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About RustRust is a survival video game in development by Facepunch Studios for Microsoft Windows, OS X, and Linux. Rust was originally released onto Steam's Early Access program on 11 December 2013. The game tasks players to survive in the wilderness by crafting items using the materials they gather or steal.
The game was initially created as a clone of DayZ, a popular mod for ARMA 2 with the addition of crafting elements. Since Rust's first alpha launch, animals, hunting and the ability to craft armor and weapons have been added. It initially featured zombies as enemies, but subsequently replaced them with bears and wolves.
Since its release, it has been met with mostly positive reviews. Reviewers praised the concept and gameplay, while noting the unfinished state was apparent. As of the end of 2015, Rust has sold over 3 million copies.
The object of the game is to survive in a harsh open world, starting with next to nothing and working to rebuild as the player sees fit. Wolves and bears represent a threat to new characters, but the primary danger comes from other players. There is no option to turn off player vs player combat. In order to survive, the player must craft tools, find blueprints, build fortresses and team up with other players. Unlike many other sandbox games, Rust only features a multiplayer mode.
Upon starting a new character, the player will have only a rock and a torch, the former of which can be used to cut down trees and break apart stones. In order to survive in the world, the player must gather resources such as wood and stone and craft tools, weapons and other gear. The player can gather cloth, food, stone, metal ore, sulfur ore and wood by killing animals, mining rocks and chopping trees. They start with an initial list of items which they can craft, represented as blueprints. As the player finds new blueprints, they gain the ability to craft new, more complex objects. Blueprints can be found in specific places around the map, such inside randomly generated monuments (sometimes referred to as "dungeons" and were previously known as "radtowns"), and in barrels. Monuments used to contain radiation hazards, the hazard was removed in a later update because of the annoyance it was causing players.
An important element in Rust is the concept of airdrops. These happen randomly, or may be called in by players using rare consumables called "supply signals". Airdrops are parachute-equipped palettes of supplies that are delivered via a propeller plane, and can be seen coming in over extremely long distances. This causes a rush of players seeking the supplies every time it happens. Players who use supply signals tend to do so inside of a base, to prevent other players from looting the supplies they called in.
Combat is accomplished with bows, melee weapons and craftable guns. Bullets and other projectiles travel via a ballistic trajectory, with optional "High Velocity" (HV) ammunition that experiences less drop over distance. Damage is calculated using hit tracking, making shots to the head or chest more damaging than — for instance — shots to the leg or arm. Holosights, scopes and suppressors can be attached to the guns.
The player must stay well fed or they will die of starvation. There are other challenges the player may face during gameplay, such as drowning, hypothermia, attacks from wildlife (primarily from bears and wolves), or exposure to radiation from the many irradiated areas throughout the world. Some irradiated areas surround generated structures throughout the game map, which can contain regularly spawned items such as firearms and blueprints. This provides an incentive to the player to risk exposure for the items. A prevalent concept in Rust is to form a "clan" with other players. These clans usually create housing for their members, provide items and supplies with each other and partake in organized raiding of other players and looting.
The development for Rust began as a clone of DayZ, a popular mod for ARMA 2, as well as featuring elements of Minecraft. Garry Newman, the CEO of Facepunch Studios, said "Rust started off as a DayZ clone. But then we decided that we are sick of fighting zombies. And can't compete with the Arma island in terms of landmarks and towns". Following its initial alpha launch, updates for Rust were released, adding mechanics such as animals, hunting, armor and weapons. In February 2014, zombies were removed from Rust and replaced with black bears and wolves. Early on in the development, the choice was made not to try to populate the world with interesting locations to explore, but rather give the players the ability to create such places. Newman described it as "we give them the tools, they make the world".
One of the aims of the developers was to create a world which doesn't encourage any particular kind of behavior from players. They considered implementing a system similar to DayZ in which players who kill other players get unique outfits that identify them as 'bandits', or possibly a rating or color-coded system. However, the developers ultimately rejected all of these, as they felt it would detract from player freedom. Instead, they found to their surprise that the implementation of voice chat had a noticeable effect on player behavior. With the ability to communicate, many players would no longer kill each other on sight out of fear.
The game is currently in alpha stages of development, and is being distributed via Steam's Early Access program. In late 2014, an "experimental mode" for Rust was released and the game was ported onto Unity 5. The experimental mode featured a new anti-cheat system and banned over 4,500 accounts over the first weekend of release. In October 2014, the experimental mode became the default launch option. In the original game, the heads-up display featured statistics such as health, hunger and radiation level. These were later replaced, the radiation level was changed to thirst and hidden statistics such as hypothermia were also added.
In July 2015, female models were added to the game but were only available for server administrators in order to test them. Similar to the skin color attribute, users will be automatically assigned a gender which is permanently linked to their Steam account. Later in 2015, cosmetic items for guns, clothing and other objects were added to the game. When Valve introduced the "Item Stores", Rust was the first game on Steam to use the feature. The Steam Community Market was also selling the cosmetics, resulting in clashing prices, with some being cheaper in the store and some being more expensive.
Though still in alpha release, Rust has garnered some praise. PC Gamer writer Andy Chalk said Rust was a great use of Early Access and even though "it's far from finished", it's ready to be played. Another PC Gamer writer, Christopher Livingston wrote a 3-day 'diary' about his experiences in the games world and how the gameplay works. Matt Purslow, a writer for PCGamesN wrote in his review of Rust he was positive it will be worth the wait even if it's the end of 2015 before it's better than what it was at the beginning of 2014. His verdict was to wait. The YouTube channel Extra Credits commended Rust for promoting diversity in the way in which the game decides for the player their in-game race; by randomly selecting a player's race and tying it to their Steam ID, the game can force players to experience the game as a different race than they would normally experience, thereby promoting a greater level of empathy for what it might be like to be someone of different ethnicity than the player. Garry Newman commented that he had felt some trepidation towards adding this feature, fearing that it might be seen as just the original character model "blacked up", and stressed how the chosen ethnicity was permanent as "just like in real life, you are who you are".
Rust sold over 150,000 copies in its first two weeks, whereas Garry's Mod had sold 34,000 within the same amount of time. Rust sales hit one million after two months as an Early Access title and by the end of 2015, Rust had sold over 3 million copies. By February 2014, Rust had overtaken Garry's Mod in terms of sales, making over US$30 million. Other games, such as The Forest, H1Z1: Just Survive, Ark: Survival Evolved, and 7 Days to Die were compared to Rust because of the open world survival aspect. These games also have crafting mechanics similar to Rust.