When I first saw Rust in the Steam store, I didn't think much of it, the logo was simple, something you'd expect from an average indie game like Meatboy or Fez, then looking at the screenshots it seemed even more simplistic since every image was of hands in a first person view holding a rock, staring a endlessly similar empty fields and mountains. However, it wasn't until I started reading the comments that I realize this was a game I absolutely have to experience for myself. Some of these comments included the following:
"I love this game, I built a house around a guys house and made him my prisoner, I fed him cans of tuna and cooked chicken when it was available, and some times I would drop in spare logs of wood(when they were available). The best part. he talks to me, keeps telling me his clans going to raid my structure and save him..."
"Chased a guy with a rock, with a rock, around a rock. Game Rocks."
"A lot of naked men throwing rocks and trying to survive against zombies, animals and other naked men."
After giving it a try, I can safely say that all these situations are completely plausible and provides endless amounts hilarious fun.
Rust is a new survival game created by Facepunch Studios which combines the survival zombie post-apocalyptic Day-Z atmosphere with the resource mining and building of Minecraft. Although it is currently only in the early alpha stage of development, it has already seen rapid growth with approximately 10 official servers, 1000+ community servers and 3000+ modded servers. The basic premise is to survive but the advanced goals are to gain the ability to craft any item, build strong fortification, create trusted alliances, build and collect costly weapons and explosives towards the ultimate goal of raiding another player or groups base.
First thing to note was that I had originally expected to just play Rust on a casual basis but now a week later, I find myself spending up to 6 hours a day on Rust. You spend days collecting materials, dying countless times until you get to a point when you've built a reasonable base and collected enough arms and resources to be a threat to others. That's when they start coming in the middle of the night or early morning to take all that hard work away from you so you have no choice but constantly defend your hard work. There is no doubt it may be one of the most addictive life consuming games in existence. Although psychologically, we are fully aware that it is just game. That if you die, it doesn't affect real life, we can help but feel the urge to avoid death at all cost. Another driving force that keeps us coming back everyday is revenge. It only takes minutes if not seconds to make enemies, and once the same guy has killed you for no reason enough times, it's difficult to not have that feeling of wanting to build up to a point that you can get your much-needed justice. Lastly, if you happen to make friends or already have friends playing with you, the pressure of responsibility and commitment to each other is a phenomenal driving force that keeps us playing everyday.
There is no doubt that no matter what is happening in my life or work, if I get a call that we are being raided and I'm at my computer, I don't hesitate to log in and protect my base with my friends.
It is amazing to see the amount of progress the game has made, the growth of the community and the tremendous improvisation that players have made through out the game that constantly change the rules of the game beyond the basics. In a sense it is ever evolving as people continue to find new way to defend and kill each other. I've played countless games in my life but no game has ever given me that real high pressure, adrenalin pumping, heart pounding fear that I feel when raiding or being raided. I expect that it is a strong contender to Day-Z and has the potential to over take some of the most popular games today including League of Legends and World of Warcraft. My conclusion is that it truly is a game changer with endless possibilities and just generally fun and exciting to play. If you haven't tried it yet, it's an experience in this decade that you don't want to miss out on, but be prepared to get sucked in and spend countless 15 hour stretches in the game, since your survival depends on it.
In the beginning
You start out arriving in the middle of no where, an open field and completely naked (depending on the server) and when we say naked we literally mean no clothes with your privates hanging out. If you look in your inventory, again depending on the server, you'll commonly find a rock, a torch (that does have a usage limit) and 2 bandages. The first thing you'll notice is that there is no map and no sense of direction or location. The controls take a bit getting used to, you walk around and interact just as you would in any general first person shooter but the crafting and building part takes a bit getting used to. Browsing through the crafting menu, you'll find the raw materials requirements needed to begin crafting some basic items such as clothes, a campfire, bandages, shelter and rudimentary weapons such as a bow, stone hatchet or handmade guns. Now that you know what you need to find, you'll need to start farming animals, trees and stone to make all the items you need. A quick way to learn more advanced items is to raid the radiation areas such as radiated fields or towns which have supply boxes that spawn with items or blueprints for making more advanced items such as automatic weapons, ammo, armor, etc.
If you are playing solo, it can be quite challenging. First of all, you will most likely be at a disadvantage when meeting other people, especially if they are already established with advanced items but even still running into another "naked" doesn't mean they are friendly and even before you can great them they may already be chasing after you with a rock attempting to bash your brains in. The most common greeting for newbies is "Please don't shoot, are you friendly?" if they don't kill you immediately they might when you turn your back so the first rule is don't trust anyone.
It's not long before you find yourself cold and hungry so after killing some animals and collecting a bit of wood you can make a campfire and cook your food. Hopefully you didn't arrive in the middle of night when it is so dark you can't see your own hand in front of your face but if you did, just find a safe hiding place and wait it out until dusk. It's best to quickly find a safe hidden area where you can build a shelter and a door, this allows you to have a safe place to return to after farming for essentials and avoiding sitting outside at night. People generally will leave sheds alone only because they are a waste of time and effort to raid with low return.
