Let me start off by saying that I love Rust.
It’s a great game, and it isn’t even out of alpha yet. The shooting mechanics are tight, the building mechanics are intuitive and the comedic aspects are spot on.
It only has one flaw, but it’s a big one, one that I think is going to make me stop playing the game.
Its known as offline raiding, or offline griefing.
You see the problem is that I have a life outside of gaming that I cannot ignore, even if just to sleep or earn money so I can continue playing games. Rust never sleeps, nor does it have to stop playing to earn money, and it is this dynamic that speaks to the core of the problem. Rust is a game where you are required to collect resources, build a base and defend it against other survivors. It encourages you to have an ongoing relationship with it over multiple days, even weeks or months. And yet it offers no protection for those who while playing for weeks or months, must leave to do other things. And in the space of one night your base can be obliterated, your loot taken, and your dreams of never being naked again shattered.
This is more than just a simple mechanics problem however. Much of the problem stems from the player base. I am on an Australian server, and I know for a fact that there are swedes, french, germans and americans playing on the aussie server because of the simple fact that when it is night time here, and everyone is asleep, it is daytime for them and a playground for easy offline raids. For me personally, this kind of behaviour goes against what I believe the spirit of the game to be. To me, an online raid is more honourable and fun than an offline one, for both parties.
On the salty end of the scale we have the griefers. People who will intentionally wall up, destroy or take over your base (mostly while you are offline) for the pure joy of seeing others suffer.
I’m not here to talk about the way other people play though. I’m here because i’d like to put my voice forward, to try to work for changes, before I have to say goodbye to Rust for good. And I sincerely hope it doesn’t come to that.
Simply put, if the Facepunch team and Rust in general cant offer me any level of protection against offline raiders and griefers, timed or otherwise, then I will have to quit Rust for good. But seeing how my mother said you shouldn’t complain about something without thinking of ways to make it better, i’d like to offer ideas for some kind of offline protection that we can all discuss, and possibly even get implemented. The more feedback on this the better.
IDEA 1 - Timed Protection
After going offline, or perhaps through activation just before you go offline, you can activate a trigger which triples the hp of all your structures health. This would make it much harder and more costly to raid an offline player than an online one, and promote online raiding again. When you log back in this protection disappears. The protection is also on a timer, and will expire of too much time has passed before logging in again.
IDEA 2 - Blanket Protection
Blanket protection for all offline players, perhaps on particular servers. This isn’t my ideal solution but it is a possibility.
IDEA 3 - Tool Cupboard Changes
Make tool cupboards harder to destroy and lockable so that raiding players can only destroy structures and not build them. This would help to prevent griefing by other players. Make ladders placable even in building blocked zones so that raiders can move around without needing building permissions.
These are just some ideas. Tell me what you think.
I recently added a poll asking you guys what percentage of raids do you think are offline raids. Please participate if you can: