Tone vs Setting

Before you scroll past everything to tell me this has been brought up before, I’m aware it probably has but a search with various keywords get such a mess of different results that I think a new post is in order.

I would like to discuss some rather trivial matters that in all honesty, don’t bother me that much and don’t effect gameplay heavily, but have a rather mixed message in terms of art, tone, and setting of the game.

Many of the concept arts on the Trello for landmarks feature a very advanced and ‘futurey’ look. There’s nothing wrong with this by itself, and I actually like how most of the stuff is conceptualized. However, when looking at the map and the way players have to live in-game, a few questions arise.

  1. What year are we in?
  2. Why did massive and impressive technology like this suddenly cease to work or be taken care of?
  3. Why are there giant satellites and research facilities in the middle of nowhere, with no sign of it’s purpose or source?
  4. Realistically and practically, every map HAS to be an island or a collection of islands. Given this, why are these things built on this island and where is the mainland that they communicate with?
  5. Why did we have advanced technology like this that is no longer used, but we still have standard cargo planes being used for random airdrops?

Obviously I could keep going with these silly questions on and on, but I think you get the point. I don’t necessarily think these questions even need to or should be addressed. The mystery adds fun to the idea. However, I do hope the setting, style and tone eventually meet each other in a place that has some cohesion and consistency. Clearly this is a low-priority matter that can be handled after core mechanics and basic gameplay features are finished, and the game is de-bugged, so I don’t wish to sound as though I’m complaining or suggesting a need for urgency. I’m even very certain that Garry and the team have a decent idea where the artsyle will end up in the end.

What I think about the most right now, is whether the style/setting is going to focus on a ‘stone age’ type feel or an ‘advanced post-apocalyse’ feel with the abandoned and decaying technologies. Do our players remember what happened? We’re we born well after the catastrophy? Do we posses knowledge of the old and lost technology?

I’d like to hear what other people think about this style and where they think it should all go in the end, just keep in mind we aren’t demanding anything from devs or implying their intentions. This is simply a discussion.

tl;dr: What do you think about the “stone age” feel versus the “post-apocalypse” feel, and the plans for landmarks relating to a previous time in human life.

Well, we know there is radiation but no explosion craters. I always told myself nuclear weapons went off around the world and the nuclear electromagnetic pulses took out most of the technology on the island. The rust island was untouched by the explosion, but suffered from radioactive dust coating areas and all technology was short circuited by the pulses. We are a bunch of people cryogenicaly frozen for [insert years]. We were all really rich and important, but due to a malfunction with our cryo power got amnesia and stumbled in a stupor for a few miles till we reach our spawn point. Whatever company froze us had an automated drone system far away outside the blast radius programmed to drop care packages on us should our cryo power malfunction and the company is unable to pick us up.[/t] [t][/t] [t]

Rust is post-civilization, that’s why you have wrecked things like these decaying and rusting away and slowly being reclaimed by nature. The naked bald guys are rebuilding civilization after a great fall of some sort.

The devs have internal Trello boards to keep spoilers out of the public view, and only they know what’s on there. So, I don’t know if they’re going to get any more specific with the backstory or not. I’d be perfectly happy for Rust to have no specific backstory, only a bunch of things that hint at the past so players can fill in the rest.

This is something that the Civilization: Beyond Earth devs did with BE’s backstory. They roughly worked out the extremely basic form of the backstory that leads to the start of the game, and then they developed their own internal narrative to explain how things got to that point. They used this internal narrative to shape how the different characters and lore in-game come across, but they never include the actual backstory they wrote out themselves. Instead, the game presents fragments of lore and hints of the past and lets players develop the rest themselves, because the past matters less than the “present time” of the game itself.

Maybe we should spawn in a broken down ship heading for a crash and try to land it. We could get a little supplies from the ship, it would leave a big smoke trail in the sky etc. That could give us a rough idea of where we are on the map aswell. In my opinion Rust should head for a soviet post-apocalyptic setting maybe… It would be cool if there was randomly spawned broken down buildings we could start from to settle down into at first.

spawn as kids, and grow older as we gain hours on a server.

i’ve always vaguely assumed some kind of nuclear event (meltdown etc) that killed everyone except us amnesiac bald guys, who then make weopons, armour and houses so we don’t get killed by bears, wolves or other bald guys. people don’t really need a reason to kill each other.

that said, although the legacy map is “rust island” it actually only has one coastline, so i always presumed it was the coastal corner of a continent, and that we simply don’t go past hacker valley because we are killed, starve to death, or get bored because there is literally nothing out there.

experimental is harder because they are islands by default. i’d actually be interested to play a seed that ended up with a bunch of middle sized islands close together, like hawaii or somewhere.