Playing With Friends
Well the most frustrating thing about playing with a friend in the beginning is finding each other. What I've learned is that it's best to first know the map via www.rustmap.net so that you can find the road, follow it and identify key landmarks to head towards such as Small Rad Town, Big Rad Town, Hanger, etc. If you don't know your map another useful thing is to also use sunrise and sunset as ways to identify where you are and where you need to go. My first time playing Rust, before I know the map, I had to tell my friends that I was at the sunrise and heading away from the sun after they told me that earlier they were on the coast where the sun set. It's still not easy but good enough to start. Once you find each other, hopefully not having died countless times to animals, other players or suicide, you can work together to pool resources much faster. Farming is quicker and people tend to be more cautious when approaching people in numbers if they are alone because even a fully armored player with advanced weapons can be murdered by two skilled rock fighting pros.
Absolute Must Play!9
Graphics score 7
Gameplay score 8
Difficulty score 7
Freshness score 8
Replayability score 9
8 Quick Survival Tips
This game is pretty much a learn as you go and generally the world is what you make of it. There is no correct way to play it but if you are surviving or even thriving, you are probably doing something right or at least what works for you. You don't have to do or be anything, you don't have to be brutal but you also don't have to be nice. We have seen aggressive Kill On Sight players gain leverage over people and resources and at the same time seen peaceful non-violent groups take over entire servers with their debt building play style. The point is try anything and everything, play multiple servers to test our your alter-ego and see what is successful for you. I personally feeling being yourself is the best since it comes naturally and with unlimited lives and resources (sort of) the person you want to be or think you can be will be amplified many folds.
8 Quick Survival Tips
1. Avoid populated areas
Walk around in the rocks and trees away from the road when moving around. Don't go near radiation areas because chances are that well armed players are always scouring those areas for resources.
2. Be aware of day cycles
The last thing you want is to be stuck outside, away from home in the dark, so always keep in mind when the sun is beginning to set and how long it will take to get back home safely. Many bad things can happen at night and often do such as running in to aggressive animals, walking off cliffs and breaking your legs, being chased by animals then walking off a cliff breaking your legs or running into people with guns who can see in the dark while you can't and one of the worst of all in my opinion is walking in the completely wrong direction and finding yourself in a completely unknown area when the sun rises which in my case I was holding tons of resources but was completely off the map in the deserted areas which took 2 hours just to walk back to civilization.
3. Don't trust anyone, even your friends at first
Just as in real life, you can't just immediately trust people the first time you meet, trust has to be earned over time. There is a high probability that people will use you and kill you when you are no longer needed. If someone says in an aggressive tone Stop! there is really no intention of letting you live even if they say I won't shoot, they probably will and are waiting for a better shot by stalling you so just run.
4. Use forest for cover instead of mountains.
If someone is chasing you and shooting at you, a dense forest with trees is a much better cover than mountains. Weaving around trees is not only harder to see but provides ample cover from a majority of shots. I've had people empty out 10 magazine trying to shoot me through forest coverings. Mountains are only good if you know the way very well and you feel you have gained significance distance from your threat but if you have a close and immediate threat on you, mountains can be your demise. Firstly because there is no real cover, secondly you may run into dead ends, thirdly steep inclines are often the only way up and they will slow you down and are wide open areas, and lastly there is always the chance that you'll slip and break a leg.
5. If you see someone, don't hesitate to speak.
Be first to announce your presence and intent with something simple. I usually start with "Hey whats up, I'm friendly, don't shoot, I'm just farming here." "Sometimes it's good to make an offering such as telling them what you have or what you can spare and say "I got some good and ore, I can give you some if you let me go." or if you are really sure of yourself you can always attack them when their guard is down.
6. If you hear a wolf or bear chasing you, run!
Run first and for a little awhile before you turn around and plan your attack. Often people hear the wolf or bear and immediately turn around and that is often just enough time for them to take a swipe at you to make you bleed. It's better to run first because you can get the distance you need to gauge what the next thing to do is. Options are climbing on rocks, however the AI is pretty smart now and will find ways around, out running it completely, which is extremely hard with wolves since they never give up, or lastly using the stall technique which is timing the animals attack and moving into it so that it can't hit you then backing up to allow yourself to get a hit on it.
7. Don't over stock, make just enough to get by.
The bigger goal is making a real place that includes 1 foundation, 1 ceiling, 3 walls, 1 doorway, and a door. Finding a quite place where you can farm safely for wood should be your first priority because breaking down a house is difficult enough for people that they won't waste their time and resources on it. Especially if it doesn't look like you have large storage boxes inside that would be stock piling resources. You should probably have in mind the goal of making a 1x1 home with a wooden door, then build a furnace and focus on enough metal ore to quickly replace the wood door with a metal door. After than build one small storage box but use your furnace as a safe storage space for valuables so that it doesn't look like you have tons of valuable loot in your home. The idea is to make it unappealing until you can expand bigger to a point that hides visibility to your core storage area.
8. Quickly make friends that you can trust.
We know people and the types of people you can trust or can't trust in the real world are amplified here in Rust. You can pretty much tell in a few seconds if this person annoys you or will probably betray you because if you think you can't trust them chance are they are much worst than you suspected.