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Posted in Reviews
August 14, 2015 at 9:19 PM
Apocalypse Rising vs. Dead Mist
Apocalypse Rising (created by Gusmanak and ZolarKeth) and Dead Mist (created by petro180) are hailed to be the two most realistic and accomplished post-apocalyptic survival games on ROBLOX. Surprisingly, both are based strongly on the game DayZ. With Apocalypse Rising having been in the spotlight of zombie games since its inception, and Dead Mist arguably revolutionizing the very concept of survival, there is no doubt that these two games could potentially be equal rivals. If Apocalypse Rising has ever met its match, it has now.
This article will specifically review the pros and cons of both games, and compare them in the following categories: realism, detail, diversity, intensity, functionality, and difficulty. (We will only be reviewing Apocalypse Rising in its latest version, “Reborn.”)
In Apocalypse Rising, the player spawns at a random location in a large map with a Makarov and two magazines of ammunition. It is easy to find random cans of food, drink, and nourishment in essentially every building across the map. On average (based on my personal experiences and those of my colleagues), it takes approximately three to five minutes before a player can locate a decent weapon, and a good amount of ammunition for it. Abandoned vehicles are often found in large cities, and car parts for them are located in almost every town. It is customary to immediately shoot other players on sight, for the purposes of survival, or to take their resources. There is also a statistical incentive, due to the badge system, which will provide players with challenging objectives through killing others.
APOCALYPSE RISING: Sitting passenger in an exclusive fire truck.
In Dead Mist, on the other hand, players spawn near small houses in a massive map (supposedly of western Canada) with no resources, except a very meager supply of food and drink. For fresh spawners, the only defense against zombies is to sprint away from them, until the player can find a weapon – ranging from fire extinguishers (the weakest melee weapon) to fully automatic assault rifles (which are quite, quite rare). Unfortunately, it is impossible (from what we have found) to use a vehicle, as all vehicles in the game are presently glitched. Normally, players do not shoot each other on sight, and oftentimes instead exchange greetings or join each other’s groups. Food spawns in scarce amounts across the whole map, and weapons even scarcer.
DEAD MIST: Cooking rice with KarlRexDrakonov.
There is an extreme social difference between players of Apocalypse Rising and those of Dead Mist: that in the former, they are inhumanly aggressive, and in the *latter , behave much more passively. This could either be an inherent difference in the types of people that play each game – whereas Apocalypse Rising is easily on the front page almost all the time, while Dead Mist requires a more experienced gamer to first hear of and then find. Or, it could be due to the fact that Dead Mist players have a much harder time gathering high quality equipment and gear, and thus are more reluctant to throw them away in a firefight. Regardless, Dead Mist’s spawn rates – and the types of food which spawns in – are far lower than those of Apocalypse Rising. Rather than seeing random cans of Boyardee or tomato paste strewn across the ground, fruit (sometimes even rotten) litter besides stands, and small cans of beans can be found in kitchens. The community of Dead Mist is also more believable than that of Apocalypse Rising; in a zombie apocalypse that is slowly choking the human race to death, it is hard to believe that the initial instinct upon seeing a potentially friendly face (in other words, another human) would warrant an instant attack.
Latter - “Denoting the second or second mentioned of two people or things.”
In terms of realism, Dead Mist wipes the floor with Apocalypse Rising.
For Gusmanak, detail is a minor issue. The vastness of the Apocalypse Rising map, its functionality, and the explorability of its terrain are far more important than small details on certain buildings. However, one aspect of the map which has always been awed at is the fluidity of the terrain: crude or overlapping corners are rarely ever seen, unlike in Dead Mist. Apocalypse Rising’s map does not make much use of different textures, but still looks impressive nonetheless. Guns and various weapons are also extremely generalized, and lack detail. Yet despite these troubles, all edges and corners are neatly tucked away, and the simplicity of the game’s aesthetic design can be quite refreshing when compared to the conflicting bricks and GUI’s which we have come to recognize in most games.
