the key art for Atomfall. a british countryside scene with a red phone box sitting in the middle. on the horizon there's a weird purple haze.

Atomfall is the new game coming from Rebellion, the studio famous for Sniper Elite. It’s a first-person single-player survival action game set in a post-nuclear British countryside, and it’s one of the most intriguing games to be announced at the Xbox Games Showcase.

The game follows an alternate history of Britain, asking the question – what if the 1957 Windscale Fire (a real nuclear fire in Cumbria, the worst in Britain’s history) had been a bigger deal? Atomfall calls on a few familiar post-nuclear-apocalypse tropes – mechs, burned-out cars, some kind of underground facility. However, it sprinkles in trappings of a British weekend fete, with a phone booth and bunting and a nice pub.

Of course, the fact that you’re inside a quarantine zone that’s run by the military makes it hard to enjoy the pastoral idyll.

Players will be expected to explore the environment of post-nuclear Cumbria (actually, the exact location hasn’t actually been confirmed, but the fire was in Cumbria and the environments in the video have a strong Lake District vibe), scavenging, crafting, bartering, and doing whatever else it takes to survive.

“Atomfall blends post-war Britain with Cold War paranoia, folk horror, and elements of classic British sci-fi like Day of the Triffids, Doctor Who and The Prisoner, to create an immersive and thrilling gameplay experience,” says the trailer’s caption. “Set in the rolling British countryside with idyllic pubs, quaint villages, and red phone boxes it soon becomes clear that things are far from normal.”

The atmosphere the developers are trying to invoke with Atomfall is also summarised in the trailer blurb: “post-war Britain with Cold War paranoia, folk horror, and elements of classic British sci-fi.” It’s shot to the top of my list of games to watch out for.

When will Atomfall be released?

There isn’t a specific release date yet, just sometime in 2025. We do know that it will be coming to PC, Xbox, and PlayStation and that it’s a day-one Game Pass title, so subscribers to the service can play it as soon as it releases.

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