Rust is an apocalyptic survival sandbox being developed by the creator of another game called Garry’s mod, Facepunch Studio. The basis of the game is set on a deserted island where you have to craft, build and scavenge scarce resources to survive against the wildlife and other online players. Before I get too deep into the review let me point out that the game is an early access meaning that it is not the final release, because of this don’t be surprised to witness unfinished content, bugs, glitches and more glitches!
Despite the game being in development for well over 3 years you can still expect to find a healthy player base with many servers ranging from a colossal of 250 players all the way down to a manageable 10.
However there is more than just the plain old vanilla server to play on, you can find a selection of servers that have mods installed which include game enhancing mods such as automatic doors or an RPG style levelling mod which add in extra content as well as the ability teleport.
As a single player experience the game is lacking, this is partly due to the online only aspect of the game as well as the time it takes to gather resources to build up a fortified base. For this reason I would recommend playing the game with a friend or finding a friendly person on the server who is willing to take you in and nurture you into a fully fledged rustling, otherwise be prepared to be killed on site as this seems to be a common trend on rust.
This can be rather frustrating to begin with as you can find yourself dying multiple times before you even have chance to build a small shelter.
Despite the somewhat trigger happy community rust has, the game can be rewarding when you find a secluded spot to set up your base, expand, defend and reinforce until you find yourself at a certain point… (More of that later)
Whilst playing, the overall experience can tend to be a bit jarring at times due to the nature of the bugs at this stage in the development. Some aren’t too noticeable but there is one particular bug that is just overwhelmingly annoying, the animals.
They may seem innocent enough but the second you chase one or get chased by one, it becomes clear that the game has a few underlying issues because animals have the ability to move through objects.
The animals in the game ignore collision boundaries meaning they can clip through walls, rocks, trees etc… The fact that you can be sleeping all safe and sound in your fortified base to then logging on to find a bear had mauled you in your sleep can be unfair and disheartening.
Moving on to that certain point mentioned earlier, once you have a super indestructible base you start to notice the game gets a little old and repetitive. Don’t stop playing there, you see, there is a darker side to rust that brings the game up another level which is Raiding.
Raiding in rust changes the perspective on how the game should be played, in the beginning it’s more of a survival against all odds, but now the odds have stacked in your favour.
Over the time course of the game, multiple resources such as guns and explosive would have been collected and crafted; these items give you the ability to make enemies across the server and the ability to defence.
Having the ability to break into someone’s base under the cover of night is a thrilling, adrenaline rushed experience that can be either immensely rewarding or heartbreaking. On the flip side of this though, being raided can leave you overwhelmed and in a mad panic, especially if you are online trying to fight the attackers off.
This simple mechanic is what makes rust one of the most addictive and greatest games out there today, no other game can have you coming back with the fear of being raided and then give you that sense of relief when you log on and check your base
Personally I think that even in this unfinished state, Rust has the potential to push through the crowded survival sandbox and take the crown to be one of the best survival games.