Review by DandyQuackShot
"The Only Part I Liked Was Being Rescued by John Goodman"
Here I submit my utter disappointment at one of the most hal-baked games thus far. From the "creators" of Doom, Quake, and by the developers famous for Elder Scrolls Oblivion, Skyrim, and Fallout 3 and Fallout New Vegas, we have the most atomic of all bombs in Rage. Rage is not a particularly bad game if you have not played any of the above mentioned other games. In fact this game is well rounded in being a simple first person shooter. If you were expecting more, however, Rage does not bring it to the table. The short attention grabbing opening is fun. You emerge from a state suspended animation to find out that the world did not do so well without you and you have to fix it by killing all the bandits, mutants, and generically named Authority that exists to make life even more miserable for those who still claim to be human. This three disc game (two for the campaign, one for multiplayer) is a simple shooter that sends you from point to point on a mission to stop an insane general from creating his own version of a mad world. It was not supposed to end like this, but after a catastrophic asteroid crashes into Earth, why not make life more miserable? This is the same exact concept of Fallout 3 and what Rage lacks in an original concept and story it does not make up for in the side games of racing dune buggies.
For a story line, the game falls as dead flat as a mutant in a Monster Bash episode. Right after you break out of your Ark, you encounter a world that exists hundreds of years after you should have already been dead and you are immediately welcomed by some wasteland mutants. And who comes to your rescue? None other than John Goodman, I mean, Big Dan, I mean, Dan Haggar. I don't think there is a role out there with the character name of Dan that John Goodman has not played. Dan gets you into his dune buggy and takes you to his hideaway in the remote dry desert canyons where you find yourself. After a brief (and I do mean brief) introduction, Dan is already ordering you around to go kill bad guys and do his dirty work. He wouldn't do it just because, but because you carry nanotrites in your body which help to revive and heal you in times of great distress. Dan spills the beans on what is going on with the Ark survivors as they are being hunted by some mean guys called the Authority, but it is not until way later in the game before you find out what is really going on with the Authority and who is behind it. Each time you run into somebody they make you do their errands and eventually pass you off to the next place. Ultimately you find the resistance leaders that help you take on the Authority jerks.
Game play is very linear compared to the Fallout games. Sure, you can backtrack if you need to with the side missions that you acquire from random dwellers in the game, but after that you are going from Point A to Point B. This gets repetitive after you realize that you have to do everybody's dirty work in getting rid of bandits and mutant infestations. After burning up one whole game disc you finally get around to taking on the Authority types but this goes very quickly. In order to proceed to new missions you have to continually upgrade your method of transportation and upgrade the kind of dune buggy you drive. Therefore you have to participate in races and rocket rallies to win a new car. The racing is okay, but it just gets repetitive like everything else in this game.
In a world devastated by a massive asteroid, it seems like weapons, ammunition, gas and V6 engines, would be hard to produce, much less come by. Not so much in the world of Rage. There are some very clever inventions, gadgets, and technology that make the world of Rage very much like a modern day game with remote RC car bombs, homing rockets, advanced pistol and rifle ammunition. Not much is explained in this game so you just have to go with it. The weapons are nothing new and only feature selective ammo for certain guns.
The missions you have to go on vary but usually are about retrieving some item or clearing out bad guys. At least the AI enemies in the game do really well in taking cover and working with each other to try to take you out. I noticed one of the Authority guys got behind another Authority guy with a shield for cover and I thought that was very clever but not as clever as me with a rocket launcher. The bandit groups vary and in some instances you get to take on giant mutants. I hated when they would disappear on you as you get used to running over dead bodies and searching them for money or ammo. Random objects can be picked up to sell for cash or to make items out of like lock grinders and RC cars. Why dollars are still currency in post apocalyptic America I don't know. Why not bottle caps? The developers threw in the Fallout bobbleheads.
The third disc features the multiplayer part of the game. You can play some extra missions by yourself or cooperatively. These extra missions are called Wasteland Legends. I tried the first one about Dan and how he came across his favorite weapon. You also have the competitive rally races in case you wanted more dune buggy mayhem and action. The game could not even get the grammar right. Rocks that fall from space and hit the ground are called meteorites. So the Meteor Rally where you have to collect the meteors kind of dune bugged me. For the competitive mode there are leaderboards for the various game types and I was easily able to get into a Quick Match so the online community is still very active.
There are a few things to do in Rage after you beat it. There are the multiplayer aspects of the game which add to the game length and in the campaign there are plenty of side games and missions to complete. I was able to complete this game in about twelve hours. It is rather long and repetitive and the achievements are fairly easy to collect as most are wrapped up in the campaign. A few DLC missions are available, but even though I picked up the Anarchy Edition I still could not find motivation to do the sewer mission.
Final Recommendation 6/10
Rage is simply not an original game nor does it come close to matching the classics preceding the resumes of those who created this game. I was rather disappointed after the pretty cool opening to Rage as the game drops your interest due to a lack of a decent plot and the repetitive game play in the campaign. John Goodman was great though and I wish his character would have had a more lasting role in the game. As long as the game is it also ends very abruptly so be prepared for that disappointment. I do not see a Rage 2 happening anytime soon nor would I care to pick up a sequel for this game. Overall this game is okay if you have not played the Fallout games or do not have high expectations for Rage. The hype certainly did not help this game at all.
Reviewer's Score: 6/10 | Originally Posted: 03/11/13
Game Release: Rage (US, 10/04/11)
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