or the game as a whole. And with Mixer integration, when you're streaming your viewers can also change the course of the game. ($14.99)
Updated March 19, 2018: The Darwin Project joined our list of the top Battle Royale titles to play on Xbox One.
Richard Devine is an Editor at Windows Central. A former Project Manager and long-term tech addict, he joined Mobile Nations in 2011 and has been found on Android Central and iMore as well as Windows Central. Currently you'll find him covering all manner of PC hardware and gaming, and you can follow him on Twitter and Instagram.
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