ID Software has made some of the best classic game like “DOOM,” “Quake” and “Wolfenstein,” and Bethesda Softworks has made some of today’s best games, such as “The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion” and “Fallout 3.” What happens when you combine the two? You get “RAGE!”
“RAGE” has been described as a combination of “Fallout” and “Borderlands,” and I can definately see how they would choose those two games. There are some similarities, but “RAGE” is far from both “Borderlands” and “Fallout.”
On August 23, 2029 the Apophis asteroid strikes Earth, turning the planet into a wasteland, but new cities are being created by the survivors. Hundreds of people all over the world took part in Project Eden, where they were placed underground in cryogenic pods called Arks to preserve enough of the population to rebuild society. Too bad Project Eden didn’t quite work as planned. 106 years after the asteroid hits you awaken inside an Ark that has apparently taken quite a bit of damage. You emerge as the soul survivor of your Ark and your adventure begins.
Like “Borderlands,” “Rage” relies heavily on automobiles for travel. Don’t even bother trying to walk from place to place because chances are you will not be able to get 20 feet before being run over by an enemy. Also like “Borderlands” the driving mechanics are pretty solid, although there are limited upgrades to play with. Weapons, themes, engine parts, etc.- too bad thats the extent of the upgradeable features, but I’ll get to that later. I found myself buying weapons and a better booster for my cars and that’s about it and it was enough for me to run through the first part of the Wasteland. With all the driving I have done in the game I have only found one glitch that sent me under the map; when driving at high speeds I jumped off the four wheeler before it crashed into rocks. I have tried to duplicate the glitch but have been unsuccessful, so I am assuming it was an isolated incident.
When you reach the town of Wells Spring you will be able to choose and outfit something that will help you stand out less, but after you choose your outfit that’s it for RPG elements. You aren’t able to tweak your armor or weapons. As you progress through the story and complete missions and side quest, all you’ll really get is an alert that the mission has been completed. There is ZERO leveling aspects to “RAGE,” and that upsets me. I expect a lot more from a game released by Bethseda at least.
The voice acting is superb and the graphics are beyond beautiful, and the story is pretty good as well. It takes a little too long to get it started, but when it does you’ll get hooked. There are plenty of side quests to keep you busy, but the only time you have a HUD is when you’re in a vehicle, and this becomes extremely aggravating. Combat is really good; the enemy A.I. is pretty responsive, the Ghosts and Mutants are really wiry. The only problem I have with the combat is that apparently head-shots don’t count as head-shots. You will hit them in the head 5 or 6 times before they register…unless you are using some of the amped up ammo, and no, I do not count that as upgrades because all you have to do is buy or find the ammo.
Like I said, the game looks beautiful but it’s not as open world as you would be lead to believe. And if Bethesda could do me a favor and explain to me why there are doors in all these locations and that are not able to be opened yet you give icons to indicate they can’t be opened. That’s just useless!
In all honesty the game is pretty good, but the lack of customization, lack of open worldness, and generic car upgrades definitely make this a rental only. I am really holding out hope for “Skyrim.”
Final Verdict for RAGE