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Rage by Bethesda Softworks is a Doom or Quake type of game where the main character awakens to a post-apocalyptic world full of other humans and mutants. As a player, you engage in first person shooting, car racing, and embark on special missions. The game also includes the elements of role-playing and has two multiplayer modes.
In order to survive the asteroid’s impact, the human race built Arks that took selected humans who were later supposed to rebuild the Earth. You play a survivor, the Ark Survivor, and realize that more people survived and organized tightly protected settlements. Unfortunately, you are the only person from your ark to survive leaving you rather defenseless and without memory of the past. You have to learn how to live with humans as well as with bandits, mutants, and engaging in various missions and performing tasks. As the game progresses you learn that the bad character in the game, the Authority, is trying to gain complete control over Earth and you fight him by joining the Resistance. In order to overpower the Authority, who is now actively trying to eliminate you, with the help of the Resistance you need to make it to Capital Prime and send activation code for the still unopened arks. With the help of those liberated from the arks, you are able to best and eliminate the Authority.
Throughout the game you can collect the weapons and ammunition and switch them around as you please. The cars you use can also be customized and upgraded as you go. Inside the towns, you can buy or sell your items and participate in car competitions. That is one of the multiplayer modes in which you compete in matches against other opponents collecting points. You can also engage in two-player missions earning points by completing numerous objectives. Both modes are online and don’t contribute much to the progress in the game itself; they serve more as a distraction and a short diversion from the main goal of eliminating the Authority.
Rage is the first Bethesda’s game that runs on the new id Tech 5 technology that at the moment is most likely more useful for developers than for the gamers. It allows the developers to create many features that are automatically optimized for other platforms, making cross-platform games more widespread than ever. Although the technology is still being tweaked, the gamers will be able enjoy some of the following features id Tech 5 offers: collision detection, virtual texturing (128k x 128k texels), obstacle avoidance, simulation (cloth, water surface, etc), procedural animation, detail model generation, and transparence processing. At the moment, it is believed this technology will be most useful for first-person shooter games, but the creators hope it can eventually be applied outside of that genre.
The game was very well received and even though it might not become an all time classic, it earned solid reviews. According to GameRankings.com, it scored between 77% to 84% across different platforms, and Metacritic.com reported very similar scores. Perhaps the weakest part of the game is the storyline that appears too commonplace and doesn’t introduce anything new. Pcmag.com that rated the game “Good” and mentioned the storyline and few multiplayer options as its major flaw. Ign.com that rated the game “Great” with the overall score of 8.5 out of 10 gave the presentation 6.5 points, mainly for the storyline (again). Where the game was able to regain the lost ground was the graphics, sound, and game play. With those features in favor, the reviewer said that Rage is “a blast to play” and although not revolutionary, it’s “an expertly crafted, beautiful shooter.”