Back to the wasteland - 7 games like Fallout on iOS and Android

Jimminy jillickers

Back to the wasteland - 7 games like Fallout on iOS and Android
| Fallout Shelter

Fallout 4 has hit store shelves with a bang, like some sort of mushroom cloud, blooming in the waste of human society.

So we thought it'd be a good idea to have a look at some of the games on mobile that capture some of the grim and grimy future that Fallout posits.

None of them are perfect matches, but there's plenty of sci-fi gems on the App Store and the Play Store if you know where to look.

And boy do we know where to look. It's basically our job.

Fallout Shelter
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It'd be remiss not to have Fallout Shelter on this list. It does, after all, have the word Fallout in its title.

Sure, it might be a building management sim, but it captures that post-apocalyptic cartoon aesthetic brilliantly. And it's surprisingly grim for a game starring bobble-headed, grinning vault dwellers.

It adds some neat touches to the genre as well. Like the ability to push your workers harder while courting disaster. No one wants their base to be invaded by weird head crab things, but at the same time you need power to make everything work.

It's a time sink in the very best way, and while it doesn't have much going for it beyond that loop of build and recruit, it's fun to pop in every now and then and see how many of your dwellers have died.

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Rebuild is a game set in the wake of a zombie apocalypse. Sure, it might not be a nuclear apocalypse, but we're still talking end-of-the-world times here.

Rather than roaming the wasteland dispensing hot shovelfuls of violent justice, here you're trying to rebuild society as best you can.

That means creating and refurbishing new buildings, choosing leaders, and trying to make sure all of your residents get along well.

It also means protecting yourself from fearsome zombie onslaughts. And getting used to the fact that a lot of the characters you become attached to will die horrible, painful deaths.

Shadowrun Returns

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Shadowrun looks at the future through slightly different eyes. It's less wasteland, more neon-slashed dystopia. And it has orcs and elves too.

But it's turn-based, and it's got an in-depth story. There are hackers, jackers, street samurai, and all manner of other interesting ideas.

The isometric adventure sees you leading a party of different fantasy cyberpunk characters through a world that's equal parts William Gibson and JRR Tolkien.

If you're a fan of the original Fallout games, then this will scratch your itches. It's a deep RPG, with plenty of content to sink your fangs into.

Dead Effect
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Dead Effect fits more into the modern Fallout template. It's a grimy futuristic FPS that sees you shooting zombies and other terrors in the face in the claustrophobic confines of a space ship.

There are RPG elements, but the action is key here. And it's pretty solid action. The combat isn't super intelligent, but there are nice explosions of gore, and some meaty weapons.

Obviously it's an FPS on touchscreen, so it's not perfect, and it's about shooting zombies, which is something we've all done a million times,

Still, it's fun, and its atmosphere of desolation and collapse will be familiar to anyone with an affinity for Fallout.

Epoch 2
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Another shooter, this one's even simpler than Dead Effect, but it's dusty, it's got robots in it, and it's got a few moves of its own.

It's more the tangible feel of the end of the world that gets Epoch 2 on this list than its slightly stumbly third-person blasting. I mean, the shooting's fine, but it's by no means perfect.

There are plenty of destroyed buildings, and the design owes as much to Fallout as it does to other post-armageddon sci-fi adventures.

It doesn't have the depth of Fallout, but it's a lot of fun shooting robots into piles of cogs. Cogs are cool, right?

XCOM: Enemy Unknown
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As classic sci-fi franchises go, XCOM is up there with Fallout. And this mobile port of the recent turn-based strategy is pretty much spot on.

It's hard in all the right ways, it plays brilliantly on touchscreens, and the sci-fi setting oozes class, style, and terrifying alien mutant things.

There's a pop and fizzle to the play that marks XCOM out as one of the best turn-based strategies, especially on mobile.

There's death and misery galore as well, and you'll build up your soldiers from fresh-faced recruits to battle-hardened legends.

Deus Ex: The Fall

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Another classic sci-fi series, Deus Ex: The Fall is a standalone mobile title set before Human Revolution and Mankind Divided.

It takes the RPG elements of those games and sloshes them into a pretty impressive mobile-focused shooter. It's slick, it's drenched in yellow light, and the story is pretty captivating.

It's about as close to the modern Fallout games as you're going to get on mobile at the moment, in terms of mechanics at least.

The bright cyberpunk setting is a little at odds with Fallout's deteriorating wasteland, but it's still an engaging and well put together shooter with plenty of neat ideas.

Harry Slater
Harry Slater
Harry used to be really good at Snake on the Nokia 5110. Apparently though, digital snake wrangling isn't a proper job, so now he writes words about games instead.