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Raging through the Wasteland

Recently, i was looking for a new single-player game which comes up with a topic other then classical war and combat like WW2 or modern warfare which include currently real existing weapons, equipment and vehicles. I thought about Doom 3 combined with some modifications which make the game well enjoyable. However, the modifications i wanted for Doom 3 ("Perfected Doom 3") didn't worked out for me as they should and so Doom 3 was out for me. Through digging in the net i found RAGE. I heared about it before, but the fact that id Software's flagships Doom- and Quake-Series are simply peaces of junk to me, i didn't investigated anymore on RAGE - until now !

I checked out some gameplay videos. Characters and setting seemed to be interesting. I like well animated and detailed NPCs and the alternating game elements shown in the various videos made my decision to spend some 30 bucks and own the game.

Download, Installation & Setup

RAGE SettingsThe Game is available on Steam and so the installation is quite easy - you just download it and you'r ready to go ! The key, you have to provide when you bind the game to your Steam account. However, RAGE comes with 18 GB and with my decent connection, i had to wait 10 hours before the game was completely loaded. As i started the game and checked the settings, i found out that RAGE automatically detected my screenresolution and ratio -> quite nice ! The Game offer you only less configuration settings on all tabs and categories. I wasn't able to disable the crosshair -> today, a no-go. I digged the net and found a way to disable the whole HUD. I bound 2 keys to disable and enable the HUD but once i started the game, i found out it was useless. Without HUD you can't quick access items like throwing grenades or using bandages. Some keys which are mapped on the keyboard aren't configurable so i had to deal with the issue that my mumble push-to-talk key also switches the item for the quick access ingame. I wished for much more configuration settings. I felt like i'm owning a game-console.

Graphics, Sound ambience & Atmosphere

RAGE GraphicsRAGE comes with an innovative graphics system. Textures are loaded and cached while playing. That gives you a hudge performance plus in point of loading times, but you will need a fast graphic card/chip to play the game fluently. It won't run on low fps and it dont feel like a slideshow if you have a weaker system, but the texture-load ingame will turn out annoying and gives you headaches. In general i like the graphics system. It looks realistic, contribute to the atmosphere, is not overlit or too high detailed. Its just fitting under the point of atmoshpere and usual gameplay. Well done id Software.

RAGE LifeThe whole sound ambience brings many joy to the game. In classical fps combat missions, you have some musics to push your adrenaline. The buggy races come with some cool rock alike tracks and the towns have some western or urban bar theme. Speaking about the genral atmosphere of RAGE, i have to mention the detailled and lovely animated NPCs and their actions all over the game. Some ppl using a jackhammer, welding stuff, laze around, gamble, tidy or cleaning up some stuff. While each NPC is unique, the amount of NPCs, their placement and actions creating the impression of a small and living society. id Software made the world alive in a way i would like to see it in the many RPGs around. Talking to NPCs just feels real due to very detailed gestures. Its the first time i disabled the subtitles of a game to enjoy it more.

RAGE Life 2Most games come with a boring and sterile game-world but RAGE is different. The world is full of useless objects and junk where it needs to. Combined with very good illumination, it adds to the atmosphere. Illumination and light seems anyway not meant to be real, it seems like it is meant to make only the atmosphere and game experience - and it does. Cruising along the open wastelands will show you realistic looking crater and mountains, remaining old human infrastructure and - of course - a very beautiful sky. Also, the wastelands offer a  deep farsightedness over the areas you can explore.

Gameplay & Story

RAGE ActionClassical fps combat, racing and gambling combined with RPG classics. Those are the main elements which define the gameplay of RAGE. The combat AI is excellent. Enemies reacting on your current position, equipment and weapons. Different enemie types may have different combat AI. They can act in groups, build up defenses or start assaults. They react on a grenade once you release it. If they recognize your sniper, they take cover, shoot blind over objects etc. pp. The AI make almost all battles very tactical and gives you the ability to use all your objects. Toys like constructable sentry towers and spiderbots or bombing cars adding up to the combat experience. The enemies are fun to fight and very good implemented  in point of vulnerability. No boring hacknslay alike battles. Armorparts can be shooten off and a headshot kills immediately as long as you hit the head and don't only shoot down the helmet. Flamethrower tanks as well as other gasbottles and explosive liquids, resulting in a nice firework.

RAGE VendorDuring the game you can find and learn construction plans to utilize objects and junk you find to make items. Lockgrinders, explosive cars, special ammo like dynamite bolts or bandages. Ammo and equipment you will find or get it from dead enemies. You can also buy stuff from the local vendors in the cities but you will need money.

What i find disturbing is the fact, that some areas look walkable but you can't due to some invisible blocking volumes. Sometimes it ends up deadly if you'r on the run and try to hideout in a lane or behind an object but you can't.

RAGE BuggyBeside the fps combat, you can drive with various vehicles like buggys or stock cars. Races can also be driven professionally in the towns on various tracks. Those races are challenging but not frustrating. You will be rewarded depeding on your racing results. Since you travel the wastelands usually with a vehicle, you can tune those. News engines, weapons or boosts are available. Along the wastelands, you can make stunts with your vehicle which may get rewarded too. If you have a contract with someone to earn rewards by smashing bandit vehicles along your ride, you always can easily make money. Driving the vehicles is a lot of fun which i miss in various racing games.

RAGE CardsSince you need money for several stuffs like ammo, ingredients or vehicle parts, you will need a way on how to make money. Beside collecting and selling junk, looting corpses, making side jobs and driving races you will find another very attractive way to make money in the towns - gambling. I really love that minigames within a game and RAGE ships with some really funny ones. In total, i gambled for sure more then 4 hours during my first playthrough. The quartet card game is the biggest of the minigames available. Quartet cards you can find everywhere and you should collect them in order to have a good deck. If you don't like card games, you can try to replay tone sequences, role the dices or try the five-finger game.

RAGE BarRPG classics like side quests, charackter development and a small open world are also part of RAGE. The world is basically devided by 2 cities, 2 parts of the wasteland and several mission areas. During to the storyline,  you explore each completely. The cities act always as a homebase since you always have to return for the main quest but also for gambling, shopping and racing. The story of RAGE is solid but the playthrough is little bit insipid. The storyline isn't very exciting made and the ending phase is totaly disappointing but also perfect to base a second game on it. You actually don't feel finished with the game. Thats RAGE's only big disadvantage. In total, I spend around 30 hours for RAGE.

(Grum) - [06.05.2012 - 11:09]
[11264 reads] 

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