‘Rust’: The second job you never wanted


A player scouts a base. image from rust.facepunch.com Photo credit: facepunch.com

Ulises Duenas

After being in early access for over four years, “Rust” still has a lot of issues that keep it from achieving its potential. While the idea of a survival game is interesting, the execution of it in “Rust” makes for a game that is too annoying to like.

When you begin “Rust,” you’re dropped into a large, open map with nothing but a rock and a torch. There’s no objective and no way to win, the aim is to gather resources and build bases. Since the game is multiplayer, only other players will constantly try to kill you and take whatever you have on you or rob your base. Survival games usually don’t have any kind of traditional structure, but not having any concrete goals makes the whole experience feel hollow. Even when experienced players manage to band together and build large bases loaded with rare materials the servers reset periodically and make everyone start from scratch.

On a technical level, the game is full of issues. Lag was a constant problem, even on servers where I had low ping. Hit detection is spotty, even when lag isn’t a problem. Objects like cars and trees sink into the ground or clip into walls.

I started having a better time when I joined up with a couple of friends, but that only made the game slightly more tolerable. Any game is more fun with friends and even then we got bored with terrorizing new players and building sub-par bases. It’s a game where you have to make your own fun, but unlike similar games like “Minecraft” and “Don’t Starve,” there are too many problems that get in the way.

The most polarizing mechanic in the game is that when you log off the game world still goes on. This means that your base can be raided when you’re not playing. This requires players to either dedicate most of their free time to the game or to join up with a group that is full of players in different time zones to keep watch on their base. I can understand the appeal of such a hardcore game, but since the core gameplay isn’t rewarding, it makes the whole thing seem like an even bigger waste of time.

Games like this can change drastically over time and the foundation of “Rust” is promising. It’s shame that so much of what is built on that foundation falls so short of what this game could be. It might be great in the future, but right now it’s only worth two stars.

[Final Score: 2/5]

Ulises Duenas can be reached at [email protected] or @OrionUlisesD on Twitter.