RAGE Review (PS3)

Vehicular Multiplayer Manslaughter

Driving mechanics get their due in RAGE’s vehicle-oriented multiplayer mode, which comes with four game types. The first three involve racing of some kind — in one, you pick up meteorite fragments and return them to a goal to score points; in the other two, you race to rally points and score points for passing them first. All of the games allow you to blast your opponents in vehicle combat, and you can earn better cars and parts for them over time. All the games are also limited to four players, which actually results in just-frantic-enough free-for-all tension.

For vehicle-combat multiplayer, it’s very fun. It’s also not Quake. I don’t see it becoming a dominant multiplayer force, because like many other aspects of RAGE, it feels a little shallow, with too few weapons, modes or areas through which a player can really branch out and become skillful.

The other multiplayer mode lets players grab a friend and take on special side-missions based loosely on the single-player campaign. These arcade-style levels allow players to compete for points while hammering through enemies and gathering new weapons, but they all play out just like the levels in single-player RAGE: move from room to room clearing it of enemies. That you can do so with a teammate makes the experience more interesting, but overall not too different from what the game already offers offline.

On the Playstation 3, RAGE is beautiful, but I somehow doubt the console version can stand against a PC version even on the PS3′s best day. The console handles the framerate throughout the game, even with things blowing up all over the place, which is great; but expect to see textures popping up constantly, all over everything. Load times are painfully long — never leave a town until you’re absolutely sure, lest you have to re-enter after forgetting something. That the game manages to be so beautiful and run so well in spite of the current hardware is probably a testament to the PS3, actually, but you can still feel the limits of this generation creeping in around the technological edges.

I enjoyed RAGE quite a bit at a few points when I was playing the campaign, but I see few reasons to head back in (or even to fully complete it), even with the promise of higher difficulties. id has made a title that does one thing well, but it doesn’t feel as though it really put much effort into the other aspects of the game beyond the flashy visuals of the new idTech 5 engine. The story is razor thin. The AI, though interesting to watch, quickly becomes predictable. The minigames, racing and driving are fairly minor diversions. The world isn’t really meant for you to explore. And in the end, it’s not a place you’ll need to live in: a visit is more than enough.

Pros:

  • id’s signature well-made FPS comment in spades
  • Lots of weapons and items give you lots of options for each combat situation
  • Enemy AI is fun to square off with and moves realistically
  • Some really, really great combat moments. Fully makes you feel like a bad-ass.
  • Co-op multiplayer is a nice change of pace
  • Vehicle-based competitive multiplayer modes are pretty fun and tightly made
  • idTech 5 engine looks great

Cons:

  • Aspects other than shooting things can often feel thin
  • Though it acts like it’s not linear, it actually is pretty linear
  • RPG-style elements aren’t really all that deep
  • While fun, each level plays out in pretty much the same way

Final Score: 75/100

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14 Comments on RAGE Review (PS3)

Heru

On October 3, 2011 at 9:35 pm

Very interesting. I wonder if the PC version is much different. If not i’ll be waiting for it to drop to 30 bucks.

Apoc

On October 3, 2011 at 11:13 pm

you probably won’t have to wait long if the first spate of reviews are anything to go by. I’m predicting bargain bin within a month or so or at least a massive sale on steam in the upcoming holiday season.

JosephPS3 Dead State

On October 4, 2011 at 6:25 am

Rage $46.49 now at Bestbuy.ca (Canada)

Its reduced to $49.99 ($56.49 after tax) and you also get a $10 reward card. So even if you were to wait a year and get it for $20, you’re really only paying $26.49 premium to play it now and not wait till it drops to $20. I think this game is worth the $26.49 premium to get it now especially if you can still get the Anarchy preorder bonus.

Nick

On October 4, 2011 at 7:21 am

I dunno man your pros and cons make this game sound better than a 7/10, you r reasons for not liking this game are not big issues for me when playing a FPS, weak story, not bothered, I haven’t played a FPS with a decent story since Half Life 2.

I’ve noticed a lot of reviewers are very cranky when reviewing this game for some reason, a lot of crying and moaning about little things. Maybe they were expecting some sort of massive RGG style FPS, I wasn’t, this is pretty much exactly what I was expecting. Not saying it’s a 9/10 or perfect, but I think a lot of reviews are being a bit overly harsh when other similar FPS get off lighter for some of the same faults.

