Played on Windows
I thought we would have an easy Humble Monthly Bundle for February 2019. I already reviewed Yakuza 0 and only have to play Division, but to switch things up, Humble Bundle has released another game, Rapture Rejects. Well, this is the game that got a release two months ago, and now is in a Humble Monthly Bundle, that’s a bit of a red flag. Let’s take a look and find out exactly what it’s about.
I’m reviewing the game as it stands in 0.6.3. It’s part of Early Access, and in fact, the only reason I’m reviewing it here is due to its inclusion in the Humble Monthly Bundle. As the game is in Early Access, I expect parts of it to change, and perhaps maybe even my suggestions might be considered.
The first thing I notice with this game is the subtitle. “Cyanide and Happiness”, it’s a webcomic that has a very dark brand of humor. I honestly am a fan of it, and enjoy the comic mostly due to the black humor.
The game does a great job of retaining that same art style and humor, and for that, I applaud the game. I wasn’t sure how the stick figure-ish characters that Cyanide and Happiness are known for would work in a video game, and I can report that they’re quite good. The entire art style is a bit simplistic but that’s also the point of the original comic.
The story of Rapture Rejects is that the Rapture has happened, and everyone left on earth was not chosen, however, for whatever reason, God has left behind a single ticket into heaven. Every player can fight over that one ticket and the last man standing gets a trip into heaven.
It’s actually an interesting reason for a Battle Royale game, at least better than everyone in a plane and jumping over an empty island for “reasons”. There’s a bit of the dark humor I was talking about, but it’s really just a framing device for the game, rather than a reason for the Battle Royale. I think the real story is that “Battle Royale is popular” so it’s time for someone else to make a battle royale game.
In this game hellfire forces players to come together.
I do have to again mention I’m reviewing the game as it appears currently. It’s currently in 0.6.3 (0.6.6 as of the last look) and I mention that because only a couple of days ago when I first got the game, there was a major update where they changed the main mode of the game. The original game is no longer playable, being replaced by “God’s Plan B”. I can make informed guesses at the change, but I’m not entirely sure. The biggest change that seems to be mentioned is that players no longer die when killed before the golden ticket is found. This means that death is not important until around halfway through a game.
I imagine with the game marked for next year, this might not be the final mode, but it’s the one I am judging at this time.
The entire battle royale game is about having nothing, in this case only being able to punch opponents, from there players run around a map and loot as many boxes as they can to get guns, ammo, and gear with the idea being to try to find the ticket. As mentioned, until that ticket is found, the only thing that happens when the players are killed is that the player’s inventory resets. A major set back, but being returned to the game means the player can go find more loot to use.
I’m unsure of the exact point of the golden ticket itself. I found the golden ticket one time and ran around the map. It seems to give all the players the location of the carrier, and if so that makes sense but it also makes the player carrying it a huge target, so if you’re playing the smart BR game, the best move is to not get the ticket if possible, to avoid drawing threat, and wait until everyone else eliminates each other, scavenging loot where you can.
This could very well be an interesting game, but it has abysmally low player count. I’ve never had a game with more than 11 players. I got into my biggest game at Midnight on the west coast on a Friday, with 11 players. I also played at noon on a Saturday and got games of 7 and 6 players. Those are the games in the First Look. On Monday, at 10 pm (west coast again) there were only 10 people online according to steam spy and the game stopped looking for players after about 3 minutes of searching.
You can see the player count in the upper right, and I’m looting boxes here.
There are even servers in different parts in the world, but with player counts so low that only increases the problems with the game as now there are four different queues, and likely 4 different servers you can connect to.
None of this is a good sign and it’s the single biggest problem with the game if no one is playing a Battle Royale game…. What’s the point. Apparently, this game was intended for 100 players, and that could be cool. Unfortunately, in the last 30 days, the peak was 61 players. That’s very unhealthy.
When you’re playing a battle royale intended for 100 players, not even hitting 100 users is going to be rough. Worse the game itself stops searching after 3 minutes. But if you’re getting games of 11 players, perhaps the solution is to find a different game mode. 11 players are better suited to a Deathmatch, or team gameplay mode, not a full battle royale experience. We’re not done with the review but maybe we should be.