You’re welcome to interpret the backstory how you want and I’m not saying you’re wrong.

However, this is the full Rust_Island_2013 map. As you can see, it’s an island. The playable area is less than a quarter of the map, in the southwest quadrant. Just like the further edges of the playable map, the rest of the map is almost totally barren and is devoid of resource spawns.[/t]

I’m sure you can guess, but I can almost guarantee that legacy (and exp, for the moment) had a limited map area for server performance reasons, and by extension, player density reasons. The server would probably choke to death if you fed it a 50x50km map with evenly-distributed resource spawns this early in development, but even if it didn’t, it’d probably fall over and die if you tried to cram 2,000 players onto it.

And if you didn’t have a ridiculous number of players and spawns are randomized across the whole map, good luck finding anyone. Ever again. If that had been the legacy experience, you would have never heard a single word of opposition from me whenever a “give us an in-game map/compass/GPS” thread came up. :v:

I’m hoping that later on, we can get some customization controls for the procedural generation, a bit like Minecraft’s controls, especially if boats get implemented.

HOW AWESOME would it be to have a map seed that generates several islands completely separated from each other? You could stage full-on invasions by boats and have battles on the beach, with the invaders trying to push the defenders back/kill them so they can rush the actual base. It’d make for much more organic and literal territorial limits and put a bit of a barrier on trespassing.

…wow, this went wildly off-topic for a thread about the setting.

[editline]24th November 2014[/editline]

garry’s dev server, and any decently-busy server that has lots of people coming in and out, would look like a war zone with crashed ships every 5 feet. :v:

I get what you’re saying, but I’m not sure such an introduction to Rust would be right for garry’s vision. But who knows, maybe by the time the Early Access banner comes off, there’ll be an intro cutscene where you crash-land and stagger out with nothing, not even your clothes.

Have you never, ever looked at the devs’ concept art board on Trello? Specifically the two columns to the far right (you may have to scroll), landmarks and remnants. I haven’t specifically heard confirmation from garry, but I’m hoping you will be able to make a shelter out of/inside these places.


For example, the spherical tanks. If the building system was capable of blocking up the entrance, you could turn this into a ready little base with one problem: Probably only one way in or out, so you’d better not piss everyone off and then run for the tank.

it’s been a while since i’ve bothered with legacy, so i’m a bit rusty on my details, but is there actually water at the edges of the map other than the coast? i’ve never bothered going far enough to run out of land, so my opinion about it being a “continent” rather than an “island” (purely a matter of scale in regards to the land mass) is really based on that :slight_smile:

Legacy never had lakes, one of the map limitations was a single water plane.

So far exp appears to only have a single water plane, but procedural generation will create inland lakes and inner seas with channels out to the edge of the continent into the sea. I think eventually garry’ll probably want to add different localized water levels so you can have a lake above sea level.

There was water at the edges. I used to play a modded server with wasteland tp points and some of them were the remote beaches.

I also thought this was going to be a post apocalyptic world in the future. But right now the modellers are working on stock animals? surely with all these awesome artist they could have come up with something a bit more creative to kill, why waste time on stock animals when you can just buy them from the asset store and save time. rabbits and chicken wow this game is really thrilling me in its direction.

at this point i have seen nothing to reflect the artwork and the game, granted we in alpha why make textures for trees and land if you not sure its going to stay isnt that a massive waste of resources?

mention of the world being like mad max, but we have mincraftesc bioms its like every other builder game with different bioms. surely 90% of the world would d esert, very little water, maybe some portion or an oasis and mini forests exists. Great way to tackle current issues of climate change, this could be the result we live in now, heavy carbon very hot…

As far as the trees and terrain, even if they don’t use the models it is a learning experience for them. They have learned a lot about speed trees and terrain optimizations for unity 5 in the past few months and even if they couldn’t convert their assets to a new theme, they can now produce them in a fraction of the time with better quality.

I like the lack of a story and just random landmark buildings. It adds a sense of intrigue to it. Wondering what the hell happened while trying not to get mauled by wolves or bears. It definitely has a post-civilization feel to it. I’m sure they’ll add more to fill this in as time goes on.

Personally, I was a big fan of the “Stone Age” feel, but after seeing clones like Out of Reach I’m kind of glad they are going for the style and feel they are. I really hope some of the decaying landmarks of past civilization are designed to fit the green and grassy look of the game. Roots, vines, moss etc growing. Stuff to make it fit the environment a bit more.