Rage was an interesting experience for me. As a long time fan of id I was looking forward to Rage. However, when it was released, it was met with mediocre reviews. I usually never let such atrocities affect my decision, but this time around I was indeed affected and never went out and supported the latest from id. Late is better than never I guess, and I have just spent several hours in the wasteland, and I came out with just the response I feared. It was OK.
Rage begins with an end of the world by GIANT meteor story, that kicks off with you being part of Earth’s last hope. You and a selected group across the world are going to be placed in Arcs that will hibernate you until after the apocalypse has passed. Unfortunately (but foreseeably), when you awaken in your Arc, you are the only survivor. The Arcs haven’t really worked as planned. You are then thrust into the wasteland and expected to be everyone’s hero for no real reason. Then it just pretty much ends. Just like that. Boom, all over. As in you were playing 8 hours of monster killing, then started killing hordes of mutants, pressing buttons, and then BAM cinematic.
Rage is not a game I recommend for its story, however there were some really positive aspects that kept me playing even when I just stopped caring about what I was doing. Weapons in Rage are awesome. Every weapon has 4 different ammo types and each one has a specific purpose. Equip the crossbow and mind control arrows to take over a baddie standing next to a shield guy, then press A to make him explode, killing the shield guy with him. Want to watch more enemies explode? Equip the shotgun with Pop Rockets and go out and enjoy yourself some good ole enemy sludge. How about going back to the crossbow, equipping electro bolts, firing them into water where some bandits are, and then watching them fry?!? Even though killing in all those different ways was fun, driving is what had me coming back for more. From the moment you start up Rage you are met with the Rage logo and the sound of a car engine. I thought that was ironic, until experiencing how amazing driving in Rage is. It’s like Mad Max meets Twisted Metal. I completed almost every race and enjoyed killing many bandits with my pimped out buggy. Yeah it was PIMPED OUT! I had everything from turrets, heat seeking rockets, shields, a shockwave effect, a flying drone that assisted me, and more. At every town there are races and each race offers you a few options ranging from time trails, laps with no weapons, laps with weapons, etc. Every race you win, and each bandit you kill earns you race tickets that can be used to upgrade your buggy. I almost wish they would make a stand alone Rage open world racing game!! (Multiplayer attempts to add even more nuances to racing, and it implies that the developer knew that driving was the strength of the game.)
What?! I can dream! Maybe like for the arcade. id, you should be reading this!!
Beyond the Guns and Cars, Rage is even more impressive visually. The game is truly stunning. Wonderful landscapes, creepy sewers, a destroyed city, are all beautifully rendered with id’s engine. It’s really heartbreaking that I lost interest in the characters and the world itself, seeing how polished it was. This is why Rage was met with just average reviews, because although it is way above average on certain levels, it falls short where it really counts. Without a drive to continue, many would simply stop playing (like Drew) before even making it to what has to be the world’s worst game ending ever. id, I still believe in you and although it wasn’t the best I did have fun while playing around in your wasteland. I look forward to leaving Rage in the “wasteland” where it belongs and looking towards the future…
Rage’s wasteland gets a 6.5/10