APOCALYPSE RISING: Driving a relatively detailed Humvee over a steep hill.
petro180, on the other hand, has his obligation set to make the Dead Mist map feel as realistic as possible, while still compensating for lag and other issues by not including an exorbitant amount of detail. Rifles and other weapons in particular make excellent use of textures, and were clearly designed by an experienced gun creator. Buildings are especially unique in terms of design and location, although the many trees and vast wilderness of the map are repetitive. Players can even hear flies buzzing around dead bodies, although oftentimes the physical flies are difficult to see. Unfortunately, there are sometimes gaping holes in the map itself, which have obviously not yet been patched up by petro180. Yet, these map glitches are counterbalanced by the presence of highly advanced and detailed mechanics (see the Diversity section).
DEAD MIST: A corpse with flies buzzing around it.
Though both Apocalypse Rising and Dead Mist are highly detailed and coherent in their own ways, the simple fact that the Dead Mist has so many more mechanics, interesting quirks, and a much more detailed map, while also having so many bugs, make this a slightly difficult decision. If the player is looking to have a relatively carefree experience with plenty of shooting, combat, and minimal lag, they should immediately look towards Apocalypse Rising. If the player instead seeks a highly interesting survival adventure with great mechanics and abundant detail, they should strongly consider Dead Mist.
By a very narrow margin, Dead Mist wins again for detail.
In Apocalypse Rising, gameplay is quite diverse. The map itself ranges from extremely rural areas – only scattered with trees, hills, and occasional farmhouses – to highly urban cities – such as the legendary zombiefest of Kin. Players can collect parts and repair vehicles for traversing the terrain, gather resources for travel, or to set up bases, engage in firefights with other large groups, and much more. Players can even slaughter cows and other livestock in random fields, and cook their raw meat over a fire. Through the use of an entrencher, players can create whole new bases and structures with various building supplies scattered throughout the map, or break down barricades surrounding another person’s base. Players can demolish buildings with C4, blow up vehicles with tank mines, or set traps with personnel mines. In Apocalypse Rising, players will always be able to find interesting things to do, either as a built-in game mechanic or through something of their own invention.
APOCALYPSE RISING: Overlooking the city of Kin. (Source: ROBLOX Blog)
Dead Mist offers an extremely large range of activities, although its map is not nearly as diverse as that of Apocalypse Rising. The vast, vast majority of the terrain consists of mountain and valleys, clustered with various trees, and a handful of wooden cabins and small towns. But with this wilderness, comes many different methods of survival-based gameplay. Players can use certain melee weapons (such as axes) to chop down trees for logs and sticks. Using sticks, string, and a combination of other miscellaneous items, players can create splints (for broken legs, which can result from falling from a great height), hunting traps (which are used to catch game such as rabbits and squirrels), set up tents (especially if someone is making camp for the night), and a great multitude of other things. Players can even cook rice by combining a portable stove top, propane, water, a pot, and a bag of rice; or bake bread by lighting a fire, building a cooking tripod over it with wooden sticks, adding a pot, and putting in harvested wheat (which the player must grow). Other interesting quirks include the capability to bind other players with duct tape, and to break free from duct tape bonds by spamming the Q and E button, trying to wriggle out. Players can even plant seeds and grow crops on farmland, and harvest them with farming hoes. Unfortunately, Dead Mist’s greatest downfall lies in the fact that the vast majority of its vehicles are broken, and cannot be driven freely around the map as they can be in Apocalypse Rising.
DEAD MIST: Finding a dead rabbit in a snare.
Though Apocalypse Rising has much more diverse terrain, it is highly combat-centered, and has less of an emphasis on wilderness survival. Dead Mist goes in-depth with game mechanics hitherto unseen, and truly expands upon open-world, post-apocalyptic survival gameplay that its rivals cannot provide. Though the lack of vehicles in Dead Mist gives it a disadvantage, the simple fact that it has so many different methods and styles of gameplay overpowers the additional luxury of having functional cars (although that wouldn’t hurt either).
