by Chris Davis
previewed on PC
The Remains (cntd.)
The demonstrator later entered a modified dune buggy and drove off through wasteland. Driving is something very new for an id title as the previous id driving experience was limited to a couple of monorail trains in Doom 3. The new driving system seems competent and about as easy to utilize as that of any other driving title out there. The vehicular combat portion of the Rage driving experience however is something that only a handful of titles have ever been able to successfully create, the most prominent title being the Twisted Metal series. As the player followed a waypoint on the HUD, two other vehicles attacked. The dune buggy had been modified with semi-automated machinegun turrets so the player was able to destroy the bandits and drive his now smoking and flaming buggy to Wellspring, the local water pumping station.
Wellspring is the site of another feature that id experimented with and is radically expanding: NPC interaction. NPC interaction has only really been previously done by id in Doom 3, wherein during the beginning sections of the game prior to the demonic attack on Mars you could interact with some NPCs and do a little exploring. This time around, id is making these characters persistent, with available side missions for those who repeatedly interact with the NPCs. Players will also be able to purchase and sell weapons and items found throughout the world as well as participate in various gambling minigames.
After having explored the town for a little bit, the player entered a water pumping station where he learned that a group of bandits known as the Ghost Clan had broken into the tunnel system beneath Wellspring and were ransoming the water supply. Like the dutiful citizen that he was, he accepted the mission and descended into the tunnels below.
With a Gun at My Side
Within the tunnel system the familiar game design that id built its reputation came to the forefront as the long, cramp corridors forebode close encounters with less friendly citizens than what was found above ground. The level was environmental detail was stunning, with extremely realistic water effects.
As the player progressed through the tunnel we began hearing the sound of bandits chatting to one another as they picked a corpse clean of valuables. We were then introduced to a new weapon: the crossbow. While bows are nothing new to videogames, the power of the weapon in Rage cannot be understated. The demonstrator snuck up on the bandits and fired an electric bolt, which works almost exactly like the trap bolts utilized in Bioshock: you shoot it into the water and any enemies in it are electrocuted. Just feet away in another room stood two more, unaware of the death of their compatriots outside due to the stealthy nature of the crossbow. It was here that the demonstrator paused and brought up another facet of Rage: item creation.