It’s not every day that your friendly neighborhood video gaming news blog gets up in the middle of a great game and decides to dash out a preliminary review of sorts, just to holler out to all you video gaming crazies just what a great time we’re having with this game. This is one of those times, when we meet a game that makes us send up a prayer of thanks (not always silent) to the patron saint of video gaming, if there’s one. So let us give you a look-in on Rage, the latest FPS offering from id Software, the people who brought us the Doom and Quake video gaming franchises. Rage continues in the same vein as the last Doom and Quake iterations to come out of the id Software Stable, particularly the dark humor and the visceral combat.
Attention Video Gaming Fans: Introducing Rage
At its most basic, Rage tries to bridge two popular video gaming genres: there’s the FPS fun we mentioned, but there’s also generous sprinklings of all the hallmark features of a role-playing-game. With a game world that’s larger than your average FPS, and the stark landscape lending credence to the setting being in a post-apocalyptic wasteland, you’ll find yourself driving from one centre of civilization to another and yet the video gaming experience hardly wanes. You’ll meet strangers who give you quests to complete in return for unique items and weapon/ armor upgrades.
A Sight for Sore Eyes
One could be forgiven for thinking that the large and beautifully done game-world could have also accommodated some good sandbox action. Agreed, that is one popular subgenre of the action gaming world that might have fit quite well into this already interesting blend, but the omission would seem rather deliberate on part of the developers. The open-world gameplay pioneered by the GTA franchise has been done to death, and yet, few games have managed to pull it off with any degree of success in what has become a veritable deathtrap for otherwise decent games, now that there’s also Red Dead Redemption setting a standard in the sandbox video gaming sub-genre. What we have instead is a fairly linear, corridor action first person shooter with the character and arsenal development afforded by the RPG-esque features lending the game a degree of video gaming immersion as well as a faux-sandbox aura of freedom. To add to that the game world is, quite simply, gorgeous. The skies change hue as per the time of the day, with colors of heartbreaking beauty and with clouds so beautifully rendered you’d think it’s the real deal.
An All New Approach Down a Familiar Path
The game world’s sprawling dimensions notwithstanding, you mostly travel down a narrow valley, and the combat action is predominantly close-quarters (wouldn’t be much of a “rage” otherwise, would it?).
Quite similar to Gearbox Software’s 2009 hit Borderlands, the over-world, which you’ll need a vehicle to navigate, has little by way of resources or missions but simply connects you to the different combat spots or quest sources you need to reach.
Rage is in no way the first game to be set in a post-apocalyptic scenario; as a matter of fact it borrows freely from similar titles such as Fallout: New Vegas and Borderlands. What makes it absolutely rollicking fun, however, is the freakishly innovative and absurdly gory combat that is complemented by the insanely good graphics, thus making for an insanely good video gaming experience.
Our Final Word (for now) on Rage
It is a thoroughly enjoyable game that you’ll learn to love warts and all. That holds especially true if, like us, you swore undying loyalty to any game coming from id when you were an impressionable teenager fragging anything that moves to gory bits of virtual blood, flesh and bone with that railgun.
It will be a while before we can really get into the game and dissect it with all the surgical precision we can muster and give you a comprehensive video game review, analyzing the various aspects in greater depth. For that, wait for the next post on this video game blog, while we return to what has so far been a great video gaming experience.