Unsurprisingly, Dead Mist’s critically acclaimed diverse gameplay wins again.
The intensity of gameplay has never been lost on Apocalypse Rising fans. Reborn excellently carries over the same amount of tension that was famously prevalent in the Reimagined version of the game. Hardly a single moment exploring a town, opening a door, or scouting a city is spent without the player feeling extremely tense and ready to strike at whatever danger awaits. With high spawn rates for many assorted weapons, players are generally well-equipped and quite willing to attack others. This willingness lends great suspense to the game, with almost every moment being quick-paced and exciting.
APOCALYPSE RISING: Focusing on the mouth of the mine with an ACOG scope on an HK417 during an intense gun fight (yes, I just killed the dead guy right there).
For Dead Mist, there is some degree of suspense. It is quite easy to kill others, but also easy to die quickly yourself. On average, three hits with a fire axe – or two shots with a decent rifle – will kill a person. However, the healing system – which consists of using bandages or rags to stop bleeding, and getting plenty of food and rest can sometimes challenge the most experienced of players. Though there are occasional tense moments when facing off against great hordes of zombies, or when directly confronting hostile players, there is not the same degree of suspense as in Apocalypse Rising. After all, the mechanics and environment of Dead Mist could just as easily be from a hunting simulator as from a zombie apocalypse game.
DEAD MIST: Demonstrating the uses of duct tape in a potentially hostile encounter.
Though both Apocalypse Rising and Dead Mist have an abundant amount of tension and suspense, there is only one clear winner in this situation. Apocalypse Rising’s zombies are far more difficult to kill, and arrive in various hordes from all directions in different cities. The increased encounters with other players also forces the necessity of caution upon many survivalist players, whereas Dead Mist player encounters rarely occur – and when they do, they tend to be friendly.
Clearly, Apocalypse Rising’s magnificent sense of tension and suspense are unparalleled among zombie survival games.
Apocalypse Rising, being one of the oldest games on ROBLOX (and having evolved remarkably throughout its lifetime) is extremely well-scripted, and rarely has any malfunctions or problems. Although, there are occasional complaints about some areas of the game – such as not being able to join a server with open slots (through the new lobby system), or even randomly levitating in the air – it has few problems and is constantly updated. Unfortunately, the highly laggy (and somewhat problematic) in-game chat system is questionable in some aspects – such as how comments usually take several seconds to send. Despite these issues however, Apocalypse Rising is one of the most functional long-term and front-page games on Roblox, and is critically acclaimed for having an outstanding script system.
APOCALYPSE RISING: Hovering glitch after jumping out of a car.
Though Dead Mist has clearly beaten Apocalypse Rising out of the ballpark in many aspects of detail and gameplay, there is no doubt that it is still highly glitched and requires severe patching. From tools seeming to be disembodied from their backpacks, to pick-up times lagging horribly for certain objects, it is far from a finished product. Perhaps its greatest downfall is the frequent interference of various comments in the in-game chat system, and how different players’ chat feed often overlap each other. Other notable issues are the occasional breakdown of the group system – how some players cannot form groups, how most vehicles within the game are broken, and how occasionally the usernames of players within the same group do not appear over their heads. Despite these problems, however, they do not significantly impair gameplay in Dead Mist, and certainly do not render it an unworthy game.
DEAD MIST: An unsightly gap in the side of a mountain.
As Dead Mist came out of closed Beta eight months ago (and has made significant strides in bug patching and glitch fixing for the main aspects of gameplay), it is expected that some lesser features of the game will not be fully functional. Apocalypse Rising on the other hand, has been a classic favorite of all ROBLOXians for many years, and has had much more time to patch itself and apply fixes. Nonetheless, these are not excuses for the functionality of the game, and it is quite clear that though Apocalypse Rising has simpler gameplay, at least the vast majority of the game is functional.