Another way to look at it would be to think of the classic Battle Royale novel which had 50 students to fight to the death. The more popular Americanized version of it, Hunger Games had 24 tributes from 12 districts. Rapture Rejects doesn’t even have enough players for one tribute from each district, and the fewer people who enter a battle royale the worst the experience.
The character customization is one of the few positives here, except…
It would be a shame overall but the game itself isn’t exceptional either. Aiming is a little hard to do in the multiplayer game. Players can easily dodge out of the way of the attacks at anything but close range, and it makes shotguns much more efficient with more hits, as well as a larger range.
I do love the art of the game, and the weapons are interesting. There are CD Launcher, Toasters full of Knives, even the shotgun makes fart noises when fired. All of these are good signs and show the humor reaches more than just the character style. Though you’ll quickly see almost all the weapons and once you’ve seen them all they’re just variety, but at least the theme works here.
Rapture Rejects also has a good customization system that allows you to create your character. Actually, one of the best parts is that the player is gender neutral and can have “Boobs” or “Dong”. The crassness is on par for the game, but I do appreciate not making it male or female. You can have both options on or neither option on as well.
This is what it comes down to, more money, ugh.
There is a worse issue than all of this though. After each match, you earn tickets. These tickets are set up so you can pull from a “gacha” machine, basically, a large loot box that gives you random customization items. The game started by throwing tickets at me, earning 104 tickets in my first match. You can watch my third and fourth match in the First Look above. I went from 99 tickets to 44 tickets, and yet I did far better in the second game. Apparently, the honeymoon period of the game was over and suddenly the game became stingy. When I got online again, I was earning less than 10 tickets a game, insultingly low numbers that made it clear that it is intended that the player gets far less tickets. Not a good look for the game.
The problem though is there are also golden tickets that get dropped from the “gacha” machine. Gold tickets allow you to buy any customization piece you want, and that’s a good thing, except I only got 20 tickets and most of the best looking gear is worth a couple hundred. I could keep playing the game to earn these, or I could pay money for the tickets.
Yes, there are microtransactions in this game. This is a 20 dollar game currently that has a low player count, and is in early access, and somehow someone thought they should start charging people more money for it.
I want to write something about Microtransactions soon, and it’ll be coming to talk about this as a bigger topic but a free game having a microtransaction isn’t the same as a 20 dollar game. Now theoretically this game could go free and Early Access time is only for “true fans” who want to donate. Except, reality seems to indicate it’s the opposite. The Early Access posting says that the game will be more expensive when it leaves Early Access.
Everything about this leaves a bad taste in my mouth. The game is suffering player counts and it seems the devs are trying to get more money out of the fans than give them a better experience. The focus should never really be on “How do I get more money out of my players” for a game where you’re paying up front, but worse this is being asked before the game is in an acceptable state.
That’s where I leave the game. It’s the ending of an unappetizing meal. The art here is good, the concept could have been interesting, and the guns are clever, but the gameplay isn’t that amazing, the player counts are abysmal, and they’re asking for more money. I got this game for free, and I feel cheated because I know some of the value of the Humble Monthly Bundle is going to this game and not to anything else. I see it as the bottom of the barrel… yet,
I give Rapture Rejects a
The ONLY saving grace here is that it hasn’t damaged my machine and is still playable some of the time. I almost gave this game a 1.5 to be nice, but the microtransactions really have me steamed for a game that is in early access, has no players and thus you can’t play it, and people are paying money for. I intended a 1 to be for a game that crashes often, and a 0 for a game that doesn’t work at all, but this game earns a 1. However, seeing how the game operates when it has less than 10 players, it’s more of a 0 at those times, and I imagine those times are coming more often. Either way, what’s the point of playing? No, thank you guys, and if this is Rapture Rejects, I might go to church tomorrow to confess my sins.
Final Thoughts: Do not buy this game, unless there’s been a complete overhaul. Player counts are under 61 players, microtransactions are in the game, and it’s not even worth the time if free. HEAVY WARNING.
Stats: 2.0 hours played