Phil Hornshaw

On October 4, 2011 at 7:32 am

@Nick

I see where you’re coming from. My trouble with Rage isn’t that it has a weak story — it does, but that’s id for you and I knew that going in — but more that it doesn’t make up for its shortcomings with really solid mechanics or gameplay. The shooting CAN be really fun, but it never changes. The first fight is the same as the last fight, but the room has different colors, you know? It lacks good bosses and set pieces, and a lot of the elements feel really shallow.

As for people expecting Fallout — I think that’s the fault of id and Bethesda, saying we were getting things like “loot” and “crafting” and “a huge world.” Rage, realistically, has none of those things. I think the game is marketed toward looking like Borderlands and Fallout and Bethesda and id allowed that to happen when that’s not the game they were making. It’s fine not to be an RPG, but I think people are right to feel like they were misled by the game pretending to be one when it’s really just a corridor shooter.

Steve

On October 4, 2011 at 5:00 pm

Rage is a strictly linear game. It was sold to us, virally or not, as being something that it is not: a non-linear game. Most of the annoying and repetitive tasks in the game do nothing but provide the illusion that you’re not just playing another id shooter. Unfortunately for id, most gamers who have yet to be lobotomized see right through their cute little illusion.

Despite this, the game is pretty. Needs some patch work on PC. It’s a mess right now.

Louis

On October 4, 2011 at 7:59 pm

Save your money for a while guys. Just downloaded and installed Rage via Steam and all I get for my $60 is:

Problem signature:
Problem Event Name: APPCRASH
Application Name: rage.exe
Application Version: 1.0.27.6901
Application Timestamp: 4e89e183
Fault Module Name: atioglxx.dll
Fault Module Version: 6.14.10.10061
Fault Module Timestamp: 4c33de79
Exception Code: c0000005
Exception Offset: 00761990
OS Version: 6.1.7601.2.1.0.256.1
Locale ID: 1033
Additional Information 1: 0a9e
Additional Information 2: 0a9e372d3b4ad19135b953a78882e789
Additional Information 3: 0a9e
Additional Information 4: 0a9e372d3b4ad19135b953a78882e789

Read our privacy statement online:
http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?linkid=104288&clcid=0×0409

If the online privacy statement is not available, please read our privacy statement offline:
C:\Windows\system32\en-US\erofflps.txt

- Windows 7 x64
- Newest ATI drivers (updated yesterday actually) 4850HD
- i7 proc and 16GB ram

Faulty graphics and sound issues are one thing. Not getting to a load screen or even an intro video is inexcusable.

Too bad I can’t get my money back from Steam. Guess I’ll have to wait for a patch to see if this game will even run.

Peace.

tiltswitch

On October 7, 2011 at 9:01 am

im pretty disappointed with the reviews so far….having not played it yet i was certainly expecting an oblivion type fps…they without a doubt marketed it as that in their trailer….still it looks great and im a big fan of quake and doom….

Blackdawg

On October 13, 2011 at 7:01 am

Wow, the pc versions review got 40/100 and complaints about graphics. Console version gets 75/100 and graphics are praised. I wonder why

Phil Hornshaw

On October 13, 2011 at 7:46 am

@blackdawg

Specifically because the game looks good on consoles, where you have no graphical options and the hardware is aging, and not on PCs, where there are no graphical control options and issues like pop-up and texture streaming are much, much more severe. Watch some YouTube videos for comparison.

Nick

On October 14, 2011 at 12:27 pm

I’ve put 7 hours into the campaign and I like it a lot. I think people are being overly harsh on this game, it’s got the best AI for enemies I’ve seen in a shooter this generation. Yes there are parts that can be tedious, but the game is a good length and the combat is a lot of fun. It’s a solid 8.5/10 for me. I’m enjoying it a lot more than most other FPS this gen

Dean Raven

On October 25, 2011 at 1:58 pm

I love the game, great gameplay good shooting etc and love the shop and the buggy!! only just about 2 hours into the game and its really fun!!! after reading about the weak story I realised that everyone is right!! I cant even think what the story is hahaha!!!!! dont let that put you off though

Me

On December 31, 2011 at 9:38 pm

Bangin game just buy it. Sick multiplayer and awesome shooting. One of the best games I’ve ever played

Marquis

On November 27, 2012 at 8:04 pm

Silly reviews for this game. ‘the rpg elements are pretty thin’… Rage is a fps, seems fairly easy to understand. Does Fallout or Mass Effect get docked 25 % (which it looks like they did here) because the shooting obiously is not up to standard of the top current fps? -Or do reviewers have sense enough..