Rust is a post-apocalyptic survival game, which pits players against nature, and each other.
[It should be noted that Rust is currently in beta, so what you play at the moment is not what you’ll ultimately get. You can see what will (likely) end up in the final game by playing Experimental mode – in theory. I’ve yet to be able to get it working, so the following is based on playing the basic version.]
Rust is simultaneously the type of game that I love to play, and that I’m terrible at playing.
I enjoy the gathering and crafting aspect, and am even happy to face off against wolves and bears (unfortunately, zombies were removed to avoid similarities with Day Z), but as soon as other people and a first-person shooter format are thrown into the mix, you can pretty much guarantee that I’m going to a) die horribly, and b) lose all my shit. Repeatedly. Which is pretty much what Rust is all about, really.
Even with zombies no longer being on the scene, it’s the PVP aspect of the game that makes me think that Rust still classifies as a horror game. There’s something about being chased through a pitch black landscape by someone with a gun (and their gamma turned up so they can still see in the dark, which is something I’ve yet to try) that, if you’re anything like me, will get your blood pumping. Especially if you’re also being chased by a mutant wolf, which is determined to give away your hiding spot with its bloody barking!
It’s this constant threat of discovery that makes Rust what it is; and this is why your choice in server is going to be an important factor in your enjoyment of the game. I was lucky enough to start on a server that had enough traffic to keep things interesting, but not so much that it was impossible to gather resources and build up a bit of a safe haven. Unfortunately, it went down and hasn’t come back up in a couple of weeks, so I’ve had to flit about in an effort to find a replacement. I’ve played on servers where I’ve been the only one on all day (which isn’t all that fun), and servers where there have been over a hundred players on at a time and I saw more of the death screen than anything else (which is also not too fun).
Still, it’s a testament to the fun of the game that I’m still looking, rather than moving on to some other game (or, God forbid, something more productive!).