Mad Max Roars Out, Dragging Movies To Steam Too

Mad Max [official site], the open-world apocalypse ’em up from Just Cause devs Avalanche Studios has arrived on Steam, and so has Mad Max, the post-apocalyptic watch ’em up series from Babe director George Miller.

Seeing the four Mad Max films on Steam is quite a surprise, given that Valve’s moving picture offerings so far have mostly been small indie films and documentaries about video games. It helps that Warner Bros. distributed the movies as well as publishing the game, but still, coo, Fury Road! More than ever, I wish Steam’s films were games.

We didn’t receive a copy of Mad Max to review before launch, but we’ll be murdering away to tell you Wot We Think when we can. For now, er, here’s its TV commercial:

As for Mad Max the movies, here’s Wot I Think: Mad Max is a pretty great action-thriller in a society falling apart, though it drags in places like ’70s thrillers will. Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior is a cracking film, and doesn’t get enough credit/blame for being a huge influence on video games. Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome continues the series’ escalation of budget and scope, losing its way in the expanding spectacle; some will moan endlessly about this film if you let them, but can’t we get beyond Thunderdome? Mad Max: Fury Road is boss as heck.

I don’t know if I’d buy any of the movies to stream on Steam, though. The Road Warrior and Beyond Thunderdome are £9.99 each, which seems a lot. Fury Road will launch on September 21st priced at £13.99, for which I could’ve seen it twice at my local cinema on a huge screen with booming sound. And the original Mad Max is only available in a bundle with the game and all the movies for £67.10. I don’t buy digital movies unless that’s the only way I’ll get to see them, though, so I’m not the target audience. But who is? Are you? Do you buy streaming movies? What’d get you buying movies on Steam?

39 Comments

  1. Kefren says:

    Gravelly voice. Action. The end of the world.
    And suddenly…
    “Rated M for Mature!” squeaked Dandal McFly, who always liked to get in the last word.

  2. Phinor says:

    Worth nothing that the movies are heavily region locked. Only available in very few select countries in the world. North America, few other countries around the world and I guess couple of European countries, but definitely not most of them.

    Which is what Steam really needed. More region locks and restrictions.

    • Lyrion says:

      My guess is that they don’t have other translations other then English so only english speaking countries get the movies? Probably skips over Germany, France ect…

      • purex. says:

        In Portugal foreign movies are pretty much always subtitled, only ever re-dubbed when the target audience is children and, even then, the original language is always available. Since these movies aren’t available on Steam over here (as far as I can tell), I would say that’s not the case (everywhere, at least).

      • MaXimillion says:

        Yet they’re selling the game in a lot of countries it’s not translated for. A decision that only makes sense if you’re a media company executive.

        • Premium User Badge

          Rublore says:

          Also not available in some English-speaking countries. Australia, for instance.

          • Premium User Badge

            Rublore says:

            The movies, that is. Game is out here.

          • WALLS says:

            where the fucking films were set and shot. wow

          • wu wei says:

            @WALLS: That has more to do with our local film distributors being monopolistic pricks than anything else, though.

      • Phinor says:

        Speaking of language/translation/localization issues, I absolutely refuse to buy any movies without English subtitles and thanks to localization, movies released in Finland rarely have English subtitles. So when services like Netflix become available here, they are always useless thanks to localization.

        Basically I love localization. It can delay things for years, even indefinitely, and the end result is something I would never pay for. Thanks localization.

      • DuncanIdah0 says:

        It is available in Spain, with English and Spanish audio. So at least, one non-enlgish speaking country.

    • Det. Bullock says:

      The problem with movies is that over the years many major studios handed over distribution rights to smaller distributors in many countries and that differently from games which usually are only “languae locked” (that is, you won’t get the translated version, but at least you can buy it in english) movies cannot be distributed in any form or language in certain countries without the local distributor having a say in the matter, which is extremely damaging in the digital age.
      Here in Italy film buffs are still throwing curses on some of our local distributors that happen to be sitting on classics like Michael Mann’s “Heat” or Raimi’s “Army of Darkness” and won’t bother to publish a Blu Ray for those who don’t have the money to import or wanted to see the movie with subtitle-hating friends and family.

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        basilisk says:

        Indeed. The trouble with the film industry is that it (quite understandably) never expected to be dealing with a global and almost single-language market and the system of regional distributors, exclusive contracts, rights to various language versions and formats etc. that has been uncontrollably developing for many decades is incredibly messy.

        The situation in the music industry was bad enough, but this is even worse. Region locking is a legacy issue that will take a very long time to resolve, because lawyers are expensive and the return on investment is very uncertain. So this is not necessarily Steam’s fault; limited distribution is arguably better than no distribution at all.

      • Andrew says:

        “Language lock” is when you can’t buy a game in English, but only in a language that you probably don’t speak at all, only because it was one of the official languages dozen of years ago then your country was part of another one. *cough*CIS*cough*

  3. Kollega says:

    I don’t think I’m going to buy the game, even though it’s Avalanche. And the reason is simple – as post-apocalyptic settings go, Mad Max the game is one big cliche, because Mad Max the movies have pretty much invented many parts of that cliche. I would most likely buy it if the world wasn’t your typical desert wasteland and the characters wouldn’t dress entirely in leather and spikes.

    It’s an interesting question whether we should give a free pass in terms of using played-out literary tropes to the works that started them. A lot of genre classics can suffer from this (two obvious examples: The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress for sci-fi and Lord of the Rings for fantasy).