Apocalypse Rising wins again for functionality.
With great intensity, comes great difficulty. On average, Apocalypse Rising players rarely live for more than a few in-game days at most, and scarcely beyond two to three hours real time in continuous gameplay. The longer the players play, the better equipment they can gather. As they increase their equipment quality, they are more prone to do daring things – such as venture into the heart of Kin, face off against other well-armed groups, and even invade the bases of other players. Though these hours are filled with great intensity and fun, the zest to continue playing is quickly sapped away if the player is killed (although they’ll probably come back the next day). Though it is much easier to be overwhelmed by zombies, it is inherently easy to be killed by other players, in exchange that it is also painless to gather food, drink, and other resources. In terms of survival, Apocalypse Rising is not difficult. In terms of beating back whole new classes of different zombies and surviving against other players, it is a highly interactive and varying experience.
APOCALYPSE RISING: Posing with our battle trophies from an encounter earlier during the playing session.
As stated previously, Dead Mist could quite easily be a hunting/survival simulator as a zombie apocalypse game. With a relatively small focus on zombies – as they are extremely easy to kill with a decent melee weapon – and an even smaller emphasis on players – as they can be easily overwhelmed with a decent number, Dead Mist is much, much harder to survive in. Food and drink spawns are scarce, and players oftentimes find themselves engaging in novelties such as cooking rice, baking bread, setting snares, hunting for game, and roasting meat. With healing yourself being much more difficult, players are prone to keep large supplies of food and bandages on them, and are inclined to gather resources to create items such as med-kits (through combining various saline bags and IV starter kits), splints (through tying together sticks and string), and much, much more.
DEAD MIST: Showing off our weapons and gear after two hours’ work.
Though Apocalypse Rising is quite difficult in itself, it is oftentimes not difficult on a realistic level. A single person with a machine gun has a fair chance of mowing down five well-armed individuals, especially if he or she has a supply of blood bags. In Dead Mist, upon being wounded, players must bind themselves up with either military-grade bandages or rags ripped from clothing, and then rest and eat an abundant amount of food and water to fully recover. Humans are much easier to kill, requiring less ammunition and even less swings with a melee weapon to murder. While the machine gunner versus five scenario I described above has a fifty/fifty probability in Apocalypse Rising, the lone player has no chance in Dead Mist. You’d better find a group quickly and stay with them if you don’t want to be at the mercy of other players.
Though this was a difficult decision, there is no doubt – in my own mind and those of my colleagues – that Dead Mist is a much more realistic and inherently difficult apocalypse simulator.
Both Apocalypse Rising and Dead Mist are absolutely outstanding games. As someone who has played and adored Apocalypse Rising for the past two years, the comparisons I made in this article do not – in any way – indicate that I dislike the game. If anything, I am glad that Apocalypse Rising is the way it is for a fun and intense shooter, while Dead Mist is always available for a more serious or realistic experience. Indeed, they are in themselves two amazing games, but appeal to different moods and depict different kinds of apocalypses.
Though there is no doubt that both of these games will continue to evolve – and may even go head to head for playership in the future – and when they do, I hope you’ll join us in seeing what the two amazing development teams cook up.
(I would like to personally thank Flameshire, JohnKohler, FriedhelmKaufmann, KarlRexDrakonov, iiCherry2036, ThatGuyThatKilledYou, and Waffles118 for working alongside me to play through both Apocalypse Rising and Dead Mist, and offering their two cents as I compared the two games. I would also like to expressly thank Viotsa for helping proofreading and sub-editing this article before I sent this monstrous essay off to the RoGo editors. #BestGameSquad2K15)
What did you think of our review? Which game do you personally think was better? Any other good apocalypse simulators you think we should have put in instead? Post your comments below, and we’ll see you on the next review!