  4. trjp says:

    Movies on Steam – fine, I’ve no issue with that at all

    BUT

    1 – I’d like to be able to choose whether they appear in my feed/find them in a category of some sort (not currently possible)

    2 – I’d like them not to be 2-3 times the cost of owning them on a physical disc of some sort…

    Valve may be the king of polish with their games – but Steam they seem to have no interest in making work well – if we knew why that was – erm – oh yeah, they’re terrified they fuck-it-up and lose MONEY!

  5. Drew says:

    I suppose once the steam tv link thing comes out in November it might make sense to buy movies on Steam.
    Or perhaps Steam will get into a Netflix type deal and allow rentals and/or subscriptions?

  6. FreeTom says:

    Lawks – i5 3.2 / 6GB / 2GB video MINIMUM. Time to admit my PC is past running modern triple-As. Not that this bothers me right now but what about Fallout 4?

    WHAT THEN?

    • Det. Bullock says:

      Most of the times minimum requirements are overstated nowadays, with my old PC I was able to run Arkham Asylum without too many issues even though technically speaking I was way below the requirements, and even the Arkham City demo ran just fine.
      I could even run the demo of Crysis by disabling motion blur in the configuration file (and even with the motion blur activated it was mostly mild stuttering).
      The only game that really gave me problems was Bioshock because it refused to run on a graphic card without Pixel Shaders 2.0b, and even then I was able to play it a couple of years after when my old card broke and had to buy a more recent card (and a low tier one to boot, it cost me almost € 60,00).

    • aldo_14 says:

      Initial things I’ve read suggests that it’s actually well optimised and will easily run on the min specs. Not sure quite how that all works out, then.

    • FreeTom says:

      There does seem to be a certain amount of guesswork in stated minimum specs, with varying amounts of elevation based on seemingly nothing whatsoever.

      I think a good method that would also remove the need for a lot of Googling and/or technical knowledge would be requirements comparitive to other big-name games.

      E.G. “If you can run Alien: Isolation [or whatever] smoothly then this will be fine too.”

  7. yhancik says:

    I’ve bought music and games online, but never films. I’ve never been interested in the subscription-based platforms because I really only watch stuff once in a while. I know Apple has films on one of its stores, but I’d rather keep away from anything Apple.

    So I really wouldn’t mind if Steam & GoG got more into selling films ;)

  8. Samuel. R says:

    Heh, they aren’t available to buy over Australian Steam. Fortunately, I already own the films, but amusing you can’t even get them in the region they’re set in.

  9. TheMopeSquad says:

    So everyone on my friends list will be able to see how often I watch “Frozen”?

  10. Premium User Badge

    Grizzly says:

    The amount of shirtless men in this game appeals to me.

    • EhexT says:

      The same screen that upgrades Max’s jacket lets you buy an upgrade (for 0 currency) to remove it. It’s hilarious (also contains beard upgrades).

  11. Core says:

    Anyone know how much is the cut Valve gets selling movies? Somehow I doubt big studios tolerate Valve taking 30%.

    • gmillar says:

      How much do you think Wal Mart takes from the sale of a DVD?

      • cunningmunki says:

        People go on about the 30% cut Valve take like it’s some kind of extortion, when it’s just standard retailer margin.
        What these morons also seem to fail to grasp is that, unlike most retail products, games on Steam are DIGITAL, which means they don’t physically EXIST. So considering how much the studios are saving in manufacturing, warehousing and distribution costs, 30% is a snip!

  12. Warlokk says:

    Considering I just got the blu-ray box set of the original 3 movies for $25 on Amazon, those prices are completely insane. I can never understand how streamed/digital versions of stuff can be more expensive than physical copies.

    • WALLS says:

      i guess they rationalize it that disc media gets lost or broken, digital copies last forever. bullshit either way

  13. Deadly Sinner says:

    I like it, but it’s baffling that they priced it so high. You can easily find the blu-ray for the same price (at least in the US.) And, going by the video test that you can watch on Steam, the streaming quality isn’t even as good as Netflix, let alone a blu-ray. (Admittedly, the test could be lower quality than the actual film, since it’s just the trailer.)

    Maybe it will all even out if they go on deep discount during the summer/winter sale.

  14. aldo_14 says:

    If they have the same sort of sale discount as they have for games, I’ll likely buy (some) movies from Steam… but I can’t see a massive appeal on the current basis, where they cost more than DVD (and sometimes BluRay) copies and – if I understand rightly – you’d still have to play the movie through something running Steam (which rules out my own little media box thingy hooked up to the TV)

  15. Andrew says:

    I’m sorry to interrupt your discussion about movies, but game’s good. Just sayin’.

  16. Carlos Danger says:

    They do need a filter to be able to remove movies from the list and it will be fine.

  17. racccoon says:

    Its seems a very limit restricted game. I’ve watched a lot of videos and seen it to not be a scavenger hunt, as I thought it would be. It seems your unable to get stuff from everything like you would if you were in that situation. Looking at it, it seems kind of boring with “100% area looted” a unnecessary placed adaption in todays exploration gaming worlds. Also the passing through walls sideways seemed extremely repetitive.
    Shame, as they really did a good job on the enviroment & graphics. I may buy it when its deep in the bin.

  18. cunningmunki says:

    I’d buy films from Steam in a heartbeat when they allow me to also add “non-steam” films to my library and pull in metadata like Kodi and Plex so I can use it as my media-player. Oh, and allow me to watch them offline. Then we’re talking.